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05/12/2020

A World Without...

As we all wait for Baseball’s return, we thought it would be cool to share the perspective from one of our top fans. Here’s a piece written by Corey Sanzone (Follow him @san3zone)

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‘I never thought I would see a world without baseball. 

Recently one of my Facebook posts from nine years ago popped up on my social media. It said simply, “I cannot imagine a world without baseball.” At the time, the thought that there could be a world without our great game wasn’t even fathomable. For over a century, time has been marked by baseball. It is the signal of spring, it is the definition of summer, and for many of us, baseball defines our lives. Now we are living in a world without.

Throughout this pandemic, I have tried to find the right words to describe the effect of this tragedy on myself, personally. As a firefighter and paramedic, I have been in the thick of the first responders during these trying times. I am often asked how I am handling all of these challenges, and the first thing that comes to mind isn’t how my job is affecting me, but how the loss of baseball has affected my life. I am not saying that this tragedy isn’t at the forefront, as it rightfully should be. Not that the illness nor the loss of life isn’t drastically more important than a sport. Only that, through all of this, the thing that has affected my life most is losing baseball. The game has always been my distraction, my way to get away. Even at the fire station, between calls, I would tune in every night to watch, even if I could only catch a couple of innings, and just disappear into the game. No matter what life has thrown at me, I always had baseball as my escape. The baseball leagues that I currently play in are also shut down. I have said to my wife before that the diamond is the only place that I get to be simply “me.” In my life off the field, I am a father, a husband, a son, and a firefighter, but when I step between those lines, I cease to be anything other than myself. Standing in the sun, soaking in everything the game has, it is impossible not to see how perfect and beautiful baseball is. How freeing it is, that you can get swept up in the game and the rest of your worries, your stresses, can be forgotten, even if for only one afternoon. Baseball was my first love, as it is with many people, and that love has been put on hold. 

I understand that baseball being shut down is a small sacrifice in comparison to what this pandemic could cause. I never want to prioritize a hobby over people's lives, but this world could use some distraction. We could all use a break from constantly checking our phones, watching the news, and seeing nothing but misery. It is good to see that the MLB is taking safe steps towards returning this season, possibly by the end of June. We need the joy of our favorite team rallying in the 9th to pull out a victory. 

Baseball is often said to be a microcosm of life, and I find that to be even more true in our current world. We are down, we are hurting, but we will rally. We will overcome what seems like impossible odds and come back to win. Baseball will return, but until it does, this spring, this summer, and our lives will not feel the same.’

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