Baseball’s Opening Day is arguably the greatest single day in sports. Opening Day marks the start of a new campaign, a new journey for teams. New faces on the diamond scattered in between legends and the games most elite players. Fresh cut grass, sun shining above, the smell of baseball in the air…not anymore. No, now Major League Baseball has decided to begin the season with Opening Night. This 2013 season will begin on March 31st when the Texas Rangers visit the Houston Astros at 8 P.M. ET. The 2012 season began in Tokyo, Japan with the Seattle Mariners and the Oakland Athletics. This new “Opening Night Tradition” the MLB is trying to push is not going to work and I’m going to tell you why.
Last season when the Mariners and the Athletics visited Tokyo to start the 2012 season, almost no one knew about it. The MLB was too busy running promos for the new Miami Marlins and New York Yankees as they always seem to do. After the Mariners and Athletics flew back to the U.S. they each played exhibition games. So after officially opening the season overseas they came back played exhibition games, then continued to play regular season games, where is the sense in that. The game was played at Tokyo, so the time the game was played in Tokyo translates to some ungodly early morning hour here in the States for which almost no viewers woke up. One last big, actually huge mistake the MLB made was starting AMERICA’S PASTIME IN JAPAN!!!!! Baseball is the Great American Sport. Opening Day is treated like a religious holiday in the US, so what does the MLB do? Send it to Japan?! Are you kidding me?
This year, rather fortunately, Major League baseball has wised up and at least started the season in the United States. However, it’s called Opening Day for a reason, IT’S DURING THE DAY! Opening Night for the longest time was the next game after Opening Day. No one ever complained about it because everyone loves the festivities of Opening Day, from parades to parties to leaving work early, Opening Day is as close to a National Sports Holiday as it can get. The MLB claims that Opening Night will allow more people to watch the start of the regular season…so they picked the Houston Astros, last years worst team, and the Texas Rangers, who should absolutely crush the Astros. I’m sure everyone is going to want to watch that thriller of a game.
The MLB completely dropped the ball on this. Opening Day is the greatest season opener in any sport, and now they are trying to change it. What’s that old saying? “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Well Opening Day ain’t broke and the MLB does not need to try to fix it. Opening Day should be exactly that, opening the Major League season during the day. Opening Night should be the game after Opening Day, as it has always been.