As I write this blog, the first game of the new MLB season is taking place. It's a Sunday afternoon. Yet, even the most ardent baseball fans outside of Pittsburgh and St. Louis wouldn't know it's even taking place. There will be a contest tonight in Kansas City between the Royals and Mets which will begin at 8:30 PM. Opening Day (or Night) for the defending champions of each league. Children, like the one with the transistor radio, might get to watch a couple of innings at most because of the late start time.
There will be more openers scattered about the day tomorrow, which will lack the pomp-and-circumstance of years past. For the most part, they'll be treated almost like any of the other 161 regular season games.
For many decades, the Major League season began in Cincinnati. A parade was held in the morning before that afternoon's game. It was the official kickoff of the season. It meant something.
Today, that schoolboy from Northern New Jersey, now middle-aged, is lamenting what has become of Opening Day on social media with others from his generation. Some things shouldn't be all about money, about networks making a few extra advertising dollars by having games start in nighttime frigid temperatures and alienating young fans (and older ones as well).
The same goes for the playoffs and the World Series.
If baseball wants it's young fans back, and away from the growing popularity of basketball and soccer, it needs to go back to its traditional roots of what made it the national pastime.