Friday, May 19, 2006

Nationals vs Orioles

Interleague play starts this weekend in Major League Baseball. The Orioles will travel from Baltimore to play at RFK Stadium tonight through Sunday. It will be the Orioles first appearance in D.C. since 1971. I'm planning to go to the Sunday afternoon game.

I was talking with my friend Ian at work and he's got a mini ticket plan for both teams. The question comes up--Who are you going to root for? The answer: I'm not really sure yet. Let me take you back a long, long time ago. September 1971. The Senators, and my boyhood baseball idol Frank Howard, are being moved to Texas at the end of the season. I listened to their last game at RFK Stadium on WWDC AM 1260. I had my dog Chester hanging out with me and I was heartbroken we were losing the Senators.

Fast forward a few months in 1972: My parents were at a dinner party and they met Orioles Public Relations Director, Bob Brown. Dad and Mom told Mr. Brown about how I was sad the Senators moved and how much I missed baseball. A few days after this meeting, I received a package in the mail from Mr. Brown. In it contained player picture cards, a hat, an Orioles shirt, a World Series program from 1971 and other items. I was hooked instantly on the Orioles and I wrote Mr. Brown a letter thanking him. Over the next couple years we corresponded with one another via US Mail and to this day, I owe my Orioles allegiance to Mr. Brown. That simple gesture on his part kept me a baseball fan. This was a very big deal to a ten year old. That's how I became an Orioles fan.

While I'm very happy that Washington D.C. got the Nationals, I'm still an Orioles fan and will always be, so perhaps I answered my own question here. I think Ian is going to wear an O's shirt while his wife wears a Nats cap.

Meanwhile, take a trip back in time by reading today's Post


Anonymous said...

Bob Brown is alive and well in West Palm Beach, FL. One of my all-time favorite people in baseball.

Pawleys said...

Anonymous is correct. I just looked up his wife in our alumnae directory!