Take me out to the ball game! Confessions of a baseball junkie

By Tom Dercola

My love of the game started at Wesley Park on Spence and Ellice watching Senior Ladies Fastball and progressed in my youth catching the Goldeyes playing at Winnipeg Stadium, a facility more suited to football than baseball.

Fast forward some fifty years and the magic of baseball still excites me.

Shaw Park is a jewel among baseball parks. Located near The Forks with a great view of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, it’s a fan’s delight… comfortable seats, warm summer nights, thousands of like-minded fans. Awesome!

Buy Me Some Peanuts and Cracker Jacks

Maybe that was baseball fare… in the last century. Nowadays there are so many choices at the Park. On those really busy days, when I have been racing around on station business, I head down to the Park to grab supper from some of Winnipeg’s iconic eateries. Most game days, I’m content with more typical baseball nibbles, popcorn and a cold one.

Baseball is more a social event than other spectator sports. There is always a time to explain the finer points of the infield fly rule to your wife or to ask your grandkids, ‘How’s the summer going’?

Goldie and Goldette, mascots for the Goldeyes.
Goldie and Goldette, mascots for the Goldeyes.

Everyone, young in age or young in spirit, gets a charge out of the on- field antics of Goldie and Goldette.

Between innings there are those funny on field fan competitions. Does Dan Chase really dress up like a strip of bacon? Throughout the season there are hosts of promotions and giveaways. Imagine 5000+ spectators all chanting ‘Pancakes! Pancakes!’

A full house cheers on the Goldeyes on a warm summer's eve.
A full house cheers on the Goldeyes on a warm summer’s eve.

Hey Ump, You Need Glasses!

For the baseball purist, nothing is more satisfying than scoring a game…6-4-3 (double play) or K (strikeout) Ah, that brings reminiscences of a classic…

Abbott: Strange as it may seem, they give ball players nowadays very peculiar names.

Costello: Funny names?

Abbott: Nicknames, nicknames. Now, on the St. Louis team we have Who’s on first, What’s on second, I Don’t Know is on third–

Costello: That’s what I want to find out. I want you to tell me the names of the fellows on the St. Louis team.

Abbott: I’m telling you. Who’s on first, What’s on second, I Don’t Know is on third—

Catch all the action live at Shaw Park or on your radio at CJNU 93.7, The Official Radio Station of the Winnipeg Goldeyes. Play by play announcer, Steve Shuster, will guide you through every game as the Goldeyes seek to capture the American association pennant.

And, on selected dates, CJNU personalities will be at the Park. We put the ball into play on May 7th at 11 a.m. for the Goldeyes Annual Open House. Rumour is that the first 1500 people get a free baseball lunch. CJNU folk will also be out in full force for the season’s Home Opener on May 30 at 7 p.m.

Let’s Play!

Tom Dercola is President of the Board of CJNU. His fielding skills will never be mistaken for Derek Jeter’s.

Let's talk...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s