I am aware that in this world of sports there are baseball fans who follow baseball and baseball only. Maybe they’re purists. Maybe baseball takes up such an incredible amount of time in their lives that they only have the energy for the one sport. Maybe there are other, more interesting reasons, reasons that I can’t come up with because I do not know these people personally and cannot relate because I myself like many sports. You can spend a lot of time running through hypotheticals that can never be proven nor dispoven.
For those of you who are baseball-only kind of fans, I’m here to tell you that tonight will mark the start of the NBA Finals. The NBA is the National Basketball Association, and is a professional basketball league. Basketball is a sport with an orange ball. I could continue this ridiculous little joke exercise for a really long time if I wanted to and write hundreds of words explaining in simple terms how basketball is played, but I’m going to spare you. If you honestly don’t know anything about basketball, 1) Wow, and 2) You’re on the internet, you can figure this one out.
Here’s where I tell you why the NBA Finals have anything to do with baseball. The Finals features the Miami Heat against the Oklahoma City Thunder. There’s this Cy Young pitcher named Felix Hernandez. He pitches for the Seattle Mariners. You may have heard of him. He just so happens to be a huge Miami Heat fan. Do you see the connection? Have I justified this post subject enough yet? Felix Hernandez really likes the Heat. I’m sure there are other baseball players who are fans of basketball teams, but I’m a Mariners fan and the Heat are in the Finals and so you can see how I would end up at this particular angle. Felix has a Twitter account and he tweets about the Heat a lot, sometimes in Spanish, which is something I can’t help with but I have to imagine the Heat talk stays positive no matter the language. Felix tweets pictures of himself in a Heat Jersey along with some other guy in a Celtics jersey, and pictures of all the Heat memorabilia he keeps near his locker. He tweets the adorable picture that accompanies this post of him and his son wearing Heat gear. His son’s T-shirt says “Baseball” on it, I hope the connection between these two subjects is still evident! He also says stuff like this: “I’ll win, they’ll win. We’ll get two wins on Tuesday.”
Felix’s love of the Heat comes at a particularly appropriate time in Seattle sports. This is not the post to explore how the Oklahoma City Thunder were once the Seattle SuperSonics. I don’t have the heart right now, and you don’t have the time. Suffice to say that most Seattleites are rooting against the Thunder with great enthusiasm and vigor. I am one of those Seattleites. The Heat will now battle the Thunder for the NBA Championship, and they can not prevail. There is no other option. That’s what makes Felix Hernandez and his love of the Miami Heat so heartening. It’s a wonderful scenario, or as wonderful as it can be, given the circumstances. As a Mariners fan who hates the Thunder, my righteous hope for the Heat to win is now supported by my favorite pitcher on my favorite baseball team. This is something I can get behind. Perhaps you can too, baseball fan. If you’re otherwise without a position, why not step behind Felix Hernandez, the really good baseball pitcher that you know? Why not step behind Seattle? Do it for baseball. Or something.