Fathers, Sons, and the Nationals’ Pastime
Fatherhood on Friday: DC will host its first World Series game in 86 years tonight. Since they’re about to host us in February, we hope they take it all.
Dammit, we love baseball. Sure, it’s just a bunch of homers and strikeouts now, but some of those still conjure up plenty of drama. And the league’s lowest-paid team can still make the playoffs, while the richest team sulks and fires everybody.
Amid all the compelling stories of fatherhood in sports, there’s something about baseball and the World Series that feels particularly father-and-sonnish. This decade, for example, has seen the most “legacy debuts,” or sons of former MLB stars, in history. (And one of them hit for the cycle 17 years after his dad did.)
We’re plugged into this year’s World Series a little more than usual, mostly because it pits our 2020 venue against our home office. The Nationals have also offered their share of dad news: closer Daniel Hudson blissfully ignored the blowback and spent Game 1 of the NLCS with his new daughter, Stephen Strasburg discussed how fatherhood has shifted his priorities, and Juan Soto embraced his very exuberant dad (who was only slightly more excited than Gleyber Torres’s dad).
Therefore, we’re using this week’s column for some of our favorite baseball stories of 2019:
- Sometimes your kid hits a dinger while you’re in the other dugout, and sometimes you catch it in the stands.
- When his son’s Little League team had no place to play, an Indiana dad built a Field Of Dreams in the lot next door.
- Three generations of Michigan Wolverines have played in the College World Series.
- Indians announcer Tom Hamilton has always made time to support his son’s baseball career. “If you’re 0-for-4 or 4-for-4, I’m going to love you the same amount.”
- And a special shout-out the Multitasking Fan of the Year, who barehanded a line drive with one hand while holding his baby daughter in the other.
We’ve been watching all week, wondering if there’ll ever be another daytime World Series game so we can watch the whole thing with our kids on a school night. And though our loyalties are divided, our choice is pretty clear. We love the Astros, who won a ring two years ago. The Nationals, on the other hand, have never won anything, and DC is hosting its first World Series game since 1933.
IN THE NEWS
Often referred to as the “homework gap,” there is still unequal access to digital devices and/or high-speed internet for American students, which prevents 17 percent of teens from completing their homework assignments.
Should a child’s age determine the number of hours (the suggestion is one hour per one year) they spend in sports training each week?
Family and cameras: What matters more? Capturing the moment, or being in it?
“Breaking a child’s will leaves him open to the influence of others who often will not serve his highest interests. What’s more, it’s a betrayal of the spiritual contract we make as parents.”
How do you raise a brilliant kid? Play a game.
“In the United States, we are sitting on the precipice of a new era of gender and identity.”
Parents, are you too positive with your kids?
Getting the ol’ haunted house ready for Halloween? Here are some helpful tips to make it fun for everyone.
Rites of passage ain’t what they used to be.
- “I’m used to avoiding involvement with any sort of conflicts on trains but this one felt different because of the kids. So I moved next to the family, placing myself between them and the man, who was still raving.” — Aaron Yavelberg, Twitter thread
- “You see, the package said twelve minutes at 415 degrees but it didn’t say it may take longer if you cook two packages. Nowhere did it say that.” — Christopher Stork, I Got Five Stars for Being on Time
- “He stood there quietly for a moment, and then said: ‘Dad. Does everybody die?’” — Edward Manning, The Questions that Keep Parents Up at Night
- “Now, ignore the tears in my eyes as he hands it to his little brother and the crowd oohs and ahhs at the sweetness of the scene.” — Bill Peebles, Pay Attention: Life’s Best Stories Found Around the Diamond’s Edges
- “It won’t always be sunshine and rainbows, but this is time that you get with your kids.” — Art Eddy, The Upside To Driving Your Kids All Around Town
‘GRAM OF THE WEEK
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Originally published at https://www.dad2summit.com on October 25, 2019.