As many baseball fans will attest, professional baseball games can be grueling in duration, stretching out over hours and lengthy innings.
The length of these games often prompts fans to leave early, heading back home to prepare for work the next day, and this is the case for Washington Post columnist Candace Buckner.
Buckner attended Sunday night’s baseball game at PNC field, but left before she could watch Albert Pujols make history with his 697th home run hit.
Buckner details this disappointing departure in her recent opinion piece and highlights what the symbolic hit means to her as well.
“By the time Albert Pujols hit his historic home run Sunday in Pittsburgh, I was on southbound Interstate 79 heading home.
I missed him tattooing a 2-0 pitch in the top of the ninth inning into the distance, toward the skyline and the intensely yellow Roberto Clemente Bridge. I missed the ball landing somewhere beyond right-center and igniting a scramble between three grown men who dived headfirst into the front row for the souvenir. I missed the proud caravan of St. Louis Cardinals fans, my people, going bonkers and turning PNC Park into their Steel City vacation rental.
Their shouts of “Albert! Albert! Albert!” energized an otherwise dreary Sunday, all because they had the privilege of witnessing something special. That ball Pujols hammered drove in the go-ahead runs in the Cardinals’ comeback win; more importantly, it was his 697th home run, the fourth most in Major League Baseball history.
I went to Pittsburgh to see my favorite ballplayer, my peer, accomplish history. His final season has already been a lesson in unexpected endings. Sunday, he gave me one final reminder: If you don’t stick around until the end, you never know what you might miss.”
Read the rest of this article here.
Buckner also highlights the practicality of her decision to leave the game early; she had work the following day, and traffic also played a role in her early departure.
The thrill of professional sports lies in the potential for a comeback, and often it is within these final moments that history is made or the excitement of a fanbase is felt.
Many baseball fans are forced to make a decision on weekday game nights: stay until the bitter end to see the game through, or be sensible and leave early to get home at a reasonable hour.
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