To whom it may concern,
As a college student, I value sleep nearly as highly as I value eating or breathing. It takes a small miracle to get me to wake up in the middle of the night and exercise my brain. And yet, tomorrow morning I will be waking up at a positively ungodly hour to watch the Seattle Mariners play the Oakland Athletics for a lot of reasons - a few of which I will share.
First off, I love baseball for, among many things, its ability to weave compelling narratives. The season's first day introduces us to the characters of 2012 without establishing which will ultimately be heroes and which will end up villains. Opening Day gives us false hope, but false hope is better than no hope at all. I want nothing more than for the Mariners to suspend my skepticism and delay my ire. I am quite happy to hate Chone Figgins, but I am just as eager to see him produce a single and a stole base.
Secondly, I have waited for baseball to return for nearly five months. Sure, Spring Training has been going on for awhile, but let's get real here. Comparing mid-March baseball to regular-season baseball is tantamount to comparing St. Patrick's Day to Christmas. Does your cousin buy you an iPad on St. Patrick's Day? (I hope not. That would be weird.) In any case, almost half a year has passed without meaningful Seattle Mariners baseball. I am famished for Felix fastballs, desirous of Dustin doubles, and even excited for headline puns. I need baseball and I need it as soon as possible.
Third, watching the M's play a meaningful baseball game in Japan appeals to me. Will Ichiro crumble under the adoration of his countrymen, or will he rise to the challenge and put on a show? Will the dimensions of the field or the quality of the turf affect the way the game is played?
Lastly, I hate the A's with every fiber of my being. You may not remember, but the Mariners went 2-17 against the Athletics in 2006 - the inaugural season of my fandom. My fourteen-year-old brain was irreparably scarred and my retinas were tattooed with Nick Swisher walk-off home runs and Barry Zito curveballs. The A's had become my first baseball antagonists and I came to despise them far more than the Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, or the LA Lakers. I want nothing more than for the M's to embarrass the A's in a foreign nation.
As you lay in your bed at 2:55 AM, your alarm throbbing gently on your bedside table, think of Felix Hernandez. Remember when Rob Johnson hit a home run on Opening Day. Recall the five errors committed by the A's last year. Exchange some sleep for some entertainment.