One of my favorite baseball traditions is throwing a visiting home run ball back onto the field. There’s just something right about it, isn’t there? Somehow, it makes me – as a fan – feel more connected to the team and to the other fans in the stadium.
Throwing it back feels like our duty, like we’re doing our part. And, perhaps this is wishful thinking, but I get the feeling that the home team would be upset if we didn’t throw it back (provided they don’t have to run too far to go get it and throw it in, that is).
The thing is, you’re only supposed to throw it back, when a visitor hits a home run at your home ball park. It’s not too often that a visitor tries to throw back a home run hit by the home team. That said, it almost happened yesterday on a 6th inning Matt Reynolds home run, if it weren’t for a couple of Mets fans that saved the day.
It may seem silly, it may seem chiildish, it may even seem like everyone is taking things one step too far, but isn’t this what fandom is about? If I can’t act silly, do something childish, and completely overreact to the highs and lows of my team, what’s the point of doing this?
As long as it as all in good fun like it is above, I say go ahead, lose your mind. Prevent a stranger from throwing a ball. Be a fan.