Get your gloves ready!

Fans prepare for baseball’s return with joyous sentiments

Isabella Tranello, Sports Editor

Many posters like these are seen hanging up around the city advertising the Mariners season that is set to start soon. These posters were located in the Wallingford neighborhood located on the corner of Northeast 45th Street and Thackeray Place Northeast. (Caitlyn Schnider)

Dec. 2, 2021, was a dark day for baseball fans around the United States. This date marked the day that Major League Baseball went into a lockout initiated by MLB ownership after they and the MLB Player’s Association could not decide on the collective bargaining agreement for the 2022 season. 

During the lockout that lasted 99 days, fans and players alike were unsure if the 2022 season was going to happen at all. The consequences of the lockout included players being barred from utilizing team facilities, games getting canceled, players not receiving regular payment, and the freezing of free-agent signings and trades, which left many with an uncertain future or no team at all. 

However, not all hope was lost. On Thursday, March 10, light and happiness returned to the hearts of baseball fans as it was announced that a divided player’s association voted to finally accept the management’s offer to salvage a 162-game season. 

After this agreement was passed, it was time to return to the diamond. Baseball is now back. 

Although Spring Training games have already begun and the teams have been playing since Saturday, March, 19, the official opening day is not until Thursday, April 7th. The two teams to face off in the first game of the 2022 season will be the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees. 

The opening day game may be highly anticipated for baseball fans as a whole, but sophomore integrated studies major Kiersten Moranville is especially excited to watch the San Francisco Giants. The MLB plays a pivotal role in her life. 

“I was raised in a Giants-loving family. I’m from the East San Francisco Bay Area, so I was really blessed by being able to go to a lot of games growing up. I have so many childhood memories of sitting at games with my dad while he taught me all about different types of hits, pitches and even players’ statistics.” Moranville said. 

After the spring quarter concludes, Moranville is excited to travel back home and catch some games at Oracle Park in San Francisco with her family. 

“I’m most looking forward to being back in the atmosphere of Oracle Park. The smell of fresh air by the Bay, seagulls flying overhead and cheering fans make me feel at home again. Oh, and of course, eating one of the stadium’s signature crab sandwiches.” Moranville said. 

The Giants had a successful season in 2021 with a record of 107-55, and they ended the season as the National League West Champions. Moranville is looking forward to watching what the Giants can accomplish in 2022. 

“I’m just hoping for them to win. But let’s be real, it is always best watching them beat the Dodgers,” Moranville said. “I think they will definitely have a shot at doing great. The Giants were NL West champions last year, so I’m hoping for the same this year.”

Sophomore exercise science major Andrea Bui is also looking forward to getting back into the ballparks, but the team she will be rooting for is more local to Washington. She will be cheering on the Mariners from their home field at T-Mobile Park in the heart of downtown Seattle.

“I love watching the Mariners and going to their games. I also love watching the Everett Aquasox in my hometown of Everett, which is a minor league team affiliated with the Mariners. It is one of my favorite things to do in the spring and summer seasons here in Seattle.” Bui said. 

The energy of baseball games was sorely missed by fans at SPU and across the United States during the uncertainty of the lockout. But now that it is back, it is time for fans to grab their gloves, throw on their jerseys, prepare for the seventh-inning stretch and take themselves to the ball game! 

“What got me into watching baseball was honestly just going to the games and having a fun time with my friends. I mostly just enjoy the atmosphere at the stadium and the garlic fries which are my absolute favorite thing to get at the games. In general, I am just excited and hopeful for a great season.” Bui said.