I woke up this morning at 8 a.m. to the soothing sounds of new shingles being nailed onto my roof (seriously, guys, on a Saturday?). Every building in my neighborhood is being re-shingled this year since they are all close to 15 years old. This, of course, made me think about baseball.
Ballparks, to be exact. Sure, everyone loves a shiny new ballpark, but what happens to the ballparks that were once near and dear to our hearts? Why do some survive the ages, while others are refurbished, and yet others are unceremoniously blown to pieces? Is it really just about money and winning, or is there more to it? Unfortunately, The Baseball Sociologist does not have a handy answer for this one. (I’d do some research, but, as I mentioned before, the roofer guys kind of woke me up too early.)
However, as a sociologist, I have noticed that baseball fans have a great appreciation of history. Some of our stadiums may be gone, but they are not forgotten. I know I am not the only one out there who has made a pilgrimage to an old ball park, nor am I the only one who mourns the passing of a beloved stadium. Is this phenomenon unique only to baseball, or the United States? Maybe, maybe not.