The present suggestion is to Stay Home, Minnesota. A friend and colleague recently called that public health recommendation “the worst thing that’s ever happened for food consumption,” because those conversations around the household now owe a substantial percentage to “what are you watching?” and “what do you want to eat?”
And apparently, when it comes to boredom, the Major Leaguers you’d root for in a typical season are not much different. They’re likely not over-indulging on Boredom Food, but otherwise they’re pretty similar.
“I like to make phone calls,” Twins star closer Taylor Rogers said on a call with media members this week, noting that there wasn’t much else to do. “Probably the same thing you guys are doing. Just trying to find ways to be productive and pass the time. I think my closet is color-coded at the moment, that’s how bored I am.”
Rogers said he’s calling co-workers to keep a pulse on the team, especially his mates in the bullpen. He especially likes to call the texters in the group, he said, because he knows it gets under their skin. Apparently you can take the reliever out of the clubhouse, but you can’t take the clubhouse out of the reliever.
“Especially us as athletes, we’re used to moving around and having always something to do, either at the field or home,” Nelson Cruz agreed. “So that’s difficult.”
Cruz got so bored this week that he live-streamed his home-gym workouts on social media. (If only the rest of us could be so productive!)
The players and the rest of us also share one more sobering similarity, as trivial as it might sounds in the grander scheme. Part of the challenge of dealing “social distancing” and trying to slow the communal spread of a very contagious virus, is that it’s not clear when there will be an end date. The players — and the rest of us — aren’t sure when life in the U.S. will go back to something resembling normal. They, and we, aren’t sure when there will be Major League Baseball again.
“We cannot dictate whether that will happen or not,” Cruz said, the day before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics officially were postponed. “The doctors will tell us if we can play the season or not. Definitely we’re pushing as hard as we can to make it happen, and definitely we are optimistic that it will happen. we don’t know how many games it will be.”
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“We’re all holding out hope that there will be some type of season this year,” Rogers said. “I don’t think anybody wants to get into that doomsday scenario where there is no season. But if that is the case, we just know that it’s for the greater good. We want people to be healthy. This is bigger than baseball, and if we cannot play baseball because of this, that’s just one we’ll have to take because this is more important than baseball.”
So, in the interim, we wait. Rogers plays catch with another pitcher in the Twins organization who lives nearby in Colorado, and “for lack of a better term, doing the in-home prison workouts,” he said.
“That’s about it,” Rogers said. “That’s kind of all we can do … We’re doing what we can, and obviously, we’re just being patient.”