This past June we went down to Cincinnati and watched a Reds game. It was Eva’s first major league baseball game, but more importantly, it was her first game seeing her favorite team, the Minnesota Twins. Well, at least I hope that will be her favorite team. As a father, I have certain duties. I must teach her lessons about life, teach her to recycle, to be a voter when she’s old enough, to call her mother, and never swing on a 3-0 pitch. I must also tell her the things to avoid, like internet predators, trans fats, Time Warner and the Green Bay Packers. I can’t force her to like the Twins, but I think that at worst I can steer her away from bad influences like the White Sox and the Yankees. I’d love for her to love the Twins like I do, but I have an uphill climb. Growing up in Iowa, we had no default favorite teams. In baseball, there were four teams that most people had as favorite teams. They were about the same distance away, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Kansas City Royals, the Chicago Cubs and the Minnesota Twins. Yes, the White Sox were the same distance as the Cubs, but the Cubs were on WGN all the time and had Harry Carey. The Yankees were terrible in the 80’s, so they weren’t too popular. The same was true of the football teams, KC Chiefs, Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears and the Minnesota Vikings were the popular ones. In a stats class I took in college they surveyed favorite teams over time. The Packer/Bear/Viking trio was always top 3, and the top team was always the one who was more successful at the moment.
I was 8 when the Twins won the World Series, and 12 when they won it again. I was a fan for life. Yet, my brother grew up in the same household, and became a Cubs fan and is a Buffalo Bills fan. So who knows. So, I will continue to take her to ball games and talk about how great the Twins are. Of course, it will be easier if they are good in a few years, rather than competing with the Cubs for the worst record in baseball.