DAILY DIRT: It’s that blessed time of the year, otherwise known as why I’m ready to roll

rogers hornsby

Daily Dirt for Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024

And yes, I truly would have loved to have known Rogers Hornsby … Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 864 of The Daily Dirt.

1. More than anything else, the start of baseball season is a time of renewal.

It’s a renewal of spirit, competition and a special kind of love for a special kind of game.

And that love affair is renewed again this week with MLB teams reporting to spring training in Florida and Arizona.

The late Cardinals Hall of Famer, Rogers Hornsby, probably expressed the feelings of baseball fans better than anyone ever has — or will.

“People ask me what I do in the winter when there’s no baseball,” Hornsby said. “I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.”

I would have loved to have known Rogers Hornsby. 

The late Harry Caray, who became a national treasure as an announcer for both the Cardinals and Cubs, once told us, “It’s the fans who need spring training. You gotta get ’em interested. Wake ’em up and let ’em know their season is coming, the good times are gonna roll.”

I’m ready to roll, Harry. I’m so ready.

With that in mind here’s some medal-worthy thoughts from three other former baseball heroes:

Gold medal:“Spring training means flowers, people coming outdoors, sunshine, optimism and baseball. Spring training is a time to think about being young again.” — Ernie Banks.

Silver medal: “The first day of spring training is like the first day of school.” — Chipper Jones

Bronze medal: “Baseball was, is and always will be to me the best game in the world.” — Babe Ruth.

2. The Great Plate Debate of 2024 moves deeper into its second month.

Now in its third year, this is the 111th weekly edition of the GPD, featuring the most interesting license plates found in West-Central Illinois and Northeast Missouri.

There’s no changes from last week’s medal standings, but there were still some interesting entries:

Gold medal: DA LIFE. Still Da One.

Silver medal: BAT LADY. 

Bronze medal: BUZZ. 

Best of the week:

  • AMERCA 6
  • MEMO 5
  • DIPI
  • 1 BEDRY
  • PETE 6

3. The Associated Press is reporting Super Bowl LVIII — a.k.a. the Taylor Swift Super Bowl — will go down as the most-watched program in television history, according to Nielsen and Adobe analytics.

Nielsen also said a record 202.4 million watched at least part of the game across all television, streaming and digital platforms, a 10 percent jump over last year’s figure of 183.6 million.

In 2023, 93 of the 100 most-watched TV programs on television belonged to the NFL.

Steve Thought O’ The Day — Maybe Nielsen and the other organizations that monitor TV viewership should create a figure for next year at this time: The number of Americans NOT watching the Super Bowl. That might be even more interesting. Or possibly WHAT they are watching other than the Super Bowl.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. And you really thought Steve would write about Valentine’s Day today?

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