The Best of Summer
By Kelly S. Croslis – Favorite Sports
No matter the time of year or favorite sport there is plenty of excitement to be had, and no shortage of events to watch on T.V. or attend in person. It is during the summer months, however, when attention is on the players that are the best in their sport.
It is during the months of June and July when the focus turns to baseball and the all-star games, both for professional and minor-league teams. For avid baseball fans, early July is the culmination of months of voting and guessing who will lead their division in the All-Star game, and which of the best hitters will dominate the home run derby. In a sense the game is a popularity contest, with the fans choosing who will attend; however, there was something unusual this year. Though they were chosen to play, at least 16 players chose not play in the game, opting out for personal reasons or because of injury, and some for what fans call, no reason at all. There is something to be said about their decision not to play in the all-star game, and some wonder if the game is losing its excitement, or if the players are just not interested in what the fans think of them. Despite controversies, i the end the game went on and the National League took the win, receiving the title of best in baseball for the coming year.
While the main focus is on the big leagues, the minor leagues use the same method to choose their all-star game players and build up the hope and excitement for the game. The goal for this game, however, may be a little different and for the players more important. These players dream of making it to the big leagues. The all-star game is an opportunity to shower their talent and what they have to offer, in a sense they are playing for their future. In addition, for baseball fans, the opportunity to attend an all-star game, when they are unable to attend a major-league game.
The competition for fan attention was challenged this year by the FIFA women’s world cup soccer games in Germany. As popularity for the game of soccer grows, more and more sports fans are turning to see how the U.S. compares to the rest of the world on the field. Last year the men showed the world their best, this year it was the women’s turn. With dramatic game’s finishes against Brazil and France, the U.S. women’s team advanced to the World Cup final against Japan, hoping to earn the gold medal and the world cup, as they did in 1999.
As with previous games, the final game left fans on the edge of their seats as the two teams played for the lead with the certainty they would prevail. In the end, after two overtimes and penalty kicks. It was Japan that came out ahead and took the World Cup title. There were mixed feelings as the game ended, while we wanted to see the U.S. women to win. A win by Japan had many hoping the win would give a sense of joy to a country that has faced unmentionable tragedy in the last year.
Whatever sport you followed this summer, there was no shortage of excitement and play analysis to ponder. So, as summer quickly comes to an end and news of the football strike ending, the hope is that the fall sports season will be just as exciting.
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