The turkey and pumpkin pie should be the main priority today on Thanksgiving, we as Dodger fans can’t help to think about them even on an off season holiday. The offseason has been a boring one thus far filled with sad departures (so long Hanley), minor league trades galore (hello Mike Bolsinger) and an overall uncertain feeling about 2015 and beyond. Who will play shortstop? How will the bullpen bounce back? Who will be the fifth starter in the rotation? How will the Dodgers finally deal with the crowded outfield situation? How will the Dodgers add power to their lineup now that they have lost Hanley Ramirez?
Pumpkin pie is my favorite. Photoshop by: Stacie Wheeler
All of these questions still linger, and there are only 84 days until Spring Training breaks in February. I’m still a bit skeptical about the changes in the front office and how they will affect the team’s chances in 2015. While I think Andrew Friedman and Farhan Zaidi have things under control, and they certainly have long-term goals which they are already working on, I still want to see the Dodgers win the World Series now and not later.
The Blue lining to all this rebuilding to be done is that the Dodgers already have a solid core to work with centered around the best player in the league. There are plenty of things to be thankful for as Dodger fans, and here are five to be happy about this Thanksgiving.
- Yasiel Puig– If you are not a Dodger fan, you might hate him. If you are a Dodger fan, you most likely love him. Puig is just beginning his epic career, and he has already created a shock wave through the game of baseball with his aggressive style of play, his dramatic escape from Cuba, and his lovable yet trouble making personality he has shared with the Dodger fans and everyone via social media. I often say that if you do not enjoy watching Yasiel Puig play baseball, you may be dead inside. I feel thankful that the Dodgers have the star center fielder as a part of their core for many years to come. Puig may not be perfect, but he’s perfectly fun to watch.
- History- The rich tradition of Dodger baseball is something that no one can ever take away. No matter how many championships the Giants bloop a million singles to obtain, the Dodgers will always have their history with roots in Brooklyn. With many fans still rooting for Blue since their days in Brooklyn, to those who followed when they moved to Los Angeles, and to new generations of Los Angeles fans, the Dodgers will always be a way of life for many. With deep cultural ties to not only Brooklyn but also the City of Angels, the Dodgers are a team which represents a wide range of fans who are even overseas (Hello Dodger fans in Australia!). I am thankful for Jackie Robinson‘s courage, I’m thankful for Walter O’Malley’s Dodger traditions, and I’m thankful for the new generation of Dodger fans learning about all that has come before.
- Clayton Kershaw– Like my Uncle’s stories of Sandy Koufax, Clayton Kershaw is the player which I will be telling stories about for years to come. He’s the best pitcher of my generation, and I feel so privileged to have seen him pitch many times at Dodger Stadium. He’s the quintessential Dodger on and off the field. A true role model, Clayton has the one of the fiercest competitive drives I have ever seen in an athlete. He’s not only the M.V.P. of the National League, but he has been the glue which holds the Dodgers together these past two seasons. Kershaw is that one in a million player, and I’m so incredibly thankful to be able to see him pitch for the Dodgers for seasons to come.
- Dodger Stadium- I’m thankful that I can still experience the beauty of Dodger Stadium. While players may come and go, the home of the Dodgers shall never be abandoned. Dodger Stadium is a home away from home for many Dodger fans. It’s a place to escape the stresses of life and instead take in some Southern California sun while enjoying a Dodger Dog with your family and friends. A gathering place, much like the Thanksgiving table, Dodger Stadium can bring all together amidst cultural differences in order to cheer as one. Instead of passing the mashed potatoes, we pass the bag of peanuts to the friendly fan down the aisle from us.
- Vin Scully. I think you knew that Vin was going to be the top reason to be thankful to be a Dodger fan. Listening to Vin Scully while tuning into a Dodger game is the perfect recipe for Dodger Heaven. Vin’s announcing and commentary adds an extra dimension to the game which very few if any other sports fans get to experience. Like a dollop of the most delicious whipped cream on top of that slice of pumpkin pie, Vin Scully adds that special touch to every game he broadcasts. Even if the Dodgers don’t make any big moves this winter, I will still be thankful to watch the Dodgers play in 2015 if only to listen to Vin.