Major League Baseball’s Opening Day is Thursday, March 29th. It’s the earliest one ever, and super-fans are totally revved up. But what about those for whom baseball is just a fleeting topic of conversation? Or a total mystery? How can they communicate intelligently with those who actually care about the sport: their employers, their loved ones, their Uber drivers? You know, the key people in their lives.
Offices all over America will empty out on Thursday as people sneak off to a baseball game. For those left behind, we’re here to help you look smart and keep up with the conversation as the sports fans wave goodbye that day, and also on Friday when they start chattering about what happened on Opening Day.
How can we do that, you say? Well, here at Dandelion Chandelier, we have some on our team who have only the merest interest in the MLB. Thankfully, we also have some who are deeply invested and serious subject-matter experts on the topic.
We’ve called upon them to help us out here.
What follows is wisdom shared from Vincent and Michael Thomas – Minneapolis residents, Minnesota Twins fans, and generous mentors for those of us who need a coach to teach us how to talk baseball.
These are the 10 questions that you can pose to anyone who seems to know something (or seems to care) about baseball on or around Opening Day. Pick any one you like (its probably best to know who your local team is in advance). These will get a conversation started, and if you play your role properly from there, you’ll be able to hang with even the MLB die-hards, who don’t actually expect you to have a strong opinion on any of these, anyway. Just ask them their opinion about any of these issues, and you’re golden. See how easy?
1. Who will hit more home runs for the New York Yankees this year? Aaron Judge or Giancarlo Stanton?
2. Speaking of the Yankees: they’ve got a great lineup and bullpen, but how do you think Aaron Boone will do as a rookie manager?
3. Can Shohei Ohtani make it in the major leagues as both a hitter and a pitcher for the Los Angeles Angels?
4. What do you think of this idea? The American League sleeper team of the season will be the Oakland A’s.
5. Do you agree or disagree with this statement? The Chicago White Sox won’t be great this season, but their young, developing talent could be fun to watch. Follow up query: should we keep an eye on Yoan Moncada and Michael Kopech?
6. Can the New York Mets keep their starting pitchers healthy? Follow up query: If they do, could veteran talent (Yeonis Cespedes, Jay Bruce, and Todd Frazier) make them better than expected?
7. Are the Houston Astros the next baseball dynasty?
8. Can Derek Jeter build the Miami Marlins into a winning organization?
9. What do you think of this idea? The National League sleeper team of the season will be the Milwaukee Brewers.
10. Let’s talk about the National League West: the Los Angeles Dodgers are likely to come out on top, but which two of these three teams do you think will make the playoffs: the Colorado Rockies, the Arizona Diamondbacks, or the San Francisco Giants?
There you have it, straight from the experts — 10 ways to ask an intelligent question about Major League Baseball this week. Check back with us as the season unfolds, and we’ll help you stay just smart enough to keep up with the conversation. And when all else fails, just offer to pay for the beer, and you’ll be fine. Good luck out there.