What can baseball learn from golf? Silence is golden

Jon, Kev and I went to the eighteen nineteen hole playoff of the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines yesterday. Jon pounced on a couple of tickets being sold for twenty bones on Craigslist.  Kev had his neighbor's ticket and we ditched work and headed out to Qualcomm where we took buses up to Torrey Pines. 

The thing that amazed me most about the U.S. open was that nobody was rude.  I wonder if part of it was because you weren't allowed to bring in cell phones or cameras.  At the turn of the century not everybody had a cell phone and some how they managed.  I came to the cell phone party late but we all checked for our cell phones a couple dozen times. 

Can you imagine if Rocco was about to put or tee off and somebody's cell phone rang or some idiot was talking really loud into the cell phone?  It would be so aggravating.  I wonder if baseball games would be better off not allowing cell phones in the ballpark?  The one thing we had to be really aware of in the massive crowds was that we kept track of each other.  If one of us got lost we'd never be able to find each other again without a cell phone.  They are so convenient when they aren't causing brain cancer but I think we could manage without them for a few hours while we take in a baseball game.  It's not that big of a deal, just a thought.

I've complained too many times that modern ballparks have made the in game entertainment much too loud. When I get home from games my voice is shot from trying to talk to the person next to me because I have to yell over the music.  Do we need all the at bat music, between inning music, the silly scoreboard games?  I know I sound like an old curmudgeon but can we try and make the game the focal point again without the pyrotechnics, announcements and blaring music?  Even today as I watched the Padres game at Yankee Stadium I was reminded how Jerry Coleman prefers Bob Shepard's player announcement much better than announcers at other ballparks.  I too prefer the more civilized announcement over that of our WWE style announcer.  It should sound like the front desk paging you in a hotel.  "Paging Mr. Herman ..."

I kind of got off on a tangent there, but the thing that really amazed me about the U.S. Open was that 50,000 people can all be quiet at the same time.  Somehow that enormous crowd all had the decency and respect to shut their pie holes for extended periods of time when Tiger or Rocco were about to take a shot.  This was my first Golf Tournament I've attended and I was blown away.  I really didn't know that a crowd could do that.  Hell you can't get people to shut up during a movie but you could hear a pin drop it was so quiet at Torrey Pines.

Would it be wonderful if baseball pitchers demanded complete silence before and during each pitch?  When the batter made contact or the ball was caught by the catcher than the crowd could erupt with their own version of "Get in the hole!"  They could act stupid for several seconds and then drop right back into quiet. 

If I hadn't been to the U.S. Open I wouldn't have thought it possible. It'll never happen, but now I know it could.  I'll settle for the Padres just turning down the speakers a few decibels, but I'll dream of a little peace and quiet.

Oh yeah Tiger won, it was awesome.  Tiger's wife also walked right by us, so everybody was a winner.

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