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The Sport Editor's Desk

Day breaks: Is Opening Day still significant?

By Ron Ledgard Published: April 5, 2012

Baseball's Opening Day is the only sports day that is in the Beacon Journal stylebook. It requires that we capitalize it. Not football or basketball or any other sports day. Although I am sure there are some readers who think we should capitalize the First Day of Hunting Season.

There was a time in baseball when Opening Day mattered. Kids would skip school (I remember going to Three Rivers Stadium to watch the Pirates receive their World Series rings in 1980), the first game would always be played in Cincinnati, and some cities even had parades.

That has been lost. Now some seasons start in Toyko. Cincinnati was replaced by a random game in a random site so that ESPN could televise the first game in prime time.

It was one of the ways baseball had become our National Pastime.

I miss that about the game.

What are your thoughts? You going to Progressive Field this afternoon?

Other thoughts:

* One thing that does remain is Opening Day usually comes with high expectations. Marla Ridenour talked with Justin Masterson, today's starter for the Indians about just that.

* Our student coorespondent, Ryan Lewis, made a quality observation on Twitter last night. Maybe the folks in Miami shouldn't have built a big pitcher's park for a Marlins fanbase that already isn't too keen on going to games. It took Miami seven innings to get a hit last night.

* Hey, the Cavs only lost by nine points last night. Progress as reported by Jason Lloyd.

* $20 million per season seems to be the new threshold in baseball to determine who is and who isn't a star. I think a better gauge should be, does the player sell tickets? If he is in town, do you want to go? That is why I don't think the contract the Reds gave Joey Votto was a good move. I really don't see that in him. Albert Pujols? Yes. Alex Rodriguez? Yes. Prince Fielder? Yes. Vernon Wells? No. Votto? No.

* Here is USA Today's database for salaries in baseball. Very cool feature of their website.

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