What do Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Chipper Jones and David Ortiz all have in common? They were all at one point three of the biggest names in Major League Baseball. But now with Jones, Jeter and Rivera’s retirement, Ortiz remains one of the few recognizable guys in the game today. Household names in the sport of baseball are few and far between, and the lack there of has really hurt the game that we recognize as our national pastime.
Baseball is a beloved game and one enjoyed by millions upon millions of Americans. But without the names to support the game, the game of baseball could therefore suffer mightily. Young fans today have no idea who guys like Ken Griffey JR or Cal Ripken Jr are unless their parents tell them stories about them.
The game isn’t as well received as it was when we were young. Football is slowly taking over as the game of America because of all the recognizable faces of the game. For baseball to be as well received as football, we need the young studs that we see today to preform remarkable things like the former heroes of the fall classic.
Players like Clayton Kershaw, Buster Posey, Bryce Harper and others need to channel their inner heroics to display what the game once was. Display the actions of guys like Jeter, Ortiz and even Manny Ramirez. The lack of big names has shown the decrease in the fans watching over the years.
When baseball was at its best, every team had four to five guys that everyone knew and could say something about. But now look at the game, ask anyone who is on the Florida Marlins or Houston Astros, and most people will look at you like you have ten heads.
Soon baseballs once great glory could fade to mediocrity because of its lack of star power. Look at last season’s World Series. San Francisco and Kansas City had few recognizeable names but now because of that series more fans will be able to recognize those names who provided that seven game thriller.
Baseball needs names like Giancarlo Stanton, Andrew McCutchen and Xander Bogaerts to do some outstanding things. Baseball is slowly becoming the “old man’s game”, but if one of the many young studs can do some amazing things and channel their inner Jeter or Ortiz, then hopefully the resurgence of baseball could be finally in front of us.
We need to look to the six guys named here, but not just them guys also with the names Mike Trout, Manny Machado and Yasiel Puig could be the first few to break the mold. If the mold is broken soon enough, baseball can return into the glory it once had in the late 1990’s and early 2000s.