Pirates Season is Almost Here - How to Manage Your Addiction

I’ll lead off with a quick statistic:  15% of all failed marriages are credited to resentment towards the husbands sports addiction.

The previous statistic may be true – although I did just make it up – but in all honesty, there is a good chance your sports habit is affecting your personal life in some manner.  Let’s see:  NFL and College Football seasons run September thru February. Major League Baseball’s marathon begins in April and doesn’t end until November, creating an interesting fall season quandary for fans of both sports.  NHL and NBA seasons seem to go on forever, and require a fairly heavy commitment to follow correctly.  Add in the “extra” sports like golf, NASCAR, English League Soccer, tennis, bowling, and even the odd curling match and you have a year-round time commitment that can crush your social life like left-handed pitching crushes Garrett Jones batting average.

With Major League Baseball kicking off the 2012 season this week, the time is now to work out your plan to accommodate 162 games into your regular existence.   Included in those games are numerous 1:35pm games and a handful of morning-after killing west coast starts.  A full season of Pirates baseball – either watching or listening to all nine innings of all 162 games – equals out to somewhere around 486 hours of baseball bliss.  If you aren’t blessed with a wife who enjoys the game, the dominoes can tumble quickly.  You forget to pay bills, you stop making time for yard work, the dogs begin to plump out because daddy has no time to walk them.  The next thing you know, you are in debt, the grass is two feet tall, your wife disappears with your credit card and your mother-in-law for hours at a time, your dogs need to get on Dan Marino’s Nutri-System plan – and its only June.

Laugh all you want (hopefully).  This is a serious issue for guys with families and jobs, those pesky responsibilities that prevent you from seeing every single one of Jose Tabata’s 2012 at-bats.  You are going to have to start making some compromises – if not for your marriage, do it for your dogs.  Your poor, fat, dogs.

You can start by purchasing SiriusXM Radio and springing for a few portable units to use around the house all summer.  SiriusXM has a Major league Baseball package that allows you to listen to any game you want, with any announce team you want, live.  You can purchase units that can be used in the garage, the office, even stream the broadcasts to your I-Phone or Andriod device via their web service and listen while you cut the crass or walk your overweight dachshunds.  SiriusXM is a fantastic resource for addicted fans and the cost is very affordable.  Check out their service at the SiriusXM Website or visit your local Best Buy.

Satellite radio can take care of you in the car and around the house, but if you prefer to watch your games on your huge HDTV, consider the MLB Extra Innings package from your local cable provider.  Combined with a DVR service, MLB Extra Innings becomes a lifesaver.  You can set your DVR to record as many games as you like, then watch them once you are finished taking your lonely wife shopping or taking your kids to see the new PIXAR movie.  The glory of DVR is that you can fast forward through the commercials, uneventful innings, or even just watch the highlights of the games you choose.  The service costs around $200 for the season, with DVR service usually adding $10-15 a month to your cable bill.

Your final option is to simply buy tickets to as many games as you can and convince your family to go with you.  With the Pirates, you can always expect a solid schedule filled with fireworks nights, concerts, give-a-ways, and numerous other promotions that can be used to bribe…err….finesse the family to attend some games at PNC Park.  You can also add in a nice meal or a trip to the Carnegie Science Center, or if its just the adults – a nice afternoon of drinking and gambling at the Rivers Casino.  Most women may not love baseball, but they absolutely ADORE being part of a nice “event”.  Make your trips to the ballpark a family event, and you have a foolproof method of getting your ass to the best ballpark in America at least ten times this summer.

If all else fails, you may have to consider dropping hockey or basketball from your sports watching docket.  With the internet providing endless streaming highlights and ESPN News rolling SportsCenter on endless loops 24 hours a day, you should be able to catch those Penguins highlights or NBA clips at any time – day or night.  Just imagine those poor schmucks who had to juggle their sports addictions and life responsibilities before all of this technology came about.  The trials and tribulations they faced should make us all happy to be living in a connected world where websites like RumBunter are here to help you keep things on an even keel.

So as we count the hours to the start of what promises to be the most exciting Pirates season in decades, the time is now to get your house in order.  Remember, if your dogs bellies are sliding across the floor come September – you have nobody to blame but yourself.


You can follow Jeff Snedden on Twitter @jeffsnedden

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Tags: Andrew McCutchen Jose Tabata Pirates Pirates Blog Pittsburgh Pirates Pittsburgh Pirates Blog

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