“Opening Day is Thursday. Are you excited?” Holly asked with a smile that made it clear she was thrilled that baseball was set to return.
It was the Sunday before Opening Day and the best friends were seated on their favorite bench next to the river.
“Of course I am,” Aaron replied as he pointed at his ever present Yankees cap. “I’m not sure why you are, though.” He flashed a sly smile and took a long sip of his Snapple.
She countered with an even longer sip of her coffee before she replied. “I didn’t want this to deteriorate into the usual exchange of Yankees and Red Sox insults, so I’ve come up with an exciting alternate line of discussion dealing with baseball.”
Aaron feigned a pout. “But I had so many Red Sox insults prepared…”
She smacked him playfully on the shoulder. “If you could time travel to watch any baseball team play, which one would it be?”
He smiled and shook his head to indicate that he approved of the question. Anything related to time travel was okay with Aaron. “The 1927 Yankees. No question. Murderers’ Row. I’d love to see Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig in their prime.”
“That team was pretty awesome,” Holly had to agree.
“Could you imagine how much those two could demand on the free agent market today?” he asked as his eyes lit up at the prospect.
“I’m not sure there would be enough money to pay them both and still be able to field the rest of the team,” she chuckled. “I mean, Cashman almost balked at paying Judge forty million a year. The Babe and The Iron Horse would command much more.”
“The Yankees would have to give one of them the Oakland A’s as compensation,” he suggested. “I’m not saying trade them to the A’s, I mean give them the franchise to own. Maybe throw in the Marlins as well. That could work.”
“I think the Players’ Association might have a problem with that,” Holly snorted.
“The suits are going to ruin the game!” Aaron protested. “They say they want to grow the sport, and yet they’d be unwilling to give Ruth or Gehrig his own team just to keep the biggest stars happy. It’s a good thing baseball doesn’t have access to time machines. Yet.”
“It would be fun to smuggle a case of 2023 baseballs back to 1927, and then use them to throw batting practice to The Babe,” Aaron fantasized. “I wonder how far he would hit them. He hit some massive shots in his time, and those were with baseballs that were basically a few pages of newspaper stuffed into an old sock.”
Holly snorted. “I think you’re exaggerating.”
“Oh really?” he countered. “They called it the Dead Ball Era for a reason. Not that Red Sox fans could tell the difference. Their players couldn’t hit anything thrown in their general direction.”
“Don’t turn a conversation on time travel into Red Sox hate speech,” she warned with a wave of her finger as she sipped a little more coffee.
Aaron nodded that she was right. “While I’m back in 1927, I’d definitely want to go to dinner with Ruth. The stories of his eating are almost as legendary as the ones about his hitting.”
“So you’re saying you might return to the present day having packed on a few pounds?” she giggled.
“Sure, but the experience will have been worth every extra pound I’ll have to sweat off on the running path behind us,” he said pointing blindly over his shoulder in the direction of the running path. “Just call it one more sacrifice I’d make in the name of science.”
“Doc Brown would be so proud,” she quipped.
“I’m not going to disagree with that,” he replied with a wink.
Holly rolled her eyes and turned her attention to the river.
Who do you have winning the World Series this year? Obviously, the correct answer is the Yankees, but you are entitled to your opinion…