The Off-Day Blues

The Yankees didn’t play tonight, so I was completely lost. I know, I know. I could have done something constructive with my free time. Like write, read a book, or learn more about the health care debate. Instead, I pined for the pinstriped ones – especially for Friday night’s game and the probability that Jeter would break Gehrig’s record. It was pathetic.
At some point I realized that if I was this bummed out by one night off from baseball, I’d be a basket case when the season was finally over. And that’s when it dawned on me.
Why can’t they play all year long?
Seriously, what would be so bad about keeping the season going? Nothing. That’s what. Well, not counting possible injuries caused by over-exertion. But that’s why there are trainers and team doctors and James Andrews.
Anyhow, I sat down at the computer and wrote a message to Bug Selig, telling him that I’d really appreciate it if the sport didn’t take the winter off. OK, it’s not a message to Bud. It’s a love letter to the Yankees. And I was basically wasting hours at the keyboard that I’ll never ever have back.
I could kick myself – or my husband for letting me use his iMovie software.
So indulge me. I’ll get better at these videos, I swear. Yes, this one will bore you to tears, but I’m just a beginner. And if I don’t figure it out, I’ll take piano lessons or start knitting or, God forbid, become interested in football.


  1. mikeeff

    i felt the same way– i edited music all afternoon–but i had nothing to look forward to. so … here we are–same boat.

  2. opinion4athletics

    I feel the same way, but about my Oakland A’s! We had a day off today and my whole timing was off. I had to find something else to watch on TV during our normal time slot, which felt really weird. Baseball should definitely be year round. Besides they pay these players enough money, they should have no reason to complain 😉
    – Opinion 4 Athletics


    Hmmmmmm…a 365 day season…what would happen? First of all, would there be any doubleheaders? I guess there wouldn’t be any scheduled but there would have to be make up games after rainouts. Second, would there be massive break-ups across MLB? The wives are basically put on hold for the whole season but then they get their men back for like 4 straight months. I don’t think they’d tolerate the full year plan.

    Come on, Jane, just consider enjoying football, or even better, hockey. The hockey season is more like the baseball season and there are no weather issues as all the areas are indoors. And some of the players are really HOT!

    I’m not sure if the Yankees will get the game in today – the weather reports are not too good. Plus, considering the date, I’m not sure if Jeter will want to break the record today. My heart, as always, is with the Yankees and with him as our captain, but 9/11 is a terrible memory for all New Yorkers and probably most Americans – okay, I really brought the mood down. Let’s Go Yankees!!!


    Diane makes a good point about 9/11, though Jeter breaking the record on this day could also be seen as symbolic of the resilience of NYC.
    I vote no on year round baseball. Maybe it would work for you in Santa Barbara, where the weather stays the same. I live in NY state and there is something appropriate about the season ending as the cold weather sets in. The long, cold, sometimes grey, winter kind of bogs you down. The holidays help lighten the mood, but towards the end of January it seems like it will never end. But then the magic words “Pitchers and catchers report to spring training.” And hope springs alive! Yes, we will have hot summer days and warm summer nights. The sun will shine again over green fields! And every fan, no matter what the stats on their team may indicate, gets to think “maybe this year.”

  5. cheshirecat9

    Your video was very poignant Jane. I also like the cycles of baseball. Spring is full of hope for your team, they play throughout the summer and then it all winds down in the fall to hibernant during the winter. Then next year it all starts again! I am selfishly hoping Jeter does not get a hit tonight because I have tickets to Saturday’s game. Of course tonight and tomorrow might both get rained out . It is a cold, gray, rainy day here in NYC.


    Hi Jane,
    I feel your pain, always a depression when the season ends and you know that spring season is so far away, my daughter has tried to stage an intervention this summer to get me away from watching our Yankees…….. step away from my remote and MLB package…….ahh youth, as if there is something better to do than watch our boys in pinstripes…….tonight will be special, hopefully the weather will hold out for Jeter’s big night…………..Jane

  7. junojen

    Love the movie, especially the music. I vote that you take piano lessons and learn “NY State of Mind” over the winter, then thrill us with a piano concerto on YouTube on opening day 2010.

    And thanks for Paul’s first comment, I now understand where this darn procrastination comes from. LOL!



    First up…amen to the solemn and heartfelt comments about today. I couldn’t add anything of substance, even tho’ we had our own Panic Attack here in D.C. with the Pentagon (understandably overlooked compared to NYC), but we too will never forget…
    Better topics to follow — so, ya want year-round beisbol? It’s funny…as a youngster in the NY area, I remember those quiet(er) winter months…not much in sports, esp. after football…and wishing that we could have sports every day of the year…guess I wasn’t careful what I wished for!!
    But now, how to play beisbol for 12 months? Maybe they should have slightly altered rules, like they do for us old fogey softballers…play indoors…have a limit on foul balls (more than two, you’re out)…have two first bases, one for runners & one for fielders (no collisions…runner runs to the wrong one, he’s OUT)…have ten fielders (four in the OF), and limit the games to 90 minutes or something…otherwise, allow ties (& kissing your sister)…have two home plates (no collisions, every play is a forceout)…think it’s crazy? Welcome to my (slo-pitch) world!!

  9. peggy3

    Hey Jane …

    I loved the video …and …one part of me agrees with you because I do HATE the off season and I do MISS My Yanks but I think if we saw them all year long we might get bored in the end. It’s the expectation of Pitchers and Catchers in Feb. that puts those winter blues aside …the sight of the beautiful green grass of Spring and the glistening, clean Stadium at the start of each season …the thrill of Opening Day each year with a promise of great things to come which always raises my spirits after the grey days of winter. I’m not into other sports …just baseball .. particularly Yankee baseball and as I said much as I would love to see them year round I really think it’s the promise of each new season where hope springs eternal for all 30 teams and their fans that make those few months off each year give us a full appreciation for this wonderful pastime….our national pastime.

    I’ll (hopefully) see DJ break the record tonight but as Diane said …not looking too good weatherwise. If not ..I guess I’ll have to find a seat for tomorrow. I’m going Sunday but I think he’ll hit it before that…I really want to be there especially after the excitement of him JUST tying it when I was there…I can’t imagine how it will be when he breaks it. Besides I watched him grow up on the baseball field as a Yankee so I want to be there for his achievements …can’t wait for 3,000… :o).

    Last but certainly not least …God Bless all those who died on 9/11 (I had a personal friend who was a fireman who left behind a lovely wife and four little girls. It was also his 40th Bday). The pain lessens with each passing year but we should NEVER forget and never take for granted the wonderful country we live in and pray that something so awful never dampen our soil again. God Bless the USA….

    Go Yankees 2009 !!!


    I felt the same way too. It did mean I could go to bed early but then I starting thinking of the whole off season and how many months without baseball. I like my life but what will bring me the joy of a walkoff? I suppose I will be saner–no more leaving work meetings to supposedly go to the bathroom but really to check the score if it’s a day game. no more planning my life around game time. no more waking up in the middle of the night to get a west coast score. no more obsession and mood alterations based on something so out of my control but no more Yankee joy. I liked the video. I needed something to start the day and without a game story I needed a Jane Heller dose. Thanks, Barbara (Yankee fan stuck in Boston)


    Hey you, Christy here. . . .
    Been thinking. . . .yes, yes, yes, this Derek thing has blown me away. That record lived for something like 70 years! 70 years! Lou Gehrig held it. Whoa . . . .Lou Gehrig. Behind Gehrig – behind him – Babe Ruth. Whoa. Babe Ruth was behind Lou Gehrig. Next on the list is Mickey Mantle. The Mick. # 3. I’m not quite sure how Bernie Williams got to next place on the list, but there he was. Don’t get me wrong, I love Bernie. But somehow I don’t recall him getting to that place on that list. Quiet Bernie. Now all those guys; Lou, Babe, The Mick, even Bernie.. . . .lined up behind Derek. Whoa. Amazing. Derek in the same sentence as The Mick, as Babe. Lou in the same sentence as Derek. All of them behind Derek. Whoa!!!!! The whole thing has blown me away.

    Now I’m thinking playoffs. Hmmmm. The rotation. Hmmmmm. CC’s got to start it off, he’s the guy, the #1. But you know, Jane, he can get himself locked in duel with Verlander, game could be 3 – 2, 2 – 1, close, pitcher’s duel. CC could pitch his heart out and still come out on the short end of the stick. The other guy just could be better on that day. So who’s pitching game #2? Pettitte’s been great in the second half, perhaps the best on the staff. He’s been “Mr. Big Game” his entire career. Do you pitch him in game 2? I’m guessing the conventional wisdom is to go with Burnett . I like A.J. very much. He’s pitching this year pretty much like he’s pitched his whole career. Unpredictable. I love him, his emotion, his fast ball, his “head”. But you know A.J., Jane. He could come out and pitch 8 innings, 10 K’s, 3 hits, lights out. Or. . . he could be behind 6 – zip before the bull pen even wakes up. He’s unpredictable.

    I think I go with Burnett in game 2. I go with him because it’s always been my feeling that game #3 is the most important game of the series. No matter how the first two games go, game 3 is the big one. I have decided I want Pettitte on the mound in the biggest game of the series.

    That’s what I’m thinking.

  12. Jane Heller

    Paul, you are SO right. Hahahaha! Procrastination is my middle name!

    Mike, it did feel like a bluesy off day, didn’t it? The sun was shining here and there was no reason to mope around, but there was no baseball. I was flummoxed.

    Glad you can relate to the feeling, opinion4athletics. It’s just weird when you’ve been programmed to watch every day and look forward to it and then – nothing. We’re such creatures of habit!

    I guess I hadn’t really worked out the logistics of 365 days of baseball, Diane. I agree that the wives wouldn’t care for it at all, and the kids deserve to see their dads. On the other hand, I’ve had ballplayers tell me they’d rather be with the guys! As for other sports, my husband loves hockey and has been a Ranger fan since he was a kid. So maybe I’ll try that. It’s just so damn hard to follow the puck on TV! (Re: 9/11, see the next comment to Melissa.)

    Melissa, I remember when the Yanks played on 9/11 after the tragedy shook our world and how momentous it was. Weather permitting, I think people gathering at a huge stadium and being together on that day is a wonderful thing, and Jeter breaking the record would only heighten the emotions. I hadn’t really thought out the logistics of playing baseball year-round, as you can see. But I do take your point about how big a role the changing seasons play. The words “pitchers and catchers report” are the harbingers of spring for sure.

    The cycles of baseball and the change of seasons are what the sport is all about, cheshirecat. I can see that. I was just feeling wistful last night thinking about that awful moment when there won’t be a game to watch for a long time! (I know. I can buy lots of Yankeeographies on DVD.) Sorry to hear about the weather in NY. My mother was supposed to go to the US Open Tennis and she won’t be happy sitting in the cold and rain.

    Jane, that’s hilarious about your daughter staging an intervention with you! My husband has given up on me and is such an enabler. HAHA! Sometimes I wish I could be one of those people who honestly doesn’t care about baseball. On second thought? Nah. I really don’t.

    Jen, the funny thing is I used to play the piano as a kid and gave it up when the guitar became more “hip.” Now I play neither! And yes, writers do find very innovative ways not to write. It goes with the territory, so don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s tough work but there are days when it’s tremendously satisfying too.

    Wow. Those rules aren’t so easy to follow, Dave. I don’t know how you do it. “Slightly altered?” I don’t think so! On this and all days, I wish you safety there in D.C, just as I wish the same for New Yorkers and everyone else who may be at risk. A huge tip of the cap to our brave men and women who keep us safe.

    A make out session between Bud and Hal? Jeff, I should have consulted you before even starting that video. It could have been a viral sensation! I was much too tame. My bad.

    I agree about the expectation of pitchers and catchers, Peggy, and wouldn’t certainly miss that feeling if we had baseball all year long. On the other hand, I don’t think I’d ever get bored seeing Yankees play every day. How about just taking the act to Florida for the winter and everybody plays there? I know, I know. It’s called spring training. OK. I give up. We’ll leave the sport as it is. I hope your friend’s family is doing all right since he was killed so tragically (on his birthday, no less). No one will ever forget that day. May we never have another.

  13. Jane Heller

    Barbara, you hit it on the head. The end of the season means no more walkoffs, no more ducking work to check scores or watch games, no more insanity! Do we want that? Noooo. On the other hand, I guess our brains need time to recover, and the off-season gives us that. Glad the video filled the blank space even the tinest bit.

    You’re right about the stress, Kaybee. There would be more of it if baseball lasted all year long. But think of all those blog posts you could write! You’d have so much more material.

    Hey, Christy! So glad you posted a comment. I hear you on Derek and all those other names on the list. It blows my mind too. I hope he’s taking it all in – or will once the season is over. No small thing to be in the company of Babe, Lou, Mickey and, yes, good old Bernie. On the playoffs, I’m so superstitious I’ve been reluctant to let myself envision who will do what. But yeah, I’m with you on your pitcher evaluations. I feel the same way you do: Game 3 is crucial. On the other hand, I might start CC, then Andy, figuring it would be great to win the first two games at home. Then let AJ go in #3 on the road. Dunno. Either way, I can’t wait. I just we can figure out a way to beat the Angels already!!!!!!!!

    “Just a Ranger fan,” wetfeet. Your team is vying for a playoff spot. That’s huge! Anyhow, I’d love to see winter ball on TV but since all the guys don’t participate in it, it wouldn’t have the same excitement for me. Still, some baseball is better than no baseball, right?

    I guess you’re right about needing recuperation time, Melissa. LOL. But couldn’t it be shorter? Like a week? HAHA.

  14. Jane Heller

    Thanks, Buz. I’m sure your daughter’s vids are much more sophisticated than mine was. But it’s back to baseball today, weather permitting, so I won’t need any filler!


    Hey Peggy3, sounds like your friend was also a good friend of my brother’s. Vinnie, of riding the Cyclone fame?


    Jane, I do feel your pain about the end of the season! It is hard to face the winter without the Yankees to watch. But the years the Yanks are in the playoffs and Series, I need those months off to recuperate!

  17. Buz

    I liked your video Jane. My daughter is absolutely awesome at those YouTube vids. She’s made a few that made me break down and cry. They were alot like yours.. music, pics.. and some pretty impactive words. Hooray for you.. Yankees play today! : )

    Buz –

  18. Jane Heller

    That’s the question, 09indians. “What do we do now?” Once the season is over, I walk around like a zombie. I’m lucky though, since it looks like the Yanks will extend their season into the playoffs. And believe me, I’ll appreciate every extra minute!

  19. peggy3


    I agree ..I don’t think I’d get bored but sometimes too much of a good thing isn’t best in the long run. I was just at a Baby Shower with Theresa (wife of the fireman) last weekend. The girls are doing well and so big now. How fast time does fly think it was 8 years ago.

    Melissa ..

    Yes …it is Vinnie ..although I don’t know about his “cyclone” fame I knew Vinnie and Theresa through the dancing school my daughter attended in LI. Their girls went there too and they were good friends of the owner of the dance studio. Vinnie was a fun guy and I wish I had known him better …I heard so many wonderful stories about him. As I said up above I just saw his wife and one of the girls last Sunday…all are well and doing fine. I can’t believe his oldest girl is now 17 …Frankie. He always wanted a son so the girls all had names that could be given male nicknames …Frankie, Toni, Nickie & Dannie. Happy Birthday Vinnie …I’m sure he’s cracking them up in heaven as I type…

    Go Yankees 2009 !!!

  20. peggy3

    Melissa …Actually I do remember a story about him getting them to open the Cyclone for his bday even tho’ it wasn’t suppose to open till later on. Is that what you meant?

    Go Yankees 2009


    Hello, Christy…you old dog (like me)!…BTW, nice to run into you last October…let’s hope that this year it’s you & me & Jane (among others like us) who are huddled around TV sets and going crazy, not the Jim Lowells and Bill Langers and…well, you know (Diane, those last two guys are BOSOX fans…big boo)! Folks, I don’t know how to weigh in on who pitches what game…all I know is that 5-game playoffs drive me CRAZY, and always have…remember the agony of those ALCS’s in the ’70s with Kansas City? And we WON ’em! Ya gotta win Game 1, but if ya don’t win Game 2, Christy, you’re right, it’s SO crucial…it absolutely SUX to have a great season come down to Who’s Hottest in five measly games…but who said life was fair…and on that note, Peggy, thanx for keeping everything in the right perspective…

  22. mlbmom

    Jane –
    What I love about your book, your blog and your freinds that comment on your blog, is that here, I feel so normal….my baseball / Yankees OCD is everybodys baseline, no matter what team we root for. From pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training in mid February till mid October, baseball and the Yankees are the first thing I thing about in the morning and the last thing I think about before bed….Win or lose, I always get into a “funk” after the seasons over. I’ll call my husband at work and say “I miss all my friends,” and he will historically say “Who?” and I’ll say, “Derek and Mo and Jorge and Andy and Alex” and by the second or third guy, hes hung up on my weirdness….
    I am anticpating (and savoring) the rest of the season and some post season action as well from our boys in Pinstripes.
    I bought pre-sale post season tickets for Yankees-Rangers…I have one leftover if you are interested……
    LETS GO YANKEES – AND LETS GO RANGERS!!! 2 back in the Wild Card …..GO GET ‘EM RANGERS!!!


  23. Jane Heller

    Wendy, you’re totally normal. It’s the non-baseball fans that are crazy. HAHAHA! I have the same conversations with my husband, btw. I’ll tell him I miss my buddies or that I have dreams about them, and he rolls his eyes and goes, “Right.” I hope you get to use those post-season tickets and I wish I could snag your extra one. I’ve never been to that stadium and would love to check it out – especially during the playoffs!

  24. ibleedpinstripes

    Every time the season starts, I forget about what I did during the offseason. I’m probably going to have the same problem again once the season is over… I can never remember what I do without baseball in my life. It’s sad, really… Ugh. Oh well, we don’t necessarily need to worry about that right now… right?

    – Lisa

  25. wakeupinacity

    haha! that is basically all i thought about last night! i cant believe how sad i felt over one night. idk how im going to survive another winter.

  26. southernbelle

    Jane: I agree that the Yankees should be on everyday. I need them, too! I know exactly how you feel. “In love with the 25 men in pinstripes.” Me too.
    How come Sergio Mitre was not in that video? You don’t want to see him? Why not? Don’t do this to me Jane, don’t do it! I would like to see Sergio everyday…..or every night…

  27. Jane Heller

    No, we don’t need to worry about it just yet, Lisa. I’m jumping the gun, I know. But yesterday gave me a taste of baseball-less life and I didn’t like it one bit!

    Isn’t it crazy how we feel, jeter x2? We’ll survive the winter. We always do. I agree with those who’ve commented about the excitement of spring training. But there’s no doubt it’s depressing when the season is over every year.

    It’s funny about those photos, Virginia. The video was taking me forever to do, and I kept thinking, How can I make it shorter? I decided to put in only players I was sure would be on the team in 2010. Hence, the omission of Matsui (sob), Molina, Cervelli, etc. I just don’t know if Mitre will be on the roster. Sorry about that!

  28. TribeTed


    We all have off day blues.

    I too wonder why the Indians can’t play every day.

    I guess we both suffer from a burning passion for the game – and that isn’t a bad thing.

    The Indians need to keep building and well…

    I don’t know about the Yanks.

    They are good enough already.

    –Ted “TTW/T”

    honoring 9/11 at:

  29. raysrenegade

    I actually would love a 365 day season, only because I post every day, so it would make the Winter months go a lot quicker.
    Maybe this year I will try and watch Arizona Fall League games, or see if MLB is going to have televised Winter League games from the Carribean nations.
    Or maybe I can just fill me feed bag with old games and cruise through the season’s highlight up unitl the second week in February.
    But then again, just like the teams need a day off to recoup and regroup, maybe we do too.
    It can be a godsend to relax, remember you have kids to feed, and recharge yourself for the fight ahead.
    But sorry, no NFL football in my house until the World Series is over.

    Rays Renegade


  30. Jane Heller

    I guess we all do have off-day blues, Ted, and we’ll just have to get over them. Today’s a new day and there’s baseball!

    I like your idea of watching Arizona Fall League games and maybe winter ball, Renegade. That might tide me over until spring training starts. (I hope to come back to Tampa. I had a great time last year.) As for football, I can’t even stand the promos on TV. It feels like an intrusion. Our season isn’t over. No fair!

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