The Tampa Bay Rays pulled off a miracle comeback the other night against the dreaded Yankees and now that the 2011 season heads into the post season with the Rays let’s examine this great institution.
Baseball is a tradition in America, much like apple pie, Toyota brake recalls and Microsoft. Its legacy brought this country into the twenty-first century and as we approach the next millennium, its roots are still steeped in traditional American values. A sunny afternoon at the ball yard, and a second baseman wearing an earring, hitting .218 and pulling down $6 million a year.
Baseball is the only institution in America that keeps more statistics than the FBI. The game is famous for its statistics because games are usually long and boring and creating new statistical categories help pass the time. Lifetime batting average with runners on second and third with a Republican controlled House and winds over fifteen miles an hour come to mind. Number of curve balls thrown during a partial lunar eclipse is another good one.
Florida has two major league ball clubs, the Tampa Bay Rays and the Florida Marlins, but the state also plays host to spring training camps for a bunch of other big league clubs. We also boast a large base of minor league ball teams, or the ‘Bush Leagues’. No, not sleazy, sandlot leagues of substandard levels of performance and hype. That league is called the Florida State Government.
The minor leagues are the real heart of baseball, arenas where dreams begin and careers end. Teams like the Brevard County Manatees, the Jupiter Hammerheads or the Ft. Myers Miracle. Names few have heard of, ballparks where everyone knows each other. A game that is still pure and unpretentious.
In a salute to the Kissimmee Cobras, the Two Egg Western Omelets and yes, the Tampa Bay Rays let’s serve up some ball park stalwarts of brats and onions, slather them with some tangy mustard and wash them down with your preferred suds of choice. Then sit back and enjoy the playoffs the next few weeks. Or you could just go to the beach instead.
Brats and Onions
-2 Tbs. Olive Oil
-1 ½ Cups Sliced Onions
Two Bottles Beer
Four Steak Rolls
Place Brats in a large pot and add beer.
.Bring the beer to a boil, reduce heat and soak the brats for five to ten minutes.
Heat oil in a skillet and sauté the onions for about five minutes.
Meanwhile take your favorite yellow mustard, add a tbs. of chipotle in adobe sauce along with the some dried thyme and coarse ground pepper. Mix well and top the brats with the onions and mustard.
Serve with beer and a roll of paper towels.