And so this makes two consecutive Opening Days where I have absolutely nothing to do with Major League Baseball. Before last year, I’d worked in and around the game from 1989-2012, with my only interruption being ‘96 and ‘97 when I took a couple of years off. In some ways I miss the game, but in other ways I don’t. I always loved being around the players, on the field during batting practice, observing their rituals and regimens. And I liked writing about the game’s nuances. What I don’t miss is critiquing players on a daily basis, I guess, because I know all too well how difficult the game is, and I know asking them to talk about what has just happened goes against the grain of what players must truly practice, which is always looking ahead to the next pitch, the next play, the next game, the next series.