This project was not inspired by seeing the movie Julie/Julia (though perhaps the blog was – more on that anon). Nor was it inspired by reading about people who plan a summer of zipping around the country to attend a baseball game in every park. That requires far too much planning, not to mention time and money.

It came about a few years ago when, looking at the baseball standings, I realized that I had seen games in close to half of the major league parks. I have done a fair amount of traveling around the country, and one thing I did in the course of those travels was to attend a ball game. I then thought that if I could see games in that many cities without even trying, I could see games in all the rest with a more devoted effort.

And so I have set about to do that. The Burnham Baseball Project will have me attend a game in every ballpark. Note, however, that this is a lifetime goal, so I am not in a big hurry. It is likely to take a number of years to complete the project. On the other hand, I don’t feel particularly conscientious about attending all the new parks as they are built. I am going to consider that I can cross a team off my list if I have seen that team in its home park. You may disagree with this rule, but it is my project, and I get to make the rules.

Along the way, I will have some thoughts about baseball and other stuff that I will share. You will note from the lists that I have 20 teams down and 10 to go (a few hours ago it stood at 19 and 11, but I am just back from a Cleveland game. You may prefer that I say “Progressive Field” but I will have more to say about those stupid stadium names later (also, remember the rule stated in the previous paragraph). Because so many of my visits happened in the past, most of my blogs will contain vague recollections of parks past rather than vague recollections of parks present. In some of those cases, there will likely be much discussion of other stuff, as the recollections of the park will likely be severely limited.

When I do talk about parks, I’m not sure where this will take me. I have some temptation to look at what others have written about different parks and develop a list of criteria that I would use for the sake of comparison. But I suspect I will not give in to that temptation. Rather, I will talk about whatever is on my mind, and perhaps from that, a sense of the pleasures of the baseball experience will emerge that is truer than a statistical template could provide. Doubtless I already sound like one of those intellectuals who thinks baseball is the only sport worthy of attention. Which I am.

And so our warmup comes to an end. Next – Play Ball!