Fall is for football, winter is for basketball and hockey, and spring is for…what? Baseball and lacrosse have long been enemies, if not always conspicuous ones, and each would argue that their sport dominates the other in any number of facets. Socially, each has embraced the fraternity culture, but, at the same time, have managed to separate themselves from one another. Baseball players span from redneck, dip-spitting douchebags to upper class, wine-drinking wasps. Lacrosse is definitely less dynamic. It’s defined by the lax-bro archetype: a long, flowy-haired (LETTUCE!) bro wearing a pastel button-down shirt with khaki shorts, tube socks, and New Balance frat cleats. The debate will eternally rage on and neither side will ever concede defeat, but here at TFM, we offer an online sanctuary where guys from either side can engage in civil discourse before ultimately drawing a conclusion. So, I leave it to you. Which is cooler?
Making The Case For Baseball
It’s hard to argue against America’s pastime. Baseball is as American as apple pie. Want proof? Just watch one of the dozens of baseball movies that were box office hits in the U.S. Field of Dreams, The Natural, Major League, Bull Durham, The Bad News Bears, and The Sandlot are all examples of how baseball has impacted our culture. Can lacrosse say that? No. They had one movie, and it sucked. At most, lacrosse has broad regional appeal. But what even is lacrosse anyway? It appears to just be a combination of other sports. The purpose of lacrosse is to move a ball across a grass field into the opponent’s goal (soccer), the referees throw flags (football), it’s relatively violent but not actually violent (women’s basketball), and there is a penalty box (hockey). Lacrosse is just glorified women’s field hockey. Not to mention the fact that Major League Lacrosse might be the most pathetic professional sports league in the U.S. Its players generally earn salaries between $10,000-25,000. That’s below the poverty line. Professional baseball players average 3.2 million. Here is an incredibly depressing video from the MLL 2013 All Star Game. It was played in the stadium where my high school occasionally played football games. Attendance was at half capacity.
Not to mention, the name “lacrosse.” Want to know who coined that term? The French. How lame is that? Let’s face it, lacrosse will always live in the shadows of baseball. There is just no room for a second spring sport. Baseball is better than lacrosse.
Making The Case For Lacrosse
Here is the difference between baseball and lacrosse, only one of these sports requires athletic ability. Look at every overweight baseball player in the country; they would collapse and die on the lacrosse field, with a few rare exceptions. Sure, baseball requires expert hand eye coordination, as well as an above average capacity for strength (usually, David Eckstein was an elf, I’m pretty sure), but athlete is a stretch when describing pro baseball players. Baseball is also, of course, America’s pastime, but lacrosse has actually been around longer. The earliest examples of American sports-betting began with lacrosse. Native American players often gambled their wives and children. That’s as TFTC as it gets.
Lacrosse players are usually associated with being wealthy, prior to athletic success. Want to know why Major League Lacrosse hasn’t become a successful endeavor? Because there aren’t any lacrosse players who have to rely on playing sports to make a living, or want to. Most of them play because it’s a fun way to hang out with other bros. The sport is usually the ticket to easy acceptance into a good college, and on scholarship no less. Look at the schools that have historically dominated college lacrosse: Johns Hopkins, Duke, Cornell, Virginia, Yale, Princeton, Lehigh, North Carolina, Denver, Bucknell and Penn. Even if you are only marginally good at lacrosse, there are a bunch of quality lower division colleges who will give you a scholarship. Hampden-Sydney, Washington & Lee, Randolph Macon, Quinnipiac, Dickenson, Middlebury, and Gettysburg are all great schools with great lacrosse programs. Want to know where all the good lacrosse players go after college? Lucrative normal jobs, because they can. None of these guys are Dominicans who grew up eating discarded rooster carcasses tossed into a barrel out back of the local cock fighting ring and praying to God some MLB scout signs them at age 14. Though, to be fair, lacrosse is actually probably a more psychotic youth sport, but that craziness takes place in the ‘burbs, not a barrio with no running water. Whatever, lacrosse is better than baseball.
Opinions Around The TFM Office
From my own personal experience growing up in Texas, baseball dominated every aspect of lacrosse. Lax was the cop-out sport for guys who didn’t make the select baseball teams. When I moved to Charlotte, NC, my outlook changed. Lacrosse wrecked baseball in popularity and was a lot more fun to watch. Baseball and lacrosse attract two different kind of women and, suffice it to say, I’ll take the latter. Here are some opinions from other people at the TFM office.
I respect the party lifestyle that surrounds lacrosse, and the crossover it has with fraternity life, but I’ll take America’s pastime on nearly every count. I seriously doubt any lacrosse player is a better athlete than someone like Yasiel Puig or Mike Trout (among others). More importantly, having a beer at a ballpark (not just an MLB one) and watching a baseball game beats watching lacrosse, where you’ll be sitting in empty bleachers at a venue that will be hosting a high school soccer tournament the next weekend.
Baseball without question. Let’s look at the facts:
1) Women everywhere love baseball players.
2) At least 75% of the time you don’t even have to do anything but stand there.
3) Chewing tobacco isn’t only allowed, it’s practically encouraged.
End of discussion.
Finally, somebody else picked lacrosse:
– Americans are the best in the world at lacrosse (because nobody else plays)
– It’s a rich kid sport
– SFPL is mad he was on JV his senior year.
– 40 Acres
A couple human girls weighed in as well:
Well, lacrosse bros are kind of inherently douchebags (which I love) — I mean, you practically HAVE to call them “bros” for fuck’s sake. That’s some hardcore douching right there. LAX pinnies are also, like, the holy grail of shacker shirts. Plus, I enjoy muscles, so lacrosse has a lot going for it. Still, there’s just something about a baseball player. Maybe it’s the fact that professionals make so much money. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s the only sport I understand. Maybe it’s just the pants. But if I had to pick, my loyalty lies with the fellas who brought this into the world.
– Hot Piece
“I like the uniforms in baseball better but my brother and all of my friends play lacrosse so I have to say I’m a little biased. Regardless, there is nothing like a man in a uniform”
– Nicole, TFM Intern
So, the debate lives on. Baseball is Seinfeld to lacrosse’s Newman. Will we ever find an answer? Maybe someday, but it doesn’t feel like it’ll be anytime soon.