Moms Are Dope

The date we've chosen to collectively celebrate our mothers couldn't be more arbitrary. There's nothing about mid-May that scream's "Mother's Day," yet, here we are showing appreciation for the women who should receive this kind of love every single day of the year. They've raised the collective of writers and sports fans here at The Journal. They've brought us to the games we love, inspired us to do better, and supported the hell out of us when we did.

Today, The Sports Fan Journal celebrates not just our own mothers, but all of the mothers out there living their lives for their children. Here is a short collection of anecdotes about TSFJ moms, sports, and life, because, well, our moms are dope.


A mom and her little madman

My mother isn't into sports. She doesn't know what field goal percentage is, for example. But when I was a teenage hooper, shooting other youths out of their gyms, her support in the stands mattered so much.

I can remember one game in which I wasn't playing well. She hadn't arrived yet and I couldn't buy a basket. The other parents even noticed when she walked in. But when she did, I instantly began to hit from the outside. I'm not sure if she knows, but I loved seeing her in the stands, even if she swore I "played like a madman." - Tillman

A perfect jumper from the perfect mother

As I type, my mom is to the left of me digging in a Macy’s bag as my sister asks about today’s purchase. She whips out a shoebox, and holds up a snazzy red heel. My sister thinks they’re cute, I think they’re perfect for her to take to the blacktop.

Let me explain.

Everyday after school, from 4th through 6th grade, I’d walk down the street to my friend’s house. In his driveway, they had a hoop with the chain nets, and we’d play until my mom came to pick me up after work.

Every once in a while, my mom would hop out of the car after a long day of selling bricks for Nextel; in her power suit and some heels. She’d ask for the rock, take one shot, and cash out every single time. She didn’t take the J often, but she shot 1.000 from the field. Perfect jumper from a perfect mother. - Barnett

Following a son's footsteps into loving baseball

While it was my father that put the game of baseball in front of me initially, my mother played a huge role in making sure that the seed of the game continued to grow. Once she realized that the game was far from one of the passing flings that children go through so many of with their various interests as they come along, she immersed herself into immersing me in the game.

It was deeper than just taking me to the countless games, practices and tryouts that she did. Rather, it was putting it in front of me from the angle that she came from as well: education. A teacher for over 30 years herself, she bought me volumes and volumes of books on the game. She mailed off the letters that I wrote to my favorite players and when I graduated from college, it was her that sought out and stood in line to land me an autographed book from none other than Cal Ripken himself, who personally congratulated me on my accomplishment within the cover. And he was also happened to be one of the ballplayers that replied back to one of the letters she mailed off for me nearly 20 years earlier.

My mother has always been my biggest fan, as you would expect of someone behind their only child. But she also played a major role in helping to build my lifelong passion for the game as well – a passion whose tenure and love in my life is still only surpassed by her. - Whitener

Mama and #42

The last time she was at a baseball game, the Dodgers had yet to leave Flatbush, the Giants toiled away in a oddly-shaped stadium in Harlem and the Yankees... well, they were the Yankees back then, too.

In September 2011, on a whim, I decided to take my mom to a baseball game. The Mets and Cubs were playing out the string and with the U.S. Open stealing New York City's collective sporting attention, getting to a game at the splendid Citi Field wouldn't be all that hard. But why trek to Flushing when we could have aimed for the much closer-to-home Yankee Stadium later that week?

Because we would have never gotten this photo at the stadium's home plate entrance, the Jackie Robinson Rotunda.


It had been 54 years since she saw the legend round the bases at Ebbets Field. For a moment, she got to be a kid again. And who wouldn't want to see their moms be so young again? - Clinkscales

When mom speaks up for her son

In the summer of 1998, my family visited our cousins in the northern Swedish town of Pitea. There was an international sports competition going on at the time and the guests of honor were two professional hockey players from the area, Tomas Holmstrom and Mikael Renberg. Holmstrom was coming off his second consecutive Stanley Cup title with the Detroit Red Wings. Renberg, with team Sweden, had recently won the World Championship.

Both men were introduced on stage before setting up autograph tables adjacent to the playing fields. I joined the mob that quickly formed, waiting for a chance to meet one of my childhood heroes. Renberg played right wing on the famed Legion of Doom line alongside Eric Lindros and John LeClair for the great Philadelphia Flyers teams of the 1990's. He was my favorite player.

For a moment, it looked like I would get lost in the throng. I was an eight-year-old blonde boy among hundreds of them. But my mom, who was standing by my side, spoke up.

“We're from Philadelphia,” she shouted in Renberg's direction.


She yelled it again.

“We're from Philadelphia.”

This time, he looked in our direction.

“Who's from Philadelphia?” He asked.

I raised my hand and he gestured for my mother and I to come forward. The crowd cleared a path and I moseyed up sheepishly.

He greeted me with a handshake and spoke near perfect English.

“We miss you in Philly,” I said. Renberg had been traded to Tampa Bay prior to the 1998 season.

“I miss it, too,” he confessed.

He signed my shirt, smiled, and wished my mother and I well. But the experience didn't end there My brother, a year older than me, missed the event with a high fever. Luckily for us, Renberg's mother taught my youngest cousin in elementary school. My aunt told her about the afternoon and how my brother was too sick to attend.

A few weeks after we got back from our European excursion, we received a package from Pitea. We opened it up to find a signed mini hockey stick and t-shirt courtesy of Mikael Renberg. I am forever grateful to him for that and to my mother for speaking up when I was too scared too.  - Friday

Got a dope story about your mom and sports? Share it with us in the comments section below!

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