Should baseball’s opening day be a national holiday?


Should Opening Day be a national holiday? (Jonathan Newton / Washington Post)

Updated at 3:15 p.m. with new data on signatures

Play ball … and take the day off!

That’s the plan. There’s a drive afoot that would make baseball’s opening day a national holiday, since the sport allegedly remains the national pastime.

Naturally, a brewery thinks is a good idea and has enlisted the St. Louis Cardinals’ Hall of Fame shortstop Ozzie Smith in the quest to get everyone another day off work by the end. Budweiser and Smith announced an advertising initiative Monday to get 100,000 signatures from people 21 and older on WhiteHouse.gov within 30 days.

The opener between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres is March 30, with the first full slate of games on Monday, March 31, so the move may be a bit of a longshot (there were 8,000 signatures at 3:15 p.m. EST), although the ads on ESPN.com and MLB.com are just kicking in. Maybe the drive would have gotten a little more steam if the ads had launched during, say, the Super Bowl. (Speaking of that and sports-related national holidays, couldn’t we all use one on the Monday after the Super Bowl? Let’s get two holidays while we’re considering these things.)

Still, this seems like a pretty cool idea. In Massachusetts, Patriots’ Day, a state holiday, is a special sports day, with the Boston Red Sox playing a day game and the Boston Marathon runners winding through the city’s streets.

Under the ideal national-holiday scenario, ESPN would still have the opener on Sunday night, but there could be a full slate of Monday games — with most falling during the day, please.

There’s just one wrinkle. What if, in order to get the baseball holiday, another day off had to be sacrificed? Which one would you choose?

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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