It's never too early to scoreboard watch -

It's never too early to scoreboard watch

(BaseballStL) -- Year after year you hear people say you can't watch what other teams are doing in May or June or even July because it doesn't matter yet.

"Oh, there's still 3 months left in the much can happen." "Stop trying to fake suspense this early in the season" "Just look at the Cardinals from last year." These are the common excuses they try and make.

To me, that could not be any farther from the truth. Yes, obsessing over being one game out of 1st place or 2 games ahead is not all that big of a deal. Yes, it's going to change about a billion times until the regular season ends.

But watching each and every game of not only your favorite team but also your favorite team's competitor is very legitimate. For Cardinals fans it's absolutely okay to obsess over what the Reds are doing night in and night out.

Think about it. At the end of the season...of the 6 divisions in Major League baseball...some of them are going to be decided by a couple games or less. History says that's probably true.

And while the last few games are the ones that will stick out in our minds the most because they were played recently...that does not make them any more valuable than those games played on June 16. Or May 4th. Or July 22nd.

It's very possible the NL Central division title will be decided on any random night. Just like any other division.

So, seeing how well the Reds have played of late isn't something you can just chalk up to "eh, it's early, who cares". If they end up winning the division by, say, 2 games you'll care then.

Football is the easiest to rationalize getting worked up over because there's only 16 games. Each contest represents more than 6 percent of the season. Basketball and hockey are a little trickier. They've got 82 games.

But since baseball has 162 it's easy to think each game doesn't matter. Well, yes in fact, they do. All of them.

Check back in October and you'll see why.

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