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Love Your Profile, Take Me Out To The Ball Game?

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Major League Baseball and Match.com are trying to hit a bunch of singles.

Organized baseball and the online dating service have formed a partnership that will allow fans to find one another. It's appropriately called SINGLES.

As Match.com says, "Connecting over a shared passion like America's favorite pastime is the best way to break the ice, so ... start your search today!"

By the way: I'm a little surprised to see a dating website to refer to baseball as America's favorite pastime.

Noah Garden of Major League Baseball told the Associated Press, "The idea is put like people together with similar interest and passion. There's still always room for more butts in the seats."

That "similar interest and passion" doesn't have to be for the same baseball club. People can use the site to try to match up with someone who roots for another club, which raises — as romance always does — some intriguing questions.

Will Yankee and Red Sox fans reject each other because of their ancient rivalry? Or get beguiled by the naughty notion of running off with the kind of fan their parents warned them against? Imagine Romeo and Juliet or West Side Story recast as the story of a forbidden romance between a guy from the Bronx and a girl from Roxbury.

I have a mixed marriage myself. I root for the Cubs, and my wife is a Yankees fan. It wasn't until I fell in love with a Yankees fan I discovered that the baseball season doesn't end with the last out in Wrigley Field, but goes on all the way through October to the World Series. How would a Cubs fan know about the World Series?

Now that I'm thinking of it, I wonder whether the SINGLES site should set its algorithms to prevent Cubs fans from co-mingling. Too many Cubs couples siring and spawning could sap the strength of the nation. It's a matter of national security!

Major League Baseball believes that ballparks are fine places for a first date. A couple can watch a game that takes place at a stately pace and leaves plenty of time for conversation.

But I wonder: $6 hot dogs, $8 beers, $82 just for a single seat in aisle 137. Those are death-do-us-part prices, not first date prices. And what if that date turns out to be someone who shucks his shirt to paint his belly Milwaukee Brewers blue and wears a frizzy orange wig to jiggle in the stands and roar, "Let's go Brew Crew!"? Would that make you say, "I can't wait to bring you home to mother"?

But the major leagues and Match.com seem to trust in one of baseball's oldest bromides: hit enough singles, and you'll score.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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