Sometimes I think I learned more politically relevant lessons playing ball than anywhere else. If nothing else, sports teach realism: what you can do, what you can't, how to deal with it. Also, what's the score, how much time's left, and what's the best tactic right now?
It helps to know the rules, and it's important to keep your head. Bad plays are inevitable, dumb plays less forgivable.
But here's something else you learn playing ball: Not everybody on your team is going to be your friend, just as people wearing different-colored shirts aren't personal enemies. Also, spectators can be fickle. Your most passionate fans can quickly turn into your opponent's ally.
These are all useful concepts during an American primary election.
An athlete in his youth, Bernie Sanders appears to understand overwrought fans. His campaign's apology to Hillary Clinton supporters harassed online by so-called "Bernie Bros," angry young men given to coarse attacks upon anybody -- especially women -- supporting his rival was a class move.