This time of year reminds one that baseball season is like farming. Now that Opening Day has come and gone and planters are rolling across much of the country, a number of parallels can be drawn.

In the spring, baseball teams hope all the work they did in the off-season pays off, and everybody, the Chicago Cubs included, holds out hope for a successful summer and a great result in the fall.

Farming is the same way. Growers put their seeds in the ground after lots of planning, preparation and scouting, and then they turn it over to nature — the same way a team’s fate is mostly in the hands of the players after Opening Day.

There are certain things farmers can do to help their crops, in much the same manner there are certain strategic moves managers can make to help win baseball games. But, once you plant those seeds — or send the “hit-and-run” sign to the third-base coach — a lot of it is out of your control. It’s going to be up to Mother Nature (or a guy hitting .220) whether you succeed.