Sunday, April 10, 2005

Baseball Explained

Gentle visitors, some foreigners who frequent these pages have implored us for a simple explanation of baseball. (These folks were raised on such sports as cricket, croquet, and curling. Nothing wrong with these athletical distractions -- not at all. We have treated curling in passing; croquet -- to be sure -- in some future meditation; and, cricket -- yes -- once we get the point of it.) At the same time, we have had a request for more baseball poetry: a redundance since the game itself is poetry -- a bit like a request to gild the lily.

But, nonetheless... nonetheless, we mean to serve (a tennis term, by the way) -- thus, the following, simple, poetical explanation of a "strike".

A strike is a pitch swung at and missed

(or, one not swung on at all but so called
by that certain masked, padded, dark-vested
gentleman styled "the umpire",
who crouches behind that other masked and padded
[though jerseyed] man catching said
missed or dismissed pitch,
to the extent that, in the unappealable judgment
of said umpire, the ball breaks an imaginary and approximate
box suspended over home plate
[a pentagonal affair -- hard rubber --
where the most important events transpire],
bounded by the plate itself
and the knees and "letters" of the batter,
as determined by his relative size and contraction,
the general reputation of the pitcher, and
the eyesight of the said umpish gent
[often a matter of concern and speculation
by those witnessing the sporting exhibition,
who are all, apparently, avocational optometrists ],

or, a pitch hit into a foul territory --
that is to say, an untoward place
demarcated by a straight, chalky line,
such that there is a great abyss fixed
between what is foul and what is fair --

unless such struck ball is caught,
in which case it is an out,

unless the foul is not caught
and would otherwise be the third strike,
in which case it is a nought,

unless the batter is trying a bunt,
[a cute maneuver -- if "cute" could ever be used
with the proper gravitas for the sport--
in which the batter does not swung,
but, rather, places the bat in front of the ball
in order that said ball be nudged
{again, an inadequate term}
a few feet forward, in the fervent hope
of advancing himself or other runners
along the base-paths]
and, contrary to the batters intent,
the ball goes foul (see above)
in which case it is a strike,

unless it would otherwise be a third strike
and the catcher does not catch the ball
[a paradox that -- otherwise, why the title?]
and the batter reaches the first base
before the catcher can throw the ball
to that person assigned to cover first base
or otherwise tag him out,
in which case it is technically a strike
and, per force, a strike out
but not scored as such).


Blogger Gone Away said...

There at the plate
(Yet no dinner for him)
Standing proud the batter
('Tis not about food
Dip not your fish)
Shoulders his mighty bat
(No vampire this)
Girt with an imagined box
Holds with a steely eye
The pitcher
(Who'll hold no water though)
Readied now he waits to swing
(No playground here -
no merry-go-round)
Dreaming of famous hits
(But not strikes you see)
Behind the man
In the abyss so foul
Hang suspended the catcher
(What, dogs, rats or vermin?)
And an umpire
Like beggars at the feast
Before our hero
The diamond
(No, no fabled jewel is this)
Awaits, anticipates the run
From base to base
The gleaming prize
The homer
(And where is Bart in this?)

Poor foreigner
Searching for the wicket
Prods the patient muse
"What, is this not cricket?"

4/11/2005 06:59:00 AM  
Blogger Remainderman said...

By Jove, I think he's got it.

4/11/2005 11:22:00 AM  
Blogger Ned said...

First we get an excellent explanation of the strike as convoluted as the defintion with as many instances and exceptions. Then we are given a wonderful exposition on the colorful terms associated with the game in another poetic foray. Both hit a home run.

4/11/2005 01:18:00 PM  
Blogger De Delaware House Cleaning said...

Excellent blog.  I go though the web in search of
blogs like this one. Its so good, that I plan on
returning to its site!
I'm looking at the possibility of checking your pr puerto rico house cleaning blog.

2/06/2006 04:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

top [url=]uk online casino[/url] brake the latest [url=]free casino games[/url] autonomous no deposit bonus at the foremost [url=]online casinos

1/18/2013 10:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am extremely inspired along with your writing skills and also with the structure on your blog.
Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Anyway keep up the nice quality writing,
it's rare to peer a great blog like this one today..

Here is my blog post ... buy quantrim

3/27/2013 06:24:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the marvelous posting! I seriously enjoyed reading it, you could be
a great author. I will be sure to bookmark your blog and may come back at some point.
I want to encourage continue your great writing, have a
nice holiday weekend!

Also visit my homepage: get fit with quantrim

3/29/2013 05:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello, There's no doubt that your blog might be having browser compatibility problems. When I look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in I.E., it has some overlapping issues. I just wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Besides that, excellent site!

My web site quantrim fast track formula

6/13/2013 02:46:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home