Monthly Archives: June 2013

The Washington Senators

Hey Chip!

Chip!

You ever see the Washington Senators?

No, me either.

They died before we were born

only to be resurrected

and become two other teams

and then they came back as their mediocre self

only to crumble into another franchise.

Big Train pitched for them, Chip.

I wished we coulda seen him.

He pitched for years

before he ever made it to the World Serious

i mean Series

Seriously,

Walter Johnson probably broke a lot of barn doors

with that fastball.

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I dunno, Chip

I dunno, Chip,

The beauty of it all

Baseball, I mean.

I just watched a shortstop make an unreal play

Like a ballerina

Without the make-up.

I wish they played it

Three-hundred-sixty games a year

I guess I could go to Santo Domingo

To watch winter ball

They play their asses off down there

But maybe the magic would dissipate

And I would have to become a sports writer

To be able to see baseball on boxing day.

 

this is a baseball

Chip,

 this is a baseball.

the baseball game is one of the best things ever given to mankind

prometheus ascended a mountain to grab fire

only to be over wrought with eternal pain

he should have found a baseball

and a sandlot

with 17 friends,

or 15, if you want to cut off right field.

you should have played with us

in the beauty of Prospect Park

a bigger ball, sure,

but it don’t come at you so quickly

as a Walter Johnson heater

Chip

pay attention to the game

and woe to you when it’s gone

like hornsby said

he just waits for spring

to play baseball again

everything else is bunk.

Sandy Koufax

What about Sandy Koufax, Chip?

Like Jesus, he is Jewish

Wouldn’t pitch game one  of the World Series

Because of the high holy days

Hank Greenberg did the same thing

And Durocher yelled at him.

But Sandy Braun, that was he real last name

He grew up in Brooklyn

You know how I like Brooklyn, Chip.

Then he gets to play with the Dodgers

Only he stinks up the joint

Bonus baby and all

And walks as many as he strikes out.

No control, but blazing fastball

Nineteen-sixty-three, he starts to dominate

Striking out almost as many people

As there are  days in the year.

That mensch struck out

Two thousand three hundred ninety-six batters

And he retired when he was thirty.

 

The Long Relief Pitcher

The long relief pitcher, Chip.

Is there any other athletic position less glorified?

Maybe a football nose tackle

Or someone running with a strange stick

On a lacrosse field.

But the long-innings guy,

You gotta feel for him.

He was probably a star in his high-school team

And had grandiose hopes

Of becoming a star in the bigs

You gotta think big, Chip.

Aim for the asteroid belt

And if you hit a cumulus cloud

You’ve done better than most of us.

 

The long man on the staff

He is in a strange position

His coaches don’t think he has the starter stuff

And can’t blow past the other team

In the ninth inning.

He waits in limbo

Silently hoping a starter goes down

So he can go out every fifth day

But that opportunity rarely comes.

He settles to toil in innings

Where his team is well ahead

Or hopelessly behind.

The molasses games of August

When your team is down

Thirteen to one

In the sixth

That’s when he heavy heat strikes down

To describe your position as a pitcher.

They don’t get the glory

But at least it’s baseball.