Ride the pine by Colin Gee
Orphans 7 10 1
Creampuffs 0 2 0
So we were sitting there, as usual, and started talking about these pitchers.
Fucking Green is hitting OFF the interstate this year, we bitched and moaned. Looks like he’s swinging at the fucking baseball with a chainsaw, we cussed, watching him flail uselessly at a
73-mile-per-hour fastball you could wallpaper your ex-wife’s baby room with.
Jesus, we groaned, praying with our intestines and superstitions, please let the bat hit the ball
The bat did not hit the ball, or vice-versa.
We slumped back into our potato chip and vodka cave in that section of the outfield wall and were silent, too depressed to pass the bottle.
Then, miraculously, light entered our universe via a misshaped slice of tarpaper roofing,
through which we were accustomed to hear both taunts and hyena laughter, and self-entitled moaning. Only this time it was not the filtering, salting, sanding peanuts but the stern words of someone we thought was our dad.
Dad, we did not cry, poking our eye into that misshappen, cretin-stained little triangle that was
the only portal between our world and the world of the people who loved us.
Our dad said, What you want is an extra guy on every bench who is just there to hit. So that the so-called pitcher gets up on the on-deck circle and is immediately hit so hard by rotten tomatoes that he has to go back and sit down, and there is a guy who gets up to bat for him.
Our necks craned and our eyes stared. We wanted to meet our dad, but he was gone – had gone somewhere to get some more beer.
Incredulous, we compared notes.
Instead of a pitcher, there would be a person designated to hit for the pitcher, our mouths gibbered, and salivered.
We said, But the designated person would not pitch, we exclaimed.
We said, No, no no, never, we chuckled – a dry chuckle, tongues clicking like hammers in the back of our potato chip cave and bullpen junta. This person’s only job would be to pitch.
To pitch, we homologized, and not to bat.
So what in God’s name does he do instead of bat, we urged – we pressurized.
He just concentrates on his pitching, screamed the rest of us – feeling vindicated, as Green
hands his bat back to the batboy as though it might as well have been a potato, and the batboy takes it like it is a loaded rifle, points it, and pretends to shoot.
So then what we would have is a designated pitcher, someone spat, spraying sunflower seeds like it was Easter Sunday.
No, no no no, we laughed. That would be stupid. What we would have, we exclaimed, standing and making the most of our five foot six inches, and six inches, without ever bumping the
ceiling or walls, is a designated batter.
True, we replied with just one tick of our violent eyelids, but kind of seems like you have the bat by the wrong end.
You said, Well then what happens to the pitcher? What we really need is two new positions, a designated pitcher who does not bat and a designated batter who does not pitch. We could call them anything, designated no-batter or designated no-pitcher.
There was a wrenching, pronlonged silence as we pondered the reality of death and the nine-man batting order.
In any case, someone argued, THAT IS NOT A BASEBALL PLAYER.
Colin Gee is founder and associate editor of The Gorko Gazette thegorkogazette.com, a humor e-zine that publishes daily headlines, cartoons, poetry and more. Twitter: @GorkoThe