The Errant Evangelical 2

Bloged in church, culture by rod Friday November 27, 2009

Chapter 2, wherein the pitcher winds down


When the little boy left the team and headed home tossing bottle caps into trashcans, the team was absolutely thriving. The changes in the game had moved it to open fields where there was plenty of room for the game, and for spectators. And spectators certainly took advantage of this opportunity. They turned out in droves. Each game brought more spectators each time the team took the field.
Unfortunately, other changes in the game had slowed down the play. The larger space had spread the action out and the rules changes had slowed down play. The spectators and team manager began complaining about the lull in action.
As it happened, the action had been centralized to the pitcher, and therefore, he was thought to be responsible for the lull. The manager began speaking with him regularly about the complaints of the spectators. They discussed his performance. It was determined that his fast ball was fast enough, that his curve ball was curvy enough, that his knuckle ball was knuckly enough. He threw more strikes than balls, and his ERA was enviable. In fact, the only weakness that they could find was that his windup was not wind-y enough. The manager was sure that if they could just wind up the pitchers windup a bit, all would be better and the spectators would be entertained once again.
Always the good soldier, the pitcher agreed to try to lift his leg a bit higher, and to step left, then right then left again just before taking the ball from his glove and finally, to make a huge sweeping motion with his throwing arm, finishing in a rightward lean just as he released the ball. He practiced these visual theatrics until his arm (and legs, and shoulders and neck and ankles) ached, but no matter how well he did them, he couldn’t throw his fast fast ball, his curvy curve ball, or his knuckley knuckle ball any longer.
The manager insisted that he do this in the game, though, so he pitched loss after loss, embarrassing himself with walked and beaned batters.
He spoke with the manager time and again, but the manager expressed that the spectators weren’t concerned with the outcome of the game, only that they were entertained by the pitcher’s motions.
The pitcher didn’t last long knowing that he was no longer needed for his ability, and so left the team to find somewhere new to throw his fast fast ball and such.
Meanwhile, the team found a new windup man. The new guy couldn’t throw the ball across the plate any better than the last guy, but he was so enjoyable to watch that all the fans were delighted and soon forgot completely that the pitcher was supposed to throw stikes.

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