Topic: "Clone Chipper,Please"(4)
Ted Williams, of the Boston Red Sox, ended the 1941 baseball season with a batting average of .406. Since no subsequent Major League player has even approximated safely hitting a batted ball as much as 40% of the time, it is unsurprising that a record which has stood for 67 years and is only now somewhat threatened, is beginning to attract attention throughout the World of Sports. Chipper Jones, of Frodo's beloved gallant Braves, has a batting average of .421, better than one-third of the way through the 2008 season. Despite the accomplishment, the Fates have thrown all of their combined fury at his teammates, as player-after-player falls to injury-after-injury.
True to character, Frodo recognizes that action must be taken. Tonight he sent an e-mail to Bobby Cox, Manager of the beleaguered Braves, volunteering his services. Frodo did this despite the fact that he was eligible to vote when the oldest current Brave was born. Frodo would be the only member of the current Braves who actually had seen Ted Williams play baseball. Desperate circumstances call for drastic action.
Tonight the gallant Braves are getting shelled by the Cubs from Chicago. Chicago, as most know, is the community that only experiences two seasons annually, and that is, of course, both winter and the Fourth of July. Rational people do not live in such climates, and those who do generally offer their wives as entertainment for weary travelers who must spend a night in the owner's igloo. Perhaps that fact explains why the Braves are playing as if all their collective energies have been spent. Things would, indeed, be different if Frodo were on the field.
Frodo envisions himself as the old-time ballplayer. You know, dear reader, the guy who "takes one for the team." Frodo would, when first at bat, lean out across the plate and suffer being struck by the pitched ball from the Cubs hurler. Then, when Chipper hit the ball into the gap between outfielders, Frodo would cross the plate and score the first run of the game for the gallant Braves.
The next at-bat, Frodo would diligently tap any pitched ball crossing the plate into foul territory. Figuring that he would exhaust the opposing pitcher, and still attain first-base when the fourth pitched ball was called a "Ball," he would again score a run when the magnificent Mr. Jones drove him "Home."
This process would continue throughout the game, and since Frodo would step up to the plate probably four times, it would mean that the gallant Braves would have four runs in their column. Unfortunately, neither Frodo nor Chipper can pitch, so that would mean that success would require similar action by at least seven others from the Fellowship, simply to match the total score amassed by the Cubs.
Perhaps Merry could crouch way down and present a strike-zone way too small for any pitcher to notch as many as three strikes. Eowyn, from the Lands where the smallest still play baseball, could wring a synthetic tear afront the umpire and win his decision to award first base to one so sincere. Where there is Fellowship, there is always hope.
Of course, it would also be nice if you had somebody who could pitch. Maybe next year.