10 August 2006

Boo Fucking Hoo

Rick Reilly shows his sensitive side (missed this the other day) in telling the horrible story about a young man who had...to...face...a...pitcher!!!

In a nine- and 10-year-old PONY league championship game in Bountiful, Utah, the Yankees lead the Red Sox by one run. The Sox are up in the bottom of the last inning, two outs, a runner on third. At the plate is the Sox' best hitter, a kid named Jordan. On deck is the Sox' worst hitter, a kid named Romney. He's a scrawny cancer survivor who has to take human growth hormone and has a shunt in his brain.

So, you're the coach: Do you intentionally walk the star hitter so you can face the kid who can barely swing?

Well, let's walk through this like a logic problem:
  • Walk best hitter and get easy out. Win the game, but look like jackasses to people who think sports are anything but zero-sum games designed to teach lessons about life
  • Walk best hitter and Romney comes up with a clutch hit. Not only do you look like a jackass to those people, but Romney gets to stick it right back in your faces
  • Pitch to best hitter and get him out. Romney doesn't get his chance to hit. Since "[t]his is a league where everybody gets to bat" I certainly hope this wasn't Romney's only at-bat but can't tell from Reilly's heart-tugging piece
  • Pitch to best hitter and he gets a walk-off hit (and frankly, with nine- and 10-year-olds, a single will do it). Romney doesn't get his chance to hit.
Maybe I'm missing some outlier outcomes, but I believe that's the full set. So, again, what would you do?

I'd walk the star. And while Romney was understandably upset, at least he ended up learning the lesson that sports and competition are supposed to teach...
"I'm going to work on my batting," he told his dad. "Then maybe someday I'll be the one they walk."
If only the whiners who think everyone should be a winner could learn the lessons of sports as easily.

2 comments:

Brian B. said...

Ya see this illustrates why I like you so much.
You rail on like any wild & wooly Liberal, and then suddenly come up with a solid conservative stance on a subject.
You don't drink the Kool Aid from either side.

Oh yeah, I know nothing about sports, but I fully agree with you on this one.

R.A. Porter said...

See, I knew you would appreciate this a lot. :)

It's not wild and wooly liberalism. It's FDR/LBJ style New Deal, Great Society liberalism. If Johnson had only pulled our troops out of Vietnam as soon as he was sworn in, he'd have gone down as one of our greatest two term Presidents.

Muscular liberalism. Pick your fights well and then fight them well.

-Afghanistan: yes. Kick their asses and leave the troops there to support the nascent democracy
-Vietnam: no. The domino theory was cracked.
-WWII: yes. Duh.
-Iraq: no damn way. Having a dick-tator isn't enough reason to invade and nation-build. There needs to be a true threat, not a desire to finish off a job that was left incomplete a decade ago.