22 October 2002

All the Comissioner's Men...

Everybody's favorite emprical scientist, Jayson Stark is reporting on ESPN.com that there is a possible conspiracy to make the baseballs used in the World Series harder, evidently to produce more offense. As is typical in such a case, the pitchers tend to play it up, while the hitters tend to play it down, and the writers....well, none of the writers except Stark seem to be saying anything about it, which either means that Stark got the scoop or he's making a mountain out of a pitchers' mound because there's nothing to report the day after no game has been played. You pick.

It makes sense to me that it was simply an unseasonably cool night for southern California, and that the pitchers naturally would have had a harder time gripping the balls. Sure, 21 runs were scored on Sunday night, but Saturday's game, despite the homers, was only 4-3, hardly an offensive paradise. And even with all that offense on Sunday, K-F-WXYZ-Rod still racked up three more perfect innings of relief, with four strikeouts.

Cultural critic and AM radio talk-show host Michael Medved holds "Conspiracy Day" every time there's a full moon, and every wacko from Tulsa to Timbuktu calls in with some theory about how the Apollo Moon landings were faked, or the FreeMasons killed JFK, or that green beans are really blue.....or that the baseballs are juiced. The thing that he usually points out to these people is that the more people are involved in a potential conspiracy, the tougher it is to keep them all quiet. Do you really think that the women in Costa Rica, sewing baseballs together for 12 cents a day, wouldn't jump at the chance to expose some such conspiracy to the media for, say, $500? I didn't think so.

So enough with this silliness and let's get back to appreciating what we do have: Two second-place teams duking it out for the gaudiest trophy in professional sports. Woo-hoo!

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