#27: A Score to Settle


My brother Jay is managing a minor league baseball team in the town’s Little League this year.
He came over to my house right after the league held the player draft, when the managers and their coaching staffs pick the kids that fill out the team’s roster, and he was exhausted because it had been a long night.
I asked him, “How was the draft?”
My brother said, “Man, it was intense. We held try-outs over the last two weekends. There were hundreds of kids that turned out and all the managers had to rank each kid on a scale of 1-to-10 in several categories based on their running, throwing, fielding and hitting ability.”
He continued, “After that, me and my staff held meetings to go over our notes, compare our ratings, and discuss our draft strategy. Then tonight we all met and had a lottery where each manager drew a number that determined their position in the draft. Once the draft started it got really competitive because everyone was obviously trying to go after the best players, based on their evaluations.”
I said to my brother, “Wow, that’s a lot of work. How do you think you did??”
He said, “I think I put together a solid team. We should be pretty good this year.
I drafted some really talented ballplayers.”
I said, “Great, I hope you and the kids are successful and win a lot of games.”
My brother said, “Well, actually no. They don’t keep score in the minor leagues.”
I chuckled and said, “Oh come on. What do you mean they don’t keep score?”
He said, “They don’t keep score. We can’t count the runs.”
I said, “You gotta be kidding me, right? If you don’t keep score, how do you determine who wins the game?”
“We don’t, so neither team wins or loses.”
I said, “That’s ridiculous. I never heard of such a thing! If no one wins or loses how are you going to determine the standings?”
He said, “They don’t keep won-loss records, so there are no standings.”
I shook my head and said, “So, tell me again, why did the league hold this draft?”
“So the coaches could pick the best players and put together the strongest team possible.”
I said, “But if you don’t keep score, and there are no standings, why do you need to get the best players on your team? Who are you going to beat? You’re no better than anyone else.”
My brother said, “Uhhh… I don’t know…I never really thought about that.”
I said, “Well think about this… No matter how good your team plays, the very best you can ever do is end-up in a scoreless tie… and, not only that, in the end, you’ll still be tied for last-place with every other team who hasn’t won a single game all season long either.”
He snapped. “Stop it, you’re making me depressed.”
“No, I’m making SENSE!… which seems to be in short supply lately.”
The world has gone mad with political correctness.
If there are no winners and losers where is the incentive for these kids to succeed? Without competition, where is the motivation to excel? To improve and make yourself better?
Why bother even to play?
I can imagine a manager pulling a kid aside before he leaves the on-deck circle and instructing him… “OK, if you get on base, I want you to try and steal second.”
“Why, coach?”
“So you can put yourself into scoring position.”
“Why, coach?”
“To give us a better chance of scoring a run.”
“Why do we need a run, coach? It won’t make a difference. We don’t keep score.”
And the coach throws up his hands in exasperation and says, “I don’t know what to tell you. I don’t have an answer for that… You know what, just forget it.”
How much more can we pamper these children?
Pretty soon you’ll see an umpire yell, “Strike three, you’re out!” and the kid will stand in the batter’s box, pouting like a baby, and yell into the stands (with a privileged, haughty Veruca Salt accent) “Father, it’s not fair. Why can’t I have four strikes?”
And the umpire will say, “Because you only get three, kid.”
Stomping his foot, he’ll scream out defiantly, “But father, tell him I want four!”
And eventually there will be no more balls and strikes.
Why? Because they let little girls play on the teams now… and little girls don’t have little balls, so they’ll feel left out or excluded somehow… lawsuits to follow.
They’ll have to call them strikes and ‘non-strikes.’
And the same will be true for the little boys, because they don’t have a ‘batter’s box.’
And that white thing on the pitcher’s mound called a ‘rubber?’ Good heavens, we can’t have impressionable children subjected to such vulgar slang, they’ll be traumatized!
My brother did inform me that all of the managers are required to keep a box score to make sure that every single kid plays the same amount of innings.
The exact same. No matter how good the kid is… or how much he sucks out loud.
This is a new thing now… this mandate that everyone needs to be treated equally; that no individual can be any better or any worse than anyone else.
It’s like that with everything now…
Sure, let’s go ahead and let women become Navy Seals and firefighters.
You might say, “But women are different than men and they can’t possibly pass all the physical tests of strength and endurance that are required for those jobs.”
That doesn’t matter… They just lower the standards for everyone to make sure the women pass. And why not? After all, they only face what are potentially life and death situations on a daily basis. What could possibly go wrong?
And don’t stop there…
Let’s allow ugly people to enter beauty pageants.
Let’s encourage blind people to perform major surgery.
Let’s let fat people figure skate in the Olympic Games.
Hell, let’s elect a President to run this country who has no idea what the fuck he’s doing… Oh, wait a second, we’ve already done that.