Down and Dirty

Safe at Third
Safe at Third

Baseball was made for little boys.  Everything about the game is filthy, and little boys would rather roll in the dirt than take a bath.  The baselines are dirt, the dugouts are dirt, and the entire infield at little league fields is 100% dirt.

The batter picks up a handful of dirt and pours it from one hand to the other so his sweaty hands won’t slip on the bat. Pitcher does the same thing so the ball doesn’t slip out of his hand.  The pitcher spits.  The batter spits.  The umpire uses his whisk broom to sweep the dirt off home plate.  Infielders kick the dirt to watch the dust bunnies blow across the infield.  Disgruntled coaches kick dirt on the umpire’s shoes to protest a call.

America’s past time is designed so little boys can get dirty.  But the ultimate thrill for a seven year old is to slide into base, especially home plate, where the dirt is finer than cosmetic powder and they can lose themselves in a mushroom cloud of dirt.

Thought for the Day:  Little League baseball is a good thing ’cause it keeps the parents off the streets and the kids out of the house.                                                              Yogi Berra

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