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Off season questions

Bleacher Views

When there is no baseball, those of us who are fanatic about being fans have to make our annual pilgrimage to YouTube, so we might do a refresher course on the Abbott and Costello classic, “Who’s on First?” I did notice this time around that classic though it is, they did forget to ask a few questions.

Idunno (he plays third) Why (left field) baseball is played in a ball park while other sports are played in a stadium or an arena If it’s a park, where are the trees, the water, the flowers? Now admittedly there are Orioles and Cardinals flying around, but shouldn’t the Royals play in a castle, the Padres in a church, and the Rays in an aquarium? Of course, in the last case, you might need scuba equipment to get into the stands, but still.

Speaking of stands, why is that where the seats are? If everyone in the stands is sitting, not standing, why call them stands?

And why are you sitting there? To see your team score runs, of course. How do you score a run, you might ask? Why you stop running as you cross home plate, naturally. What is a plate doing at home anyway? Did someone steal it from an unsuspecting mother? If so, that would be the oddest looking plate in the china cabinet. Maybe Mom just wanted to get rid of it anyway.

As far as stealing goes, if you steal a base, where do you hide it? Oh, in the dugout, that place where the fellow with the power shovel ruined the foundation of the stands so that everyone had to sit. Of course.

Another way to score one of those valued runs is to hit a home run, wherein no one runs, they trot. So why isn’t it called a home trot? Clearly because you have to practice your home run trot so that your run counts. Got it.

You have to remember, though, to touch all the bases during your home run trot. As you do, you might ask why there are three bases. Shouldn’t there be only one base? Or is that a baseless question to ask?

Of course, if you hit a “fly,” you don’t get to stand on a base. To do that, your fly has to turn into a hit by “dropping in,” and not because a player dropped the ball either. That would be an “error.” But if your “fly” “drops” by itself, you get a “hit” even though you had to do that just to get a “fly.”

If you can follow all that, it’s pretty easy to understand why Costello couldn’t figure out that Who was the first baseman. Makes perfect Sense, doesn’t it? Oh sorry! He’s the umpire.


Millerton resident Theodore Kneeland is a retired teacher and coach — and athlete.

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