Mine Is A World Of Maddening Intrigue
With just a few more days to go before the regular season begins, I am obsessively checking the SEAL (Semi-Employed All-Stars League) homepage in hopes that BREAKING NEWS will await me. Other than Brian Roberts’ bizarre ailment, which does not look like it will keep him out of the Opening Day lineup, my current fantasy league strategy is sitting on my hands to prevent myself from pointlessly signing free agents. Jeremy Hermida has had a monster spring! But he hit .249 last season! And how will his production be affected by his placement in the lineup relative to Cameron Maybin and HanRam? There has been a distinct dearth of news regarding Jay Bruce of late–THIS CLEARLY MEANS I SHOULD DROP BRUCE IN FAVOR OF HERMIDA, right? No? How is Jim Thome’s back today? Maybe I should drop him–WAIT A MINUTE, I can’t drop a first-ballot Hall of Famer in favor of a 25-year-old with just two full seasons under his belt, can I? Of course I can–fantasy baseball is all about gambling on breakout seasons, right? AAAH! Hands…off…mouse…NOW! Must…read…about…um…politics?
I followed the most recent presidential cycle obsessively, allowing entire days of my life to be swallowed up by various campaign intrigues which I cannot now remember. I would feel bad about this, except that the guy I voted for got elected President, and it’s relatively easy to make the mental leap to presuming that my hyperventilated mashing of the Refresh button on various poitical blogs had something to do with his success, and is therefore somehow related to the General Well-Being of the World. So what does it say about me that I am, if anything, even MORE consumed by the pre-season minutae of the upcoming baseball season, about which there is far less news–to say nothing of its decreased significance regarding the General Well-Being of the World? I am too busy to think about this at present; I am currently attempting to determine the relative weight of Jered Weaver’s potential statistics as compared to Gil Meche, who is still unsigned and has far superior stuff, but pitches for a far inferior team and received mysteriously mediocre stat projections from both Bill James and Baseball Prospectus. Additionally, I am deeply involved in my planning for Opening Day of the 2009 Prospect Park Wiffle Ball League, which will be played according to the Official Wiffle Ball Rules–which, interestingly, are quite different from the rules of Regular Baseball.
What the rules fail to mention is whether or not the use of a strike-zone/backstop is recommended, and if so how large it should be. THIS IS A VERY SERIOUS AND IMPORTANT QUESTION. The site says each team should have a catcher, but if this is the case then who serves as umpire? ALSO, what is the meaning of this:
- The batter can strike out only if he/she swings at a pitched ball and does not foul tip the third strike. Foul tips count as a strike for the first two strikes only. A foul tip caught in back of the batters box does not count as an out.
- Fly balls caught in fair or foul territory
- Ground balls caught while the ball is in motion, in fair territory. Bunting is not allowed and the batter cannot obtain a base on balls.
Am I to assume, then, that no strike zone is in fact necessary? That an at-bat continues until the batter either strikes out or puts the ball in play? Plus, here is the real question: does it really matter, since a world in which Felix Pie gets the starting left-field job over Ty Wigginton is not a world in which I care to live?