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The Clutch

Fall and October beckon and, with them, come the conclusion of baseball season and the beginning of another long season of hopeful anticipation of the spring.  I have often thought that if a man cannot study philosophy and will not reflect upon his religion, there may yet be some hope for a meaningful life if he will, at least, study baseball.

Elizabeth Scalia waxes poetic on some of the reasons for this over at the First Things blog, On the Square.  At the heart of her musings is her recollection of the dread and then heartbreak she witnessed in a fan of one of her rival teams as her team rode the wind to glory.  The capacity of baseball to "break your heart," she reflects, is what makes baseball great.  And the reason baseball can do this is because of the way it can put you "in the clutch"--that is, in a state of suspension between certainty and uncertainty; the place where you have offered up your best, but can only hope for an agreeable outcome.  As the potential for tragedy spins on this roulette wheel of fate, love prevents us from calling in our chips.  We double down and are drawn in, yet again, for another spin.  We are caught in the clutch and the love that drives us compels us to surrender to it.  The pitcher may have perfected balance and form and strength and speed but, at some point, he must release the ball. 

It is a grand read.  Enjoy.
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Discussions - 1 Comment

Julie,
Good blog, fine article, made an otherwise prose day into a bird in flight. Thanks.

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