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Baseball = America

Apr 18, 2012, 3:30 PM EDT

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Tim Stanley is a writer for the Telegraph in London. He went to his first baseball game the other day. Even though he referred to home plate as “fourth base,” he shows a far greater understanding of what baseball is all about than that dude who slammed it in his football blog yesterday.

And not just because he says smart things like “the rules are simple and any confusion is cleared up by more beer.”  He understands the zeitgeist of the thing, and makes some interesting parallels between baseball and the American psyche, at least as we like to believe it to be:

At face value, baseball’s an individualist sport because it’s all about the man at the bat. He swings, he runs, he’s in command of his destiny. But he’s also playing for the team, and sometimes sacrifices have to be made. If someone’s already at third base, the goal of the batter is to hit the ball far enough to allow his teammate to get to fourth – accepting that he’ll probably get taken out himself as he sprints to first. It’s a reminder that a necessary ingredient for the flourishing of the individual is the health and the wealth of the people around him. For you to succeed, others must succeed, too – and as with baseball teams, so with nations. We’re all in this together.

I don’t think our society always works that way. But I think we’d like it to.  At the very least it has before and will again. And I think baseball reflects it far more than the other sports do, even if other sports reflect how our society works in practice from time to time.

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    Yadier Molina is beginning to make some progress. Brian Stull of STL Baseball Weekly reports that the star catcher took swings in an indoor batting cage Wednesday at Busch Stadium for the first time since tearing the ulnar collateral ligament in his right thumb July 9 on an awkward side-swiping slide into third base.

  2. Las Vegas hands South Philadelphia’s Mo’ne Davis her first Little League World Series loss

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  3. Starlin Castro excused from Cubs after death of cousin and three friends in car accident

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  5. Video: Billy Hamilton pulls off heads-up double play

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  6. Giants win protest, will complete rain-halted game at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon

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  9. Rays activate reigning Rookie of the Year Wil Myers

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  11. Nick Swisher undergoes surgery on both knees

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  12. Heyman: Jon Lester unlikely to sign with the Sox this offseason

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  16. The Cubs are giving rain checks to fans at last night’s game. That was not postponed.

    Aug 20, 2014, 2:44 PM EDT

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  17. HBT Daily: You had ONE JOB

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  18. John Lackey gives Pat Neshek a ball autographed by Babe Ruth in exchange for his jersey number

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  19. Spotted at the Des Moines airport: 1,023 career homers

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