Hamburgers, cowboy hats, pickup trucks, shotguns, horses, lassoes and Chinese people playing on professional basketball teams are just a few of the things that are “bigger” in Texas, I’m told.
Now, I’ll admit that I’m no Texan, but after this weekend’s sandlot action in Lubbock, I think that we just might be able to add another item to the list.
Earned run averages.
My case for the ERA may best be proven through the simple fact that as I sat down to write this article, my mind literally lapsed in and out of reality.
Scanning the weekend results, I was flashing back to games I had played in World Series Baseball 2002, somehow, when I would crush the computer in virtual double-digit slugfests with the National League All-Stars, reveling in the absolute, whimsical fantasy of it all.
“15-12!” a younger, more naive last-summer version of me exclaimed.
But oh, how things have changed.
On Saturday night, I was forced to come to grips with the following figure: During the first three games of the Crimson’s road-strip, 107 total runs were scored.
Harvard had given up 68 of them.
Read that figure again, and let it sink in.
The boys from Cambridge began their weekend by scoring over 20 times against Air Force in a 25-20 shootout, but the Red Raiders did them one better by crossing the plate against the Crimson a staggering 30 different times, edging our boys out 30-8 in the second-highest Tech tally ever.
Life, after a long time coming, had seemingly begun to imitate video games—but unfortunately, it wasn’t the Grand Theft Auto 3 kind as I had hoped.
Instead, I legitimately thought that I was reading box scores from October, when I watched the Crimson upend the Northeastern football team 28-20 on a rainy, Harvard Stadium afternoon.
But quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick’s season had ended more than three months ago, I realized; heck, I had watched “R-Rated Hypnotist” Frank Santos fail to mesmerize the junior signal caller in Lowell Lecture Hall on Friday night.
So in the end, it was me, all alone with facts and unwanted memories of a summer wasted surging back to my mind.