October comfort

I need baseball to make it better.

I need to replace children being dragged across classroom floors with runners busting it down the first-base line.

I need to counter thinly veiled racist arguments with the crack of the bat and the pop of leather.

I need to remember I am blessed to choose my family.

I need to cry some more because I miss my friend.

Two friends, actually. Mike, I assume you’ve met Ken by now. I can only imagine the stories being told.

I need to measure my life by more than coffee spoons and page views.

I need to feel the soul-deep self-validation that comes from knowing I did a good job, whether anyone else knows or agrees.

I don’t know a lot these days. But I know what high and outside is (sorry, Ben Revere).

I know three-and-two, two outs. I know the sweet satisfaction of going the other way. I know the beauty of a slow-rolling, chalk-teasing bunt. I know you sometimes walk the runner to set up a double play, and I know you always slide to break it up (still did nothing wrong, Chase Utley).

I know I hate Joe Buck. I know Marlins Man is my hero.

When baseball disappoints me, it’s for reasons I understand. Double-digit runners left on base, shortstops failing to cover third on a shift, Cy Young-worthy performances wasted by a stubborn swing-for-the-fences mentality.

When people disappoint me, I still am somehow surprised.

So I need diving catches and line drives and first-pitch inside-the-park home runs.

I need my medicine, even though I have no more than seven refills left.

It’s strong enough to get me through till spring.