|Casey at the Batby Ernest Lawrence Thayer ©|
|Published: The Examiner (06-03-1888)|
The Outlook wasn’t brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
Then from 5,000 throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
There was ease in Casey’s manner as he stepped into his place;
Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;
And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
With a smile of Christian charity great Casey’s visage shone;
“Fraud!” cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered fraud;
The sneer is gone from Casey’s lip, his teeth are clenched in hate;
Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;
|Casey at the Bat by Ernest Lawrence Thayer ©|
Thanks to Baseball Almanac.Com for this beautiful depiction of the famous Ernest Lawrence Thayer poem. “Casey at the Bat” was first published on June 3, 1888 in the San Francisco Examiner and went on from there to become the spinal rhyming spirit of all fans who have ever closely , and with great emotional attachment, followed the great American sport of baseball.
In baseball today, no one depicts the heart and spirit of the game any greater than the great Grover “Deacon” Jones of the Sugar Land Skeeters. The Skeeters begin their first season of independent league ball tomorrow night, April 26, 2012, before a home sell out crowd against the York (PA) Revolution behind former Houston Astro big leaguer and first Skeeters manager Gary Gaetti.
Watch the Chronicle and Internet for further details on upcoming games and come see the Skeeters for yourself as you are able. And look for old Deacon Jones walking around while you’re there at the Sugar Land ballpark. He’ll be the only one walking around the concourse with a bat in his hands. If the bat isn’t in his hands when you spot him, rest assured, it’s on his mind. Good hitting and genuine smiles are both a happy kind of habit thing with the good Deacon.
The world needs more people like him. Running into Deacon Jones unexpectedly is like all-of-a-sudden watching the sunburst breaking through the sky on an otherwise long and overcast charcoal cloudy day. I think the Good Lord puts sparks like the Deacon on this earth to keep the rest of us moving toward the sights, smells, sounds, tastes, and touches of hope for something better. Always moving steady toward the truly good. And always reaching openly for the things that rest deep in the heart of soul.
Thank you, Deacon Jones, for being with us here in Houston and for becoming such a big part of the new Sugar Land Skeeters baseball club. We shall see you at the ballpark.