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December 2, 2004
Casey's Random Batting Trial
A Poem(With apologies to Ernest L. Thayer.)
The win probability was epsilon for the Mudville nine that day
Then when Cooney lowered his OBP, and Barrows did the same
The Dodger fans began to leave, the Expos fan did too
They thought, if only one at-bat, Casey he could get
But Flynn and Blake preceded him. Who made this lineup card?
So upon the stricken statheads, grim melancholy sat;
But Flynn singled off the closer, to the wonderment of all
And when the fielders finally stopped giving the ball a chase
Then from fifty thousand estimated arose a lusty yell
It pounded through the TV speakers, enhanced and amplified by FOX.
There was ease in Casey's manner, and a smile was on his face.
When responding to the cheers, he flipped off the roaring crowd
All eyes were on Casey as the pitcher got the sign
The manager debated the I-B-B, and then said with a sneer
At last he hurled the spheroid, sent a-whizzing toward the plate.
Far too close the batsman stood, so the pitch came towards his head.
From the stands, black with people, there went up a muffled roar.
"Kill the ump!" Don Zimmer shouted, and from the dugout he bound
Casey knew the state transition matrix, and should have showed concern.
He stepped back in the box, and once more the dun sphere flew.
"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, when they saw the Jumbotron.
Pitcher and batter faced off as foes, and each refused to bend
"Walk-off homer" Casey thought, avoid the extra innings he did hate.
From the stretch to a full stop, so deliberate it's absurd.
Oh somewhere in this land, the Red Sox are champions of the day.
But there is no joy in Mudville