Saturday, November 26, 2011

Once O’Hare to Havana shuttle in place, we need to send a softball team to Cuba

The Associated Press is reporting about a company that will soon offer once-a-week shuttle flights directly from O’Hare International Airport to Havana.

Which is a good thing, on account of a report I read in the New York Times about a Massachusetts-based softball league that sent a team to Cuba to play a series of matches against Cubano athletes.

IT SEEMS THE Massachusetts boys got smacked around by the Cubans. But my real objection is the fact that these guys, despite the fact that they were playing slow-pitch softball (rather than the fast-pitch game that usually is played competitively around the world) were using fielder’s gloves.

Which any Chicago-based fan of the game (which was concocted here) knows is anathema. The whole point of slow-pitch softball is that you only need one ball and one bat – and NOTHING else. It can be played anywhere at any time, and managing to play one’s defensive position with a fractured finger is seen as a sign of toughness.

Why do I sense that any of the aging beer-bellies who hang around public parks or Thillens Stadium and try to pretend that they could ever hit like Dick Allen could go to Havana and give Cuban softball players a harder run for the money than they got from the gloved, cigar-chomping seniors from New England?

Those who want to know more about the abomination that took place in the name of “slow-pitch softball” should read the commentary published at this site’s sister weblog, The South Chicagoan.


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