I do not like baseball. It holds no allure for me; no resonance; no nothing. Never has. I have no fond baseball memories, no golden-hued shortstop scenes like the main character in Tobias Wolff’s best-ever short story. I cannot remember or visualize any play from any baseball game, ever, in history. If you offer me free baseball tickets, I will not take them.
I do not like baseball—but I will read Angela Vasquez-Giroux on baseball anytime. Hers is the best kind of writing; with baseball, it, like, almost makes it all make sense to me. It suggests a way in.
I was actually moved to link to this bit of her writing specifically because of this graf, tucked into the middle of the piece:
First Joel Zumaya’s beautiful right elbow went supernova, a truly sickening thing to watch in real time, as I did, tearing up because I just want to hug the boy and tell him, it’s ok, son, you’ve got one more brutal recovery and storybook comeback in you.
Joel Zumaya’s beautiful right elbow went supernova.
What is there not to love about that line? It’s all action (supernova!) and juxtaposition (beautiful?) and suspense—er, who’s Joel Zumaya, anyway? And on and on: sickening, real-time, hug the boy. It’s a whole wacky universe wrapped up in a sentence. It could be the first line of a novel. I’d read that novel.
There’s more, too, including a Yeats cross-reference. Get thee.