One more swing

With this show, take me out to the scandal.

By Charles P. Pierce
September 26, 2010

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Dear Ken Burns: Well, it appears that we’re going into extra frames. Bonus stanzas. Supplemental cantos. Back when I hung around press boxes full time, that meant that a baseball game was going to go so far past any rational deadline that the only people who would get to read your final game story were people who lived within two blocks of the printing presses. But I digress. It seems that you’ve tacked on a Tenth Inning to your monumental Baseball documentary that first aired 16 years ago. This is probably a good thing, since a great deal of cool stuff has happened in the game since then. For example, we’ve had The Greatest Scandal There Positively Ever Was, which has now deteriorated into a sodden series of perjury traps set for not altogether bright athletes. (Catching baseball players with words! About as hard as fishing with hand grenades.) And I see from the previews that you and Keith Olbermann have patched things up, which is also good. But I do have one great hope – that you went mellow on what happened up the street here in 2004. Take it from me: The rest of the country’s very, very sick of the Red Sox triumphalism that replaced what had been the traditional (“I was sawwwbing!”) Red Sox Existential Angst. If the word “curse” appears in this episode except in connection to something Tommy Lasorda said, I’m off to American Pickers, Ken. Guaranteed.

Charles P. Pierce /

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