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First base's name is "Who"

Second base's name is "What"

Third base's name is "I Don't Know"

Pitcher's name is "Tomorrow"

Catcher's name is "Today"

Left Field's name is "Why"

Center Field's name is "Because"

Short stop's name is "I Don't Care"

They don't mention right field.

Get it?

Casey at the Bat
By Ernest Lawerence Thayer, June 1888
The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville
nine that day;
The score stood four to two, with but one
inning more to play,
And then when Cooney died at first, and
Barrows did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons
of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair,
the rest clung to that hope which springs eternal
in the human breast;
They thought, "If only Casey could get a whack at that-
We'd put up even money now,
with Casey at the bat."

But Flynn preceeded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a hoo-doo, while the latter
was a flake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat;
For there seemed but little chance of Casey
getting to the bat.

But Flynn let drive a single to the wonderment of all,
and Blake the much despised, tore the cover
off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what
had occurred,
There was Jummy safe at second and Flynn
a-hugging third.

Then from five thousand throats and more there
rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It pounded on the mountain and recoiled
upon the flat,
for Casey, mighty Casey was advancing to the bat.

There was ease in Casey's manner as he
stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey's bearing and a smile
lit Casey's face;
And when, responding to the cheers, he
lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt 'twas
Casey at the bat.

Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed
his hands with dirt,
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped
them on his shirt,
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball
into his hip,
Defiance flashed in Casey's eye, a sneer
curled Casey's lip.

And now the leather-covered sphere came
hurling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty
grandeur there,
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball
unheeded sped- "That ain't my style," said Casey.
"Strike one!" the umpire said.

From the benches, black with people, there
went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm waves on a stern
and distant shore;
"Kill him! Kill the umpire!" shouted someone
on the stand; And it's likely they'd
have killed him had not Casey raised his hand.

With a smile of Christian charity great Casey's
visage shone; He stilled the rising tumult;
he bade the game go on; He signaled to the pitcher,
and once more the dun sphere flew; but Casey
still ignored it, and the umpire said, "Strike two!"

"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, and echo
answered, "Fraud!" But one scornful look from
Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his
muscles strain, and they knew that Casey wouldn't
let the ball go by again.

The sneer has fled from Casey's lip, the teeth are
clentched in hate; He pounds with cruel violence
his bat upon the plate. And now the pitcher holds the
ball, and now he lets it go, and now the air is shattered
by the force of Casey's blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favoured land the sun is
shining bright, The band is playing somewhere,
and somewhere hearts are light,
and somewhere men are laughing, and little children
shout; But there is no joy in Mudville-
the mighty Casey has struck out.

Casey’s Revenge

Grantland Rice (first published in The Nashville Tennessean, 1907)

There were saddened hearts in Mudville for a week or even more;
There were muttered oaths and curses  every fan in town was sore.
“Just think,” said one, “how soft it looked with Casey at the bat,
And then to think he’d go and spring a bush league trick like that!”

All his past fame was forgotten he was now a hopeless “shine.”

They called him “Strike-Out Casey,” from the mayor down the line;
And as he came to bat each day his bosom heaved a sigh,
While a look of hopeless fury shone in mighty Casey’s eye.

He pondered in the days gone by that he had been their king,

That when he strolled up to the plate they made the welkin ring;
But now his nerve had vanished, for when he heard them hoot
He “fanned” or “popped out” daily, like some minor league recruit.

He soon began to sulk and loaf, his batting eye went lame;

No home runs on the score card now were chalked against his name;
The fans without exception gave the manager no peace,
For one and all kept clamoring for Casey’s quick release.

The Mudville squad began to slump, the team was in the air;

Their playing went from bad to worse nobody seemed to care.
“Back to the woods with Casey!” was the cry from Rooters’ Row.
“Get some one who can hit the ball, and let that big dub go!”

The lane is long, some one has said, that never turns again,

And Fate, though fickle, often gives another chance to men;
And Casey smiled; his rugged face no longer wore a frown
The pitcher who had started all the trouble came to town.

All Mudville had assembled, ten thousand fans had come

To see the twirler who had put big Casey on the bum;
And when he stepped into the box, the multitude went wild;
He doffed his cap in proud disdain, but Casey only smiled.

“Play ball!” the umpire’s voice rang out, and then the game began.

But in that throng of thousands there was not a single fan
Who thought that Mudville had a chance, and with the setting sun
Their hopes sank low, the rival team was leading “four to one.”

The last half of the ninth came round, with no change in the score;

But when the first man up hit safe, the crowd began to roar;
The din increased, the echo of ten thousand shouts was heard
When the pitcher hit the second and gave “four balls” to the third.

Three men on base nobody out, three runs to tie the game!

A triple meant the highest niche in Mudville’s hall of fame;
But here the rally ended and the gloom was deep as night,
When the fourth one “fouled to catcher” and the fifth “flew out to right.”

A dismal groan in chorus came; a scowl was on each face

When Casey walked up, bat in hand, and slowly took his place;
His bloodshot eyes in fury gleamed, his teeth were clenched in hate;
He gave his cap a vicious hook and pounded on the plate.

But fame is fleeting as the wind and glory fades away;

There were no wild and woolly cheers, no glad acclaim this day;
They hissed and groaned and hooted as they clamored: “Strike him out!”
But Casey gave no outward sign that he had heard this shout.

The pitcher smiled and cut one loose across the plate it sped;

Another hiss, another groan. “Strike one!” the umpire said.
Zip! Like a shot the second curve broke just below the knee.
“Strike two!”
the umpire roared aloud; but Casey made no plea.

No roasting for the umpire now, his was an easy lot;

But here the pitcher whirled again was that a rifle shot?
A whack, a crack, and out through the space the leather pellet flew,
A blot against the distant sky, a speck against the blue.

Above the fence in center field in rapid whirling flight

The sphere sailed on the blot grew dim and then was lost to sight.
Ten thousand hats were thrown in air, ten thousand threw a fit,
But no one ever found the ball that mighty Casey hit.

O, somewhere in this favored land dark clouds may hide the sun,

And somewhere bands no longer play and children have no fun!
And somewhere over blighted lives there hangs a heavy pall,
But Mudville hearts are happy now, for Casey hit the ball.

© Arncliffe Scots Baseball Club
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