Ballspeak: What Do You Mean “We,” White Man?

Roger Clemens, after he pitched pretty damn fly for a fiftysomething guy with an indie team last week, tells the Houston Chronicle that’s about it for the time being, anyway:

Who’s we?

Not at this point. That could change in a couple days, but right now we haven’t talked to any of the guys or anything like that. This is good for it, good exercise. We’ll do a little cardio and try to get some more of that soreness out. It’s good soreness though. We came out of it all right and everybody had a good time, so that was the key.

I’m trying to remember when players began talking in the first person, plural, about situations or in conversations in which there was none involved save the first person, singular. It isn’t as though Clemens had a small team out on the bump with him that day.

“We haven’t talked to the guys or anything like that.” Did he really mean himself and perhaps his agent? His family? Manager Gary Gaetti, a bud from his Astros days who may have planted the idea about pitching a game in the first place?

“We’ll try a little cardio.” Who’s “we,” white man—your medical or training advisors? It’s going to be you, not “we,” doing the exercises.

Now, it’s simple to presume Clemens meant the Skeeters when he said, “We came out of it all right, and everybody had a good time.” If so, that may be the only time the first person plural belonged on this particular field.

But if Clemens meant to say himself, it’s probably a good idea to ponder when the last time was we saw more than one pitcher throwing to the plate. Which makes an interesting thought—could there have been two hitters in the box, one left and one right?

Lots of players carry entourages with them, of course. What if any player’s entourage starts taking direct part in his actually playing the game? I don’t know about you, but I think we’ll have a bit of a problem on your hands if his people line up to throw them pitches.

I’d better go now; you understand, we’ve got some serious errands to run.

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