I am fascinated by the concepts of baseball’s pinch hitter and pinch runner.
They come in handy, show up when needed, and hopefully succeed.
The scheduled hitter isn’t filling you with confidence —
He can’t hit a curve or his bat is too slow for a 98 mph pitch —
Replace him with another, one who might deliver in a pinch.
The runner is not exactly speedy, may not score from second
On a single, may not tag up from third and score as the result
Of a sacrifice fly — substitute a speedster who can zip
From where he is to where he needs to be like a lightning bolt.
That is what I need in my own life sometimes. Oh, I’m okay
Most of the time, but when there’s pressure, when I am too
Sluggish to perform up to my Major League standard, I sure can use
Someone to replace me, to pinch hit or pinch run, to score
Success on a day when I can’t reach that goal. I’d call a name, and
Magic would create a temporary substitute to do my laundry,
Buy my supermarket stuff, clean my home, bring my big box
Packages to me in just two days! But wait!!
I realized just now I have my very own pinch runner and
Have had so for the past three years, pandemic time,
When the pressure was too much for my aging legs and
My weakened arms: Almost every big game day, I will hear
My downstairs buzzer ring and then I know that my pinch runner
Has delivered my package — snacks or furniture or heavy
Packs of drinks or paper plates; my second pinch runner has rung
My doorbell and has left for me my weekly groceries; my postal
Pinch runner daily leaves me bills (a necessary evil) and ads
And a renewed registration or a driver’s license. I don’t need
A pinch hitter, either. My super hangs my pictures, fixes my plumbing
Problems and re-does my flooring. I am blessed; I have my talents
But I recognize my limitations; I am not speedy as I was or flexible
Or strong, but wisdom has provided me, in my managerial capacity,
With a ready team of players needed in a pinch.