The game was juiced:
slick leather and minimized laces
made it modern day town ball
and the nation embraced it,
fast-talking fans exiting stadiums and
going to work blurry-eyed the next day
like soldiers returning home in 1865
to recollect each dinger in grander fashion
than the time before.

There will be no Mitchell Report
following this World Series –
only more encouragement
from the blogs and TV suites
to wind the balls tighter
and keep excitement up,
if not for ratings but so folks

could again remember the dangerous
beauty of the curve being invented,
when 14-year-old Candy Cummings
stood at the Brooklyn waterfront
throwing 12-to-6 clamshells
destined to be hung and smacked
all across the continent.