When Nelson Figueroa,
my former student and present pitcher
takes the mound for the D-backs,
I will be twelve years old once more,
playing sandlot ball, on literally a sand lot.
Bobby Tzechtik will be at short,
and I will cover first base
for the Generals, the name we gave ourselves
in crayon on white tee-shirts
I took from my father’s drawer.
Bobby and me were going to be major leaguers,
though I wore glasses and he was short.
Hey, if Nelson’s dream came true, couldn’t mine?
Couldn’t I get the low throw from Bobby,
and cleanly scoop it up from the ground on one hop?
So when Nelson takes the mound again this spring,
me and Bobby will be right behind him,
slapping leather and screaming, “No batter! no batter!”