Wednesday, May 2

Jose Wants the Airwaves

It’s time for Jose Melendez’s KEYS TO THE GAME.

1. There’s a funny thing about month in reviews. They are almost impossible to write. The clumsy shapes of the written word some how fail to convey the awesome significance of a lunar cycle gone by. And yet they are adequate for years in review. Weird.

No, the contemplation of a full month requires the spoken word, the ebullient cacophony of air moving across larynx. Thus, it is Jose’s great privilege and pride to present to you the first of KEYS TO THE GAME PODCAST produced by SoShers OCDSS and Trotsky. If Howard Stern is “King of all Media,” by moving into this second form of communication, Jose is, perhaps, emerging as a Viscount of some media, or perhaps a squire, like Sancho Panza except lacking insight.

2. Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to be an early Christian watching Christ upon the Cross?

You’ve seen this guy perform miracles. Sure the water into wine could have been a trick, and maybe, as Father Guido Sarducci suggested, he was actually standing on the shoulders of his brother Billy Christ when he walked on water. But how do you explain the loaves and fishes? Hmm? And what about healing lepers? Those are grade A miracles.

And so you look at this guy up there, the Messiah, the miracle man, the Son of God, and you keep waiting for the amazing escape. Sure, he looks awful, thin and scraggly, blood flowing from lance wound in his side, but you know he’s got something ready. And then, all of a sudden, for the grand finale… he dies. That’s right he just dies up there. Can you believe it? No, of course you can’t.

And so it was watching Jonathan Papelbon last night. You’ve seen the guy escape inescapable jams, transform losses into wins, heal the leprous Red Sox bullpen, and then… without warning, he fails. He does not save the game or save himself. He falls, bowing, it seems, to the cruelty of men.

But for Christ, his failure to save himself begat the greatest miracle of all, his stunning, history-changing resurrection. Do we, can we, except to see anything less than the resurrection Jonathan Papelbon three days hence? Amen

3. According to Alan Schwarz of the New York Times, a new study by a UPenn professor and Cornell grad student says that white NBA referees call fouls on black players at a much greater rate than on white players. If one puts aside the possible conflict of interest of having a race story written by a man whose name, Schwartz means “black” in German and is sort of a slur in Yiddish, (note: this story should only be reported by a South Asian or Eskimo, as neither are currently represented in the NBA) the story is pretty interesting. Moreover, it makes Jose wonder if a similar study of some kind could be done for baseball. Jose suspects that if one was done, it would find that umpire discrimination is rampant. While race isn’t an issue, Jose’s theory is that tall players are almost universally discriminated against with a larger strike zone then their shorter teammates and opponents.

Jose doesn’t have data to back up the theory yet, but if he’s right than MLB is wrong. Tall people should never be discriminated against, except in Fenway Park seating, where they need to be corralled in a special section just for them so Jose doesn’t get knees hitting him in the back of the neck.

I’m Jose Melendez, and those are my KEYS TO THE GAME.

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