With apologies to Ernest Thayer

The Promise Keepers were playing in the church league tournament on Thursday night, June 25.  It was a play-till-you-lose deal (no time limit, seven innings or run-rule), and although we scored fewer runs than First Baptist Branson in the 6:30 game, we ended up winning it because our erstwhile opponents had done that hush-hush, technically forbidden thing of playing some very accomplished guys who hadn’t met the minimum participation requirements with their team during the regular season.

[Note: We witnessed this same situation a few years ago with a team from another area church that shall remain nameless.]

Anyway, First Baptist was disqualified, so at 7:30 we went on to play CORE (a.k.a. Church Army), whom we disposed of handily via run-rule.

Our guys then got to rest at 8:30 and watch a close game in which The Sanctuary lost to Living Word Church from Branson West.  Living Word’s players were generally speaking – and in so saying I mean no disparagement of our players; especially of our eldest player! – a bit younger and a bit more fit than ours, and I thought we might have some trouble.  It was late, and after two games our guys were tired, and, well. . .

Well. . . the championship game commenced shortly after 9:30, and we were batting last.  We held our own initially, but by the 5th inning, we were hitting not so well, we were fielding their solid hits even more poorly, and the score was tied, ten all.  The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the PK nine (Trey was sitting out that game and just “coaching”) that night.  Well, actually, let me just abandon the play-by-play prose and give it to you straight.  And since WordPress suddenly flatly refuses to allow me to have spaces between stanzas, I have added some ~~~~~ for legibility.



The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the PK Nine that night.

The score stood ten to ten with not much power left in sight.

Two outs had just transpired in the bottom of the 5th,

When to the batter’s box My Hero strode and shook his hips.


We know such shake with elbows raised portends a strike, and so

We weren’t surprised when Bob the ump growled “Strike Two,” (though ‘t looked low).

Again, Scott took some practice swings; he often does the same,

But he’s been known to miss a pitch released while he takes aim.


We watched with bated breath and nervous sweat the pitch come down,

Knowing if we didn’t score, the sixth would make us frown.

Scott swung, and made good contact with that neon yellow sphere!

Would it be caught?  Oh, who could tell?  Right center; how we peered.


It did look deep, but we weren’t sure – the tremors, the suspense.

On flew that ball, o’er all their heads, then rolled on toward the fence!

Our runners ran from every base and tore the diamond round,

With pumping arms and grunting lungs; fans made a screaming sound.


We urged them on with all we had, those desp’rate racing four.

We near grew hoarse as they raced on; we few, but what a roar!

We saw the fielder finally scoop the ball and hurl it in.

Oh, RUN PK-ers!  Don’t quit now!  We stand a chance to win!


One by one the three came home to whoops and cheers galore.

Emotions high, we wondered: would Scott hold or try to score?

In rounding third, he looked to see and in an inkling chose

To keep on tearing toward that plate despite his gathering foes.


The catcher planted both his feet; Scott slackened not his pace.

He sped toward home with all he had.  He would not be disgraced.

The throw was off but only just; the catcher stretched. . .  and failed

To keep his foot upon the plate; where Scott’s foot did prevail!


‘Twas one for all the record books, an in-the-park grand slam!

The crowd went wild, we clapped, high-fived, and hugged, and danced a jam!

Who would have thought?  Who could have known? Such heart within these guys,

To press so hard and give so much to win that noble prize.


Two innings more, and though the scoreboard see-sawed back and forth,

Our Promise Keepers held their ground; they hit for all they’re worth.

The final score I can’t recall, sixteen to twelve perhaps?

In any case, it was enough for our victorious chaps.


I think the winning factor was a phrase Scott had us chant

With rising gusto when it seemed our guys were weak and faint.

Scott rallies folks where ‘ere he goes.  Deep from his heart still pours

The cry that “Everybody hits, and everybody scores!”


1 Response to “With apologies to Ernest Thayer”

  1. 1 servantofthesecretfire July 2, 2015 at 9:51 pm

    Oh, I SO enjoyed this post and your delightful poem! Thank you for making me smile!!

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