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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Vision (08/03/06)

TITLE: Who Struck Out?
By moody connell


He was an orphan who chased buddies through out the streets of Baltimore.
Like most boys, faith was something new, uncertain and life just seemed to reach out to drag him in another direction.
Somewhere out there in the streets and at the orphanage, he learned to play baseball. The game became his life. He could hit and pitch better than most boys his age. He kept on developing his skills until they signed him to play the game in Boston and then New York in the big leagues.
Faith was taught him in the orphanage. He grewup street tough, not necessarily polished. His choices weren't always the best, but kids looked up to him. He could hit a baseball farther than anyone in the major leagues. What else was there? Might be compared to the prodigal son, but in his sport he inspired many and left a legacy undisputed even today.
There was the time he was being booed and appeared about to strike out at the plate. He knew as a slugger, he had to swing with his full weight so that striking out a lot was part of it.
He pointed toward the outfield. One might think he was cocky enough to be calling a homerun shot. The pitcher seemed sure he would record another out on this guy. Then that graceful, mighty swing connected and the ball disappeared in the stands where he had just pointed.
So many honors and so many kids followed him everywhere. He liked kids and they treasured each small moment watching the guy at Yankee Stadium.
Life seemed to crown him a king. The world appeared to be at his feet. He figured there was always tomorrow coming around to make that decision in his life.
He stood next to a teammate who had shared many sports headlines until stricken by a disease that proved fatal.
Then one day it was the "king" who lay in a hospital bed in New York, gently attended by a nurse from Alabama who loved baseball.
She crept into his room. He was standing by a window with tears streaming down his face.
They had shared many thoughts as he battled cancer. What had drawn him to the window?
It was a group of kids below in the streets playing baseball, starting life and eagerly practicing their skills.
This guy knew the game better than most. He told the nurse as he wept that he was moved to see the kids below his hospital window just beginning his game. He wanted to be one of them and wanted another crack at life. They were tommorrow. He had become yesterday.
Would he have changed things in his life with a second chance? Possibly.
Did he learn something about living and what the important decisions were that changed lives?
He was surely the king of baseball.
The day he died, the world mourned the death of a Yankee legend they called Babe Ruth.

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This article has been read 614 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 08/10/06
Good story, and it was very effective to leave the name to the end.

Gary Sims08/11/06
I struggled with reading this, partly because of the spacing. Gaps between paragraphs really help the reader. I got a sense everything was run together as a series of single sentence paragraphs.

I also feel you need a little more variety in sentence structure. Count the number of sentences that begin with the word "He" and see if you can't find different ways to begin a sentence in order to provide variety and interest.
david grant08/11/06
Guideposts once did a special on The Babe's faith, way way way back in maybe the 50s? Dont ask me how you'd get a copy of it, but I've seen it in an anthology somewhere.
Marilyn Schnepp 08/12/06
Wonderful story of the Babe, but I too, got lost and bogged down in the maize of words with no spacing - but a really neat story.