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Message Leni Matlin
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(Fiction, Satire)

"It's a perfect summer day here at Orioles Park at Camden Yards in beautiful downtown Baltimore, sunny and clear, not a cloud in the sky, with a pleasant breeze blowing through the stadium, outstanding weather for a ballgame. If you're just tuning in, we've got a good one going. The Orioles are finishing up a three-game home stand with the New York Yankees and after splitting the first two games, this is the rubber match. A win here would be a big boost for the O's, right Ted?"

"Definitely, Bob. The Orioles are in third place and the Yanks on top in the American League East Division, but taking this series would put the O's in second place ahead of the Red Sox and only one game behind New York. Both pitchers have been sharp today and we're going into the bottom of the fourth inning with a 1-1 tie. The O's have the heart of their lineup due up, so we'll see if they can get a rally going here."

"OK, Ted. The Oriole's all star centerfielder Pepe Montero steps in the box as Yankee pitcher Bosley settles in on the mound and looks in for the pitch call from his catcher Jamie Woodall. Bosley's first pitch is a sinker down and away and Montero watches it go by for a called ball. Montero's 4 for 12 against Bosley this season, a solid .333 average, so if Bosley gives him something to hit, Pepe will take a good rip at it. We've just been handed a news bulletin which we'll read to you after Bosley's next pitch... and it's a slider that Pepe pulls foul over the third base line making the count 1 and 1. Ted, tell us what this bulletin is about."

"Let's see, Bob. Apparently undersea volcanic activity has triggered a huge landslide and a mountainous chunk of one of the Canary Islands has broken off and fallen into the ocean."

"Where exactly are the Canary Islands, Ted?"

"They're off of Spain at the other end of the Atlantic, four or five thousand miles away or so."

"At least it's not in our neck of the woods and likely to disrupt play."

"There's a little more here, Bob. The bulletin goes on to warn-"

"Hang on there, Ted, Pepe Montero just got some good wood on a Bosley fastball and smacked it cleanly into left field for a standup single. The Orioles are on their feet in the dugout - it's the first solid hit off Bosley today - and they're hoping to get something going here in the bottom of the fourth as Dale Miller, the O's third baseman, steps to the plate. Miller watches a fast ball miss high and outside. What was that you were going to tell us, Ted?"

"Yes, the bulletin. Scientists are warning that due to the enormous size of the landmass that fell into the sea only minutes ago they expect it to cause a tsunami and-"

"Montero's off on the pitch trying to steal second base! Woodall throws a strike to second but it's too late. Pepe picked the right pitch to go on and got a great jump on that Bosley change up. Woodall's throw was perfect but not in time to catch the speedy Montero. Miller steps out of the box and looks at third base coach Walt Wetzel to see if there's a play on. So back to the Canary Islands, Ted."

"Right. Apparently there's a high probability of a tsunami being generated by this massive landslide. Ships in the Atlantic are being cautioned to keep an eye out and the Air Force is sending out observer planes and there will be further bulletins."

"All right, thanks. Ted. Miller takes a ball, and he's sitting pretty at 2 and 0, a definite fastball count. Bosley can't let it get to 3 and 0 with a man on second and no one out so he's going to have to put it over the plate and Miller's settling in and looking for something to hit."

"Well, Bob, yet another bulletin has come in and this one's a bit more detailed. It seems there is definitely a tsunami of major proportions in the Atlantic headed west. Unfortunately, the tsunami alert system that has been set up in the Pacific doesn't have a counterpart in the Atlantic so it'll take a bit longer to gather all the information but it's being tracked and currently estimated to be traveling at nearly five hundred miles per hour."

"Five hundred miles per hour? Whoa. And I thought Bosley's ninety-eight mile per hour fastball was something to see. Here's the windup, the pitch... and Miller hits it hard and deep. It reaches the centerfield wall on the fly and Montero's rounding third and digging for home. He'll make it easily. The throw goes into second and Miller slides headfirst under the tag and is safe with a double and the O's pull ahead and it's 2-1 Orioles. Bosley looks a little rattled and pitching coach Will Carson's going out to talk to his pitcher and calm him down so we'll have a minute to hear more about this tsunami of Ted's."

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Leni Matlin was born in NYC and attended Brooklyn College before moving to California in his twenties. For the better part of his adult life, he has worked as a musician (keyboards / vocals) and played in more bands then he can remember, while (more...)
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