Here is the deal, internet. 99% of the time, your fickle, cheezburger-ridden attention span is a thorn in my side, sometimes causing you to have forgotten something I’ve written while you’re still in the process of reading it. But not today! These are the golden times, the week before the season, where I as a Responsible Internet Journalist Figure can say anything I want about anything, and you will praise me for bold vision and keen insight. This, dear reader, is prediction season.
But you don’t want predictions. You want bold predictions, so bold that if my predictions were a barbecue sauce, they would melt through the meat, through the bone, through your fingers and the plate and the floor and the earth’s very crust itself with its spicy, spicy hubris. And I am nothing if not your faceless, linguistic slave. So partake – delicately, one or perhaps a fraction at a time – these bold predictions for the 2013 season.
1. On Tuesday, May 21, the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Aaron Hill will face reliever Rex Brothers of the Colorado Rockies in the eighth inning. On the fifth pitch of that at bat, Hill will be thrown out on a grounder to third base. You will have forgotten this prediction by then.
2. Zack Greinke unexpectedly retires from baseball three weeks into the new season, devoting his life to wandering across the country from playground to playground, playing jacks for money. Also, jacks becomes the new craze with kids in the next three weeks.
3. As Miguel Batista says farewell to baseball, a new literary force rises to take his place in Bruce Chen. At first, however, Chen can only find his voice through haiku, answering questions from beat reporters only in seventeen-syllable phrases. Kansas City remains on edge until early August when Chen utters a heroic couplet, and a city sighs in relief.
4. The hidden ball trick returns in 2013. Believe.
5. Eric Sogard will unleash controversy when it is learned that his beloved spectacles are actually Google glasses, and that he is using them to access pitcher and hitter information in the middle of games. Public outrage, however, doesn’t arise until it’s learned that Sogard spends his games in the dugout surreptitiously watching Iron Chef with the sound off.
6. In a surprise move, the city of Milwaukee apologizes for its bygone crimes and returns the Brewers to the city of Seattle, restoring them to their original nickname of the Pilots. Seattle doesn’t really want the Brewers, but are too polite to refuse. When the Cubs travel to meet the now National League-based Pilots, the confluence of baseball depression is so great that everyone simply lies down, and the game is cancelled.
7. Jon Garland begins to have dreams where he is from the nineteenth century, and that he has for some reason been sent forward in the future. He does not speak of this with reporters. His dreams become haunted with back-to-back-to-back home runs, while his father sits in the front row and shakes his head disapprovingly. Eventually, in an important series against the Dodgers, Garland pitches six strong innings and the Rockies win a critical game. Garland then disappears back to his own time, leaving his girlfriend distraught and searching for answers.
8. On August 25th, Andy Dirks lifts a ball into foul territory near the press box. A fan will lean over the railing and make an excellent, one-handed catch. That fan will be an accountant named Glenn.
9. Baseball learns to stop fighting the GIF, and instead embraces it, putting them up on the JumboTron during at bats. Life for all mankind improves markedly.
10. Yuniesky Betancourt will play for a new team in 2013. Again. And again after that.
I’m sorry for spoiling the future for you, internet. But remember: you asked for it. Well, maybe not explicitly. And maybe not even you in particular. But someone somewhere, somehow. And now here we are, you and I. At the end. Here.