Amish Baseball

"Witness" baseball: in Lancaster County (photo by Kurt Wilson)

“Witness” baseball: in Lancaster County (photo by Kurt Wilson)

To the question whether baseball is played in all corners of America, I (Evander) submit this article from the March 22, 2013, issue of the New Republic as a Yes!

As the essay notes, whereas TV-viewership has flagged, in part due to all the hoohah (that’s a technical term) over PED, injuries to big stars (the full extent of these, on the big-leagues level, could not have been fathomed when the article was published), and the so-called slow pace of the game itself (the latter, a notion dismissed in Right Off the Bat), the national pastime flourishes among a portion of the Amish community, wherein once, in the 1940s and 1950s—as the article divulges—semipro players used assumed names.

No one is going to confuse these boys—and girls—of summer (there is no such thing as “Pennsylvania Dutch”: the term comes from the more accurate Deutsch) with the reigning World Champion San Francisco Giants. But as the article indicates, it is “The Mental Game” that rules players, even as well as their fans. There is a certain unique purity and sense of redemption, even beyond the field-of-dreams shibboleths, to baseball as enjoyed in and around Intercourse.


About rightoffthebatbook

Co-author of the book, "Right Off the Bat: Baseball, Cricket, Literature, and Life"
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