The imaginary game, which even included several controversial calls by the umpires, went on for nine innings, with the Texas Rangers finally succumbing to the Indians 14-3. The fans in the parking lot, bloated from hot dogs, beer, and whatever else, gave a round of applause to the topless announcer – or maybe it was for their absent Indians.
Eventually, some real players arrived.
Several of the Indians were seen heading down the player’s ramp toward the clubhouse to pick up their belongings. Word of their appearance spread through the parking lot like an excited electrical charge running through a conductor. By the time the five players left the protective confines of the stadium, hundreds of heartbroken fans were gathered by the private gate, a thin row of security guards ensuring they kept their distance.
“Why are you doing this to us?” bellowed a deep voice from the crowd. “You’re garbage!” yelled another. The players ignored the remarks and continued their silent procession. Three photographers snapped pictures. “Don’t strike!” shouted a female voice. “Please don’t strike!” Again, the yelling went unanswered.
“Don’t strike! Don’t strike! Don’t strike!” a methodic chant began. Then another one started: “Strike four, you’re out! Strike four, you’re out! Strike four, you’re out!”
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