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More Than Base Ball

4 Pages 1042 Words

More Than Baseball

Pitchers and poets all have the same goal; to be eccentric, avoid the obvious, to be a moment misunderstood, and no to be errant, arrant, or wild. Robert Francis’ poem, “The Pitcher,” (653) uses these words to describe a baseball pitcher. Not only is he describing a pitcher, he is describing the criteria of writing a poem. This poem was published in 1953 during baseball’s peak in popularity and back when the game was still innocent. Francis’ use of the paradox in “The Pitcher,” seizes this normal poem about a baseball position and coverts it into something much more unique.
This poem describes the pitcher in all of its lines. In the first four lines, Francis reveals the pitchers art, aim, passion, and technique. “His art is to be eccentric” (L1), which means that his art is to be odd or to act different. “His aim is to not hit the mark he seems to aim at,” (L2) meaning that he is aiming at the strike zone, but throwing where the batter will miss the ball. “His passion is to avoid the obvious,” (L3) in other words he loves to pitch so that the batter doesn’t know what he is throwing. “His technique how to vary the avoidance,” (L4) is saying that he has to pitch different pitches that will keep the batter from making contact with the ball. In lines five and six Francis writes, “The others throw to be comprehended. He throws to be a moment misunderstood.” By

that, he is talking about the other players on the field. They throw simply to another player, not strategically throwing the ball to make a batter a moment off guard. In the next two lines of the poem, Francis uses connotation and alliteration. “Yet not too much, Not errant, arrant, wild, But every seeming aberration willed.” (L7-8) The use of errant and arrant is both connotation and alliteration. Connotation is the significance of a word in addition to its actual meaning. T...

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