The pitcher is betrayed by a shortstop sweeping the dirt with glove, ball still spinning somewhere in the outfield grass.
The run scores. The batter flies around first, then retreats back to the base, kicking the mud off his cleats.
He shakes the dust off his feet and asks not for a welcome, but instead seeks safety 90 feet away, and again, and once more as he returns home.
This has happened on a Tuesday in late April.
Fans tilted plastic cups of beer above their mouths and drank, and they missed the replay to watch the fans dance.
When the pitcher is betrayed again on a Saturday afternoon this month, fans hold their caps in front of their faces, mouths agape with shock, and bitterly weep.by