Piazza or Inge?

—Jack Nicas

It all depends.

Home runs: Piazza.

Batting average: Inge.

Defense, which I doubt your league keeps track of: Inge.

For your daughter to bring home: Inge.

Most homosexual potential: Piazza.

Easier stain to remove: Inge.

As inebriated backup singer during karaoke rendition of Golden Girls theme song “Thank You for Being a Friend”: Surprisingly, Inge.

Juggling: Piazza.

Juggling wives if he were a secret Mormon: Inge.

Onomatopoeic: Inge, easily.

Tag-team partner in WWF championship match: Piazza.

Tag-team partner if wrestling were real: Inge.

As a phone-a-friend lifeline: Piazza, and his broadband access.

- - -

“If my heart were made of bases, you’d be Scott Podsednik.”

If a guy said that to me, I’d actually be touched. Then again, with my last name, I’m easy.

Sarah Bunting

Tee-hee. Bunting.

- - -

I admit it: I was hung over and slept through my early-morning draft. Any advice on how to avoid the shame spiral?

Iain Cartwright
Detroit, Michigan

Well, you really have but one option here. It involves your elderly friend who often dabbles in crazy scientific experiments. One of these schemes will certainly involve a DeLorean, a flux capacitor, and 1.21 gigawatts of electricity. Before he finishes his explanation, hit your gray-haired friend over the head with your skateboard and pilfer his car. You might feel bad at first, but think of it as finally cashing in on the friendship you’ve been faking for years. With the car, you’ll be able to draft players like Chris Carpenter, Jon Garland, Morgan Ensberg, and Brian Roberts, while avoiding Jim Thome and Todd Helton. Your friends will respect you and be in awe of your fantasy foresight.

Of course, the hard part is going to be killing your doppelgänger after traveling into the past without upsetting the space-time continuum and allowing the universe to collapse onto itself. Yeah. That’s the tricky part. But it’s well worth the risk. Especially if you have one of those Champion trophies with a personalized plaque at stake. You can’t just buy one of those on your own. Well, actually you can. But then it wouldn’t be officially recognized by the rest of your league. Then you’d be out 50 bucks and have a paperweight always reminding you of your failure.

In conclusion: Go kill that old man and get the 2005 season started!

- - -

OK, I know he says he’s out of the game, but no Wyatt Earp? Two and a half words: dead-eye shot! Also, I hope to see some guys in the dugout and front office, too. You can’t have a team without somebody manning the corners, writing the checks, and checking on the prospects. This is where Jim Garrison, Kenny O’Donnell, and Eliot Ness come in. Garrison is watching film of the minor leaguers (Marcus, Ted, Ed, John Logan). O’Donnell would be ideal as a third-base coach; he took orders from Kennedy, for crying out loud! And, of course, Ness could be the team compliance officer. No ‘roids on his watch, I’ll tell you what!

—Bennett Starnes

During months spent living as a hermit while coming up with the Costner Roster, I kept on getting stuck with what to do with Jim Garrison. Seriously, what could he do? Attempt to prosecute the opposing pitchers? Lull the batters into sleep with his long-winded arguments delivered in that soothing Southern accent? Turn into a closer nicknamed The Litigator, the surprise witness being his out pitch? It was all too … fabricated.

Finally, when my toenail clippings began to plot my murder, I felt it time to forget about Garrison and move on. So, I added the “Fictional” part to the piece’s title and forgot about Ness or Earp. Bluntly: I pussied out.

Of course, thinking about it now, the answer is fairly obvious: Stick Garrison’s ass in left field. He’d play back, to the left, and Torii Hunter any near-homers from the front rows.

- - -

What about the role he played as the dead dude in the bathtub in The Big Chill? There’s got to be a place on the team for him.

Josh Terry

Not on my team. I play for keeps. But the Royals probably have a starting spot for him. Or the D-Rays. Or the NL West.

- - -

Eric Gagne has to be on the cover of the first edition of your Heckling Prospectus . Is this the first-ever suspension for heckling, technically “bench jockeying” according the rule book, while on the DL? Even Vin Scully said he’d never heard of it before and Vin remembers EVERYTHING. As a baseball fan surviving in the Los Angeles underground who frequently roots for the visiting teams at Chavez Ravine, I’m glad to finally have a heckle for Monsieur Gagne.

Sure, I could always mock that goofy beard, but girls apparently love that beard, so it’s not much of a heckle. But now I can heckle him for his heckling! I can’t wait until his elbow heals.

—Glenn Birkemeier

I have no reply for this. Well done.