Team Paris Review Storms Hearst Castle



After the jump, a recap of last night’s softball game against Esquire.

Team  |1|2|3|4|5|6|7|  Total
ESQ   |0|1|1|0|0|0|0|  2
TPR   |5|3|0|0|3|0|x|  11

There are moments in the history of every truly great sports team in which the din and clamor of past failure and petty distractions are suddenly quieted and the many struggling individuals become united as one, playing the game as it was meant to be played. I was a witness to such a state of grace on Tuesday night at Dyn-o-Mite Field. That night, we proved that even Man at His Best can’t stop the women and men of the Paris Review softball team when we’re operating at our highest level. The Parisians played like a team inspired, devastating the good folk at Esquire 11 to 2.

Esquire was talking trash before the game, but fell strangely silent once our new ace, Stephen “Oil Can” Hiltner, delivered back-to-back shutout innings to start the game. The Paris Review bats, however, were anything but mute, as pretty much the entire lineup got on base in the first. Pashman started things off with his customary no-apologies early-inning home run, then Hiltner followed up with a three-run shot. Two rookies teamed up to give us our fifth run that inning, when Jimmy “James J. Walker” Williams scored on a single by Dan “Double Play” Malkoun. The team took its foot off the accelerator a little bit after the first inning—no one wanted a blowout—but we still managed to see Devin “Mac Foundation” McIntyre, Robin “Calliope” Creswell, and a host of others across the plate in the later innings.

But the real story was the Paris Review defense, which came together in a way that we haven’t seen since the storied undefeated season under captain Nat Rich way back in 2009. We had jumping catches, laserlike throws, and not one but two double plays, our first of the season (5–4–3 and 1–3, for those of you keeping score at home). I’d go on, but, like dancing about architecture (a Mia Hamm bon mot, I believe), it’s difficult to write convincingly about such physical mastery. Perhaps I’ll simply let the row of zeroes in the ESQ column do the talking.

Although Esquire was not above whimpering in self-pity from the recesses of their Twitter lair (for the record, the scorekeeping was done inside a copy of A Fan’s Notes only because your faithful captain left his clipboard at the office), at the bar afterward, having escaped the hot agony of the game, they were champions of good cheer.