Dear Steve Callaway [Mayor, Hillsboro, Oregon}:
I write to you with grave concerns, Mr. Mayor. Grave concerns. I recently saw you disparage the Beer Batter on Twitter, which is grounds for a recall election in civilized cities. I find it hard to believe that you woke up on May 10th, 2021 with the desire to end your political career, so I suspect some sort of some hidden prejudice again cheap beer and fun rests just below the surface of your public demeanor.
Perhaps one reason for this is the Hops are a Diamondbacks’ affiliate, and Diamondback prospects have an extreme proclivity to strike out, so it gives you a BIG SAD when a Hops strikes out on the road, and the home fans erupt with glee as your batter slinks back to the dugout. Or Perhaps you are worried that the poor Diamondbacks prospects’ feelings will get hurt. Steve, this is High A Ball now, not some short season goat grope league. Ballplayers need to be tough to get to the Bigs, and mayors passing out emotional participation trophies are a hindrance. Of course, most Diamondback prospects lack the talent to make a AA all star game, but you are arresting their development of a fine career in retail.
You maybe wondering just who I am. All you need to know for now is that as a Thirsty Thursday Ambassador of minor league baseball, I am a higher law and order than you. The judge, jury, and executioner just rolled into Oregon. You best make amends rather quickly. You can start by making sure Ron Tonkin Field gets real outfield fences. Yes, Ron Tonkin Field is a splendid travel ball league that sufficed as a Northwest League stadium in a league that contained the roach motels in Salem and Boise, but this is High A Ball.
Who is responsible for the turf maintenance at the Tonkin travel ball complex? Because they are remiss in the duties. Ever wonder why the ball is bouncing so hard off the turf these days? Lack of care. Synthetic turf often hardens when not properly maintained. My high school chum, Fast Eddie, studied turf management at Penn State University, and he passed this knowledge along to me, as well las many other groundskeepers throughout MiLB. Plus, Fast Eddie did time in a Nicaraguan prison for knifing a guy on a rainy night, so he knows something about hardening. Or maybe it was the Philippines.
I heard you were on the Emeralds’ broadcast tonight. I missed that because I was watching the video stream of the Hops’ arguing about the color of the Hops’ home jersey. Steve, perhaps you should take those two to Sherman Williams to study some color samples so they know just what Carolina Blue is. Maybe you three can go to Applebee’s afterwords and split a 2 for $20 deal three ways while loading up on the beer cheese dip through a straw — you know, to get in some quality male bonding.
I saw a game a few years ago at Ron Tonkin, when Dansby Swanson was on the team before the Diamondbacks traded him for Shelby Miller. I found the concessions rather lacking, but the staff was friendly. The family was in town to see Hillsboro’s largest tourist attraction, the Roloff Farms. I think the Smith Berry Farm was closed that day. Hillsboro seemed quaint, a good place to send a doddering relative to live out his last few years. Imagine my surprise when I found out tonight it was an enclave who despises something as holy the Beer Batter even though they have a team named after a primary ingredient of beer. I must say, it make me want to root for AB InBev.
Mr. Mayor, your riposte has evoked a reckoning. You probably should explore avenues of contrition. I would start with ensuring that The Hold Steady’s “Killer Parties” is played at every Hops’ home game.
Your friend in baseball,
PS: A community that cannot savor the fruits of a Beer Batter is incapable of a PRIMAL SCREAM.