I heard last week that Roger Angell wrote an article for the New Yorker about the World Series that was coming out for the Nov. 30 issue. I've been hustling (well, not really) and trying to get my hands on the magazine, but of course it's not easy to come by in Jakarta. Then I tried the Internet and the New Yorker site and was thoroughly confused by the registration process (possibly I'm an idiot or there is some sort of foreign rights legal crap going on. So no article for me.) I visited Bronx Banter and thankfully, Alex Belth posted some highlights. Frankly, the term "highlights" is an understatement. What stood out to me was the passage about Hideki. It's brilliant. But I also must admit a sadness at reading it because I think that Matsui is not coming back and what Angell's words make me think very much in past tense:
His straight-back, left-handed stance, with that almond-colored bat held still; his broad-shouldered, slashing cuts at anything up in the zone; his slightly tilted vertical style of running; the trim black hair just touching his uniform at the nape; the cracked smile–we knew all this, certainly, but in some oddly formal and removed fashion, because he was Japanese and because he didn’t speak English easily. His silence kept him old-fashioned: a ballplayer from the black-and-white newspaper-photograph days, before our heroes talked.