Home Run Blast & Casey at the Bat Book, 2000, Leroy Neiman
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Puzzle by David Kwong / Edited by Will Shortz
"Strike" is the clue for MILITARY ASSAULT, LABOR PROTEST, BOWLING SCORE, and along with JOY IN MUDVILLE (58A. Result of three strikes for 38-Across) and CASEY (38A. Famed batter in an 1888 poem), constitute the interrelated group of this opening-week-of-the-baseball-season Wednesday crossword.
Other — ADAGE, AIMEE, Honolulu’s ALOHA Tower, ANALYZE, BUY UP, CARUSO, CHICK LIT, ELITE, EMERY, FUEL LINE, HAMAS, HENCE, HERETO, INKER, LOG OFF, MESSY, NO LIE, PLAIT, RILEY, YOLKS, ZALES.
Short stuff — AJAR, AMEN, ANEW, ANOS, APSE, ARC, ARGO and ARNO, ATIC, ATTN, BIB, BRA, CANE, DOES, DOLE and DOTE, EAT, EBAY, ENE, ENTO, FATS, HOPS, IDA Tarbell, IDLE, IS ON, LENO and LENT, LOAM, NOR, OAT Chex, OLAF, OLEO, ON CD, ONYX, PLEB, PTA, QUID, RARE, SERF, SITU, SOS, TBSP, TEX, TROY, UNDO, UNUM, VIM.
Casey at the Bat by Ernest Lawrence Thayer ©
The Outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play.
And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,
A sickly silence fell upon the patrons of the game.
A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, if only Casey could get but a whack at that -
We'd put up even money, now, with Casey at the bat.
But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a lulu and the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,
For there seemed but little chance of Casey's getting to the bat.
But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Blake, the much despis-ed, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and the men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.
Then from 5,000 throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It knocked upon the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.
There was ease in Casey's manner as he stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey's bearing and a smile on Casey's face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt 'twas Casey at the bat.
Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt.
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance gleamed in Casey's eye, a sneer curled Casey's lip.
And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped-
"That ain't my style," said Casey. "Strike one," the umpire said.
From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore.
"Kill him! Kill the umpire!" shouted someone on the stand;
And its likely they'd a-killed him had not Casey raised his hand.
With a smile of Christian charity great Casey's visage shone;
He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;
He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the spheroid flew;
But Casey still ignored it, and the umpire said, "Strike two."
"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered fraud;
But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
And they knew that Casey wouldn't let that ball go by again.
The sneer is gone from Casey's lip, his teeth are clenched in hate;
He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate.
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey's blow.
Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout;
But there is no joy in Mudville - mighty Casey has struck out.
Click on image to enlarge.
Puzzle available on the internet at
ACROSS: 1. From now on; 6. Brewery supply; 10. Pound sterling; 15. Inner: Prefix; 16. “Go back,” on an edit menu; 20. Suffix with symptom; 21 Rangers, on a sports ticker; 22. “Save Me” singer Mann; 23. Search for; 25. Memo abbr.; 32. Braid; 35. Airs now; 36. Lobster eater’s wear; 37. Carnival follower; 40. Sometimes-saturated substances; 41. Lansing-to-Flint dir.; 42. Seldom seen; 43. Try to corner the market on; 48. Dairy section selection; 49. Take a good look at; 53. Bit of wisdom; 56. Slow-pitch path; 57. Rich soil; 62. Patron saint of Norway; 63. Bucks’ mates; 64. Printing press part; 65. Feudal worker; 66. Rive through Florence; 67. Like dorm rooms, often. — DOWN: 1. Radical Mideast group; 2. Best of the best; 3. “And that’s the Truth!”; 4. Women’s fiction, slangily; 5. Use knife and fork, say; 6. Regarding this point; 7. Jet-black gem; 8. School grp.; 9. “Help!” at sea; 10. Like many shops at Disneyland; 11. One in a mint?; 12. Not active; 13. Lavish affection (on); 18. “… three men in ___”; 19. Squelched; 25. Religious mosaic locale; 26. Where Paris took Helen; 28. Gets up; 29. Cyberspace marketplace; 30. In ___ (as found); 31. Dosage amt.; 32. Commoner; 33. TV host with a college degree in speech therapy; 34. From the top; 38. Punish, in a way; 39. Golden Fleece ship; 40. Gas tank-to-engine connector; 42. N.B.A. coach Pat; 43. Item with straps; 45. Leave a Web page, perhaps; 46. David of “CSI Miami”; 47. One way to store data; 50. Whites’ counterparts; 51. Big name in jewelry; 52. Tip reducer?; 53. Calendario units; 54. McCain : 2008 :: ___ : 1996; 55. Nearly shut; 56. Service closer; 59. Muckraker Tarbell; 60. And not; 61. Energy.