Do UCLs Go to Heaven?


“All tucked in sport? Did you brush your teeth? Good. OK, good night. See you in the morning.”

“Daddy, wait.”

“What is it?”

“I’m scared.”

“Scared of what?”

“I’m scared … I’m scared about my UCL.” 

“Oh, son. You’re only nine. You don’t need to worry about that stuff.”

“But Jose Fernandez broke his UCL.”

“I know.”

“And he’s a pitcher like me.”

“Danny, you’re still in Little League. You won’t have to worry about your UCL for a very long time.”

“But it’s still going to break someday.”

“Listen, Danny. I know it’s been a rough couple of months for you. You’ve had to hear about a lot of torn UCLs, and I’m sorry you’ve had to go through that. But that doesn’t mean you should be scared all the time. UCLs just go away sometimes. That’s the way the world works. But the important thing is that we cherish the time we do have with our UCLs while they are still around.”



“What happens to UCLs after they break?”

“What do you mean?”

“Do UCLs go to heaven?”

“I’m not sure.”

“When Stephen Strasburg broke his UCL, did it go to heaven?”

“I don’t know son. Nobody knows for sure. Some people think that if UCLs are good and kind before they break, that they do go to heaven. And when they do, they get to be with all the other UCLs that have ever broken, and they get to spend eternity without ever breaking again.”

“That sounds nice. I hope there is one. And I hope Jose Fernandez’s is there.”

“Me too, son. Now get some sleep. When you wake up tomorrow, you won’t feel as bad. I promise.”

“I think I’m going to pray before I go to sleep. I want to tell God that Jose Fernandez’s UCL should go to heaven.”

“OK. But right back in bed after you’re done. Good night son.”

“Night, Daddy.”

David G. Temple is the Managing Editor of TechGraphs and a contributor to FanGraphs, NotGraphs and The Hardball Times. He hosts the award-eligible podcast Stealing Home. Dayn Perry once called him a "Bible Made of Lasers." Follow him on Twitter @davidgtemple.

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Mike Green
10 years ago

Wait ’til Danny reaches adolescence and learns about R.A. Dickey’s lack of a UCL. It’s a long, slow slippery slide into Proust.