The Cruelest Cuts of All: A Carson Cistulli Story

This is fun: Last Monday, in the seventh inning of a Spring Training game against the Reds, Indians manager Terry Francona used a conventional method – i.e., emitting words from his mouth hole – at an unconventional time – i.e., during a pitching change on the mound – to inform right-hander Blake Wood that he (Wood, not Francona) had made the Cleveland rotation.

Less fun, at least for NotGraphs President and CEO Carson Cistulli, is this true fact: While Wood celebrated his achievement and Francona told the tale, the aforementioned mogul was forced to relive the many and various ways by which he, as a young and dream-filled ballplayer, learned that he had not made the team.

What follows is a truncated list:

– in a hand-drawn cartoon on a Hi-C juice box

– in a whisper from Mickey during a visit to Disneyland

– in a Golden Ticket inside a Willy Wonka Chocolate Bar

– in an onstage announcement during a Spice Girls concert in Concord

– in a telegram from Carl Yastrzemski

– in a brief statement from a trained parrot during a visit to Busch Gardens

– in a passing mention from a younger cousin who had made the team

– in an onscreen message during a “very special episode” of Who’s the Boss?

– in a second-period announcement over the school loudspeaker

– in a brief communiqué in his alphabet soup

– in a short announcement in the church bulletin

– in a ranger talk at the summit of Mount Washington

– in a phone call from Christina Applegate

– in a limerick from the leprechaun during the St. Paddy’s Day Parade

– in a message on an airplane banner during Spring Break at the Jersey Shore

– in a proclamation on the YMCA bulletin board, correcting a previous proclamation

– in a first-inning announcement on the Fenway Park PA system

– in a dramatic enactment during a mime show at the mall

– in an abrupt mention just prior to what would have been his first kiss

– in a typed, double-spaced and notarized letter wedged between the Hostess Twinkie and the Hostess Ding-Dong in his official Full House lunchbox

– in a message spelled out on hand-held placards during halftime at the Rose Bowl

– in a brief word from Glinda, The Good Witch of the North, during a school production of The Wizard of Oz

– in a message delivered by falcon during a falconry exhibition at Six Flags

– in a catchy tune from Happy The Clown

– in a mention from “Ben Franklin” during a field trip to Independence Hall

– in a dinner announcement from Bodhi, the cool counselor at sleep-away camp

– in a speech by Coach Thompson during an after-school pep rally

– in a song from the animatronic band at Chuck E. Cheese

– in a letter from Santa

Author’s Note: It is entirely possible that the aforementioned Aforementioned Mogul, being utterly mogul-ish, will soon dispatch a termination notice via text, email or remorseless henchman.

We hoped you liked reading The Cruelest Cuts of All: A Carson Cistulli Story by John Paschal!

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John Paschal is a regular contributor to The Hardball Times and The Hardball Times Baseball Annual.

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Oh my! What does dejected.jpg look like???