There has been much talk lately about adopting a “universal designated hitter” in Major League baseball. The problem is that pitchers can’t hit, and fans deserve a professional hitter in every at bat in today’s time-challenged game.
As a baseball traditionalist I’ve always been against the designated hitter. I thought it diminished strategy, made life too easy for managers, and robbed pitchers of the joys of swinging a bat.
That’s the big fun in playing baseball—swinging a bat. But what’s fun got to do with anything these days? We’re all much too busy for fun; life isn’t a game for amateurs.
No, I’m afraid the universal designated hitter is an idea whose time has come. But why stop at baseball? There are countless tasks in life that we do as well as a pitcher hits.
Let’s face it, folks. Most of us are good at one thing—the thing they pay us for. When it comes to most other tasks, we muddle through, at best.
We absolutely rule stocking shelves at Pottery Barn, 8 to 5 daily. We’re the beloved tech support guy at the office, saving the know nothings from digital disasters. But we fall apart when the cat drags a rat into the house. We humiliate ourselves stumbling over French words on the menu. Our socks don’t match. We need help.
Maybe your social media game is weak. Your Instagrams are blurry, your Facebooks aren’t liked, your Tweets are trite. Maybe, like me, you’re barely there. Do not despair. Hire a designated social media pro and watch him knock it out of the park. Who knows, with professional help you might get that cutie to swipe right.
We already have designated drivers, but why should only drunks have that privilege? Half the cars I see on the streets could use a designated driver, and that doesn’t even count the Uber hordes.
The designated driver is a wonderful thing. But what if you use a designated driver too often and wind up a blackout drunk? What if your friends stage an intervention and cart you off to rehab? Nobody has time for that in our hypercompetitive world. You can’t spare three months from your job; those human resources compliance reports aren’t going to file themselves.
And if you went to rehab, you’d probably fail. Most people do, the first few times. But most people aren’t professionals. You need a designated rehab specialist.
He or she will come out looking great, with a fine tan, hell, they might even lose you a few pounds. And you can keep on doing do what you do best—drink.
The universal designated hitter can save our threatened American democracy. Each election, fewer and fewer citizens can be bothered to vote. And who can blame them? Voting is a bother. The ballot is overstuffed with propositions, school board candidates, mayors, supervisors, judges, representatives, you name it. Who can keep track of it all?
Not nearly enough voters, that’s who. So we stay home, which allows a few fanatics to elect some unspeakable idiot to office, and we are where we are now.
Certified designated voter professionals will be good citizens for us. They’d know every candidate for every office in the land. And they wouldn’t dare cast our votes for an idiot, charlatan or con man. They’d be disbarred.
The relief a universal designated hitter program would bring to us all is incalculable. Do I even need to mention jury duty? Jury duty is such a heinous obligation that most people move heaven and earth to avoid it. As a result, our “presumed innocent” defendants are judged by a jury of their peers who aren’t smart enough to get out of jury duty.
The designated juror program can end this farce. Who wouldn’t want to be judged by eager, informed, conscientious jurors? The guilty?
The universal DH would be great for the economy. If you’re a tech zillionaire, you probably stink at most other life tasks. Why not put your money to good use? Get a designated friend to handle those awkward “face to face” personal encounters. A designated bon vivant will make you a hit at any dinner party. Plus, the designated professional will spare you the social opprobrium of hiring underpaid task rabbits to do your dirty work. Say goodbye to liberal guilt. Hire a pro!
Let’s make the universal DH truly universal. No more swing and a miss in the game of life. Designated batter up!