What would baseball’s poet laureate actually be like?

So, apparently, there’s this guy, Tom Martin, who has been tweeting haikus about the Milwaukee Brewers (@brew_haiku). According to the Times baseball blog, Bats (via the Poetry Foundation), Martin is lobbying to become baseball’s poet laureate:

Tom Martin texts haikus about Brewers games on Twitter, and he wants to be baseball’s poet laureate, a role that has been vacant since, well, forever. (The late, great Dan Quisenberry wrote some pretty good poetry, but never earned the national superstardom and universal acclaim that comes with the title of poet laureate.) Martin’s verses celebrate the joys and sorrow of following the Brewers. Joys, from Sunday: “At Miller Park now/ready to go with game two/packed house is rocking!” Sorrows, from Wednesday: “It’s tough to win when/we can’t keep the ball in yard/see you on Friday.” It is as if Dick Stockton were calling a game, only concisely. 

Martin would be willing to work for no money, taking his compensation in the form of booze, just like any good poet. However, even this alco-altruistic stance is not consistent with baseball’s actual economics. The fact is, if baseball were to have a poet laureate, not only would the poet not get paid, they would have to pay baseball for “promotional consideration.” This would ultimately wind up with the poet laureate position being held by some multi-national corporation.

Which means that the haikus written by baseball’s poet laureate would look something like this:

Poet Laureate Citibank Group:

          Step up to the plate!
     Open a checking account,
          you’ll hit a home run!

Poet Laureate Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufacturers of America:

          Steroids can be safe
     and effective. Unleash
          your inner champion!

Poet Laureate Bank of America:

          B of A, leading
     the league in stolen “bases,”
          by which we mean homes.

Poet Laureate Goldman Sachs:

          Slide into second
     quarter earnings with our new
          accounting methods!

Poet Laureate Novartis, makers of Ex-Lax:

          Try our new bunt cakes!
     Is your last meal “stuck on third”?
          Drop one in the grass!

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