ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 19: Albert Pujols #5 of the St. Louis Cardinals holds his wrist after a collision with Wilson Betemit #24 of the Kansas City Royals at Busch Stadium on June 19, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
Albert Pujols's injury is catastrophic enough to warrant, for St. Louis Cardinals fans, the biggest gun in the Hollywood arsenal: Faux-Biblical grieving.
Whether it's a disaster flick, a rap album, or a mediocre organized-crime-thriller that needs to reach back for a little extra Western-Civ gravitas, the first well any pop cultural artifact taps for added depth is always the Old Testament, or at least peoples' hazy recollection of the Old Testament.
It's not the one people read, but it's always been the one people prefer to deeply intone, ideally while a meteor, a Rolls Royce, or the cops are about to change our heroes' lives forever. Given just how terrible the news that Albert Pujols will miss at least a month following his wrist injury is—it's as though Babe Ruth, rather than having the stomach-ache heard round the world after consuming that fateful junk food, had been diagnosed with stage-IV hot dog cancer (not in the Biblical sense)—a trip through the pop-cultural OT seems only appropriate the morning after.
With that in mind, some possible options for St. Louis Cardinals fans ready to meet their grief at Albert Pujols's early exit head-on:
1. Fake Quote About Vengeance Or Something. You could always go the Pulp Fiction route and make up a verse about the hard path of first basemen, or people who have to field throws from the Cardinals' middle infielders, or maybe something about how awesome guns are, and shooting guns. First draft:
"The path of the first baseman is beset on all sides by the hustle of the baserunner and the tyranny of mediocre shortstops. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak throws through the valley of foul territory, for he is truly his teammate's keeper and the finder of lost prospects. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and injure my first baseman. And you will know my occupation is blogger when I whine ineffectually upon you." (Obadiah 2:5)
2. Fake Biblical Parable. Movies get plenty of mileage out of real Biblical parables, too, but sometimes a lazy screenwriter finds he just can't push his character and Isaiah's character closely enough, which leaves us with strikingly on-the-nose parables about the stars of romantic comedies and rappers with very high opinions of themselves.
Like the parable of the Injured First Baseman, which, I mean, you can look it up if you're so anxious to know the reference. One of the minor prophets talks about how this wealthy land-owner had three shortstops—one of them who could throw extremely well, but didn't look outwardly pious enough, another who was very pious but couldn't throw at all, and then a third who just really never had a chance with the fans because they drafted him before Rick Porcello. It goes on from there, but then I'm sure you've heard it.
3. Sackcloth and ashes. The good news about co-opting the ancient tradition of wearing painful clothes for mourning and penance is that you can both outwardly express your mourning about Pujols's absence and, at the same time, apologize to the gods of baseball for your hubris in taking Albert Pujols for granted, which, if you haven't been arrested for stalking Pujols, you probably did.
4. Deeply Significant Biblical Names. So get this, get this—we name the Wilson Betemit character Cain, and we name the Albert Pujols character—well, not Abel, because that can be rearranged to form most of Albert's name and then he might sue for a story credit. How about Cain and Bill?
Of course, you'll remember that in the Parable of the Injured First Baseman, the guy who runs over the wealthy land owner's best crops is named—Wilson Betemit.
5. Fake Verse Reference. As "Stone Cold but Secretly Deeply Anxious" Steve Austin once wrote, Pujols 3:16 says, "I just oh god I'm so scared, please come back, Albert."