Roosevelt hefts the bat, takes off his hat and hands it to Klem, shakes the
water from his mustache, and tries to establish solid footing in the
waterlogged batter's box.
"I venture to
say this gives new meaning to my credo, 'Speak softly and carry a big stick,'
" booms the President. All of us within hearing laugh politely.
and tosses a looping, batting-practice pitch. The President lets it go by.
patronize me, young man," he shouts at O'Reilly.
sir," O'Reilly calls back, and I can see his face tighten as it does when
he is facing one of the Cub power hitters. He takes his high leg kick and fires
a blazing fastball over the outside corner. President Roosevelt also lets that
one go by.
one," calls Bill Klem.
better," says the President.
another fastball, and Roosevelt takes a mighty cut, missing by several inches,
his knee-high boots squealing from the force of the swing.
you, young man. Strike!"
another blur of horse-hide straight across the plate. Roosevelt takes an
equally vicious swing. He turns and looks down and behind him to where
Pulvermacher clutches the ball in his warty hand.