And according to today's Globe, semicolon use is way down. How is all this relevant to Soxlosophy? Good question. I use semicolons all the time; in my last post, I used 5 semicolons; in the previous post, 3. Right there, in that last sentence, 2 friggin semicolons; only a real man would be ballsy enough to do that!
Periods imply abrupt stops, discontinuity; semicolons introduce distinctions yet maintain continuity. Commas separate mere words; semicolons ideas. Sometimes thoughts need to be modified by entire thoughts; thoughts are amplified, not diminished, by such qualification. Independent clauses don't require each other, it's true, but then how they are to be related is left unsaid; distinct ideas can holistically combine via the alchemical link of the semicolon.
The semicolon is suited to baseball. Baseball isn't just one damn thing after another. This. Then that. And then this. The period is such a Humean punctuation mark, severing the connection between clauses. It's also mechanistic, lifeless. And commas are just for breathing, required for life, yes, but of itself a lowest form of living; the vegetable state of punctuation. But the semicolon is the punctuation mark of the robust, meaningful life; anywhere there's narrative structure, nuance and modification, individual thoughts organically integrated into a larger whole, a semicolon is appropriate. It's the punctuation for the story of baseball; it should be in the scorecard. DP 6-4-3; didn't hustle. Sox humiliate New York; Yankees suck. And with apologies to Mr. Updike, he should have said "the other players, and even the umpires on the field, begged him to come out and acknowledge us in some way, but he never had and did not now; Gods do not answer letters."
I imagine that if Gods did answer letters, they'd use a lot of exclamation marks; Gods bark orders. But for those of us who do nuance, not imperatives, we have a plucky little overlooked Dustin Pedroia-esque punctuation mark to help out.