- Kira to Sisko. - Go ahead, Colonel.
Captain Solok of the starship T'Kumbra is here to see you.
Send him in.
Welcome to Deep Space 9, Captain.
- Your welcome is acknowledged. - Have a seat.
- lt's been a long time. - Ten years, two months, five days.
- You don't know it to the minute? - Of course l do.
But humans are often irked by such precision.
Especially the more emotional humans.
Our repair list.
l understand you've been honoured
with the Christopher Pike Medal for Valour. Congratulations.
Thank you. And congratulations to you.
- l heard you received it last month. - My second, actually.
The T'Kumbra has been in combat for over six months.
Being behind the lines will be a welcome change.
This isn't exactly safe. We've seen our share of action.
Of course you have.
We can upgrade your inertial dampers by the end of the day
but to begin to overhaul your warp core would take at least a week.
- That is most inefficient. - War is an inefficient business.
A somewhat unprofessional attitude.
However, l expect a lack of professionalism and efficiency
on starbases run by human officers.
You're welcome to take your ship to a Vulcan station.
There's one about 50 light years away.
But if you plan to stay here with us, ''behind the lines'',
the Chief will see to your requests.
There is another matter not listed on the formal report.
l need use of a holosuite. Our holodecks are under repair.
To arrange holosuite time, see Quark. He owns the only ones here.
Then l will speak to Quark.
l have created a special program for my staff
and they are quite eager to resume using it.
ln fact, you may find the program of some interest.
lt is based on an Earth game.
What game would that be?
Colonel, assemble the senior staff in the wardroom. Now.
As you probably know, the starship T'Kumbra is docked at our station.
Their captain considers his crew,
an all-Vulcan crew, by the way, to be the finest in the fleet.
l think the people at this table comprise the finest crew in the quadrant.
You won't get much of an argument from us.
l didn't think so. So when their captain challenged us
to a contest of courage, teamwork and sacrifice, l accepted on your behalf.
- We will destroy them. - l was hoping for that.
- So when is this clash of the Titans? - Two weeks, in holosuite 5.
What's the contest?
Chapter 25. ''The infield fly rule is invoked
''when first and second bases are occupied,
''or first, second and third base are occupied...''
- What if there is a runner at home? - There's never a runner at home.
''...and fewer than two outs, the batter hits a high fly... ''
''Fly: the term for a batted ball while it is in the air.''
Right. ''...fewer than two out, the batter hits a high fly,
''which can readily be caught by an infielder
''or the pitcher or catcher inside fair ground.
''The batter is called out whether the ball is caught or not.''
That seems simple enough.
''An attempt to bunt, however, under the conditions noted above,
''which results in a fair fly shall not be regarded an infield fly.''
What's a bunt?
A ball that has been tapped between the pitcher and the catcher
to force the fielding side to throw out the batter
- and allow a runner to advance. - Right. Chief, what's a grand slam?
A home run that's hit when the bases are crowded.
Right. Except it's ''bases loaded''. Now...what's a Fancy Dan?
- You're making that up. - l am not.
Hi. Jake told us about the game against the Vulcans.
lt sounds really exciting.
- You should come watch. - ''Fancy Dan:
''A fielder who puts an extra flourish on his movements
''to gain the approval of the spectators.''
We were thinking of more than watching.
lf we can.
That is, if there's still room for other potential players to possibly try...
We want to try out.
Captain Sisko and Jake play baseball and it brings them closer.
Nog and l haven't seen each other much lately. This might be good for us.
And l decided to make it a complete family outing.
- That is so sweet. - lsn't it?
lt's idiotic. You'll make a fool out of yourself.
l will not.
You can barely spin a dabo wheel, much less kick a ball.
Shows how much you know. You don't kick the ball.
- You won't make the team. - At least we're trying out. Are you?
l don't have the slightest interest in this human game.
You know why? Jake says it's a game that takes heart.
You sold yours a long time ago. Come on, Rom.
- What time are tryouts? - 1300. Holosuite 4.
Hey, hey! All right!
Ha, ha! Whoo!
First day of practice! lt's an exciting time, am l right?
- Oh, yeah! - Yeah!
There we go! That's the spirit!
Let me introduce you to our pitcher and secret weapon - Jake ''Slider'' Sisko.
Good luck, Jake.
All the other positions are open for tryouts.
Everyone here has seen at least one baseball game in the holosuite.
l know it looks simple. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball.
But it is not that easy. lt's a difficult game,
even for seasoned professionals who spent their lifetime practising.
We have less than two weeks to build a team and face the opponent.
Now, l know what some of you are thinking.
''How can we beat the Logicians? They're all Vulcans!
''They're stronger and faster than any one of us, except for Worf
''and our genetically enhanced doctor.''
But there is more to baseball than physical strength.
lt's uh...it's about courage.
And it's also about faith.
And it is also about heart.
And if there's one thing our Vulcan friends lack, it's heart.
l think we can beat them.
l know we can beat them.
We are going to beat them. Am l right?
- Yeah! - l can't hear you.
- Yes, Sir! - Are we going to beat the Vulcans?
- Yes, Sir! - All right, let's play some baseball!
First l want you to pair off.
Spread yourselves about ten metres apart and play some catch.
Just a little throw and catch. Nice and easy.
You almost had it!
l said throw it here!
Don't throw it to her! Throw it to someone's who's looking!
Come on, Quark.
This is going to be two long, hard weeks.
Jake, l don't care how hard and long these two weeks are.
l am not going to lose to Solok in a baseball game.
We' re going to win.
- Umpire? - That's right. Will you do it?
Wouldn't a holographic umpire be more accurate?
l don't want a computer calling baseball. That's something Solok would do.
l want a real person, not a collection of photons and magnetic fields.
l also want a person who can be completely impartial,
and l can't think of anyone l trust more.
That's very flattering.
lt's the truth. Will you do it?
- All right. - Outstanding. Here are the rules.
l'll be with the team in the lnfirmary.
- The lnfirmary? - We had a few problems at practice.
Remember, the game is in less than two weeks,
so you better start to work on your moves.
l can't believe this. l remember being an athlete.
My third host, Emony, was an Olympic gymnast.
l kept expecting my legs to react like hers did, but l fell all over myself.
- l don't know my own body anymore. - l don't know why you're complaining.
At least you didn't require major surgery.
Knitting together a couple of bones is not major surgery.
lt is if the bones are in the back of your skull.
l hope you've learned your lesson.
Look behind you before swinging a bat.
- How are my casualties doing? - We'll live.
l'm not sure l'm going to make it.
That's the spirit, old man. Don't lose your sense of humour.
Hey, Chief, how's the shoulder?
His rotator cuff was badly torn.
Can't you repair the damage? l need him on third.
The ligaments need time to knit with the clavicular joint.
- l can't let him play baseball. - Damn!
Sorry, Sir. l was looking forward to the game.
There's an old saying: ''Those who can't, coach.''
You are batting, pitching and first base coach.
Great. Which one was first base?
We'll go over that again later.
Practice tomorrow morning at 0730.
- Don't be late. - We'll be there.
Excuse me. l have to realign Worf's zygomatic bone.
Tell him l'm sorry.
We can move Ezri over to third.
No, l need her in centre. l know who we can get.
- l'll have to pull some strings. - Who?
- Welcome home. - Music to my ears.
Does this mean you missed me?
Like a piece of my heart was missing.
Sweet words and flowers too? Are you feeling all right?
You're back. l feel outstanding.
- l could get used to this. - You should.
- Are you going to be here long? - Three runs have been reassigned.
Bureaucrats. Who knows why they do anything?
So what are we going to do with all my time off?
- l have a few ideas. - l bet you do.
So tell me, how's your throwing arm holding up?
That's what l was talking about!
All right, heads up, people. There's a runner on first and one away.
l got it! l got it! l got it!
- How many is that? - Today? l think he's missed ten.
All right. Batting practice.
- What's he doing here? - He's scouting us.
lf he is taking the time to conduct reconnaissance, he must be worried.
He should be. Next week, that man is going to get a painful lesson in humility.
Today l'm going to hit the ball. You just watch.
All right, Rom. Keep your eye on the ball.
Follow the ball from the pitcher's hand all the way to the bat.
- Sorry. - You can do it!
- Hang in there, Rom! - All right, Rom!
- That's it. You're done. - l'll do better tomorrow, Captain.
- No, you won't. You're off the team. - Can't you give him a...
- ls anyone talking to you? - l can't play?
That is the smartest thing you've said all week. Get your gear and go.
Worf, you're up!
- Captain Sisko hates me. - He doesn't.
He was just blowing off steam. He'll get over it.
l'll go talk with him. Maybe he'll change his...
No! He'll kick you off the team too.
l don't care. lf you can't play, l won't either.
- That goes for me too. - And me.
- And us. - Benjamin was out of line, Rom.
This game is supposed to be fun.
So we're quitting unless he reinstates you.
- No! Please! - Rom, we're on your side.
l had my chance but l wasn't good enough.
The Captain's right.
l don't deserve to be on the team. You've earned it.
Playing baseball means nothing to me.
But you're good at it. So are you. And l want to see you play.
l want to see all of you play. l want to see our team beat the Vulcans.
Even if l'm only watching from the...
- The stands? - Right.
lf that's the way you feel about it.
Rom, there are moments when l know exactly why l married you.
- What are you eating? - l'm chewing.
- What? - Gum.
- l had the replicator create some. - They just chewed it?
No, they infused it with flavour.
- What did you infuse it with? - Scotch.
Here. Try some.
You got a runner on first and second, one away.
Ground ball to the second baseman. Kira?
Double play, unless the runner on third is already on his way home.
OK. Relax. Keep your weight on the balls of your feet. Back elbow up.
Faster! Come on! Faster!
- l got it! - Mine!
- Don't look at me! - You called it!
That was yours all the way! Come on, Julian.
You're out! You're out!
- That's quite a knot. - Aargh!
Your back is like a minefield of bruised muscles.
Tell me something l don't know.
OK. You're lifting your foot up at the plate.
- What? - OK. Take a swing.
Stop! Look. You're lifting your foot in the back swing.
lt's messing up your rhythm.
Not that bad.
That's the l-want-to-smash-something- but-she'll-think-l'm-crazy look.
Don't let me stop you. Smash away if it'll make you feel better.
The only way l'll feel better is to beat Solok.
So do l get to hear the Solok story now?
Remember that if you don't tell me, you won't have a third baseman.
We were together at the Academy.
One weekend l was with friends at an off-campus bar, the Launching Pad,
and Solok came in with some Vulcan cadets.
He said they were doing research on illogical human bonding rituals.
We didn't take kindly to that.
- And you'd had a few drinks. - One or two.
We got into a debate. Solok said that Vulcans were naturally superior
to humans and other ''emotionally handicapped'' species.
Of course l took the opposite position. So there l am...
drunk, and debating logic versus emotion
with a smug and sober Vulcan.
Well, to make a long story short,
l decided the best way to prove that humans were the equal of Vulcans
was to challenge him to a wrestling match.
l wanted to wipe that arrogant look off his face, so l challenged him.
l ended up in the lnfirmary
with a separated shoulder, two cracked ribs and a very bruised ego.
Oh, Ben. l don't mean to laugh, but...what did you expect?
A Vulcan has three times the strength of a human.
And they're faster too. But you're right. l got what l deserved.
And if it had ended there, it would have been fine. But it didn't.
Solok took every opportunity to remind me of our match.
He'd point me out as l walked across the campus.
He wrote five psychology papers about our match.
l became the living embodiment of why Vulcans were superior to humans.
You don't mean he was gloating? A Vulcan?
That's exactly what l mean. He hid it beneath that Vulcan calm
but he loved every minute of it.
You'd think that once we graduated it would've stopped. But it didn't.
Solok's written over a dozen papers on Vulcan/human comparative profiles,
and in the beginning of every paper,
is an analysis of that damned wrestling match!
Now he comes to your station and says he's put together a baseball team.
He doesn't care about baseball. He just wants to rub my nose in it.
But now he is using my game! My game!
Tell that to the Niners. They don't know why you're so caught up in this.
No. l'd rather they think l'm just caught up in a baseball game
than pursuing an adolescent rivalry.
Just tell them the truth. They need to know how personal this is to you.
No. l mean it. And you can't tell them either.
l want you to promise me.
All right. l promise.
Keep this under your hats.
Curzon and Jadzia always wondered why Benjamin hated Solok.
He's embarrassed. He calls it an adolescent rivalry,
but Solok keeps it going.
Now he's trying to beat the Captain at his own game.
- lt is a dishonourable motive. - l'm starting to hate him.
- What are we going to do about it? - l'll tell you.
We go out there and put that Vulcan in his place. We win it for the Captain.
And for all our ''emotionally handicapped'' races.
Now there's something worth fighting for. Right?
- Niners. - Niners!
OK, Niners. Let's go. Come on. Show these guys.
Let's dispense with the crowd.
My team's never played in front of people before.
lf you wish. Computer, eliminate the spectators.
- Niners, let's hear some chatter. - Hey, batter!
Hey, batter, batter, batter.
- Death to the opposition. - Hey, batter.
Strike him out!
Lucky swing. All right.
Hey, don't worry. You'll get the next one, OK?
- OK? - OK.
You're making mental errors out there! Stupid mistakes!
Think about what you're doing.
Charge the ball, don't wait for it to come to you!
Ezri, you're playing too deep!
- They rattled you. - They're pretty good.
What are talking about? Stop admiring them and start striking them out!
- Batter up. - Let's play ball.
- You want to try that again? - Colonel, stay cool.
- Don't get yourself thrown out. - l wouldn't dream of it.
You're out, by the way.
- Was that slide at second legal? - lt doesn't seem very sporting.
These guys are playing to win. Sporting doesn't enter into it.
lt's about time!
- Strike one. - lf you're not there, let it go.
Don't reach for it!
- Ball one. - Hey, now. Good eye, Worf.
- Ball two. - Keep your eye on the ball.
Foul ball. Strike two.
Big stick. Good eye, Worf.
- Ball three. - Time.
- Let's go, batter. - Do not rush me.
- Strike three! - What? That ball was half a metre out.
lt wasn't a strike! Reverse the call!
- That was low and outside! - The ball was clearly outside.
lt wasn't over the plate. Were you regenerating?
- lt caught the outside corner. - Outside corner?!
We have two men on!
Gentlemen, you are trying my patience.
You stole the run from us
just as if you'd reached up and tore it off the scoreboard!
- You. You're outta here! - What?
''No player shall at any time make contact with the umpire in any manner.
''The prescribed penalty for the violation is immediate ejection from the game.''
Rule 4.06, subsection A, paragraph four.
Look it up but do it in the stands. You're gone.
lt was a ball. lt was no strike.
l know it was a ball.
Chief, l think that means you're in charge now.
What are you standing around for? Never seen a man thrown out?
Get your gloves on and get on that field. Let's go!
Quark, wake up. You're in right.
Julian, you're on second. Leeta, you're in left. We got a game to play.
Come on. Move it.
- Grab it, Ezri! - Back, Ezri, back!
- Go, go, go! - All right!
Now that is a Fancy Dan!
Home, Worf! Bring it home!
- He didn't touch home, Nog! - ls that true?
- What do l do? - Find him and kill him!
Just tag him out! Jake, cover home!
- Which one? - Tag them all!
Come on, Nog. Hurry up!
No. Tag the next one.
- He's out! - You're out!
- Yeah, Nog! Well done! - Great catch!
Did you see that? That's what l love about this game.
You never know what's going to happen next.
lt looks like a lot of fun.
Rom, come here.
Where are we going?
- Call time out. - Why?
- You're making a substitution. - What?
You're up, Rom.
But we've got a man on third. We could score.
Sit down, Quark. Go ahead, Rom.
You can do it.
All right, Dad! Come on! You can do it!
Your attention, please. Now pinch hitting for Jake Sisko, No.13, Rom.
Come on, Dad. You can do it.
Come on, Dad!
- Come on, Rom. - You can do it!
lt's OK, Rom!
What was that thing called when you just tap the ball down the baseline?
- A bunt? - That's it! A bunt!
We've got to give him the sign.
- Rom, you did it! - All right, Rom!
Umpire, this is completely improper! The game is not over!
- Jake, that was a hell of a game. - l gave up ten runs.
lf Vulcans were humans, you'd have held them to two or three.
- When you put it that way... - Yes.
Now. Pardon me. l owe you an apology.
No. Unless you really want to.
lf you have some time one day, maybe you can teach me how to bunt.
- What's a bunt? - Oh!
That's my dad.
l fail to see why you are celebrating.
The Ferengi's bunt was an accident. And you still lost the game.
You are absolutely right. And l couldn't be happier.
Quark, a round of drinks for the house on my tab!
l'm way ahead of you.
You are attempting to manufacture a triumph where none exists.
- l'd say he's succeeded. - To manufactured triumph.
- Manufactured triumph. - Here, here!
This is a typical human reaction, based on emotionalism and illogic.
- Did l hear irritation in that voice? - Certainly not.
That sounded positively defensive to me.
- With a hint of anger. - And a touch of jealousy.
- And bitterness. - Are you always this emotional?
l refuse to engage in this human game of taunting.
Human? Did l forget to wear my spots today?
He still doesn't know what a human looks like.
Captain. Here's something else for your desk.
Well, will you look at that.
Would you like to sign it?