Now that we’ve clinched, I’m gonna have me some fun.

Finally, NL Central champions. But I’ve still got to field a competitive lineup. That’s the best part for the Dusty.

First off, we’re going to go with Paul Janish in right field. I’ve always wanted to put that little elf in right. We’re sitting Bruce tonight because he’s got a thing with his side. Doesn’t matter what it is, just leave it at that. It’s a thing with his side. Plus I look for any excuse not to play Bruce. But Janish is better anyways against lefties and he’s better at air hockey so he’s in there tonight.

The shortstop always hits second, and at shortstop; tonight I’m going with Bill Hatcher. Hatch, get your big ass loose and take some ground balls before we get underway. This is a big one tonight mayn. We gonna have some fun.

Bloomquist, you’ll go to first base. You played first base in pony league, didn’t you Bloomquist? Since the first baseman hits third that’s where you’ll be hitting. I don’t care that your lifetime statistics suggest that you’re useless. No matter. You’ll be at first, you’ll be batting third; and I know you got some good stuff for em’ mayn. That’s right.

Clean-up is where I have some good surprises up my sleeve. I’m bringing out my old teammate Glenn Burke; the inventor of the high-five. That’s right mayn. No I don’t mean that out. C’mon mayn. Burke’s a good ballplayer. He’s dead? Well if he’s alive, he’s hittin’ fourth in my lineup. He’s tough on em’ mayn. I don’t care that he’s a lifetime .237 hitter with 2 home runs. He’s a center fielder, and they hit clean-up sometimes. Good enough to clean up in my lineup. No I don’t mean that kind of ‘clean up’. You’re sick mayn, you know that?

Hitting fifth and in left field is Johnny Gomes. My reasoning is simple. Rain or shine, snow or sleet, I’ve stuck with this guy all year. I’ve seen him go through 0 for 35 droughts with about 881 infield pop ups. I’ve seen him strand small towns. I’ve rode him through winning streaks, losing streaks, ties, hangovers, and pregnancies. He’s going to hit fifth if for no other reason than I’ve done it this long and fuck–lineups don’t always have to make sense. This is fun! Yea mayn! K or double play, Gomes is my guy ’cause he can really ‘do it’ mayn.

Hitting sixth is my son Christopher. He’s gonna play second base. I like to hit the second baseman sixth. Just because, mayn. Christopher is a good bunter and I know you typically don’t stick a little guy who can handle the bat 6th in the lineup, but The Dusty does it. Christopher is my guy. Plus he likes Brandon Phillips and he wants to play at his spot. We’re just gonna do it this once (and maybe tomorrow and the next day if I wake up and feel that way). Batting sixth…. Christopher Baker. Go get after em’ mayn.

Hitting seventh we’re gonna go with Masset. He’s not pitching tonight he’s got something going on with his toe but he says he can catch. I like the catcher hitting seventh. They don’t clog up the bases with those worthless walks and every now and then–they’ll get that big hit mayn. Masset is built like a catcher, look at him over there. Plus he wears #40. That’s a catcher’s number so he’s gonna be hitting seventh and he’s gonna call the game tonight himself. His experience as a bullpen pitcher will serve him well as a catcher.

I like to hit my best hitter 8th as you know. That’s why all year when he was hot as Hell, I hit Jay Bruce 8th in the lineup. The best hitters don’t need protection other than the pitcher–and besides it’s not any ordinary pitcher that’s batting behind him tonight. I feel good about our 8th hitter tonight, I call him my M-V-P mayn. Miguel Cairo, batting 8th and at third. Utility guys are great. I don’t have to make up an excuse for the weird shit that I do when it comes to them. I wish I had 25 Miguel Cairo’s–because I favor veterans who are mediocre over young studs.

And batting 9th will be our starting pitcher; my dog Charlie Baker. Charlie is a golden retriever. They say they’re some of the smartest dawgs around, mayn. I mean he is a DAWG. He’s got somethin’ for them tonight. He don’t look like much but he is quick on the mound and he’s a winner. He’ll compete. You should see him play Frisbee at home.