Why is it great? Yes, it’s more than one sentence. But in this one short stanza, Cramer has captured all the rage and sorrow and loneliness and drive of the legendary Red Sox hitter Ted Williams. This is one of the best profiles of all time. The use of ALL CAPS to capture the lash-out-before-they-lash-out-at-you belligerence of Williams! The long section consisting solely of dialogue that reads like a Shakespearean soliloquy! The rhythms that reach a mad, loving Kerouac level! I called the lines above a stanza, and that was deliberate: This profile is an epic poem, about a man and his helpless rage. I almost used another stanza, which I’m going to add here. “The Kid was back, and Fenway was with him. ‘Yeah, 98 percent were for me,’ Ted said later, as he scraped his bat. A writer said: ‘You mean 100 percent. I didn’t hear a boo.’ Ted said: ‘Yeah, they were for me, except a couple of kids in the left-field stand, and a guy out in right. I could hear them.'”

 

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