1939, New Amsterdam City, New Amsterdam.
The Flyers Stadium was filled to bursting with onlookers from all over the state. The smell of hot dogs and popcorn was heavy in the air. The sky was blue and cloudless, and Will Sanchez, the Flyers’ celebrated power-hitter, was about to take the field.
The bat hung loosely and comfortably in his hand as he climbed out of the dugout and strode across the grass to home plate. He waved at the cheering crowds and gave the bat a twirl. It was the bottom of the ninth inning. The bases were loaded. It was anybody’s game now.
Will, the “Empyrean Slugger,” took his place to the left of the plate and gave the bat a practice swing. Satisfied with the familiar weight of the bat, he nodded to the pitcher and readied himself, breathing in deeply. The crowd went silent and expectant as the Albany Shooters’ pitcher wound up. The ball hurtled through the air. Will exhaled, his bat fluidly arcing to meet the ball.
For a moment