NY Mets Pitcher Angers Fans of The Hobbit (and Beowulf)

NY Mets Pitcher Angers Fans of The Hobbit (and Beowulf)

May 09, 2011

If you're a fan of the NY Mets, then you're already well aware of the fact that the team can't seem to get anything right ... ever. And even when they show signs of getting something right, they usually manage to screw it up not long after. Currently sitting in last place in their division seven and a half games out of first place only one month (and change) into the season, it can't really get much worse for the Mets ... or can it?

Speaking to the NY Times recently, Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey spoke about his fondness for naming his baseball bats after references in The Hobbit and Beowulf. Probably not the first ever professional athlete to confess his fanboyishness for The Hobbit and Beowulf, but it's still cool to see a big athlete geeking out on, well, geeky literary properties. So Mets fans who are also Tolkien freaks finally have a reason to rejoice, right? Um ... not so fast. Apparently, when telling the NY Times about his geeky ritual, the pitcher messed up the references for not one, but both properties, prompting tons of readers to write in to correct the Times on their misprint, thus leading to one of the more humorous Times corrections we've seen in some time.

This is how it appeared in the original piece: "One bat is called Orcist the Goblin Ax and the other is Hrunting. Dickey, an avid reader, said that Orcist came from The Hobbit; it is the blade Bilbo Baggins uses in the Misty Mountains. Hruntung -- the H is silent, Dickey said -- came from the epic poem Beowulf; it is the sword Beowulf uses to kill Grendel's mother."

And that's all well and good -- people make mistakes -- but in issuing this correction, the Times failed to mention the fact that the Beowulf reference is also wrong. Yes, Hrunting was a sword that Beowulf used in his attempts to slay Grendel's mother, however he discarded it when it proved to be ineffective.

Guess that's all you really need to know about the way the Mets have been playing as of late, huh?

[via Gothamist]

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