Editor's note: with the one-armed, three-wheeled robot PhillieBot scheduled to throw out the first pitch before Wednesday's Phillies-Brewers game, Page 2 solicited the following op-ed piece from Sarah Connor:
You just don't get it, do you? This is how it begins. The machines. The war against them. Strong light. Stronger fastballs. Burning right through my eyes. Can't you see?
You talk about Aroldis Chapman. He's nothing. Just a man. The machines are different. They can't be bargained with. Don't feel pity, remorse or fear. Never get pumped for "Enter Sandman."
They were trusted with ceremonial pitches, then the real thing. They got smart, a new order of intelligence, even smarter than Mike Mussina. Became self-aware. Got bored dominating "Jeopardy!" They saw all hitters as threats, not just the ones on the other team.
They decided our fate in a microsecond: extermination. And no other buttons except ASK MADDEN.
The early ones had rubber skin. Easy to spot. The later ones looked human. They took over all sports. Plus poker. We were this close to going out forever. But there was one man who taught us to fight back, to armor our elbows and chemically-enhance our muscles, to smash those 150-mph metal pitches right over the wall.
He turned it around. His name was Barry Bonds. And we had won. The machines had no choice. They sent a hunter-killer unit back in time. The T-Novitzky. You go back bald. There's something about the field generated by human hair. I don't know tech stuff.
You robot scientists think you're saving America the horror of first pitches from Carl Lewis or Mariah Carey? How would you know? Men like you built the hydrogen bomb. Thought it up. All you know how to create is destruction. And Roombas.
Look, this is not a dream. It's real. I know the date it starts. On April 20, 2011, it's going to start feeling pretty freaking real to you, too. Anyone holding a bat and not injected with an oil tanker's worth of Winstrol is going to have a real bad day. Get it?
Listen. You're already dead. A-Rod, Pujols, designated hitters. Everything you see on Baseball Tonight is gone. It happens.
I know it happens.