Dominion War, take a break. It's time to PLAY BALL!!! Solok, an old academy rival of Sisko, shows up with a challenge that the captain can't possibly refuse: a game of baseball. However, Sisko's assumed home-field advantage might not be enough to overcome the Vulcans' inherent advantages in strength, speed, and snark. The crew will have to dig deep to grind out a victory, any kind of victory, to knock these logic-obsessed bullies off their pointy-eared pedestal.
This episode contains examples of
- Baseball Episode: With Sisko's obession it had to happen eventually.
- Breather Episode: A comedy episode after some very heavy material.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory: Ezri automatically defers to her memories of Emony the gymnast, with painful results. But it works when she pulls off a "Fancy Dan" by running up the wall to grab a would-be home run.
- Everybody Laughs Ending: In which the team gets Solok's goat.
- Fantastic Racism: Hidden under a thin veneer of "logic".
- Game of Nerds: The crew is baffled and incredulous at baseball's many rules, exceptions, and complexities.
- Gilligan Cut: Benjamin makes Kasidy promise not to tell anyone the story of why he and Solok don't get along. Cut to her telling everyone, "Now you can't tell him I told you this..."
- Irony as She Is Cast: Rom is so hideously bad at baseball that Sisko throws him off the team. Max Grodenchik, on the other hand, was a star in high school and considered making baseball his career before he deciding on acting. (He had to play left-handed because he couldn't manage to fake such extreme badness as a righty.)
- It's Personal: Sisko quickly starts obsessing over turning his staff into a good team and beating Solok, which they don't approve of until they find out why he hates Solok so much.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Odo is named umpire because he is the only one who will be completely impartial. This is later evidenced when he ejects an out of control Sisko.
- Rules Lawyer: Odo, who quotes paragraph and subsection as he ejects Sisko.
- School Yard Bully All Grown Up: Solok. Apparently he built his entire academic career around continuing to taunt Benjamin Sisko.
- Serious Business: Worf and his "infield chatter."
"Death to the opposition!"
Also, when told the Vulcan's player didn't touch the plate: "Find him and kill him!"
- Serious Business: For Sisko.
- Smug Smiler: Odo when he gets to eject Solok.
- "Stop Having Fun" Guys: Sisko, at first - in universe. He berates the team for not being as worked up about the game as he is, and even kicks Rom off for his Epic Fail attempts at baseball. After getting kicked out of the game himself, however, he realizes that it's just a game, and relaxes so as to take pride in his team, win or lose.
- Straw Vulcan: Solok.
- Underdogs Always Win: Averted. They lose, but Rom's bunt and Nog's run the Niners celebrate as though they had.