Kenny Asimov’s Three Laws of Robot Baseball

By: Christopher Monks

As the grand-grand-grand-grand-nephew (by marriage) of the great science-fiction author and robot expert Isaac Asimov, I, Kenny Asimov, feel more than qualified to devise the Three Laws of Robot Baseball. Now I realize there are quite a few people in the robot-baseball community who believe my recent stay in Space Sector Four’s Apple Junction Penitentiary is cause for my removal as the first-ever commissioner of Basebot. All I can say to those people is, even though they may have seen the indicting hologram of my alleged offense, they don’t know all the facts of the case. Yes, it might have looked like I was distributing illegal robot sexual prosthetics to robot minors, but I assure you I was not. It was all a big misunderstanding, and I have my team of lawyers to thank for convincing the appellate judge the same.

While the time I spent incarcerated was hard on my family and my robot concubine, Wendy, it allowed me to not only kick my pesky synthetic-smack habit, but to also carefully consider the basis for the Three Laws of Robot Baseball. I take this new sport very seriously, my friends and robots, and I feel it deserves the same amount of respect and attention that all the other elite robot sports get, like extreme ultimate robot fighting and robominton.

For Basebot to thrive, we must recruit the most athletic and aesthetically pleasing robots. Nobody wants to watch baseball played by uncoordinated and ugly robots. I know I don’t. Therefore, I call on robot manufacturers around the Milky Way to create faster, stronger, and hotter robots designed solely for playing Basebot. And while anatomically correct robot players might help us tap into the trillion-dollar “adult” market, they are at this time not required. (If and when they are, contact me and I’ll get you a good deal on prosthetic robot genitalia.)

I also ask all human fans to be courteous and orderly while attending Basebot games. Believe you me, I know how satisfying it is to mock robots, but we must refrain from it while the robots are out there playing on the hexagon. We can’t have our robot players humiliated (no matter how comical it may be), as it will only lessen the quality of play. As for our robot fans, all I ask is that you stay in your specifically marked seating areas in the upper bleachers of all Basebot stadiums. And keep your beeping to a minimum, please.

Ultimately, Basebot’s success will rely on the robot players themselves. If they play the sport with honor and integrity, the game will no doubt evolve into a solar-systemic pastime. Thus, certain robotic laws must be adhered to so that the sport can be played the way it was meant to be played. With that said, I give you the Three Laws of Robot Baseball:

Law Number One: A robot may not injure another human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm on the playing field.

So no killing human umpires. A robot may argue with a human umpire over a disputed call provided the robot does not read the umpire’s mind. This will ensure a fair fight, as well as prevent any residual brain damage on the part of the umpire. In addition, a robot must not use its laser rays to zap off an umpire’s pants in an effort to embarrass the umpire. And should family members of the human umpire be in attendance, robots must not kidnap them and/or threaten to drill holes in their heads to try to persuade an umpire to reverse his or her call. As for robot umpires, robot players are encouraged to not only argue with them, but to attempt to destroy them as well. Everyone likes a good robot battle, so let’s not disappoint our patrons.

Law Number Two: A robot must obey orders given it by human managers, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.

For instance, if a manager wanted one of his robot players to rip the eyes out of a human umpire’s head, the robot wouldn’t be allowed to do it. It doesn’t matter how many bad calls the manager believes the umpire has made: no eyeball ripping out allowed. Now in regards to team mascots, well, that’s another story. Even though most team’s mascots feature humans dressed in some kind of funny-looking suit or uniform, robots do have more leeway in terms of the level of harm they can administer. You see, even though they’re humans, they’re dressed up like nonhumans, so managers are allowed to order their robot players to harass, molest, and torment an opposing team’s mascots as they see fit.

Law Number Three: No pepper games allowed.

I am confident that if these three laws are strictly abided by, we shall have quite a popular and revenue-generating robot sport on our hands. Yes, there will be a constant struggle to fill team-mascot positions with human applicants, but if worse comes to worse, I’m sure mutants would be more than up to the task. I mean, mutants have to work somewhere, right?

The inaugural season begins three weeks from Monday in Boise. President Tony Danza VI is scheduled to throw out the first titanium sphere at 1:05 p.m. sharp. He’ll be followed by Fantasia-bot’s rendition of our Galaxy Anthem, and the ceremonial proclamation of “Play ball!” by the recently unfrozen and reattached baseball legend Ted Williams. I look forward to a great day and the advent of a great new robot sport!