If the innings correspond to the seasons of Troy's life, what is the parallel between Troy's life and baseball in these nine scenes or innings?In Fences

Expert Answers
Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is very interesting to see the structure of the play as that of a ball game.  I think that the opening innings or scenes help to set the story of the drama.  The starting lineup is introduced, as well as the challenges of playing in this particular stadium.  When Troy brings up the issue of racism and Bono brings up Troy's issue of Alberta, the reader is aware of the challenges present.  I think that the play is structured like a ball game in that the middle innings, the ones rarely paid attention to, are where much of the drama unfolds.  The conflict with Cory reaches its maximum in the end of the first act, in that both father and son draw their lines in the sand in the son's pursuit of his dream.  It is also revealed at this point that Troy is the product of abuse, and this makes it fundamentally difficult to grasp what it means to love and how to display that love to his son.  It is in these vital, but so oft ignored, fourth, fifth, and sixth innings that both the drama and a game are decided.  The "closing pitcher" is brought in to finalize the game and resolve the drama.  When Gabriel begins to dance and howl, it is almost as if the "closer" has finished off Troy.  In this light, Troy's game has ended, whereby he had his moment on the stage and could not materialize the elements needed for a "win."