Here’s an interesting find from the Library of Congress. Dated May 2, 1963, Branch Rickey wrote up a scouting report of Hammerin’ Hank Aaron.
Cincinnati, Ohio May 2, 1963 Cincinnati vs Milwaukee
Surely one of the greatest hitters in baseball today. Can hit late with power, – good wrists. But in spite of his hitting record and admitted power ability, one cannot help think that Aaron is frequently a guess hitter. Will take three strikes down the middle and in fact frequently acts frozen on pitches. For years I have believed and I still believe that Aaron has more trouble with the breaking stuff. He stands close enough to the plate to pull the outside ball and does pull it. However, he is a foot length further from the plate than Frank Robinson of Cincinnati.
[Transcribed and reviewed by volunteers participating in the By The People project at crowd.loc.gov.]
It’s an interesting review of Aaron’s hitting, pretty much right in the middle of his MLB career. Looking at the box score, Aaron went 2-for-4 with a homer and 2 RBIs in this game, but also struck out twice.
While I am too young to have ever watched Aaron’s hitting, what limited knowledge I have makes me think Rickey might not have been alone in his perception of him as a “guess hitter.” At the same time, I would also wager that Aaron might have read pitches better than he sometimes let on.
If you’re interested, you can find the digital document on the Library of Congress website here.
On June 7, 1957, Howard University awarded honorary Doctor of Law degrees to Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and to recently-retired Dodgers infielder Jackie Robinson. In the years that followed, the former baseball great and the Baptist minister frequently appeared together at Civil Rights rallies, fundraising events, and demonstrations.
Working in education myself, I find I can identify with a lot in this poem. But whether it is school or business or any other kind of official type of environment, most folks we interact with have different personas in other surroundings.
I had planned this evening for weeks. A beautiful May night at the ballpark with friends. But now, due to circumstances beyond my control Because I live in a community where everyone is related to everyone else, Two of my tickets were given to
And not just any student– The one who caws like a crow out my window daily– The one who groans in exasperation whenever he’s asked to do Anything beyond breathing– The one who raises his hand to respond to every question but whose answers Come from his bottomless pit of irrelevant responses– The bane of my existence: the sophomore boy. Sworn enemies.
Seven rows up on the right field line His dad between us as a buffer zone, We sat in seats so close you could see the scuffs on Cliff Floyd’s cleats. “Prime foul ball territory,” I said to him. He just nodded as we rose for the national anthem. By the first inning, we were Awkward adversaries on neutral ground.
We groaned as Uggla and Cabrera launched white missiles into the stands– Our team in the hole right off the bat. We found ourselves heckling the other bullpen–together. By the fifth inning, we were wary allies.
We buried our faces at a 3 K performance by Soriano– (Shouldn’t he be good on his own bobblehead night?) The game was a rout, So we leaned forward eagerly and swapped autograph war stories, Laughing and joking around his dad.
Politely and unprompted, he looked me in the eye and said, “Thank you for the tickets.” By the ninth inning, I could see David as A civil human being.
Later I heard he said, “She’s pretty cool, when she’s not in class.”