I’m not a White Sox fan, but I admit I was lowkey hoping they’d at least advance to the ALCS, if only so that I could post this without it seeming awkward. But I also know that if I wait until after the end of the season, I run the risk of forgetting about this altogether, so here’s the White Sox fight song performed by Captain Stubby and the Buccaneers.
This song first appeared in 1959 during the White Sox’s run for the AL pennant, which was the team’s first league championship since the Black Sox Scandal of 1919. The song re-emerged and regained popularity in 2005, the year that the Sox swept the Astros in four games in the World Series.
Major League Baseball fans watching a ballgame today can usually differentiate between the away team and the home team due to the color of the teams’ uniforms. Most teams will wear white uniforms (or team-colored jerseys with white pants) when playing at home, whereas when a team is playing on the road, uniforms are typically gray.
Much of this has to do with history. Looking back in baseball history, traveling teams did not have time or access to laundry service to wash their clothes in the late 1800s. As a means to hide the dirt and the mud that would accumulate on the road, teams opted to wear gray uniforms. Over time, with the expansion of the laundromat industry and the ability of teams to bring along multiple uniforms, hiding dirt became less of an issue. It became simply a matter of tradition for teams to wear gray for away games.
Today is Roberto Clemente Day in Major League Baseball. Roberto Clemente was the first player from Latin America inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame, but he is also remembered as a selfless humanitarian. When Clemente passed away on December 31, 1972, he was aboard a cargo plane that crashed on its way to Nicaragua. The plane had been carrying crucial supplies to the survivors of an earthquake in the area.
Roberto Clemente Day coincides with the start of Hispanic Heritage Month in the United States, and on this day, MLB takes the opportunity to remember both Clemente’s altruism and his prowess as a baseball player. The Roberto Clemente Award, which is awarded annually, recognizes players who exemplify good character, community involvement, philanthropy, and positive contributions, both on and off the field.
The list of nominees for the 2021 Roberto Clemente Award can be found here.
A couple weeks ago, the Cubs posted this documentary about the restoration and expansion of Wrigley Field. The film also includes a lot of history of the ballpark and is certainly worth the watch. Even if you’re not a Cubs fan, one can’t deny Wrigley is an important landmark in the sport, and it would be nice to keep it around for as long as possible.
This documentary, “Fastball,” is fun to watch, and currently, it’s available for free through YouTube. Kevin Costner narrates, and you also get to hear from Joe Posnanski, Derek Jeter, Goose Gossage, Hank Aaron, plus a number of other hard-throwing pitchers and the hitters who had to face them. The documentary is rich with stories about many of the great fastball pitchers in the game, both past and present, and I even found myself experiencing small surges of adrenaline as I watched. The science presented in the film is fascinating, as well.
It looks like you’ll have to make your way to YouTube to watch it, as I’m unable to drop the video here due to restrictions. Definitely check it out, if you get the chance!
Congratulations to Diamondbacks pitcher Tyler Gilbert, who threw a no-hitter in his first MLB start last night. Gilbert led the Diamondbacks to a 7-0 victory over the San Diego Padres with his performance. At 27 years old, Gilbert had spent six years in the minors before appearing in relief three times for the Diamondbacks prior to being given the start in last night’s game.
Gilbert didn’t play baseball in 2020 after the minor league season was canceled, due to the pandemic. He spent the summer learning to be an electrician from his dad and making some extra money. With last night’s achievement, however, Gilbert commented, “I’d rather be doing this than pulling wires. No offense, Dad.”
A few years ago, MLB.com’s Cut4 did an article listing the teams who had the best record in games played on Friday the 13th, as well as teams with the worst record. If you’re interested, you can find the article here.
I’m sure the numbers have shifted a little since 2018, but even if they’ve won a couple in the meantime, you can’t help but feel bad for the Pirates.
Team USA lost a 2-0 contest to Japan in the final game of the Olympics in Japan. USA Baseball thus earns the silver medal in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Certainly, those of us in the States were hoping for gold, but a silver medal in the Olympics is certainly nothing to be ashamed about. Congrats, Team USA!
In case you missed it, the USA Olympic Baseball team defeated South Korea a few hours ago, and thus will be playing for Olympic gold! The gold medal game will take place on what will be early Saturday morning in the States, and Team USA will be facing off against Japan to determine who gets the gold and who gets the silver. The game will air on delay at 6 a.m. EDT Saturday on NBCOlympics.com.
South Korea, meanwhile, will be facing off against the Dominican Republic for the bronze.
Yesterday, the Cleveland Indians announced their new, much-anticipated team name, which will become effective at the conclusion of the 2021 season. Starting next season, the Cleveland baseball team will be known as the Cleveland Guardians.
While I wholeheartedly agree that a name change is necessary, I confess, I was initially torn about the new name. My initial reaction to the announcement was along the lines of, “Ew… what?” I thought, surely, they could have found something better than that.
But the more I think about it, the more the name grows on me. I cannot think of any other team in any sport, baseball or otherwise, who call themselves the Guardians. Plus, Guardians of the Galaxy is a kickass movie, and I would love to see Cleveland do a Star-Lord theme night (or a Groot theme night!).
I am curious what the new mascot is going to look like. That is just one of many details that the team will have to figure out in the months ahead, for sure. In the meantime, the new logo does look pretty slick.