A little music baseball humor for our Friday. I’m not sure whether swinging that giant instrument would make it easier or harder to make contact with a 100 mph pitch.
In this 1970s song, Del Reeves manages to turn a list of Major League Baseball team names into a song about girls. I took a moment to look up the word “filly,” which I somehow had never heard before. It turns out that a filly is a young female horse — essentially the female version of a colt.
I was a teenager when I first watched this movie and came across a copy while browsing around the library this weekend. Feeling like I was overdue to re-watch it, I decided to check it out.
The Pride of the Yankees was released in 1942 and is subtitled “The Life of Lou Gehrig.” Starring Gary Cooper as Gehrig, Teresa Wright as his wife Eleanor, and Babe Ruth as himself, it chronicles events of Gehrig’s life, from boyhood to his iconic speech at Yankee Stadium at the end of his career. The movie is much more touchy-feely and relationship-focused than it is a baseball biography. There is certainly baseball in the movie — after all, how could there not be? — but emphasis falls more on Gehrig’s relationships with his parents and with his wife.
The complete turnaround in Gehrig’s mother’s attitude towards baseball is certainly one of my favorite aspects of the plot. In the beginning, Mrs. Gehrig is determined that her son will become an engineer, only wishing for him a better life than she had. When Gehrig signs with the Yankees out of Columbia, she is naturally disappointed. However, Gehrig’s solid play and eventual stardom win her over, and by the end, she insists that anybody can be an engineer, but there is only one Lou Gehrig.
Gehrig’s “luckiest man” speech, both the original and the movie version, is so moving that anybody with a heart can’t help but be moved to tears. The movie as a whole revolves around the pulling of heart strings, from Gehrig’s too-good-to-be-true relationship with Eleanor, to the story of hitting two home runs for little Billy in the hospital, to the speech at the end. Certainly it was intended much more as a feel-good tale than a baseball movie. The movie ran a bit longer than I remembered it going (a little over two hours), but as a whole, was definitely worth watching once again.
It’s easy to forget, sometimes, that the players we watch from the stands or from the comfort of our own homes are just as much flesh and blood and bone as we are. Julio Lugo was certainly no stranger to criticism during his career, and admittedly, it was his own fault oftentimes. The thing about being in the spotlight is that your mistakes get magnified ten-fold. That doesn’t excuse them, of course, but I do still think it’s important for us as fans to remember that we all know folks in our own immediate lives who make the same kinds of mistakes, but are fortunate enough to not have a spotlight shone on them.
That’s why we’re here, said Julio Lugo
to the Globe. Sox fans booed
poor Lugo, booed his at-bat after
he dropped the ball in the pivotal fifth.
That ball, I got to it, I just
couldn’t come up with it.
Lugo wants you to know
he is fast: a slower player
wouldn’t even get close
enough to get booed. Lugo
wants you to know he’s only
human: We’re human beings.
That’s why we’re here. If not,
I would have wings.
I’d be beside God right now.
I’d be an angel.
But I’m not an angel.
I’m a human being that lives right here.
Next day, all
is forgiven. Lugo’s home run, Lugo’s
sweet comment to the press.
I wanted to make a poster like the ones that say
It’s my birthday! or First Time at Fenway! or, pathetic, ESPN.
Posterboard, permanent marker to say Lugo: me, too.
I’m a human being that lives right here, decided
it’s too esoteric, too ephemeral a reference, but it’s true:
Oh, Lugo, Julio Lugo, I’m here with you.
I broke a few windows on the house as a kid. I wish I had been clever enough to use this line.
This is pretty fun, so I thought I’d change things up just a little bit this morning. It’s been years since I watched any Letterman (I’ve never been a real night person, even while the show was running), but I always found the top ten lists amusing.
Top Ten Things Babe Ruth Would Say If He Were Alive Today:
10. “You call this a baseball team? Where are all the fat guys?”
9. “Yo quiero Taco Bell!”
8. “All right, who’s the son-of-a-bitch who named a candy bar after me?”
7. “All right, who’s the son-of-a-bitch who named a talking pig after me?”
6. “Hell, if that’s the case, I would have been impeached from the Yankees 500 times.”
5. “I won’t play unless I’m paid one hundred thousand dollars a year!”
4. “I can’t believe all these naked photos of me on the internet.”
3. “I’ve just come back from the dead – so can’t Denny’s give me a free meal?”
2. “Yeah, I’d like to see McGwire hit 60 home runs drunk off his ass!”
1. “Steinbrenner sucks.”
One of my personal favorite things about going to the ballpark is getting myself a hot dog. I enjoy hot dogs in general (never mind the horror stories we all hear about them), but something about the atmosphere of a Major League stadium makes them taste that much better.