“Thankful for Baseball and Babe Ruth,” Jim Yerman

American Thanksgiving is rapidly approaching, and I think it’s fair to say that many of us are thankful for the American National Pastime. This piece helps us to express and embrace that gratitude.


May we be blessed to acknowledge all the wonders in our life
that have, for us, thus far accrued…
and to begin each day with a word of thanks…
and thoughts of gratitude.

Today I’m thankful for baseball
and the wisdom of Babe Ruth…
(Many old-timers will remember his name)
He said, ‘never let the fear of striking out
keep you from playing the game.’

Quote of the day

OK, we won a game yesterday. If we win today, it’s called “two in a row”. And if we win again tomorrow, it’s called a “winning streak”… It has happened before!

~Lou Brown, Major League II

A Face in the Crowd, by Stephen King and Stewart O’Nan

A Face in the Crowd

A Face in the Crowd has been available as an ebook since 2012 and became available in a hardcover physical format just this year. The protagonist of this story/novella is Dean Evers, an elderly widower living in Florida, having moved there with his wife before her passing. Originally a Red Sox fan, Evers has “adopted” the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as his second team and now whiles away his evenings in front of the television watching Rays games.

One evening, Evers notices someone in the seats behind home plate — Young Dr. Young, as Evers’s mother used to call him — Evers’s dentist when he was a boy. But Evers is aware that Dr. Young had passed many years ago, so how could he now be attending a Rays game?

After convincing himself that he’s not going crazy, Evers flips on the television the next night for more baseball, only to see another face in the seats behind home plate. Once again, it is someone from Evers’s past whom he knows to be dead. And it is the same the next game he watches. And the next game.

These appearances understandably affect Evers’s sleep, and he resorts to a cocktail of ambien and scotch to fall asleep each night. Through the story and his reminiscences, we learn a bit about each of the individuals who Evers sees in the stands and, of course, a bit about Evers himself. Finally, a face appears in the stands that leads Evers to finally understand what is going on.

I won’t spoil the ending here, though anyone with a twisted enough imagination can easily deduce the conclusion of this tale. I enjoy Stephen King and, of course, I enjoy baseball, so it’s always a lot of fun when I get the opportunity to read a baseball story written by King. The story is short, only 58 pages in printed format, and it reads quickly. I knocked it out easily in one evening. It’s a worthwhile piece of brief entertainment if have an hour to fill sometime.

“Bad Umpire,” CJ Beatty

While I do have an appreciation for it, hip hop is not my preferred genre of music, so this is the first time I’ve come across this song. I find that I enjoy it quite a bit, and I find the video both disturbing and amusing simultaneously. We’ve all had umpires about which we’ve had these kinds of feelings, which makes this tune very relatable.

“Fan Valentines,” by Lillian Morrison

This piece by Lillian Morrison is short and sweet, and, at first, I admittedly found it confusing. Each line reads like something you’d find printed on an elementary school valentine, which I later realized might be intentional. In the 1960s, Morrison published a book titled Yours Till Niagara Falls: A Book of Autograph Verses, an anthology of poetry intended for children.


Yours till the pinch hits
Yours till the 7th inning stretches
Yours till pennant races
Yours till pop flies
Yours till the home runs
Yours till the line drives
Yours till the double plays
Yours till batters box

The Ball State University Singers perform “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”

I love this arrangement of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” performed by The Ball State University Singers. Apparently this was recorded thirteen years ago, but the video has only been viewed a little over 1100 times, and I feel this deserves to be higher. It’s a bit showtune-ish, but it’s a fun arrangement, and they even sing the full 1908 version, not just the bit we hear at the ballpark.