“Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly

This appears to be a clip from a movie sharing the same name as the song, Take Me Out to the Ball Game.  I’ve never seen the movie, but after watching this rendition of the song (not to mention the tap dancing!), I may have to seek out a copy.


Quote of the day

I don’t see pitches down the middle anymore – not even in batting practice.

~Hank Aaron

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New York Daily News


Jetpack

Here’s a comic strip by Mark Tatulli.  I suppose that’s one way to get your hands on a major league baseball.

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Mark Tatulli


“The Beaning”: Horror Short Documentary

Over the weekend, I watched the latest movie iteration of It, and it prompted my curiosity to do a search of the phrase “baseball horror.”  I didn’t actually expect to find much, but much to my surprise, I found this little documentary (if you can call it that) that ALTER released earlier this year.

To be honest, I cannot say that I’m a particularly big fan of this short little spoof, though it does put forth a weirdly interesting theory.  The video proposes that the death of Ray Chapman as a result of being beaned in the head by Carl Mays was actually a form of occult human sacrifice.  The payoff of the sacrifice?  The rise of the New York Yankees as a baseball empire.

While I do agree with the video’s assertion that baseball can be a form of religion for some folks, the whole occult/human sacrifice bit seems a bit far-fetched to me.  But, here, you can judge for yourself.


“The Reason for Rainbows,” by J. Patrick Lewis

I thoroughly enjoy reading this piece.  It has a nice rhythm to it and it is dripping with metaphor.  Plus the idea of being whisked away to play baseball just has a wonderful feel-good aspect to it.

*

There was an Old Man of Late Summer
Met a Winter Boy out of the blue,
And he whisked him away
From the city one day
Just to show him what country boys do.

He taught him three whys of a rooster,
And he showed him two hows of a hen.
Then he’d try to bewitch him
With curveballs he’d pitch him
Again and again and again.

He taught him the reason for rainbows,
And he showed him why lightning was king,
Then he fingered the last ball—
A wicked hop fastball—
He threw to the plate on a string.

Oh, the Old Summer Man and the Young Winter Lad
Spent the light of each day—every moment they had—
In the wind and the rain, or the late summer sun,
Where he taught him to pitch and he taught him to run
In the wind and rain and the late summer sun.

But when that Old Man of Late Summer
Met the Winter Boy out of the blue,
He said to him, “Son,
You can pitch, you can run,
But to hit here is what you must do:

Just pretend that the stick on your shoulder
Is as wide as a bald eagle’s wing.
You’re a bird on a wire
And your hands are on fire—
But you’re never too eager to swing.

Stand as still as a rabbit in danger,
Watch the pitch with the eyes of a cat.
What will fly past the mound—
Unforgettable sound—
Is the ball as it cracks off the bat.”

Oh, the Old Summer Man and the Young Winter Lad
Spent the light of each day—every moment they had—
In the wind and the rain, or the late summer sun,
Where he taught him to pitch and he taught him to run
In the wind and rain and the late summer sun.


“Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown On A Bad Bet,” by Fall Out Boy

I debated whether or not to post this here, because in spite of its title, the song itself isn’t actually about baseball.  Rather, if you pay attention to the lyrics, you realize the song is about infidelity.

However, the title still grabs your attention if you’re a baseball fan, so I did a little poking around to see what I could find in terms of an explanation.  While there is some uncertainty about the general meaning, the consensus seems to be that the title is a reference to Pete Rose — in fact, some people indicate that Fall Out Boy originally included Rose’s name in the title, then changed their minds to avoid the potential for a lawsuit.  So instead of using his name, the band referenced Rose’s tendency to utilize headfirst slides.

Beyond that, the connection gets a bit hazy, but here’s what I found that makes a modicum of sense: In the song, the narrator is having an affair with a married woman.  He is the other man, if you will.  More than anything, he wants the woman for himself.  However, due to the fact that she is married (his bad bet), he can never have her.  In the same way, Pete Rose has found that he cannot have what he truly wants — a place in Cooperstown — due to his own bad bet.


Charlie Brown is a terrible manager

It’s been a minute since I last posted a Peanuts strip.  Happy Friday, everyone!

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Charles Schulz