Quote of the day

A good catcher is the quarterback, the carburetor, the lead dog, the pulse taker, the traffic cop and sometimes a lot of unprintable things, but no team gets very far without one.

~Miller Huggins

Miller_Huggins

Bain News Service


“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.


This day in baseball: The Cardinals’ first home night game

The St. Louis Cardinals played their first home night game on June 4, 1940.  The Cardinals lost to Brooklyn, 10-1, in spite of a 5-for-5 performance by Joe Medwick, including three doubles. The first evening ballgame in St. Louis, which had taken place on May 24, was actually hosted by the Browns, after the two teams had agreed to split the $150,000 cost of installing lights at Sportsman’s Park.

sportsmans park

ballparksofbaseball.com


Quote of the day

Baseball is the national side-show.  The baiting of umpires is the real big-tent entertainment.

~George Jean Nathan

George-Jean-Nathan-1928

Wikipedia


Infographic: How to Dress to Play Baseball

This infographic is obviously intended more for amusement and sales promotion than anything else, but one might find some useful tips listed all the same.  What I’d really like to find is a graphic on how to dress as a baseball fan attending a game as a spectator.  I’ve seen Royals fans show up to a game against the White Sox in gray or black t-shirts — not that this is a crime, but it makes it confusing for anyone to know who you’re really rooting for.

how-to-dress-to-play-baseball infographic


Charlie Brown is a terrible manager

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

peanuts-outfield-large

Charles Schulz