This song isn’t really about baseball, per se, but I think it’s a good example of how deeply the game is ingrained in the American psyche as the National Pastime. The idea that giving a young man a baseball would be considered by so many to be a fundamental building block in his development is a pretty profound statement.
Here’s an amusing Top 10 video posted by WatchMojo a few days ago. To be fair to the players featured, we all make stupid mistakes sometimes, and these individuals were just unfortunate enough to have them featured in front of a huge audience — and now replayed for anyone who missed them the first time around. Nevertheless, some (if not all) of the incidents highlighted here will leave with a nostalgic smile on your lips while you scratch your head.
Ironically, this video about mistakes also includes a mistake of its own. The 1998 ALCS was played between the Yankees and the Indians, not the Yankees and the Braves.
Happy birthday to Jackie Robinson, who was born on this day in 1919!
Here’s a short, but lovely, photo video tribute I found that was dedicated to this important man.
Talk about a high-scoring game. And using an entire tree trunk as a baseball bat has Mark McGwire steroid vibes all over it.
Looney Tunes was a staple piece of entertainment in my childhood. Enjoy this bit of lighthearted cartoon baseball!
In 1946, Disney released an animated adaptation of Ernest Lawrence Thayer’s poem, “Casey At the Bat.” The short film proved so popular that in 1954, Disney made a sequel, Casey Bats Again, in which Casey’s nine daughters redeem his reputation.
I’m so glad we now live in a world where girls playing baseball is becoming more widely accepted and appreciated.
We all know that root, root, rooting for the home team can be a rollercoaster ride. In this video, Goofy attempts to show us how to do it right.
Poor Goofy. Being a baseball fan really can be tough, sometimes.
I enjoy the imagery presented in this piece. The metaphor comparing a pitcher to a dancer can be a good one, especially with some pitchers, like Luis Tiant, who have some rather elaborate windups.
Clear August sunlight spotlighted the dancer
he twirled in the style of Tiant
technical in spin, placed practiced choreography.
A white ball, laced red with a season’s skill and hope,
hurled to the stanched batter,
who would nick it to the dirt
In his 7th inning finale
a foul, a strike released in a summer’s era,
the spiraling pitcher spun to a season’s final ovation,
in late afternoon shadows.
In August 1976, the Chicago White Sox wore shorts for three games. A friend shared this video with me, wondering if I had known this little tidbit, which I did not (learn something new every day!).
1976 marked the return of owner Bill Veeck, who had previously served as Sox owner from 1959-61. Keeping in line with his reputation as a promoter with wild ideas, on March 9, 1976, Veeck unveiled the new White Sox uniforms. They featured a long pullover top with a garish faux collar. But what really got people’s attentions were the shorts.
About the shorts, Veeck insisted, “They are not garish. Like my wife Mary Frances said, they have understated elegance. … Players should not worry about their vanity, but their comfort. If it’s 95 degrees out, an athlete should be glad to put on short pants and forget his bony knees. Hell, I’ve got a worse looking knee than any of my players. It’s solid wood.”
The shorts debuted on August 8th, in Game 1 of a doubleheader against the Royals at Comiskey Park. The White Sox collected seven hits — all singles — and won the game 5-2. They switched back to regular pants for Game 2 of the doubleheader and lost 7-1. The shorts would not appear again until later that month, on August 21-22 against the Orioles. In total, the White Sox won 2 out of 3 games played in the shorts.
The video below shows footage from the game against the Royals, in which the shorts made their infamous debut.
In honor of 4/20, here’s a brief overview on Major League Baseball’s policy regarding use of marijuana. In December 2019, MLB announced that it would be dropping marijuana from the list of drugs it would be testing for (while, at the same time, adding opioids and cocaine to that list).https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js
A few weeks prior to the originally scheduled start of the 2020 season (which ended up not happening… thanks, COVID!), Dave Samson delved into the policy in a little more detail, and also overviewed the policies regarding the drug in other professional sports:
Here’s a movie I watched as a kid, but not since then — until last night. I finally had the opportunity to sit down and enjoy the 1989 comedy classic, Major League, this time as an adult. I was young enough the first time I watched this movie that I couldn’t really remember the core plot line. Perhaps the thing I remembered most from that first viewing was singing along to “Wild Thing” when Ricky Vaughn took the mound in the division championship game.
My memory did get jogged with regards to some other details. Pedro Cerrano shaving his own head with a massive knife (or a small sword?) had me nodding in recognition. Not to mention the snakes and the almost-chicken-sacrifice. And Willie Mays Hayes dropping to do pushups at the plate during spring training also brought a reminiscent chuckle to my lips.
One thing I did not recall, likely because I was too young to understand it the first time around, was how the new team owner deliberately sought to screw the team over. But, as with any great sports movie, how could I ever forget the Indians’ miraculous winning performance as the season progressed? I definitely appreciated this movie so much more this time. Understanding what is going on can make such an impact.
As for final thoughts, I certainly would not mind enjoying this clip during the seventh inning stretch of the next ballgame I attend, whenever that might be: