• Dock Ellis

    Posted by on April 19th, 2014 · Comments (1)

    Interesting story.

    Hitting 3 Batters & Not Retiring Any In One Game

    Posted by on April 19th, 2014 · Comments (4)

    It’s one of the most rare things to ever happen in baseball history. Here’s how many times it has happened:

    Rk Player Date Tm Opp Rslt IP H R ER BB SO HR HBP
    1 Cesar Cabral 2014-04-18 NYY TBR L 5-11 0.0 3 3 3 0 0 0 3
    2 Dock Ellis 1974-05-01 PIT CIN L 3-5 0.0 0 1 1 1 0 0 3
    3 Earl Moore 1914-06-17 BUF IND L 8-11 0.0 2 3 3 1 0 0 3
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 4/19/2014.

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    The Baseball Belles From Cardiff

    Posted by on April 18th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Hey, batter, batter…

    Top 10 Logos In MLB History

    Posted by on April 18th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Great feature.

    I always thought that old Brewers logo was genius.  And, I never knew the story behind the Expos logo.  Cool stuff.

    Detroit Wolverines, Recreation Park, ca. 1888

    Posted by on April 17th, 2014 · Comments (1)

    Love this picture. Click on the image to enlarge it.

    Wolverines

    America’s First Baseball Star

    Posted by on April 16th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Historians Restore Grave of a Pioneering Brooklyn Baseball Pitcher.

    Excelsior!

    Hey, Who Has The Most Hits By A RHB In A.L. History?

    Posted by on April 6th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Mr. Jeter.

    Thanks, Yanks

    Posted by on March 29th, 2014 · Comments (13)

    A case can be made that the greatest games in the history of the Pirates, Diamondbacks, Red Sox, Rays and Mariners all came against the New York Yankees, no?  How many other franchises have five or more of these games on their ledger?

    Pete Rose

    Posted by on March 11th, 2014 · Comments (3)

    Want to know Pete Rose’s biggest mistake? It was not waiting until five years after his career to start managing.

    If Rose had never been a player/manager, and if he had not started managing full-time as soon as he retired, and if he had waited five years AND THEN started managing, he’d be in the Hall of Fame today.

    And, maybe, sure, he would have later bet on baseball as a manager and been banned from the game – as the rules clearly state.

    But, he’d already have been voted to Cooperstown, I am sure – and celebrated when he went in…

    Every Number Tells A Story!

    Posted by on March 5th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Great feature here.

    Still waiting for that first Yankees superstar to claim #26!

    Something You Will Never See In Baseball

    Posted by on February 27th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    In the major leagues, a catcher who steals 40+ bases in a season.  It’s never happened, to date, in the history of the game.

    Playing 2,500+ Big League Games For One Team Only

    Posted by on February 19th, 2014 · Comments (2)

    It’s a very small group:

    Player WAR/pos G From To Age PA R H HR RBI BB SB BA OBP SLG
    Mel Ott 107.8 2730 1926 1947 17-38 11348 1859 2876 511 1860 1708 89 .304 .414 .533
    Carl Yastrzemski 96.0 3308 1961 1983 21-43 13992 1816 3419 452 1844 1845 168 .285 .379 .462
    Cal Ripken 95.5 3001 1981 2001 20-40 12883 1647 3184 431 1695 1129 36 .276 .340 .447
    Al Kaline 92.6 2834 1953 1974 18-39 11596 1622 3007 399 1583 1277 137 .297 .376 .480
    George Brett 88.4 2707 1973 1993 20-40 11625 1583 3154 317 1596 1096 201 .305 .369 .487
    Brooks Robinson 78.4 2896 1955 1977 18-40 11782 1232 2848 268 1357 860 28 .267 .322 .401
    Robin Yount 77.0 2856 1974 1993 18-37 12249 1632 3142 251 1406 966 271 .285 .342 .430
    Derek Jeter 71.5 2602 1995 2013 21-39 11968 1876 3316 256 1261 1047 348 .312 .381 .446
    Ernie Banks 67.7 2528 1953 1971 22-40 10394 1305 2583 512 1636 763 50 .274 .330 .500
    Craig Biggio 64.8 2850 1988 2007 22-41 12504 1844 3060 291 1175 1160 414 .281 .363 .433
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 2/19/2014.

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    Pretty cool that most of these guys are still alive.

    Picturing America’s Pastime

    Posted by on February 19th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Pretty cool.

    Saw Kingman Do This Once At Yankee Stadium

    Posted by on February 19th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Endy Chávez

    Posted by on February 14th, 2014 · Comments (0)

    Did you know that Endy Chávez was the last player to bat for the Montreal Expos? Endy, indeed.

    Can You Name This Major League Player?

    Posted by on February 12th, 2014 · Comments (3)

    I have appeared in major league games in 24 different seasons as a position player. There are only 6 non-pitchers to do his in big league history.

    I have two World Series rings and my lifetime BA/OBP/SLG slash line in the post-season is .303/.370/.515 – and I almost had a third World Series ring.

    I’ve played in six different major league cities where I had teammates, from each franchise, that went on to the Hall of Fame. Also, I played for two managers in the major leagues who went on to the Hall of Fame. And, one of my minor league managers later went into the Hall of Fame as a major league manager.

    I managed in the minor leagues and one of my teams won the Triple-A league championship.

    Who am I?
    .

    Was John Valentin The Best Player In Baseball In 1995?

    Posted by on January 17th, 2014 · Comments (3)

    You tell me…

    Rk Player WAR/pos Year Age Tm G PA R H 2B HR RBI BB SO SB CS BA OBP SLG
    1 John Valentin 8.3 1995 28 BOS 135 621 108 155 37 27 102 81 67 20 5 .298 .399 .533
    2 Barry Bonds 7.5 1995 30 SFG 144 635 109 149 30 33 104 120 83 31 10 .294 .431 .577
    3 Edgar Martinez 7.0 1995 32 SEA 145 639 121 182 52 29 113 116 87 4 3 .356 .479 .628
    4 Albert Belle 6.9 1995 28 CLE 143 631 121 173 52 50 126 73 80 5 2 .317 .401 .690
    5 Chuck Knoblauch 6.7 1995 26 MIN 136 629 107 179 34 11 63 78 95 46 18 .333 .424 .487
    6 Tim Salmon 6.6 1995 26 CAL 143 638 111 177 34 34 105 91 111 5 5 .330 .429 .594
    7 Reggie Sanders 6.6 1995 27 CIN 133 567 91 148 36 28 99 69 122 36 12 .306 .397 .579
    8 Bernie Williams 6.4 1995 26 NYY 144 648 93 173 29 18 82 75 98 8 6 .307 .392 .487
    9 Craig Biggio 6.2 1995 29 HOU 141 673 123 167 30 22 77 80 85 33 8 .302 .406 .483
    10 Mike Piazza 6.2 1995 26 LAD 112 475 82 150 17 32 93 39 80 1 0 .346 .400 .606
    11 Barry Larkin 5.9 1995 31 CIN 131 567 98 158 29 15 66 61 49 51 5 .319 .394 .492
    12 Jim Thome 5.9 1995 24 CLE 137 557 92 142 29 25 73 97 113 4 3 .314 .438 .558
    13 Jim Edmonds 5.6 1995 25 CAL 141 620 120 162 30 33 107 51 130 1 4 .290 .352 .536
    14 Mark McGwire 5.5 1995 31 OAK 104 422 75 87 13 39 90 88 77 1 1 .274 .441 .685
    15 Rafael Palmeiro 5.5 1995 30 BAL 143 624 89 172 30 39 104 62 65 3 1 .310 .380 .583
    16 Sammy Sosa 5.3 1995 26 CHC 144 629 89 151 17 36 119 58 134 34 7 .268 .340 .500
    17 Frank Thomas 5.3 1995 27 CHW 145 647 102 152 27 40 111 136 74 3 2 .308 .454 .606
    18 Brian Jordan 5.1 1995 28 STL 131 525 83 145 20 22 81 22 79 24 9 .296 .339 .488
    19 Mark Grace 5.0 1995 31 CHC 143 627 97 180 51 16 92 65 46 6 2 .326 .395 .516
    20 Jeff Bagwell 4.8 1995 27 HOU 114 539 88 130 29 21 87 79 102 12 5 .290 .399 .496
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 1/17/2014.

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    Prince Andrew

    Posted by on January 13th, 2014 · Comments (1)

    Who is the greatest “Andrew” in baseball history?

    I think Pettitte has a case, as being the best ever…until that guy in Pittsburgh plays longer.

    From 1968 To 1978, Sal Bando Was The 5th Best Player In Baseball During Those 11 Years

    Posted by on January 2nd, 2014 · Comments (4)

    According to WAR, that is:

    Rk Player WAR/pos From To Age G PA R H 2B HR RBI BB SB BA OBP SLG
    1 Joe Morgan 68.0 1968 1978 24-34 1488 6466 1035 1473 267 179 731 1095 512 .280 .403 .453
    2 Johnny Bench 64.5 1968 1978 20-30 1607 6667 869 1579 308 309 1105 700 59 .269 .345 .487
    3 Reggie Jackson 62.2 1968 1978 22-32 1615 6668 960 1561 295 339 1025 776 201 .271 .362 .509
    4 Rod Carew 60.9 1968 1978 22-32 1498 6419 884 1935 283 66 682 576 266 .338 .398 .451
    5 Sal Bando 59.7 1968 1978 24-34 1721 7202 875 1578 255 226 949 922 66 .258 .359 .421
    6 Pete Rose 59.7 1968 1978 27-37 1746 8102 1192 2265 429 101 652 832 95 .317 .391 .441
    7 Bobby Bonds 54.5 1968 1978 22-32 1572 6999 1102 1656 266 296 896 783 407 .271 .355 .480
    8 Carl Yastrzemski 54.1 1968 1978 28-38 1651 7033 962 1668 279 244 944 1046 113 .283 .389 .462
    9 Graig Nettles 52.7 1968 1978 23-33 1530 6201 742 1376 208 244 792 636 29 .252 .331 .431
    10 Reggie Smith 52.3 1968 1978 23-33 1516 6321 900 1607 300 255 880 708 103 .291 .371 .503
    11 Roy White 47.7 1968 1978 24-34 1601 6858 872 1626 271 148 690 851 205 .277 .367 .415
    12 Tony Perez 47.5 1968 1978 26-36 1659 7012 878 1789 330 268 1095 643 44 .286 .351 .482
    13 Bert Campaneris 46.1 1968 1978 26-36 1543 6683 829 1545 199 58 454 454 447 .258 .312 .337
    14 Thurman Munson 43.5 1969 1978 22-31 1326 5486 654 1448 211 110 662 406 47 .292 .347 .413
    15 Mike Schmidt 42.4 1972 1978 22-28 924 3831 565 810 158 190 552 569 108 .255 .372 .502
    16 Cesar Cedeno 42.1 1970 1978 19-27 1161 4933 720 1299 265 142 617 380 397 .291 .350 .466
    17 Willie Stargell 42.1 1968 1978 28-38 1402 5693 805 1405 280 317 983 656 12 .285 .371 .545
    18 Bobby Grich 41.0 1970 1978 21-29 982 4160 524 896 159 83 372 569 87 .259 .369 .394
    19 Mark Belanger 40.3 1968 1978 24-34 1596 5625 574 1151 152 18 334 506 147 .234 .308 .286
    20 Jim Wynn 39.3 1968 1977 26-35 1363 5663 801 1145 188 205 677 971 144 .248 .378 .433
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 1/2/2014.

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    This list also tells you how good Belanger’s glove was…

    Actually, look at the top 20.  It’s Reds, A’s and Yankees.  No wonder why those teams ruled the ’70′s.

    Ian Kinsler’s Remarkable 2011 Season

    Posted by on January 1st, 2014 · Comments (1)

    It’s the only time someone, ever, in baseball history had a 30-30 season where they also had less than 100 whiffs and less than 5 times caught stealing. Here it is, along with the others to come somewhat close to matching it:

    Rk Player HR SB SO CS Year Age Tm G PA R 2B 3B RBI BB BA OBP SLG
    1 Chipper Jones 45 25 94 3 1999 27 ATL 157 701 116 41 1 110 126 .319 .441 .633
    2 Willie Mays 34 27 58 4 1959 28 SFG 151 649 125 43 5 104 65 .313 .381 .583
    3 Ian Kinsler 32 30 71 4 2011 29 TEX 155 723 121 34 4 77 89 .255 .355 .477
    4 Davey Lopes 28 44 88 4 1979 34 LAD 153 692 109 20 6 73 97 .265 .372 .464
    5 Carlos Beltran 27 25 96 3 2008 31 NYM 161 706 116 40 5 112 92 .284 .376 .500
    6 Eric Byrnes 26 25 88 3 2006 30 ARI 143 606 82 37 3 79 34 .267 .313 .482
    7 Carlos Beltran 26 41 81 4 2003 26 KCR 141 602 102 14 10 100 72 .307 .389 .522
    8 Raul Mondesi 26 27 96 4 1995 24 LAD 139 580 91 23 6 88 33 .285 .328 .496
    9 Jimmy Rollins 25 36 80 4 2006 27 PHI 158 758 127 45 9 83 57 .277 .334 .478
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 12/31/2013.

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    Derek Jeter Can Break Pete Rose’s Record In 2014!

    Posted by on January 1st, 2014 · Comments (0)

    No, not that record.

    It’s the record for most seasons in MLB history with 179+ hits in a season.  Coming into 2014, the Captain and Charlie Hustle are tied with 15 seasons each:

    Rk Yrs From To Age
    1 Derek Jeter 15 1996 2012 22-38 Ind. Seasons
    2 Pete Rose 15 1965 1980 24-39 Ind. Seasons
    3 Ty Cobb 14 1907 1924 20-37 Ind. Seasons
    4 Stan Musial 13 1943 1956 22-35 Ind. Seasons
    5 Sam Rice 12 1919 1930 29-40 Ind. Seasons
    6 Ichiro Suzuki 11 2001 2011 27-37 Ind. Seasons
    7 Lou Brock 11 1964 1974 25-35 Ind. Seasons
    8 Hank Aaron 11 1955 1967 21-33 Ind. Seasons
    9 Paul Waner 11 1926 1937 23-34 Ind. Seasons
    10 Lou Gehrig 10 1926 1937 23-34 Ind. Seasons
    11 Al Simmons 10 1924 1936 22-34 Ind. Seasons
    12 George Sisler 10 1917 1929 24-36 Ind. Seasons
    13 Eddie Collins 10 1909 1924 22-37 Ind. Seasons
    14 Sam Crawford 10 1902 1915 22-35 Ind. Seasons
    15 Miguel Cabrera 9 2005 2013 22-30 Ind. Seasons
    16 Albert Pujols 9 2001 2010 21-30 Ind. Seasons
    17 Wade Boggs 9 1983 1991 25-33 Ind. Seasons
    18 Billy Williams 9 1962 1972 24-34 Ind. Seasons
    19 Doc Cramer 9 1933 1943 27-37 Ind. Seasons
    20 Charlie Gehringer 9 1928 1937 25-34 Ind. Seasons
    21 Pie Traynor 9 1923 1933 24-34 Ind. Seasons
    22 Goose Goslin 9 1923 1936 22-35 Ind. Seasons
    23 Tris Speaker 9 1910 1923 22-35 Ind. Seasons
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 1/1/2014.

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    Derek Jeter Needs 4 Hits To Set A Record

    Posted by on December 30th, 2013 · Comments (5)

    Most hits by a right-handed batter in American League history, through 2013:

    Rk Player H From To Age G PA 2B 3B HR BB BA
    1 Paul Molitor 3319 1978 1998 21-41 2683 12167 605 114 234 1094 .306
    2 Derek Jeter 3316 1995 2013 21-39 2602 11968 525 65 256 1047 .312
    3 Cal Ripken 3184 1981 2001 20-40 3001 12883 603 44 431 1129 .276
    4 Robin Yount 3142 1974 1993 18-37 2856 12249 583 126 251 966 .285
    5 Al Kaline 3007 1953 1974 18-39 2834 11596 498 75 399 1277 .297
    6 Alex Rodriguez 2939 1994 2013 18-37 2568 11344 519 30 654 1240 .299
    7 Brooks Robinson 2848 1955 1977 18-40 2896 11782 482 68 268 860 .267
    8 Al Simmons 2831 1924 1944 22-42 2113 9137 522 144 300 591 .337
    9 Luke Appling 2749 1930 1950 23-43 2422 10254 440 102 45 1302 .310
    10 Luis Aparicio 2677 1956 1973 22-39 2601 11230 394 92 83 736 .262
    11 Rickey Henderson 2604 1979 2002 20-43 2540 11180 433 61 260 1795 .282
    12 Jimmie Foxx 2543 1925 1942 17-34 2143 9178 438 124 524 1405 .331
    13 Nap Lajoie 2522 1901 1916 26-41 1988 8256 510 101 50 457 .336
    14 Harry Heilmann 2499 1914 1929 19-34 1990 8396 497 145 164 792 .342
    15 Ivan Rodriguez 2477 1991 2009 19-37 2151 8790 496 45 281 419 .301
    16 Frank Thomas 2468 1990 2008 22-40 2322 10075 495 12 521 1667 .301
    17 Jim Rice 2452 1974 1989 21-36 2089 9058 373 79 382 670 .298
    18 Dwight Evans 2446 1972 1991 20-39 2606 10569 483 73 385 1391 .272
    19 Alan Trammell 2365 1977 1996 19-38 2293 9376 412 55 185 850 .285
    20 Carlton Fisk 2356 1969 1993 21-45 2499 9853 421 47 376 849 .269
    21 Manny Ramirez 2337 1993 2011 21-39 2079 8882 494 18 511 1191 .311
    22 Kirby Puckett 2304 1984 1995 24-35 1783 7831 414 57 207 450 .318
    23 Joe Cronin 2258 1928 1945 21-38 2074 8724 512 116 170 1051 .302
    24 Jimmy Dykes 2256 1918 1939 21-42 2283 9351 453 90 108 958 .280
    25 Paul Konerko 2249 1999 2013 23-37 2187 9034 398 8 427 894 .283
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 12/30/2013.

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    RIP Paul Blair

    Posted by on December 27th, 2013 · Comments (12)

    The sad news via Roch Kubatko last night:

    I have the unfortunate task of passing along news that former Orioles center fielder Paul Blair died tonight.

    From what I understand, Blair collapsed in a Pikesville bowling alley. He was 69.

    Blair played his first 13 seasons with the Orioles and was part of the 1966, ’69, ’70 and ’71 World Series teams. He won two titles with the Orioles and two more with the Yankees.

    Blair won eight Gold Gloves and was named to the American League’s All-Star team in 1969 and 1973. His final season came in 1980 with the Yankees.

    Blair, who won seven straight Gold Gloves from 1969-75, was inducted into the Orioles Hall of Fame in 1984.

    It was Blair’s home run in Game 3 of the 1966 World Series that accounted for all the scoring in the Orioles’ 1-0 victory over the Dodgers. They went on to complete the sweep for their first world championship.

    Paul Blair was the greatest fielding center fielder of all-time. Sixty-nine is too young. This is very sad. He was, without question, a great baseball man. And, he will be missed.

    Paul-Blair
    Paul Blair and Son, 1966

    December 18th, 1886

    Posted by on December 18th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Welcome to the world, Tyrus Raymond Cobb.

    Meet John Thorn

    Posted by on December 16th, 2013 · Comments (0)

    Via the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

    The past escorts John Thorn home from the moment he greets a visitor at a 139-year-old railroad station, crosses the Rip Van Winkle Bridge and arrives at his residence, a county historical landmark.

    Clad in a facsimile jacket of the defunct Negro Leagues’ Kansas City Monarchs, he enters the billiards room of his home in this Hudson River town 35 miles south of Albany, its walls crammed with old framed prints and theater posters.

    The environment befits the official historian for Major League Baseball and one who devours Americana.

    “I am a sports historian by trade,” the 66-year-old Thorn says, “but I am an antiquarian in all things.”

    While Thorn may delve into baseball lore for a living, it was more than just a game for this son of Holocaust survivor parents who was born in a displaced persons camp in Germany.

    As an immigrant raised in the New York City boroughs of the Bronx and Queens, the young Thorn collected baseball cards and read their statistics and text, which he says helped him assimilate in America. Thorn says he was drawn to the national pastime because of its “possibilities for fairness” and the heroic figures who played the game.

    His baseball-inspired imagination enabled Thorn to “construct my own legends untied to my European roots,” he explains while sitting in his second-floor office surrounded by books filling floor-to-ceiling shelf units.

    Growing up, Thorn refused to speak with his parents in their native Polish, but only in the English of the family’s adopted land. The household included an older “brother,” Adam — actually a cousin whose parents were murdered, like much of the family, in the Holocaust. Thorn recalls that his parents had ransomed Adam from a peasant who shielded him during the war. Adam became a successful businessman; he’s retired and lives in Florida.

    As one whose story mirrors that of many other post-war Jewish immigrants, Thorn says he shares both the sense that America “was a blessedly safe haven” and that baseball welcomed his family into the country. So his work as a consultant for the National Museum of American Jewish History on its upcoming exhibition documenting Jewish ties to the national pastime is personal, too.

    While Thorn is baseball’s authority on matters of the past, he extends the game’s historical allure to present and future generations. He and MLB Advanced Media launched BaseballMemoryLab.com, where fans can share baseball experiences; the remembrances are hyperlinked to relevant articles and videos.

    Thorn has “incredible command of historical information,” says Josh Frost, his colleague at MLB Advanced Media, “constantly breathing new life into [Memory Lab] to keep it fresh.”

    The site also hosts Thorn’s blog, Our Game, which pries open the treasure chest of baseball history’s attic. Embedded in one recent entry were four baseball cards, perhaps hinting at Thorn’s fondness for his own roots in the game and its legendary performers.

    Legend and fact, in Thorn’s view, aren’t so contradictory. In his 2011 book, “Baseball in the Garden of Eden,” Thorn confirms the view of historians that Abner Doubleday’s purported invention of the game was just myth. Still, Thorn, a member of baseball’s Origins Committee, says he’s unwilling to “beat the corpse” of Doubleday because of its hold on fans.

    “Let’s put the myths to one side,” he says. “We can’t kill them, but let’s get to the story that the very best scholars will endorse.”

    Along with the numerous sports books he has authored and edited, Thorn for many years wrote for a New York Folklore Society journal. Legends, after all, offer delectable tales, he says.

    Thorn offers the family legend about his great-grandfather Ernest Thorn, a renowned magician from Galicia, in an article he researched and wrote titled “Magician’s Blood.” Ernest Thorn, it seems, endured a shipwreck and went on to marry a Turkish woman. Near the end of his life, Richard Thorn, John’s father, learned that Ernest was a chevalier knighted by the Cambodian King Norodon I.

    Soon after the article’s publication, a German antiques dealer who had recently discovered the knighthood document emailed Thorn.

    “I couldn’t have written the check fast enough,” Thorn says of the $150 purchase, though he isn’t quite certain that Ernest really is his ancestor.

    “It’s great to be part of muddled history,” he adds. “What is history? It is the story we tell ourselves, generation by generation.”

    It was history that brought together Thorn and Jim Bouton, the ex-pitcher and author of the best-selling book “Ball Four” chronicling his baseball career. Bouton helped Thorn locate a 1791 document proving baseball was played then in Pittsfield, Mass., and Bouton later consulted with Thorn on a renovation of the century-old Wahconah Park in Pittsfield. In 2004, they staged a Vintage Base Ball game there, played under 19th century rules, that was telecast live by ESPN.

    Bouton, who lives in Massachusetts, says his now close friend Thorn is “such a smart man … very funny, a wonderful conversationalist. We hardly talk about baseball anymore.”

    Back in the billiard room, Thorn poses for photographs while holding the Norodon decree, stamped in 1878. On one wall hangs a painting of the Pittsburgh Crawfords, also a Negro Leagues team, taking the field. On another wall, a painting by the same local artist, John Wolfe, depicts the great Jim Thorpe in his Carlisle (Pa.) Indian Industrial School football uniform.

    Thorn directs a visitor to the kitchen, where opposite the table is a century-old barber chair in which Thorn likes to read newspapers.

    “History wafts over every game we’re watching now,” says Thorn, digging into his wife Erica’s homemade apple pie. “That’s my goal: to enhance the pleasure of fans today.

    “Is it vital to know who Dazzy Vance was or who Babe Herman was? No, but I see Yasiel Puig, and I think of Babe Herman because he makes mental errors,” Thorn says of two former Brooklyn Dodgers and a current star of their Los Angeles successors.

    “I feel I’m waving the flag for baseball’s 31st franchise, which is history, which underlies the other franchises.”

    John seems like a really, really, nice guy. And, of course, TOTAL BASEBALL (which he did with Pete Palmer, Michael Gershman and others) is one of my favorite all-time baseball books. (I wish they would do an update on it too!)

    A-Rod Needs 377 Runs Scored To Set The Career Record

    Posted by on December 12th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    Without a suspension, Alex Rodriguez had a shot to get this record over the last 4 years of his contract with the Yankees. But, if he misses a season or more, I don’t think he has a chance to break Rickey Henderson’s record.

    Shoot, if he gets suspended for the next 211 games, I could see the Yankees just releasing him when it’s done and eating the remaining $50 million on his contract.

    Luis Polonia Was Managed By LaRussa, Cox & Torre

    Posted by on December 9th, 2013 · Comments (5)

    Polonia played for the 1987-89 Oakland Athletics, the 1995-96 Atlanta Braves and the 2000 New York Yankees.

    Has any other player in baseball history played for each of these (now) three Hall of Fame managers?

    Big Hands On The Bench

    Posted by on December 7th, 2013 · Comments (0)

     

    bench hand
    Click to enlarge.

    Bio Books On Baseball’s Greatest

    Posted by on November 26th, 2013 · Comments (2)

    I have read all these and recommend them:

    Babe Ruth – The Big Bam: The Life and Times of Babe Ruth – by Leigh Montville
    Ty Cobb – Cobb: A Biography – by Al Stump
    Willie Mays – Willie Mays: The Life, The Legend – by James S Hirsch
    Mickey Mantle – The Last Boy: Mickey Mantle and the End of America’s Childhood – by Jane Leavy
    Tris Speaker – Tris Speaker – The Rough-and-Tumble Life of a Baseball Legend – by Timothy Gay

    I have not read these yet, but heard good things about them:

    Ted Williams – Ted Williams: The Biography of an American Hero – by Leigh Montville
    Lou Gehrig – Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig – by Jonathan Eig
    Hank Aaron – I Had a Hammer: The Hank Aaron Story – by Hank Aaron

    What other bio books are out there on baseball’s greatest that you would recommend?

    What’s A Good Number For A Catcher?

    Posted by on November 24th, 2013 · Comments (8)

    Brian McCann wore #16 with the Braves. But, he won’t be wearing that number with the Yankees.

    Johnny Bench wore #5.
    Wally Schang, Yogi Berra, Bill Dickey and Gary Carter wore #8.
    Ivan Rodriguez wore #7. Joe Mauer wears it now too.
    Mike Piazza wore #31.
    Ted Simmons wore #23.
    Thurman Munson wore #15.
    Bill Freehan wore #11.
    Jorge Posada wore #20.
    Gabby Hartnett wore #9 and #2.
    Carlton Fisk wore #27 and #72.
    Mickey Cochrane wore #2 and #3.
    Ernie Lombardi wore close to a dozen different numbers.

    Yadier Molina wears #4. Buster Posey wears #28. Matt Wieters wears #32.

    What number will McCan wear for the Yankees?

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