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Found 136 results

  1. It's funny - back in 1970, I think that in many ways, I knew more about Major League Baseball than I know today. In my eyes, Dave McNally was the club's ace, followed by Jim Palmer and Mike Cuellar in no particular order. Put yourself in that time period: There was no internet, no "online stats," and only The Washington Post, Channel 13, my older brother, and a slew of baseball cards as resources to form an opinion - this was mine, when I was nine.
  2. Here's a historically important video of Game 7 of the 1971 World Series, in which the Pittsburgh Pirates (affectionally known as "The Lumber Company") defeated the Baltimore Orioles, 2-1. I could only watch the first inning because there's too much memory of a ten-year-old's anguish, knowing what happened, but even watching the first inning alone is of historical importance - you get to see three hall-of-famers in action: Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, and Roberto Clemente. Willie Stargell played, of course, but didn't see any action in the first inning. Can any old-timer from Pittsburgh tell me why Billy Meyer's number was retired? It takes an aficionado for this to mean much, but Pittsburgh's retired numbers from the infield (Mazeroski at 2B, Wagner at SS, Traynor at 3B) are probably as fine as anyone's in baseball, especially Wagner (.328 career BA) and Traynor (.320 career BA) - you could justifiably place both of these two men on a major-league all-time roster by position, and be taken seriously.
  3. And then today they fall to the Padres, 4-2. I've been trying to stay silent to avoid jinxing the Nats. Dammit, as much as I've always loved baseball, and always will, there's something fundamentally wrong with a sport that has so much built-in parity. I get it: it maximizes round-the-league revenue and interest in smaller markets, but it isn't right. The Yankees are all the more impressive for having won so many damned World Series. As in: 1923, 1927, 1928, 1932, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1941, 1943, 1947, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1956, 1958, 1961, 1962, 1977, 1978, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2009 (and even here, they had cold streaks of 15 and 18 years without a championship). To be precise: 1920s: 3 championships 1930s: 5 1940s: 4 1950s: 6 1960s: 2 1970s: 2 1980s: 0 1990s: 3 2000s: 2 Do you see how free agency (which began in 1975), expansion (1969), and the mighty Orioles (1960s, 1970s) killed them? (Sorry - had to get that one in, but the mighty Yankees were the team you *loved* to hate, and what's so wrong with that?) Best post-live-ball records in baseball history, and whether or not they won the World Series: 1954 Cleveland Indians: 111-43, Lost (season shifted from 154 games to 162 games in 1961 (American) and 1962 (National) 2001 Seattle Mariners: 116-46, Lost (you've got to win the series to be in the discussion for GOAT - unfair, but true) 1927 New York Yankees 110-44, Won (featuring the legendary Murderer's Row, and batting .308 as a team) 1998 New York Yankeees 114-48, Won (must be included in any serious discussion of greatest team of all time) 1931 Philadelphia Athletics, 107-45, Lost 1939 New York Yankees, 106-45, Won Of these, since the 1969 expansion, only the 1998 Yankees has ever had the best regular-season record, and won the World Series. There's something about a sport where a team (the 1972 Miami Dolphins) can win the Super Bowl by going 17-0. Complete, total, dominance. *That* is truly memorable. Or the 1995-1996 Chicago Bulls going 72-10. In baseball, when your teams goes 110-52, you're considered one of the very greatest teams of all time, and even then, you've only won less than 68% of your games - hardly dominance - and there's probably only about a 30% chance of becoming World Series Champions (just a guess on that latter point). I am not a fan of parity in sports. Yes, in drafts, it's fair I suppose, but salary caps annoy me. Let the rich get richer, and let us hate the Yankees, dammit. It's fun! (We don't really hate them by the way; but we can't actually *admit* that we respect them!) "‹I have *always* had this problem with baseball, and yet, it's what makes it so damnably lovable. I think. It would help things, in my mind, if we didn't have so much free agency resulting in "Musical Players." It kills the love for a city's team, at least it does for me. Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic. Parity, my eye. Let the best win.
  4. During a late lunch I was half watching today's day game: Orioles/Yankees game in NYC. The Orioles crushed the Yankees. Orioles hits everywhere; homers, doubles, everybody for the Orioles was torching the ball. It wasn't much of a contest as the Orioles went up early and kept adding runs. One play grabbed my attention. It also grabbed the attention of the writers for ESPN who added these sentences: It was NOT a scorching shot. It was a ground ball on the shortstop side of second base. Jeter moved to his left, dropped his glove but it was still to the 2nd base side and below him. My reaction to that play was curious as to Jeter's age and range. The reaction was in sync with the comment above from the article. I couldn't have asserted that others would have made that play or done so easily but it was beyond Jeter's reach. I assume the author above is more knowledgeable than I and he "answered" my unstated question. Jeter has been an exemplary athlete over his career. I hope he goes out in style.
  5. Interesting story focused on how food at the ballpark is undergoing an upgrade (actually this has been a trend underway for several years now, starting at Camden Yards) "All across America, the national pastime has been hustling to keep pace with the latest food trends: Juicing in baseball has taken on a whole new meaning, with fashionable cold-pressed fruit and veggie juices sold at Marlins Park in Miami. At Citizens Bank Park in Philly, even fans with celiac disease can enjoy a cheesesteak "” or choose from a bunch of other gluten-free options from Section 136. Phillies faithful who have no aversion to wheat, meanwhile, can gorge themselves on artisan-style doughnuts designed by James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Solomonov. At Fenway Park in Boston, there is now a whole peanut-free zone, where clean-up crews take extra care to eliminate every trace of the old-fashioned shelled snack in line with modern concerns about allergens. And, in Denver, the crew at Coors Field seems especially eager to adopt the latest food craze, laying claim to a trio of firsts over the past several years: MLB's first dedicated gluten-free stand (2009), first food truck to set up inside a ballpark (2011) and, in a remarkable flip-of-the-script to Field of Dreams, the first sustainable garden to be built within a ballpark (2013)."
  6. The Washington Nationals' webpage Season opener, 9-7 in 10 innings. Amazingly, the score after regulation was 5-5 - that is a tense tenth inning. A classic Earl Weaver game: "pitching, defense, and 3-run homers." Look: 1) The Nats struck out *18* batters today, and gave up only 3 walks. 2) Error-free the entire game. 3) Anthony Rendon hit a 3-run homer. Strasburg fanned 10, and his BAA (batting average against) was .238. It's remarkable that his ERA after this game is 6.00. We've got to watch giving up the long ball. Box Score on cnn.com
  7. I think Thomas Boswell is one of DC's greatest sportswriters - he is one of the people at the Post whom I look forward to reading whenever I can. Basically, I have nothing negative to say about him. One question, though: I remember back in 1997 when Mark McGwire was chasing Roger Maris, someone for the Post called McGwire "Our Babe Ruth." Shortly thereafter, the legendary Shirley Povich (1905-1998), sports editor since *1925*, took issue with the comment, saying something along the lines of: "Now hold on just a cotton-pickin' minute there!" etc. That's a little embellished, but the general tone is intact. Does anyone remember if this was in rebuttal to Boswell (as opposed to someone else), and what, if anything, was Boswell's response? It was a great little back-and-forth.
  8. This video of R. A. Dickey's knuckleball is mesmerizing. Afterwards, there's plenty of explanation of the physics behind the pitch. I've caught a knuckleball before, and it's a devil - you can have your mitt right where you think the ball is going to be, and then, at the last moment ... it's in a different place (notice where it ends up in the catcher's mitt in the video (the brief glimpse of the batter's face is also priceless)).
  9. Believe it or not, this man was at my house last night having some wine; unfortunately, it wasn't Ernie Banks.
  10. Okay, since I started the R.F.K. thread based upon the Nationals being there, and I don't know what the story is with concessions for D.C. United events or other events at R.F.K., it's high-time to steer the baseball food to this new thread. (Moderators: Please feel free to merge/add-in appropriate posts from the R.F.K. thread as necessary) It's been noted in the R.F.K. thread that the new food concessionaires for Nationals Park have been announced as follows: Ben's Chili Bowl, Boardwalk Fries, Cantina Marina, Gifford's Ice Cream, Krazee Ice, Kosher Sports, Hard Times Café, La Piccola Gelateria, Mayorga Coffee, Noah's Pretzels, and Red Hot and Blue. My first question is: Where the heck is Five Guys? I mean, it's a local, home-grown chain, after all. I'd love to see them there. By the way, as of today, the official Opening Day for the Nats season is only 35 days away, and for season ticket holders, the free game on Saturday, March 29th is only 34 days away. Spring is officially 25 days away. Don't those thoughts warm your heart?
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