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Found 18 results

  1. Here's my seven-part series on Brooks Robinson. --- Brooks Robinson means more to me than any other athlete who has ever lived. I suppose over the months and years, I'll be writing more about Brooks, but suffice it to say that in the 1980s, someone asked me who the three people I wanted to meet more than anyone in the world were. My response? Ronald Reagan, Vladimir Horowitz, and Brooks Robinson. Roy Firestone, American sports commentator, appears to feel the same way that I do about this gentle giant of a man - a giant not in athletic stature, but in an everyman's way that
  2. David Thompson was at NC State right around the time when I became a sports fanatic. My uncle was a professor at the University of Maryland, and my aunt was Assistant Superintendent of schools in Howard County - bottom line: free season tickets to University of Maryland basketball games for several years, dating all the way back to the Jim O'Brien years and continuing through their "three-guard offense" years (remember that?). At my age, Thompson, by sheer reputation and from the couple of times I saw him play in college, was essentially a space alien. I didn't really follow pro basketball bac
  3. *** SPOILERS FOLLOW *** Sometime in the late 1960s, we were visiting my Aunt Kitty and Uncle Ben in Detroit, and were out for a walk. We walked past a park, and Uncle Ben (who knew I was a baseball savant) asked me to guess who the park was named after - I immediately said "Ty Cobb,: and he (in his 70s at the time) said, "No, no, no! Ty Cobb wasn't loved here in Detroit - this park is named for Harry Heilmann!" (With his accent, I thought he had said "Harry Hahmann," and I never got the name right for the next twenty years). Uncle Ben had lived in Detroit for decades, and remembered
  4. Oh my, Yogi Berra, an all-time great catcher in the big leagues, and an all-American icon for his many quotes and advertisements that featured him. Seeing comments here referencing that .... really depressed me. Yogi is an iconic American sports star, a beloved character, and what hit hardest on a personal level, was that Yogi has lived most of his life since he got to the Yankees in a Northern NJ town, near where I grew up. There was a fair bit of news about Yogi in my neck of the woods, and all of it was positive and beloved. Yogi's achievements in baseball are legendary and for
  5. It about kills me to put this video up here, but the one person in the world I'll do it for is the great Roberto Clemente, killed in an airplane crash while making a humanitarian visit to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. He was 38 years old, and was still arguably the best right fielder in baseball at the time - it's hard to believe he was a year *older* than Frank Robinson, a pretty darned good right fielder himself, and whom you can see scoring the winning run here, the game before, off a Brooks Robinson sacrifice "fly" (if you want to call that a fly). This video is Clemente's second W
  6. "Naismith Hall of Fame Finally Does Right by Lefty and Votes in Driesell" by John Feinstein on washingtonpost.com Brian Magid's Facebook Status regarding the announcement Pam Driesell's Facebook Status regarding the announcement Some insider trivia: The Driesells lived right across the street from Springbrook High School in Silver Spring, MD - I went to school with Pam since 5th grade (when they moved up here from Davidson, NC), as well as Chuck (who played for Maryland), but here's the really esoteric, insider trivia: Their house was literally right next door to the family of H
  7. I was trying to think back to recent players that came into the league and developed quickly into stars. Off the top of my head I came up with Lebron, Durant, Rose, and Davis. Any others??? Possibly Westbrook and Love developed big numbers pretty quickly. Everyone else is a development prospect imho. . I think most, though, need a lot of development. Good luck to Okafor. Porter came out of nowhere in the very last few games of the season and then in the playoffs. He was terrific, playing starter minutes and doing a little of everything including getting stops on Dee. If he keeps that
  8. To any hardcore baseball fan (which is short for "fanatic"), this photo will emblaze a permanent memory. If you're not sitting down, sit down before you read any further - to fully understand the level of royalty in this photo, scroll down to read the fact list about each player. Standing, L to R: Honus Wager, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Tris Speaker, Nap Lajoie, George Sisler, Walter Johnson Sitting, L to R: Eddie Collins, Babe Ruth, Connie Mack, Cy Young
  9. 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.
  10. People justifiably remember Joe Garagiola as an amiable announcer, but he was also a respected major-league player, spending his entire nine-year career in the National League - in game 4 of the 1946 World Series (*), Garagiola went 4-5 with 3 RBI's. Garagiola coincidentally grew up across the street from Yogi Berra. How can you possibly not love someone who once said, "Not only was I not the best catcher in the Major Leagues, I wasn't even the best catcher on my street!" Likewise, on playing for four different teams in an eight-team league: "I felt like I was modeling uniforms for the Nat
  11. "Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza Voted Into Hall of Fame" by Tyler Kepner on nytimes.com And just in case you've forgotten this rather incredible piece of trivia: "20 Years Ago: Griffeys Go Back-To-Back" by Jim Street on mlb.com
  12. Cal Yastrzemski, affectionately (and practically) known as "Yaz" by his fans, was an incredibly durable 18-time All-Star for the Boston Red Sox. Although he played some of his later career at 1st Base and Designated Hitter, he was primarily known as a Left Fielder. Yaz was the first player with both 3,000 hits and 400 home runs. His longevity made him not only a beloved fixture in Boston, but also earned him second place all-time in MLB Games Played, and third place all-time for MLB At-Bats. He is the all-time Red Sox leader in career RBIs, runs, hits, singles, doubles, total bases, and games
  13. "Are Johnson, Martinez, Smoltz Best Pitching Class Ever at Hall of Fame?" by Jay Jaffe on si.com The 4th inductee is Craig Biggio, who will undoubtedly be overshadowed by the 9 combined Cy Young Awards the three hurlers share between them. The Sports Illustrated article is interesting, as it attempts to rank the HOF classes in terms of "Best Pitchers," and, as it turns out, this year's class only ranks #2 using their methodology.
  14. So one day my brother is changing flights in an airport. Stopping by the airport bar he sees Dan who really looks like he doesn't want to be bothered. My brother walks up to Dan and says "Jon W, Central Catholic class of 1982. Nice to meet you." Upon meeting a fellow Viking, Dan's demeanor changes. "Good to meet you. Sit down and have beer." They chat for a while when two women walk up and ask Dan if they can take a picture with him. He says, "Sure, but you have to have my good friend Jon in it, too." So somewhere out there. Some woman has a prized photo of herself and Dan Marino and my
  15. Olajuwon had just absolutely great moves as a center. Great moves and they were so much quicker than anyone defending him. Here is video of when he crushed...just demolished David Robinson in a playoff match. Probably the best "moves" of any notable center, ever: ....and you have to listen to Robinson speaking of the match up.....
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