Roger Angell is the greatest of all baseball writers. Today, the game has recognized the fact. This July, along with Joe Torre, Bobby Cox, and Tony La Russa, Roger will be celebrated in Cooperstown, New York, the site of the Hall of Fame. He will receive the J. G. Taylor Spink Award, which has previously gone to the likes of Grantland Rice, Red Smith, Ring Lardner, and Damon Runyon. [more inside]
Facial hair on men. Point: "The beard implies a monastic indifference to worldly cares, a hermetic withdrawal from ordinary concerns, and a fixed focus on the higher mysteries, whether divine, philosophical, or the split-finger fastball." Counterpoint: "Enough. It's time we stop congratulating these men for simply presenting a secondary sexual characteristic with no accompanying display of follicular craft or even basic self-control."
Johhny Pesky, longtime member of the Boston Red Sox has passed away at the young age of 92. More famous for the right field foul pole named after he hit one of his only 6 Fenway Park home runs as it swung around the pole, the erstwhile manager spent nearly his entire 73 year baseball career with the Boston Red Sox. Much like teammate Ted Williams Johhny left baseball during his prime to fight in World War Two
A group of Kenyan students re-enact Bill Buckner's error leading to the Mets winning run in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. Here's the original play. Previously
Fenway Park, in Boston, is a lyric little bandbox of a ballpark. Everything is painted green and seems in curiously sharp focus, like the inside of an old-fashioned peeping-type Easter egg. It was built in 1912 and rebuilt in 1934, and offers, as do most Boston artifacts, a compromise between Man's Euclidean determinations and Nature's beguiling irregularities. So wrote John Updike in his moving tribute to Red Sox legend Ted Williams -- an appropriately pedigreed account for this oldest and most fabled of ballfields that saw its first major league game played one century ago today. As a team in flux hopes to recapture the magic with an old-school face-off against the New York
Highlanders Yankees, it's hard to imagine the soul of the Sox faced the specter of demolition not too long ago. Now legally preserved, in a sport crowded with corporate-branded superdome behemoths, Fenway abides, bursting with history, idiosyncrasy, record crowds, and occasional song. [more inside]
"To get something like that, something that belongs to you," Jones says of that monthly pension, "it makes a big difference in your life." And for that, the 84-year-old Jones has an accomplice to thank. For he would not have had evidence of the extent of his Negro League service time and his pension eligibility if the Center for Negro League Baseball Research's best gumshoe hadn't been assigned to the case.
The Boston Globe's Bob Hohler gets to the bottom of the Red Sox's epic collapse: Inside are tales of alienated potential MVP candidates, pitchers playing video games and eating take out chicken and biscuits instead of being in the dugout, and older players chasing statistical glory.
After beating the Texas Rangers on Sept. 3, the Boston Red Sox were 84-54. Although half a game behind the Yankees in the American League East, the Red Sox had a nine-game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays for the wild card and roughly a 99.6 percent chance of making the playoffs. Fast forward one excruciating month to a dead heat with Tampa coming into tonight's bitter imbroglio. Boston struggles ahead of laughingstock Baltimore by a single run until a rain delay clears the field, leaving them in the surreal position of rooting for the hated Yankees playing down in Florida. They can only watch from the sidelines as the rival Rays, tied with Boston in the pennant race but down 7-0 against New York, roar back to life with six runs in the eighth inning and a tie run on the final pitch at the bottom of the ninth. And then, after blowing two different strikes that would have salvaged the game, Boston loses to Baltimore, completing what is arguably the worst late-breaking collapse in the history of major league baseball.
Bill Lee, The Spaceman, baseball curmudgeon, subject of a Warren Zevon song, marijuana advocate, has become the oldest pitcher to win a professional baseball game at the age of 63.
22 years after letting a ball roll through his legs in extra innings to lose game six of the 1986 World Series, Bill Buckner returned to Fenway Park to throw out the ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day. Here's a post on the Curse of the Bambino and the 2004 World Series [more inside]
On Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling's blog, Curt responds to commenter questions, reviews his starts pitch-by-pitch, discusses his various charities, engages ex-teammate Kevin Millar in conversation, and responds to the recent controversy over his bloody sock from the 2004 postseason. Love him or hate him (or defend his blogging, at least), it's a new way for athletes to engage the public, and any baseball fan can learn a lot from his analysis of his starts.
Bored researchers conduct unappetizing study from a small sample that wasn't collected with even an allegation of neutrality. The conclusion? Winners sometimes use more drugs than their opponents. Did William Sessions and McGruff the Crime Dog lie to us? And is the Boston Globe even trying anymore?
So, should he give back the ball or not? Of course, I say "give back" as if the Red Sox owned it in the first place, which they didn't. So is it up to Major League Baseball?
Hey, no crying in baseball! Who would you like the Red Sox to win it for? A Sox fanboard thread dedicates the hoped-for, possibly imminent World Series championship to loved ones living and dead. NSFW, if your employer frowns on tears streaming down your cheeks.
Red Sox "Nation" After the Boston police take full responsibility for the killing of a student at the ALCS celebrations on Wedensday night/Thrusday morning, the Mayor takes aim at thugs and threatens bans on alcohol sales, bars showing the series in the city, and expulsion of students. The city wants more police presence at the World Series. Many news reports refer to mayhem and riots, but "video footage from the scene showed large crowds but no sign of rioting." Is this the face of the new Sox?
Underdog to NY Yankees --> "Who's YOUR Daddy?"
Seats...On the Green Monster? It seems that the Boston Red Sox have finalized the plan to make changes to one of Major League Baseball's most famous curiosities, the Green Monster - if not *the* most famous, as this article suggests. The stadium has the lowest amount of available seating, and is definitely, in the realm of the other stadiums in major markets, out of date. But it has a classic sort of feel to it. Here are some of the proposed plans for this and other changes to the stadium. I can't wait to see if someone falls off the back of the 'Monster trying to catch a homerun ball.
Goodbye Trust (Hello Shyster?) After 60+ years of Yawkey ownership and a year's worth of politicking, the Red Sox have been sold to a group headed by the current Florida Marlins owner and the man who presided over a fire sale as owner of the Padres (and is pals with Satan). The local heroes dropped out of the group today after a spat. The new owners' remaining local talent consists of former senator George Mitchell and Les Otten, a man who had trouble making money in the ski business. And staying out of trouble.
This ruined my day. The Yankees are going to buy another World Series. If I ever hear that the Yankees do not buy championship again I am going to poop my pants. They do buy championships. Man, do they suck.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.... for Boston Red Sox fans. This story from espn.com's Page 2 about Game 6 of the 1986 World Series is well-written and fills me with sympathy and empathy for Sox fans. See, as a Yakee fan, I was rooting against them at the time, but I feel sorry for them now. What a cruel punishment that game must have been. So close, and yet so far. (Please pardon my sports digression and shameless use of cliches.)