Total Pageviews

Monday, September 11, 2023


My tin cup runneth over
The brown baseball
Saving the base runner
From a cleat gouging
At the hands (feet) of a first baseman
With an irrational grudge
No rhyme, no reason, no meter, no bathos
Or is there? 


Jeff Shyluk said...

That reminds me of Charlie Finley's experiment with orange baseballs. Finley owned owned the Oakland Athletics in the 1970's when he managed to convince Spalding to make orange balls, thinking that bright orange fly balls would be easier to track in the sky than white. These were normal white balls dipped in orange dye, and used for exhibition games.

The dye concealed the red stitches, so batters had a hard time gauging the spin of the ball. Even so, they teed off on them since the dye made the balls slippery and pitchers couldn't get a good grip. With the breaking ball being the only pitch that did not go wild, it was not difficult for batters to adapt. Worse still, the dye made ink smear so players found it impossible to autograph them.

Still, in the catalogue of bizarre experiments in baseball, orange balls (which were retired after two games) weren't nearly as crazy as when the Chicago White Sox wore short shorts for their uniform, or when Bill Veeck sent 3'7" Eddie Gaedel up to bat with the instruction "If you swing your bat, I have a rifle sniper up in the lights who will shoot you dead where you stand."

Sean Woods said...

Have you read the Veeck autobiography? It's a hoot.

Jeff Shyluk said...

Bill Veeck was a genius, no doubt. I have his book, it's very instructional on the business of expansion-era baseball.