I wanted Carlos Beltran to insist that he was in one of the better shapes of his life, certainly the best of the past few years of his life. “Best shape of my life” would have been too clichéd and beyond credulity. We saw Carlos Beltran when his shape was indisputably spectacular. I would have [...]
Welcome to a special midweek World Series edition of Flashback Friday: Take Me Out to 34 Ballparks, a celebration, critique and countdown of every major league ballpark one baseball fan has been fortunate enough to visit in a lifetime of going to ballgames.
BALLPARK: Fenway Park
HOME TEAM: Boston Red Sox
FIRST VISITED: July 30, 1985
CHRONOLOGY: 2nd [...]
Avery, enjoying one of his favorite modes of transportation.
Avery the Cat! He’s the cat who was born with an exclamation point!
It was five years ago tonight Avery and I made our acquaintance. Stephanie had a tip on another cat — we had only just begun to search for a worthy successor to the late [...]
This is no one-night stand
It’s a real occasion
Close your eyes and you’ll be there
It’s everything they say
The end of a perfect day
Ooh, wait! I’ve got another one! I know you guys are sick of me chiming in, but I can’t help it. Now that we’ve experienced the first no-hitter in Mets history and [...]
Friday night was an extraordinary pitchers’ duel. The only thing that would have made it perfect would have been a better result, both in terms of reversing the identities of the winning and losing teams and if Johan Santana had, like Yovani Gallardo, pitched all nine innings in the process.
This is not a rant about [...]
How different. How incredibly different. For two years in a row, I was a first-hand witness to history, sitting slumped over and dejected in the highest tier of an enormous stadium. On a Sunday afternoon in September 2007 and on another Sunday afternoon in September 2008, I watched my baseball team eliminated from a chance [...]
With apologies to Steve Phillips (the last time I’ll ever say that), the Phillies are a 24 + 1 team this weekend. There are the 24 Phillies the ground beneath Citi Field can open up and swallow — opening up and swallowing Shane Victorino 24 times and spitting him back 23 times before reluctantly sucking [...]
The poets tell how Pancho fell
Lefty’s livin’ in a cheap hotel
The desert’s quiet and Cleveland’s cold
So the story ends we’re told
Forgive the following hackneyed cinematic conceit, but let’s say it’s 1999. A voice whispers in your ear that in the relatively early years of the next millennium, the greatest starting pitcher in baseball and one [...]
A staple of every book I ever read about Tom Seaver and every article I ever read about Doc Gooden in his prime was the testimony of a teammate who said he and everybody else played better behind their ace. Fielders were more confident, more on their toes, just sharper. Interesting to me that the [...]
The accepted folkways of the big league clubhouse escape me. Even having grown up watching a team whose acknowledged leader — the player whose mere presence was and is universally acknowledged to have transformed the attitude of all those around him — was a pitcher, I’ve been hearing all my life that a pitcher can’t [...]