Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Baseball On The Radio

This Thursday will be the first Giants spring training game, vs. the Cubs in Mesa, AZ. The game will be broadcast on the radio, at 12:05pm PST. I'll be tuning in. I love the first radio broadcast, even if it is a spring training game. The sounds of the announcers, crowd noise and even commercials are very beautiful indeed. I don't care much about the game, but just getting to hear it on the radio makes my spring.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

When Will Barry Break Aaron's Record?

At work, Kurt was bugging me for my prediction on when Bonds will break the record. I really hadn't thought about it. Given the fact that he needs only 22 more, and that last year he hit only 26, and that this year he's not likely to be that much more in shape and injury free than last year, I'll guess that he'll break the record late in the year. Late August or September.

He'll have to do it at home, of course. It seems all the major records have been broken at home. Maris, Aaron, McGwire, Bonds' season HRs, Pete Rose, Rickey Henderson all time stolen bases. All at home.

Maybe, as Willie Mays told Kurt, he'll hit 20, hold out for another contract, and do it on Opening Day, 2008.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Pitch to Barry

No doubt Barry will get to see many more pitches this year than in years past. I'm looking forward to seeing him with the opportunity to swing the bat more often. I'm sure this will boost his confidence to some degree (as if that could be measured). I'm not sure how many intentional walks he'll get this year. Somebody should keep count. Now that Zito's in the NL, that is.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Pitchers and Catchers Reporting

A newspaper spread on the A's and Giants gave each team's roster, with a few stories, and their Spring Training schedule. Pichers and catchers report for the Giants on Wednesday and A's on Friday.


Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Say Hey, Willie, Willie Said What?

A long time friend of mine, Kurt, who I have known for almost 20 years and worked with for 12, recently had dinner with Willie Mays. Prior to his engagement, he asked me if I had one question I could ask Willie, what would it be. Wow, that's a project right there, coming up with just one question. Immediately I thought this: "Did you have it all the way?", referring to his '54 Series catch. But we discussed it out, and my friend eventually asked him something I mentioned that I had heard before.

They had hours of discussion about baseball and Willie's service in the military. Great, funny stories. He had many questions lined up, but the one from me was a confirmation of what I told him. I heard Willie McCovey say once that for 14 years he had the best seat in all of baseball. This was in reference, of course, to his being in the on-deck circle when Mays was at bat. No fan in the front row, no player in the dugout or on the field had a closer view of Mays batting than McCovey. The catcher and umpire may have been closer, but their job was to watch the ball, and even then they only had a 3 game series with Mays as a player. McCovey watched Mays every day, home and road, day or night, for 14 years, from 30 to 50 feet away. Wow.

So Kurt asked him if he ever heard McCovey say that. He hadn't, and was glad to hear it now. I didn't get to talk to Kurt past this one bit, so tomorrow I hope to hear the rest of the story.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

A New Name for the A's

With the A's moving to Fremont, they'll undergo a name change. The owner has all but promised the city of Fremont that its name will be used in the team's name. The Oakland A's of Fremont? That's almost as stupid as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The San Jose A's of Fremont? The Fremont A's? The Bay Area A's of Fremont? Or will it be more formalized like The Oakland Athletics of Fremont? The Oakland Athletics of Fremont Baseball Club of the American League? How about just the A's?