Archive for Babe Ruth

AROD # 600 and The Hall Of Fame Debate.

Posted in Baseball, ESPN, History, MLB, New York City, New York Yankees, NYC with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2010 by mattyfresh697400

AROD # 600!!

I have a new love in my life and her name is TWITTER.  Fine ,  I might very well be a little late to the tweet party , but that is all good! At some point this summer I figured out the amazing beauty of twitter and I dove in headfirst. But rather than detail the workings of the super-social network that is twitter, I would prefer to talk about Baseball , and the milestone that occurred when Alex Rodriquez of my beloved New York Yankees finally clubbed career home run # 600.

In typical Arod fashion he hit # 600 during a day game (of which I could not attend) , He hit it in the first inning when there were zero dramatic implications (although the 2 run shot did turn out to be all the Yankees needed for the W) and in very typical Arod fashion, it took him a while to hit it. He might be one of the greatest to ever play the game but  the dude is just not great with milestones.

The Real HR King

But as sure as the sun rises each day Arod was going to blast # 600 and he did! And just as soon as the ball landed in monument park , the great sports debate of our time jumped right back to the front page of every paper, the top of every blog and of course to the greatest sounding board of all…TWITTER.

Baseball is all about history and stats, plain and simple. The game is defined by its history and the numbers that make up that history. Any real baseball fan is at heart a statistics person, perhaps not in the sense that you like to sit around and bang out ill computations like Matt Damon in “Good Will Hunting” , but you know the single season HR record , you know that Rickey Henderson is the all time stolen base king and you know the mother of all statistics….you know who the all time Baseball Home Run King is….or do you?

# 600 for Arod has quickly resurrected the Steroid era debate or what is now cutely known as the PED debate (Performance Enhancing Drugs). Do those admitted and or accused ROID users belong in the Hall Of Fame, Do the Home Runs actually count, should all the numbers be tossed?

Alex Rodriquez is only the 7th player in Baseball history to knock 600 career bombs, the club he joins is beyond exclusive and some members beyond reproach. The Babe , Hank Aaron , Willie Mays and even Ken Griffey JR. are all safely and cleanly in the record books..no asterisk required, they are all in the Hall of Fame (with the exception of Jr. , and he is a first ballot shoe in with out question. Its the other two members who make things interesting.

Always a KING!!!!

Sammy Sosa, who along with Mark McGwire captivated the nation in 1998 with the great single season home run chase as they both smashed the record of Roger Maris (61 dingers) Sosa has 610 career home runs and before the PED debate would have been a no brainer for the HOF. In fact pre -2003 when the house of cards started to unfold, the rule of thumb was, if you hit 500 career home runs you basically get into the Hall Of Fame automatically.

Thats about right!

Well when it became terribly obvious that Barry Bonds was a freak of nature whose cap size grew like 10 sizes in two seasons and at the age of 38 started banging out 50 plus homers a year and then in 2002 broke the already obscene single season record of 70 held by McGwire , the jig was up. Major League Baseball could no longer look the other way and before you knew it  a slew of incredible home run hitters and perhaps the games greatest pitcher were lying before congress and labeled , well , cheaters.

Back to yesterday , again Arod goes yard and Twitter is burning up.  “Does Arod belong in the HOF?”  “Bonds and Clemens will never get in” “Sosa and McGwire stand no shot ever” “Rafael Palmeiro is a doucher” (Agreed..what up coop)

The Future King?

So just being at Cooperstown two weeks ago , and  having a pretty solid handle on what it means to be in Cooperstown from a fans perspective.. I chimed in on twitter…. “If The Hall is willing to recognize Bonds  statistically as the all time HR King and displays his record breaking home run ball as well, why should he not get his plaque too” ( I want to note that I despise Barry Bonds , but he was going to the Hall prior to his cheating so… go fish)

Well this turned out to be a great question ,  because before I knew what was happening I was being retweeted by espn bloggers and well-known sports columnists and I am thinking , damn this twitter thing is pretty freakin cool.

And for the next few hours, the debate raged and I came to a few conclusions.

1. There is a consensus that Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds are dirt bags and are never getting into the Hall of Fame.

2. The Jury is still out on Arod as far as the public is concerned although my money is on him getting into the Hall because time is on his side.

3. and finally….That twitter might be the single greatest blow to worker productivity modern man has ever seen.

Congrats AROD…looking forward to # 700 and eventually # 763 and looking forward to continuing the great STEROID debate….on TWITTER of course!

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Grand Slam Weekend!!

Posted in Baseball, History, New York Yankees with tags , , , , , on June 14, 2010 by mattyfresh697400

Grand Weekend!

This past weekend I made a feeble attempt to celebrate my birthday, only to realize that as you get older your best bet in celebrating your birthday is staying home alone and watching sports or a classic episode of Seinfeld. I will not get into the details of my horrible birthday weekend so as not to embarrass my two best friends , lets just say my crew was in poor form and leave it at that.

But rather than wallow in my own personal post birthday misery, I choose to focus on the positive and the positive this weekend came in the form of Jorge Posada and The New York Yankees.

First things first, the Yankees are in first place for the first time since April 21, granted they have taken full advantage of a soft patch in the schedule that will end tomorrow as interleague plays brings the defending National League champions the Philadelphia Phillies to the Bronx. This series is followed by part two of the Subway Series where the seemingly hot METS should be brought back down to earth by the bombers.

Speaking of bombs, it seems that the stories of the demise of Jorge Posada have been greatly exaggerated!

Saturday Jorge came up with the bases juiced, fresh of the DL, the Yanks would have been happy with a base on balls or simple bloop single. But Jorge is on a mission to say to the Yankee Universe that he is healthy!  Playing as the DH on Saturdays game Jorge blasted a monster GRANNY that made that stadium erupt!

For just coming of the DL, this blast alone would have made everyone in the Yankee world breathe easy that our aging catcher had not lost a step in his time off.

How do you top a day with a Grand Slam, well in baseball you can’t top a Granny, but you sure can repeat it and that is exactly what Jorge did on Sunday. Skipper Joe Girardi rewarded Jorge on Sunday by finally playing him at catcher and Posada repayed the favor by hitting his second Grand Slam in as many days.

Once again a bit of history was being made in the boogie down!

Bill Dickey

The last time a Yankee player hit Grand Slams in back to back games was 73 years ago and only the fourth time in the history of the franchise. Another wonderful Yankee catcher Bill Dickey accomplished the feat in 1937, prior to that , the Sultan of Swat Babe Ruth did it in both 1927 and 1929. Now both those legends have their numbers retired in monument park and I assume one day Hip-Hip Jorge will get the same treatment and maybe, just maybe ,  a nice plaque in Cooperstown.

The Babe

Jorge..I am glad one of us a had a great weekend!!

Enjoy!!

27 Days till Yankee Baseball – The Reggie Bar!!

Posted in Baseball, MLB, New York Yankees with tags , , , on March 8, 2010 by mattyfresh697400

You can tell it’s coming, the temperature is slowly moving up. The snow is clearing and the hot stove discussions are heating up as Spring training is in full swing. I do my best not to pay attention to pre-season baseball results,  April 4 is where the real action begins. Yankee vs Sox in Boston on a Sunday night….great way to start the year.

I love hearing the stories of opening day 1978 at Yankee Stadium. What could Reggie do to follow-up his  Babe Ruth like effort in Game 6 of the 77 series (3 home runs on 3 swings) where he became Mr. October, well on opening day in 1978, Reggie did what he does best…He went long!!

The Yankees’ home opener of the 1978 season, on April 13 against the Chicago White Sox, featured a new product, the “Reggie!” bar.

In 1976, while playing in Baltimore, Jackson had said, “If I played in New York, they’d name a candy bar after me.”  The Reggie! bars were handed to fans as they walked into Yankee Stadium on that 1978 Opening Day. Jackson hit a home run, and when he returned to right field the next inning, fans began throwing the Reggie bars on the field in celebration. The Yankees won the game, 4-2.

Reggie , Reggie, Reggie!!!!!

41 Days till Baseball – The Babe

Posted in Baseball, MLB, New York Yankees with tags , , on February 22, 2010 by mattyfresh697400

Spring Training in Tampa is almost in full swing and of course the core of the 2010 Yankee squad has hit the ground running. Forget all the contract nonsense with Jeter and Mariano, if all goes well both men will retire in pinstripes and hopefully not too soon.  So before we look forward lets look back at another Yankee legend, the second player in our RETIRED NUMBER SERIES, a man who needs no introduction , a man who truly was bigger than the game and perhaps one of the most famous athletes of all time…THE BABE.

The Babe

George Herman Ruth, Jr. (February 6, 1895 – August 16, 1948), best known as “Babe” Ruth and nicknamed “the Great Bambino“, “the Sultan of Swat“, “the King of Crash“, and “the Colossus of Clouts“, was an American Major League baseball player from 19141935. Ruth originally broke into the major leagues with the Boston Red Sox as a starting pitcher, but after he was sold to the New York Yankees in 1919, he converted to a full-time right fielder and subsequently became one of the league’s most prolific hitters. Ruth was a mainstay in the Yankees’ lineup that won seven pennants and four World Series titles during his tenure with the team. After a short stint with the Boston Braves in 1935, Ruth retired. In 1936, Ruth became one of the first five players elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Ruth has since become regarded as one of the greatest sports heroes in American culture.[1] He has been named the greatest baseball player in history in various surveys and rankings, and his home run hitting prowess and charismatic personality made him a larger than life figure in the “Roaring Twenties“. Off the field he was famous for his charity, but also was noted for his often reckless lifestyle. Ruth is credited with changing baseball itself. The popularity of the game exploded in the 1920s, largely due to his influence. Ruth ushered in the “live-ball era,” as his big swing led to escalating home run totals that not only excited fans, but helped baseball evolve from a low-scoring, speed-dominated game to a high-scoring power game.

Ruth was the first player to hit 60 home runs in one season (1927), setting the season record which stood until broken by Roger Maris in 1961. Ruth’s lifetime total of 714 home runs at his retirement in 1935 was a record, until first surpassed by Hank Aaron in 1974. Unlike many power hitters, Ruth also hit for average: his .342 lifetime batting is tenth highest in baseball history, and in one season (1923) he hit .393, a Yankee record. His .690 career slugging percentage and 1.164 career on-base plus slugging (OPS) remain the major league records.[3] Ruth dominated in the era in which he played. He led the league in home runs during a season twelve times, slugging percentage and OPS thirteen times each, runs scored eight times, and runs batted in (RBIs) six times. Each of those totals represents a modern record (as well as the all-time record, except for RBIs). (Courtesy Wikipedia)

The First true legendary Yankee and the backbone of Murderer’s Row, The Babe is credited with truly setting the tone for what would become the greatest sports franchise in the World.  Before there was Jordan or Tiger (well forget Tiger)… before there were any star athletes that transcended sports, there was Babe Ruth. True Yankee for real!

73 Days Till Opening Day

Posted in Baseball, New York Yankees with tags , , on January 21, 2010 by mattyfresh697400

You can almost feel the spring time coming.  Soon it will be time for Opening Day and for the Yanks to raise our 27th World Series Banner. The Babe would be Proud!!!

I think The Babe is Smiling!