Dutch Honkballers defeat Republic of Baseball, 2x

Friday, March 13th, 2009

I don’t care how my or your stock portfolio did this week but this is an event that gives our individual and collective weakest and dimmest hopes a jolt of optimism.Dutch HonkballersThis upset in the World Baseball Classic, the true World Series, exceeds in incredible achievement Joe Namath’s-led victory over the Baltimore Colts, the Japanese Navy’s annihilation of the Russian Navy at Tsushima in 1905 and the 1-in-120,526,770 odds of winning the 6 ball USA Powerball Lottery. One victory over the superior Dominican Republic baseball players is astounding; another victory 3 days later turns the sports world nearly upside down. Please note that the Dutch won the second game, played in Puerto Rico, in the bottom of the 11th inning and down by one run! Imagine12dutch190 if the best kid on the local high school tennis team defeated Raphael Nadel in 3 straight sets on one day and then Roger Federer in 3 straight sets a couple of days later. In a world too consumed by sports, stadiums and athletes, this is proof positive of why we watch despite ourselves. I guess it’s because we’re allowed to appreciate the accomplishments of the superior while rooting for the improbable achievement of the underdog.

And if we’d like a lesson in fortitude and stickin’ with it, check-out last night’s 6 overtime NCAA basketball victory by #20 Syracuse over #1 Connecticut. Maybe I won’t give up on my stock portfolio after all.

Say Hey! Say What? Never heard of Willie Mays!

Friday, November 21st, 2008

Dinner with younger colleagues at an Irish Pub in lower Manhattan. Uncovered common ground as high school baseball players, albeit several or even many years apart. I asked whom he considers the best baseball player that he had seen. Manney Ramirez had a great 09, he said. Best I’ve seen is Willie Mays. My comment received a blank, mildly uncomfortable look. ‘Don’t know much about the older generations, he said.’

OUCH. Reminded me of when my own father would talk about Bob Feller, the fireballer of his generation. To me Bob Feller may as well have pitched for Abner Doubleday’s team in Cooperstown, maybe during a Civil War truce.

At any rate, what a catch! Poor Vic Wertz.