Tag Archives: Baseball

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My aunt worked for Time Life Magazine, so growing up we’d get some unique toys at Christmas time.

One year she gave two of my brothers a pint each of Polo cologne.

They in turn passed it onto me.  I didn’t shave yet, so I still had about half of a bottle when I did start shaving.

Another time we received pictures of moon rocks.  I guess in retrospect, it looked a bit like a postcard, but the thought was certainly there.

Another year she gave my brothers a unique razor that she said the astronauts had used.  It had a small razor head about the size of a quarter and a huge spring inside it that required it to be wound.

My brothers mostly used the disposable ones when they did shave, so I was given one of them.

Of course, the first thing I did was to take it apart to see how it worked.  It had a large spring and about 50 cogs and gears in it.

It was nifty.

Since I didn’t shave, I re-purposed mine into a portable fan by adding a fan blade to it.  Very cool.

In 1976, my aunt gave us a few signed World Series baseballs.

She was good friends with the then-baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn.  We’d always get a lot of stuff from my aunt, so not realizing the importance of these items, they were put in the baseball bag with our bats, balls, and gloves.

I used one of the signed balls when my friends wanted to play ball in the local field.

It was also in 1976 that I got my first autograph book, which was a re-purposed red 1975 day planner, but since I never went to any games, I got autographs from people in the neighborhood who meant something to me.

So, there was an autograph from our mail carrier, my teacher, a few of my friends.

My brother took it upon himself to autograph some extra names in my book.

My dad took me to his job one day and there was a photo of him standing at the top of the George Washington Bridge.

Up to that point, I never really knew what my dad did, but this made it real.  He said it was taken when they were painting the bridge.

A few weeks later, my dad had his friends from work over to the house and to me they were celebrities because they were up on that bridge with him.

A signed baseball from — who cares?

I got me a Ray Bolger and a Tony Gomez, two heroes in my book.

It’s my Fault the New York Mets Lost the 2015 World Series

Most fans are blaming Terry Collins, Daniel Murphy, Fallout Boy, or some combination of the three, for the Mets crushing World Series failure. The sad truth is that I am solely responsible for the Kansas City Royals being this year’s MLB World Series champions.

You see I’ve been blessed with very powerful baseball mojo. I didn’t seek out this power, it was thrust upon me. Who am I to refuse a gift from the baseball gods?

It’s been both a blessing and a curse and, while a tremendous responsibility, I’ve always been able to carry out my duties without fail…until now.

I first noticed the baseball mojo as a youngster. My wearing of a plastic team-branded batting helmet while swinging a Roy White engraved bat during Yankees at bats single-handedly powered them to consecutive championships in 1977 and 1978.

It was after that second Yankees championship that I realized I must use this awesome ability for good and help the sad sack National League team in Queens.

From 1979 to 1983, I used all the weapons in my arsenal: rally underpants (rally caps are a just a lame variation which I DO NOT get credit for inspiring), not washing team t-shirts during winning streaks (my mom was purple with rage about this at first but mine was a baseball-loving family and she eventually understood), eating the same meal on game days (just the smell of Chef Boyardee ravioli will bring on horrific flashbacks these days).

I pulled out all the stops.

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It was slow going, but by 1984 the Mets were finally coming around. My mojo was getting results.

Bill Buckner’s error gets the lion’s share of the credit for the 1986 Mets winning it all but folks forget that his blown play occurred in game 6. It was my deep hatred of the Boston Red Sox, a steady stream of “Boston Sucks” chants and a complete banishment of anything that could remotely be confused for the color red from my home that sealed the deal for the boys in Flushing.

1987 and 1988 were tough. Like a late inning relief specialist, I had thrown too many pitches and had nothing left in the tank. I stepped away from the game I loved.

By 1995 it felt as if my mojo was stronger than ever and since I’d neglected the Yankees in the 80s, my new goal was to bring World Series glory back to the Bronx!

I helped rebuild the Yankees championship dynasty in the late 90’s with a deft mash-up of the classic batting helmet / Roy White bat combo and a series of vulgar opposing team chants.

In 2000 I set my sights on doing what was heretofore considered impossible: a subway series between the Mets and the Yankees.

Much like Icarus, I flew too close to the sun.

I’d stretched myself too thin after that series and, except for a fluke in 2009 where I wore a Yankees spring training cap for the whole season, my baseball mojo laid dormant until this season.

This year I wanted back in the game. As a crafty veteran, I would rely on guile instead of power. My mojo would get the Mets back on top using a radical approach: I would ignore them for the entire season.

It worked — although I read a box score in July and that sent their bats into a nasty funk for a long while.

But then it happened, the awful occurrence that has me telling this tale.

I was working at home with the television on in the background. The sound was down on the set and as I took a quick break from my editing, I stared at the screen for about 10 seconds. It was game one and Lucas Duda was at bat. When I realized what was happening, I scrambled for the remote to shut it off. I was in a panic.

To make matters worse, the next night I walked in on my wife watching game 2 and witnessed an unidentified Met pop out.

We instituted a total media blackout at home for game 3 and that helped a bit but the damage was done. You all know the rest.

I let the Metskis down just when they needed me most. For that I humbly beg you all for forgiveness.

Oh well, there’s always next year!

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