Weekend Wonderings

Written June 29th, 2014 by Ken

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Welcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. Here we are, end of June, which means we are getting closer to football season. If your appetite needs whetting, you can check out Patrick’s weekly season opponent preview series.  Since your appetite is now properly whetted, grab whatever beverage that you need, appropriate for time of day of course,  and let’s proceed.

We have a little something regarding The James, some baseball and our Sunday Song. Of course, accompanied by our article soundtrack from Maroon 5.

The James/Wexner

New Stuff: As you may know by now, the James is moving into a brand new facility soon. Very nice, indeed, but there is brand new technology that obviously goes along with the “bones” of the facility.

Stepping Up: Like a lot/most/all Ohio State fans, I have a deep respect for Chris Spielman as a a husband, a father and a football player. Chris had a few words at the recent Stefanie’s Champions Awards Luncheon.

At this year’s 15th annual Stefanie’s Champions Awards Luncheon, I had the opportunity to make a big announcement that I am honored to share again: The Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research at Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) has raised more than $15.4 million!

That, dear readers, is an impressive accomplishment by supporters. As part of the ‘Pay It Forward’ philosophy here at tBBC, we encourage you to be supportive. No, not to the point of “give ’till it hurts’. But give so that others may not hurt. You’re doing a magnificent job. Thank you.

Commentary

Earlier in the week, my uncle emailed me a copy of a photograph taken of my little league (8yr-12yr old) team, so we’re guessing that it’s from a half century ago or so. I laughed when I saw that rag-tag bunch of street urchins posing as a baseball team. It was a far cry from current ‘spit and polish’ approach to sports. But, at the time, that’s all we knew. The nice thing is that were were actually a pretty good team; we won quite a few regular season and tournament titles. Even though the mists of time are getting denser, I can still remember specific  plays in specific games, so the game never really leaves you.

The folks from the SABR (see below) are trying to clear the mists of time by properly memorializing the pioneering players in the Negro Leagues, and in this case to correct a mistake from a half century ago as well.  This is a piece of baseball history that needs to be recognized, and part of it is happening in Buffalo, NY. Former Negro Leagues  player Grant “Home Run” Johnson passed away 5o years ago, and was buried in an unmarked grave in Hamburg, NY.  Thanks to the work of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), Johnson’s gravesite will be properly marked and recognized. From The Buffalo News:

 “We are recognizing a good man who made a great contribution to Buffalo history – a man who deserves to be recognized for his baseball skills, who would be in the Cooperstown Hall of Fame were it not for segregation,” said Howard W. Henry, the SABR member who organized the grave-marking.

Johnson earned his “Home Run” sobriquet during his days as a semiprofessional player in his hometown of Findlay, Ohio. His stats at the semipro level are gaudy. He cranked 60 round-trippers in 1894 for the Findlay Sluggers.

It’s an interesting article, as is this biography, courtesy of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. It’s good that efforts are being made to recognize and memorialize the early pioneering players that were pathfinders for the early players to have come out of the Negro Leagues such as Jackie RobinsonLarry Doby, Satchel Paige, who themselves widened the doorway for future generations.

Sunday’s Song

Naturally, we’re going with John Fogerty’s Center Field.

2 Comments

  1. Joe DexterNo Gravatar
    June 29th, 2014 at 11:22 am

    Wow. That is such a good story. I think all the teams we root for in baseball all have that first player to bridge the gap. I always loved hearing from Larry Doby during interviews over the years.

    [Reply]

  2. KenNo Gravatar
    June 29th, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    As a lad, I had a scrapbook (do kids still put together scrapbooks?) and amongst the “treasures” were a handful of autographed (by someone) photos of baseball players. Larry Doby was one of my collection. Others included; Vic Power, Rocky Colavito and Ted Williams. I wonder what happened to the scrapbook, it must be around someplace…

    [Reply]

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