I see a couple of my favorite ball players have had something to say in how the World Series is playing out, but it’s not clear if they’ll get another kick at the can. The Philadelphia Phillies’ Pedro Martinez and Matt Stairs were on the losing side of Game 2 the other night.
If I favor the Phillies over the Yankees, it’s because Martinez and Stairs are both former Expos, and Stairs comes from Stanley, a small town in New Brunwick, which isn’t far from where I started my broadcast career.
Stairs is a no-nonsense meat and potatoes guy, who’s managed to parlay his lumberjack forearms and average talent into a long and productive career (17 seasons, more than 250 homers).
Martinez matured into a dominant starter while playing here in Montreal in the 90’s, and he remains one of the most colorful and talented pitchers in the game.
Read on and then post a comment about who your favorite performers of the baseball post-season, current and past.
My attention is back finally on baseball, as the World Series plays out between the Yankees and the Phillies. I’m enjoying the spectacle more than anything else. Like so many others in Montreal, I’ve had trouble following the regular season since Major League baseball abandoned this city five years ago.
Beyond the spectacle, I’m also enjoying the little things that make baseball the unique game that it is. For example, the pitch count impacts everyone on the field, and not just the pitcher, batter and catcher. The game is being played on several levels at once, and that’s what makes it so rich. There’s a language unique to baseball and once you’ve learned it, hearing it is a pleasure. In this case, like reuniting with an old friend.
I was reminded of that when reading Ron Kaplan’s Baseball Bookshelf blog. He has commentary on the new book out by Reggie Jackson and Bob Gibson: Sixty Feet, Six Inches.
Jackson and Gibson are two giants of the game, and I can’t wait to read the book. Meantime, inspired by Kaplan, I am attaching a couple of videos posted online by the book publisher. They feature Gibson and Jackson talking about some of those little things in the game I just referred to. Two giants conversing in the language of baseball –I hope you enjoy it as much I do.