Ray Fosse, the victim of history's most famous home-plate collision, weighs in on Buster Posey.
OAKLAND—The photograph used to hang in his office. Taken during a game at Fenway Park, the image showed a flowing swing he once called his own, the same swing he spent the rest of his career trying to replicate. He never came close.
Ray Fosse holds the pose now as he stands in an equipment room in the Oakland Coliseum—his head down to watch the ball jump off his bat, his left arm fully extended through the zone, his mind drifting back to the way it all clicked so easily throughout the first half of the 1970 season.
Some of baseball's most exciting moments are reserved for its most inconsequential plays.
While looking toward the future with our comprehensive slate of current content, we'd also like to recognize our rich past by drawing upon our extensive (and mostly free) online archive of work dating back to 1997. In an effort to highlight the best of what's gone before, we'll be bringing you a weekly blast from BP's past, introducing or re-introducing you to some of the most informative and entertaining authors who have passed through our virtual halls. If you have fond recollections of a BP piece that you'd like to nominate for re-exposure to a wider audience, send us your suggestion.
Revisit Jim Baker's humorous look at plays whose prominence outstrips their impact, which originally ran on June 18, 2004.
Lance Berkman reminds Astros fans that he wears big shoes, but Brett Wallace may be capable of filling them; Alfonso Soriano rarely gets on base but often drives himself in.
It was an eye-opening week in Minute Maid Park, as Zod and the other residents of Planet Houston were treated to superb performances from first basemen of the Astros' past, present, and—perhaps—future.
Lance Berkman, the twelve-year Astros veteran who was traded to the Yankees late last year before signing with the Cardinals over the winter, made his return to Houston as a visiting player on Tuesday. He was well-received by the fans, who gave him an extended standing ovation in his first at-bat. When he laced a single to right field off of an inside fastball from Bud Norris, the crowd erupted into more cheers. Needless to say, the man with the second-most home runs in franchise history is still very popular in the Bayou City.
I have seen the future, and its name is FIELDf/x. OK, so we kind of knew that. But today, FIELDf/x started to seem a lot more real, and even more exciting than I’d imagined. You may have noticed that BP had a man on the scene at Sportvision’s PITCHf/x summit whose liveblog was actually live. So why am I doing this, when Colin already did? Well, for one thing, Colin arrived fashionably late, and I was all over those first 14 minutes that he missed. For another, his computer died before a lot of the fun started. And for still another (this is a third reason, now), I thought it might be fun to do a Simmons-style quasi-liveblog (written live, published later) that would free me from worries about frequent updates, and allow me to write at length. Most likely that length turned out to be a good deal longer than anyone has any interest in reading, but if you’re determined to catch up on the day’s intriguing events without sitting through eight hours of archived video, you’re welcome to peruse what lies below. If you’d like to follow along, here’s an agenda, and here’s where you should be able to find downloadable presentations in the near future.
Here we are in sunny California, home of the cutest girls in the world, if the Beach Boys are to be believed (I gather there’s also a more recent chart-topper that expresses a similar view). Okay, so by “we,” I mean the attendees at the 3rd (annual?) Sportvision PITCHf/x summit, held at the Westin San Francisco in—you guessed it—San Francisco. I, on the other hand, am watching from the other end of the continent, via a webcast that dubiously claims to be “hi-res,” despite being blurry enough to make deciphering text an adventure (I guess “hi-res” is relative, in the sense that there are even lower resolutions at which it could’ve been streamed). And sure, maybe the Beach Boys weren’t thinking of this particular gathering when they extolled the virtues of California’s beach bunnies. But never mind that—it’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon here in New York, and how better to spend it than to watch a video of some fellow nerds talk about baseball in a dark room some 3,000 miles away? Well, to describe the experience at the same time, of course. Let’s get this quasi-liveblog started.
Give us your poor, your huddled Quad-A sluggers, yearning to be big leaguers.
I want to share a very personal fantasy with you, something I think about only late at night when no one else is awake. My fantasy is that in this year's annual, under Rod Barajas it will say, "See Miguel Olivo," and under Miguel Olivo it will say, "See Rod Barajas."
The Rays' young catcher comes into his own at just the right time.
It seems like it took forever waiting for it to happen, but Dioner Navarro finally cranked out a full, productive season as the starting catcher for the Tampa Bay Rays. Since Navarro was first handed the job all the way back in 2006, it's easy to forget that he is in the midst of just his age-24 season, and that he hasn't even hit his peak years yet. His production this season-his first as an All-Star-makes it look as if he's ready to enter his prime. What changed for the young catcher in 2008, and what can we expect from him going forward?
The perils of head trauma, and how it can derail a promising career.
Sixty-five years ago, the nation was at war and the Dodgers were about to fall out of postseason contention. Today, the nation is at war and the Dodgers are about to fall out of postseason contention. If the 2007 Dodgers fail to last into October, that failure will be due at least in part to the timidity with which the organization embraced young players like James Loney, Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp and Chad Billingsley. Their 1942 counterparts lost for precisely the opposite reason, holding on too tightly to a young player when they should have played anybody else.