Ruth Called Shot Baseball

And That Happened: Classic!


Note: due to the All-Star break, we now bring you a special “Classic” version of “And That Happened.” The following originally ran on July 14, 1932

Yankees 5, Browns 3: A home run for Babe Ruth, his 25th on the season. Ruth is the power-hitting sensation the sport desperately needs these days. Let’s hope he’s clean. Sorry, but even in this Prohibition era, it’s impossible not to be suspicious when someone continues to show up to the ballpark in last night’s clothes, reeking of gin, cigar smoke and the scent of loose women. Ruth is a great story. Let’s just hope he’s legit.

Senators 15, White Sox 4: The game was delayed some two hours, as the city’s streets had to be cleared for Army Chief of Staff General Douglas MacArthur, as he and two cavalry units marched to clear the Bonus Army off the Anacostia Flats. When the dead and injured were removed, it was a wonderful day for a ballgame. Heinie Manush had a triple, four RBI and an assault beef, after he socked two wiseacres for laughing at the name “Heine.”

Dodgers 5, Cubs 4: This game was delayed as well. Hobos. Hobos as far as the eye could see. Happens so often anymore, however, that none of the players seemed too upset by it all.  At any rate, after the hobos were rounded up and placed on a westbound freight, play resumed.  Only problem: the Dodgers’ starter — Sloppy Thurston — was himself mistaken for a hobo, likely due to his name. This led to a longer delay. Eventually Sloppy was returned.

Phillies 3, Reds 2: I was going to take the train down to Cincinnati for this one, but I had another engagement. There was a meeting of the  Women’s Organization for National Prohibition Reform here in Arch City, and I for one would never pass up the opportunity to meet Ms. Pauline Sabin, who (a) is single and; (b) is doing God’s work. Snipe Hansen and Pinky Whitney were the heroes of this one for the Phillies. Which isn’t surprising, because when you think of a hero, you can’t help but think of Snipe and Pinky.

Braves 5, Pirates 1; Braves 10, Pirates 5: This doubleheader was not entirely necessary. Boston has been visiting Pittsburgh for several days now and could very well have completed this series in single games. It was deemed appropriate by President Hoover, however, that in light of the current economic strife, that the clubs stimulate the economy with concentrated economic activity like this whenever possible. “Some may construe mild suggestions to the private sector such as these to be a brand of socialism,” President Hoover said, “and I am not unaware of the danger of this level of governmental meddling in private affairs.  But desperate times call for desperate measures, and if the very meek entreaties of a sitting President to our nation’s evil, bloated plutocrats has even the slightest hope of helping matters, I am willing to risk the potentially destabilizing side effects that this intervention might cause.”

Cardinals 6, Giants 2: after 30 years with John McGraw at the helm, the Giants are still adjusting to new manager Bill Terry following McGraw’s retirement a little over a month ago. Winning games without constantly baiting the other team, the umpires and the fans into horrendous donnybrooks is not part of the Giants’ makeup, so it will certainly take time to adjust.

Red Sox 8, Tigers 2: The Red Sox’ win — the second in a two-game winning streak! — brings them to within 36 games of first place. This win was nice, but it’s just sad to see a team from a town as small as Boston trying to compete with the big boys from up-and-coming juggernaut cities like Detroit.

Indians 7, Athletics 5: Three days after the ridiculous game in which Eddie Rommel gave up 29 hits — and won — and in which Johnny Burnett went 9-for-11 — and lost — the Indians and Athletics play a relatively tame one. Lefty Grove takes the loss in a relief role. I say, the man just simply doesn’t know how to win baseball games.

UPDATE: Barry Bonds tentatively plans to accept the Marlins hitting coach job

Barry Bonds

UPDATE: Bob Nightengale reports that while negotiations are not yet finalized, Barry Bonds “tentatively plans to accept the Marlins’ offer to be hitting coach with Frank Menechino.” Which is a good reminder that Menechino is still the Marlins’ hitting coach. Who would be the assistant and who would be the coach — or if they’d be co-coaches — is unclear.

12:00PM: The matter of Barry Bonds as the Marlins hitting coach has gone from “consideration” to “offer,” reports Bob Nightengale. The Marlins now await Barry Bonds’ response.

The biggest mystery in all of this is whether Bonds is actually interested. No one has reported that he was willing or even that there have been serious conversations between the Marlins and Bonds. That could be because Bonds, as has always been his practice, doesn’t talk too much to the media. Indeed, we learn more about him from his social media presence than anything reported about him. So it’s possible that Bonds and Jeff Loria have been in contact about all of this and he’s strongly considering it as well.

It’s also possible that this is all nothing and the Marlins are just trying to make a long shot happen.

MONDAY, 5:01 PM: This shouldn’t cause any controversy, lead to a lot of people saying dumb things or provide fodder for jokes at all. Nope, none whatsoever:

In what promises to be a bombshell move, if executed, all-time great slugger Barry Bonds is under consideration to become Marlins hitting coach.

Team higherups have quietly been discussing this possibility for weeks.

That’s Jon Heyman, who reminds us that Bonds has worked with the Giants in the spring in recent years. And who, no matter what else you can say about him, was one of the greatest hitters the game has ever seen. Also worth remembering that despite his controversial past, that greatness came not just from physical gifts, naturally or artificially bestowed. It came from his approach, preparation and strategy at the plate. No one can teach a hitter to hit like Barry Bonds, but you’d think that hitters could be taught to try to approach an at bat the way Barry Bonds would. And who better to do it than Barry Bonds?

That is, if Bonds is willing to drop his seemingly ideal retired life in San Francisco, move to Miami and work for Jeff Loria for nine months a year. Which, eh, who knows? But the possibility of it is pretty fascinating to think about.

Royals avoid arbitration with Tim Collins for $1.475 million

Tim Collins Getty
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Left-hander Tim Collins, who missed the entire 2015 season following Tommy John elbow surgery, will remain with the Royals after avoiding arbitration for a one-year, $1.475 million contract.

Collins was a non-tender candidate due to his injury and projected salary via arbitration, but the Royals are convinced he can bounce back to be a valuable part of the bullpen again in 2016 and beyond. He agreed to the same salary he made in 2015.

Prior to blowing out his elbow Collins posted a 3.54 ERA with 220 strikeouts in 211 innings from 2011-2014 and he’s still just 26 years old. He figures to begin 2016 in a middle relief role.

Joba Chamberlain signs with the Indians

Joba Chamberlain

When you think “Joba Chamberlain” and “Cleveland” you think of the then-Yankees phenom being attacked by midges in the 2007 ALDS. If you don’t remember that somehow, the video evidence is below.

But all of that changes now, as the Indians have just announced that they have signed Chamberlain to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league spring training. That’s no promise of a big league job, but the Indians did make at least one promise to him:


I can vouch for that. The Indians’ Triple-A team is in Columbus and we don’t have midges here.

Chamberlain split time with the Royals and the Tigers in 2015, posting a composite ERA of 4.88 in 36 games of mostly mopup work.

Mariners trying to trade Mark Trumbo by Wednesday

Mark Trumbo

Seattle making Mark Trumbo available has been known for a while now, but Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that the Mariners are trying to trade the first baseman/outfielder before Wednesday.

That’s the deadline to tender 2016 contracts to arbitration eligible players and with Trumbo set to make around $9 million via that process the Mariners would rather move on before any decision needs to be made. In other words: They don’t want to be stuck with him.

Trumbo has elite power, averaging 30 homers per 160 games for his career, but that power comes with a .250 batting average, poor plate discipline and a .299 on-base percentage, and sub par defense. Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has already traded Trumbo once, dealing him to the Diamondbacks back when he was the Angels’ general manager, and now he’s working hard to part ways again.

Ken Rosenthal of reports that the Rockies are among the interested teams.