This is only about baseball insofar as it involves a baseball player, but it’s a pretty interesting story anyway.
The New York Times’ Joshua Prager has a story about retired Dodgers’ pitcher Ralph Branca’s family. Seems that even though Branca was baptized and raised Catholic to Catholic parents and remains Catholic to this day, his mother was Jewish and, unbeknownst to Branca until very recently, most of his mother’s family remained in Europe after she emigrated and they were killed in the Holocaust.
It’s neat on the surface for the “hey, he didn’t know it” perspective, but I find it pretty interesting from the “what makes us who we are; how does one define one’s identity” point of view. I come from a hodgepodge of a background with all manner of wackiness in the branches of my family tree, so it’s the kind of thing I think about often.
Does it matter where we came from? I often think not, because absent a trust fund or a congenital disease, life is what me make it. But the fact that we spend so much time thinking about it makes me think that there’s more to it than I typically care to admit.
Phillies rookie starter Jake Thompson has been shut down for the year. Not that there’s much of the year left, but he will not make what would’ve been his last start.
Thompson allowed three earned runs over four innings in the Phillies’ 17-0 blowout loss to the Mets. That leaves him with a 5.70 ERA in 53.2 innings for the season. Which, while that’s kind of ugly, it was a function of some bad starts mixed in with good starts as opposed to overall badness.
Everything about his 2016 should be viewed as “get yourself used to the big leagues, because you’re going to be part of this rotation in 2017 and beyond,” and from that perspective, you can call 2016 a success.
As a horrible Sunday unfolded yesterday there was at least one thing buoying the public mood: the overwhelming outpouring of emotion and love for Jose Fernandez and warm remembrances of his all-too-brief time on Earth.
But it wasn’t a unanimous sentiment. Some people, like this Florida state representative who is currently running for Congress, thought it was a great time to make a political point:
Setting aside the tastelessness of Gaetz’s timing and intent, one wonders if he appreciates that the reason Fernandez risked his life on multiple occasions was specifically so he could live in a country where protesting and not exhibiting a reflexive loyalty and patriotism is a fundamental right and does not get you thrown in jail.
But really, it’s the tastelessness which most galls here.