Autographed Cardinals cap found on the side of the road

21 Comments

I just want to know what led to it being on the side of the road:

 A die-hard Chicago Cubs fan has found a 2011 World Series championship cap autographed by rival St. Louis Cardinals players – and he wants to give it back.  Joe Couri tells the Journal Star in Peoria he was driving along Interstate 74 in central Illinois when traffic backed up because of an accident. He says he saw the hat among debris on an off-ramp.

The cap was signed by David Freese, Yadier Molina, Jason Motte and one “unexpected player.”  The identity of the unexpected player is being held back because Mr. Couri is doing the noble thing and is going to return the cap to its owner if he or she can be found.  They’ll have to name the player or provide photo evidence that the cap is theirs to get it back.

Hmmm … unexpected player.  I’m going with Ernie Lombardi, Hall of Fame catcher for the World Champion 1940 Cincinnati Reds.  Now, can I have my hat back?

Must-Click Link: Remembering Eddie Grant the first major leaguer to die in combat

3 Comments

As you get ready for Memorial Day weekend and whatever it entails for you and yours, take some time to read an excellent article from Mike Bates over at The Hardball Times.

The article is about Eddie Grant. You probably never heard of him. He was a journeyman infielder — often a backup — from 1905 through 1915. If you have heard of him, it was likely not for his baseball exploits, however: it was because he was the first active baseball player to die in combat, killed in the Battle of the Argonne Forest in October 1915.

Michael tells us about more than Grant’s death, however. He provides a great overview of his life and career. And notes that Grant didn’t even have to go to war if he didn’t want to. He was 34, had the chance to coach or manage and had a law degree and the potential to make a lot of money following his baseball career. He volunteered, however, for both patriotic and personal reasons. And it cost him his life.

Must-read stuff indeed. Especially this weekend.

The Indians are unveiling a Frank Robinson statue on Sunday

Getty Images
8 Comments

The Cleveland Indians will unveil a Frank Robinson statue at Progressive Field on Saturday.

Robinson’s tenure in Cleveland was not long, but it was historic. On April 8, 1975, he became the first African-American manager in Major League history. He was a player-manager. One of the last ones, in fact. He spent two years in that role and then a third year — a partial year anyway — as a manager only. Robinson would go on to manage the Giants, Orioles and the Expos/Nationals, compiling a career record of 1065-1176 in 16 seasons. He is now a top MLB executive.

Robinson was, of course, a Hall of Fame player as well, lodging 21 seasons for the Reds, Orioles, Dodgers, Angels and Indians. He won two MVP awards and hit for the Triple Crown in 1966. Overall he hit 586 home runs – 10th all time – and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982. For an inner-circle Hall of Famer with that kind of resume he is still, strangely enough, underrated. I guess that happens when your contemporaries are Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and Mickey Mantle.

Anyway, congrats to Frank Robinson for yet another well-deserved honor in a career full of them.