Associated Press

In 1950, a fan was shot and killed at a Giants-Dodgers Game

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The story about the fan in St. Louis being grazed with a stray bullet reminded one of our commenters, and in turn, reminded me, about a crazy thing that happened at a ballgame back in 1950. The game: Brooklyn Dodgers vs. the New York Giants. The place: the Polo Grounds. The crazy thing: a fan was shot and killed while sitting in his seat during the game. The shot came from the roof of one of those apartment buildings to the third base side of the stadium in the picture above.

The entire story of it, complete with photos and stuff, was recapped by David Pincus at Sports Illustrated three years ago. Read it all here. The craziest part about it all? The game went on. And the fans didn’t even seem to care. Not even the 13-year-old boy who went to the game with the victim:

“Standees fought over Doyle’s empty seat as medics carried the dead man away,” reported the New York Daily News. Even Flaig, Doyle’s compatriot, seemed more upset that the incident caused him to miss the game than that his neighbor had been killed before his eyes.

“Young Otto himself complained that the detectives’ questions were making him miss the ballfield action,” the Daily News story continued. “‘I’ve been dreaming about this game for a month,” he grumbled.'”

We’re often accused of being a coarser, less caring society today than we were back then, but can you imagine if that happened today? The game would certainly be stopped. A national conversation would ensue. The people who flocked to the dead man’s seat would be castigated as monsters. It would dominate the news for days. In the 1950s? Eh, just a thing that happened, man.

Like I said. Crazy.

A-Rod to join ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball booth

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Alex Rodriguez’s post-retirement renaissance continues apace. After starring as a studio host for Fox’s playoff coverage over the past couple of years, A-Rod is about to be named to, arguably, televised baseball’s top job: color commentary in ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball booth.

Michael McCarthy of The Sporting News is hearing that ESPN is going to give the gig, vacated by Aaron Boone by virtue of his hiring by the Yankees, to Rodriguez. There he’ll join Jessica Mendoza and whoever they get to replace play-by-play man Dan Shulman, who chose to step back from the Sunday night job following last season. This, by the way, marks the second time A-Rod has taken over Aaron Boone’s job given that he replaced Boone at third base for the Yankees in 2004.

The twist: A-Rod is likely to keep his Fox postseason job too. While some broadcasters work for multiple networks, it’s pretty rare for Fox to allow its talents to work for competitors like that. Apparently they believe keeping A-Rod — who five years ago was one of the most despised figures in baseball — is worth it. What a difference a few years makes.

In other news, Alex Rodriguez is likely to be shunned mightily by the current crop of BBWAA voters when he hits the Hall of Fame ballot in a couple of years. At the rate he’s going, though, their successors will put him in Cooperstown via the Ford Frick Award sometime in the 2040s.