Saturday, November 07, 2009

The Boys of Summer

My first job was in the fourth grade, as a newsboy with The Cincinnati Enquirer. For getting five new customers in early 1965, I got two tickets to see the Reds play the Chicago Cubs (I think) for the Opening Day game. Now, a lot of baseball towns have opening day games. But everyone knows that the REAL one can only take place in the city that gave the world professional baseball. Not only that, but getting tickets to the game was considered an excused absence.

So I took my Dad (hey, somebody had to drive) to old Crosley Field. I remember the smell of "red hots," the best I ever tasted. How did they make those? The organ played a mournful tune during one of the breaks, and an old man in a dark suit stood up and removed his fedora. They were playing his song, "My Old Kentucky Home."

I stopped following the game as closely as I once did when I moved to DC. I was never that good at it anyway. This is why I was too busy this year to pay any attention at all to the World Series. So the Yankees won again. Big deal. Another reason for New York to think it's the center of the known universe.

But over in Korea, they seem to have a different attitude toward the game. It's hard to tell exactly how, because I don't speak Korean. But if anyone out there does, I'd love to know if the commentators in this clip can explain what's going on. Peter Schiller of The Dugout Doctors calls this "the strangest thing I have ever seen in a baseball game." We've all seen plays where the pitcher accidentally hits the batter. Here's how they deal with it in Korea.


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