Wednesday, October 23, 2013

No memories of Medwick, but a World Series pair Cobb could comprehend

I was disappointed a couple of days ago when the Boston Red Sox managed to win the American League championship – I was hoping that the Detroit Tigers would prevail.

Because that would have meant a Tigers-St. Louis Cardinals matchup in the World Series beginning Wednesday. Considering that part of a World Series coverage includes a historical review of all the other times the two teams have played each other, we invariably would have been able to review 1934.

THAT WAS THE World Series between St. Louis and Detroit in which Tigers fans – outraged at the way Cardinals star Joe Medwick was kicking their behind on the field – started pelting him with fruit and vegetables and pop bottles, then turned to hot dogs and newspapers when they ran out.

The situation became so bad that then-baseball Commissioner Kenesaw Landis ordered Medwick removed from the game – which the Cardinals won anyway.

I still think Medwick’s after-game response was one of the funniest (and honest) things I have ever heard from a ballplayer’s mouth – he said he understood why Tigers fans were upset, but couldn’t comprehend why they had brought all those fruits and vegetables to the ballpark in the first place. It would have been fun to relive.

But we’re not going to get those reminisces. Instead, we have 1946 (Enos Slaughter’s unbelievable game-winning run scored from first base), 1967 (when pitcher Bob Gibson “owned” the Red Sox) or 2004 (when the momentum of defeating the New York Yankees in the American League playoffs enabled Boston to defeat a superior Cardinals ballclub in the World Series).

NOT AS FUNNY as Medwick’s moment. But I have to admit to not being offended by a Boston-St. Louis matchup, particularly because it means that the ball clubs with the best regular-season records in the American and National leagues respectively actually went on to win their league championships.

It really will be the two top ball clubs playing for the championship of U.S. baseball (what would constitute a real “World” Series is a subject best written about for another day).

There is a part of me who doesn’t mind when a pair of traditional ball clubs makes it to the World Series. An Atlanta-Tampa Bay matchup in the World Series (which could have happened) just doesn’t have the same “aura” about it! What would a reincarnated Ty Cobb think?!?

Besides, it doesn’t directly involve Chicago – the World Series rarely does.

THIS COULD BE the year that Chicago Cubs fans wind up rooting for Boston, because there’s no way that they’d think of rooting for their arch-rival in St. Louis to win yet another championship.

Meanwhile, Chicago White Sox fans will be watching the performance of Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy, and will likely tear their hair out of their heads if he winds up being spectacular. A Cy Young Award winner for the San Diego Padres and potential World Series star for the Red Sox who got paid big bucks by the White Sox for injury-prone seasons on the Sout’ Side.

Would Sox fans prefer it if the Cardinals knocked Peavy on his keister for a game or two?

Or will this World Series follow the trend of other World Series played in recent years – nobody outside the home cities of the two teams involved cares much?

Nobody attending Wednesday night's World Series game is getting into the ballpark for $1.20
IF SO, IT would be a shame. Because this still is for a championship, and the next week to 10 days could wind up creating moments that will be remembered forevermore.

At least during those times in the future when there is a rain delay and somebody thinks that past highlights shown on the stadium video boards will help pass the time.

Although somehow, I doubt it if anyone in Boston or St. Louis brings fruit and vegetables to pelt their least-favorite player on the opposition. Medwick’s memory will likely remain unique!


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