Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers helps to save New York area youth from child predators

Rollie Fingers presents award at Greatest Save dinner
The world-renown golf courses at Bethpage attract thousands of enthusiasts each year looking to tackle one of the sport’s most ferocious challenges. On Monday May 20, a few hundred devotees gathered there to support a more pressing issue, educating youth about the dangers of child predators.

Headed by the efforts of KinderVision founder Doug Sebastian and national spokesperson, Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers, The Greatest Save was able to make a profound impact on Long Island. All proceeds from the golf tournament and auction went back to local municipalities to further education and prevention programs.

Click here to read more about The Greatest Save's efforts in New York and its impact on the local area.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Share your memories of John 'Mule' Miles, Negro League star

John "Mule" Miles, a power hitting outfielder / third baseman for the Chicago American Giants of the Negro Leagues, passed away on Friday May 24, 2013 at the age of 90.

Miles played three seasons in the Negro Leagues from 1946-48, and set a record of hitting home runs in 11 straight games.

In recent years, Miles was a very popular figure with baseball fans, exchanging letters filled with inspirational phrases like the one below to those that sought his signature. It is no surprise that he entitled his autobiography, "A Legacy to Leave Our Youth."

Pictured below is a note from Miles after writing to him in 2006.
"Winning is not by luck, it is how you play the game."
Share your memories of Mr. Miles below, or your favorite words of wisdom that you received in your correspondence with him.



Thursday, May 23, 2013

Cot Deal, 90, pitched for the Red Sox and Cardinals

Cot Deal 1954 Topps Archives / Baseball-Almanac.com
Ellis "Cot" Deal, who spent 50 years in professional baseball as a pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals, as well as a coach for numerous organizations, passed away Tuesday May 21, 2013. He was 90.

Deal's career is expertly detailed by SABR member Patrick Doyle in his SABR biography.

Doyle's research on Deal's career also appears in the book, "Spahn, Sain, and Teddy Ballgame: Boston's (almost) Perfect Baseball Summer of 1948."

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Joe McEwing receives nod for 2013 Irish-American Baseball Hall of Fame class

"Super" Joe McEwing, the current Chicago White Sox third base coach, and former utility man who played primarily for the New York Mets, was inducted into the Irish-American Baseball Hall of Fame last week in New York City.

McEwing joined a class that included former Met Rusty Staub; Peter O'Malley, owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Bill Madden, writer for the New York Daily News; and Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy.


Friday, May 3, 2013

Autograph signings a family affair for Potter

Bret Boone / Chris Potter
Baseball possesses a magical power to connect young and old through the history of the game. Passed down from father to son, these shared tales of the legends of yesteryear keep players from decades past relevant today. With the pictures of their youth immortalized on pieces of cardboard, collecting memorabilia has been one such way for families to share in the baseball tradition.

Chris Potter is a specialist at bridging fans with these cardboard heroes, navigating the back roads of the United States to conduct autograph signings with retired baseball players. Potter’s clients range from those whose careers amounted to a "cup of coffee," to those who have reached the baseball's pinnacle, the Hall of Fame. His next round of travels begins on May 10, 2013 and will include a special partner in these cross country expeditions, his father.

“My father just retired from being a police officer of 40 years. He’s coming out with me for this trip and I couldn’t be more excited for him to come along. He’s going to spend the next month with me on the road,” said Potter from his offices in Maryland.

Potter believes having his father around for these series of visits are the residue of baseball’s ability to bond father and son.

“The reason why it’s America’s pastime is because it’s been passed down from generation to generation,” he said.

A few of the players Potter will be conducting signings with have made baseball the family business. Bret Boone, a three-time All-Star, was a third generation major leaguer. His father Bob enjoyed a 19-year major league career as a catcher, and grandfather Ray won a World Series with the 1948 Cleveland Indians. Vernon Law, the 1960 Cy Young Award winner, nurtured his son Vance to follow his major league footprint.

Also in this round of Potter’s signings that includes 90 former major league players, are well known veterans such as Rollie Fingers, Vida Blue, and Jack McDowell, as well as baseball obscurities such as Drungo Hazewood, whose career lasted an ever so short five plate appearances.

With the many names that Potter will be encountering, there is a father somewhere that will have a tale crystallizing the moment they saw one of these ballplayers on a good day. An autograph on a treasured baseball card or photo will further the conversation. Hopefully for Potter, he’ll get a few of these yarns spun his way by his traveling companion on this round of signings.