Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Pine Tar Game + 35

Like It Was Yesterday: Under normal circumstances, Abq Jew would wait until '2xChai' to memorialize such an important event. But circumstances these days are nowhere near normal. And Abq Jew isn't getting any younger. So here goes.

And besides which. Abq Jew's good friend Steve Goldstein posted this on Facebook yesterday, along with a video about 'The Pine Tar Game':
35th anniversary of the Pine Tar Game. I was there at the original Yankee Stadium with my friend Marc Yellin. We were sitting in the 2nd deck (mezzanine) in right field, directly above the spot where Brett's home run ball cleared the fence. For a split second, as the ball clears the fence, Marc and I are in the video.
To which Laura G, Steve's ex-wife and also our good friend, responded:
Uh, can you actually SEE yourself in the video? I can't!
And Steve replied:
I know exactly where we were sitting. Consequently, I know which people in the stands are us. There were not many people sitting near us. 
And Abq Jew said:
OMG, 35 years. Yep, it's just like Steven Goldstein says. That's exactly where we were sitting. Like it was yesterday. And of course we're in the video. You just have to look hard enough!

For those of you, Abq Jew's loyal readers, who were either a) too young; or b) could not have cared less about the 1983 New York Yankees - Wikipedia will explain.
The Pine Tar Incident (also known as the Pine Tar Game) was a controversial incident during an American League Baseball game played between the Kansas City Royals and New York Yankees on July 24, 1983, at Yankee Stadium in New York City. 
With his team trailing 4–3 in the top half of the ninth inning, with two outs, George Brett of the Royals hit a two-run home run to give his team the lead. 
However, Yankees manager Billy Martin, who had noticed a large amount of pine tar on Brett's bat, requested that the umpires inspect his bat. The umpires ruled that the amount of pine tar on the bat exceeded the amount allowed by rule, nullified Brett's home run, and called him out. 
As Brett was the third out in the ninth inning with the home team in the lead, the game ended with a Yankees win. 
The Royals protested the game, and American League president Lee MacPhail upheld their protest and ordered that the game be restarted from the point of Brett's home run. The game was restarted on August 18 and officially ended with the Royals winning 5–4.

 And for those who are really, really interested:
The bat is currently on display in the Baseball Hall of Fame, where it has been since 1987. During a broadcast of Mike & Mike in the Morning, ESPN analyst Tim Kurkjian stated that Brett used the bat for a few games after the incident until being cautioned that the bat would be worthless if broken. 
Brett sold the bat to famed collector and then partial owner of the Yankees, Barry Halper, for $25,000, had second thoughts, repurchased the bat for the same amount from the collector and then donated the bat to the Hall of Fame.
The home run ball was caught and sold by journalist Ephraim Schwartz to Halper for $500 plus 12 Yankees tickets, as well as Schwartz's ticket stub. Halper also acquired the signed business card of Justice Orest V. Maresca, who had issued the injunction, and the can of Oriole Pine Tar Brett had used on the bat. Gossage later signed the pine-tar ball, "Barry, I threw the fucking thing."

On a more somber note: This week also marks the 53rd anniversary of that fateful day, July 25, 1965, when Bob Dylan went electric (for a performance of Maggie's Farm, et al) at the Newport Folk Festival.

For those of you, Abq Jew's loyal readers, who were either a) too young; or b) could not have cared more about Komodo dragons and other endangered species - Wikipedia reminds us.

In the 1990 movie The Freshman, Bert Parks, portraying a version of himself and acting as event MC and musical host, performs a cover of Maggie's Farm during the final gathering of the Gourmet Club, a group of wealthy individuals who attend a covert and expensive dinner in order to dine on the last of an endangered species (which is actually an elaborate con, with the real meal consisting of more traditional ingredients).
And yes, Bert Parks also sang Tequila!

Abq Jew reminds us all, himself included:

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