Friday, February 1, 2019

Check out 'This Week In Baseball History' if you're into baseball history

About a year ago, I started listening to podcasts. For those of you unfamiliar with podcasts, it’s basically a pre-recorded radio show that you can download onto your computer or smartphone.
I spend a lot of time in my truck, and I usually listen to podcasts while riding around. I just plug my iPhone into the truck radio and hit play.

Podcasts cover a wide range of topics. You name it, there’s probably a podcast about it. Some are really well done, while others can be extremely tedious.

I say all this to say that during the past week, I discovered a sports-related podcast that some of you might want to check out. It’s called “This Week in Baseball History,” and it’s hosted by Mike Bates and Bill Parker. Bates is a columnist for MLB Daily Dish, and Parker is a lawyer who also happens to be a huge baseball fan.

The podcast released its first episode on June 8, 2017 and it’s currently in its third season. I’m currently in the process of listening to all the old episodes, and from the looks of things I’ve got a lot to look forward to. They’ve covered dozens of baseball history topics so far, including the infamous Black Sox Scandal, the scandalous Pine Tar Game and the rise of AstroTurf.

If you have any interest at all in baseball history, I highly recommend that you check out this podcast. The hosts are good humored, extremely knowledgeable baseball historians and have the ability to discuss baseball history topics in a way that’s engaging and interesting.

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Speaking of baseball, the University of Alabama’s outstanding athletics communications department issued a media advisory on Monday that grabbed my attention. The advisory was actually a nice invitation from Alabama head baseball coach Brad Bohannon, asking members of the media to take part in a lunch and batting practice session this coming Monday in Tuscaloosa.

Not only did this media event include lunch with the coach, but reporters wishing to take part in batting practice would be escorted to Sewell-Thomas Stadium to shag fly balls and take 10 swings from the cage starting at noon. Bats and balls would be provided during batting practice, but reporters will have to bring their own gloves, batting gloves and “other baseball-related attire” to take part in the batting practice session.

Other than fooling around in the backyard with the kids, I haven’t made a good, honest swing with a baseball bat in about 25 years. At my all-time best, I was a very average baseball player, and I can only imagine what I would look like taking 10 swings at Alabama’s baseball stadium. Much younger sports reporters would probably avail themselves much better, so I figure I will save myself the embarrassment of stepping up to the plate.

I did ask Courant Publisher Robert Bozeman about taking the day off on Monday to attend this event in Tuscaloosa. After all, there was a free meal involved, and as a matter of principle, I didn’t want to pass that up. Robert did not immediately reply to my query, and I was reminded of a Clint Eastwood quote that he repeats sometimes around the office – “A man’s got to know his limitations.”

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