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Archive for the ‘Baseball’ Category

Wednesday’s show: The baseball post-season and the 2018-19 Dallas Stars

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Guests:  Carlos Torres & David Busby join me for a look at Dallas Ft Worth sports………We will look at the Dallas Stars 2018-19…….What happens to The Texas Rangers in the off season?………...and other stories………click to listen:


Written by scantojr

October 3, 2018 at 11:00 pm

Happy # 70 Dave Concepcion

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We say happy birthday to David Concepcion, who was born in Venezuela on this day in 1948.    He turned into one of the greatest shortstops in NL history.    Dave broke in with the Reds in 1970 and was one of the key parts of the teams that won 4 NL titles and the World Series in 1975 & 1976.  

Dave was more than a great defensive infielder:  He hit .267 with 2,326 hits.    

In my opinion, Dave should be in the Hall of Fame, as Tyler Duma wrote in 2012:

There are 22 shortstops in the Hall of Fame as of 2012. When placed in that group of players, Concepcion ranks ninth in HR, 10th in SB, 11th in hits and RBI, 15th in SLG and 19th in AVG and OBP.

He won five Gold Gloves (four straight from 1974-77), back-to-back Silver Sluggers (1981-82) and made nine all-star teams (eight straight from 1975-82).    

Add to all of this that Concepcion was a quiet leader in a team that included Johnny Bench, Tony Perez, Joe Morgan and Pete Rose.    



Written by scantojr

June 17, 2018 at 10:00 am

Posted in Baseball

Harvey Haddix perfect for 12 but lost in the 13th

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We remember Harvey Haddix today.  

This is what happened on this day in 1959:

“Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches 12 perfect innings against the Milwaukee Braves, only to lose the game on a two-run double by Braves’ first baseman Joe Adcock in the 13th inning. 

It was the first time a pitcher threw more than nine perfect innings in major league history…….
Haddix took the mound in the 13th inning after retiring 36 Braves in a row, nine more than usually required for a perfect game. 

The fleet-footed second baseman Felix Mantillia came to bat first. He hit a grounder to Pirate third baseman Don Hoak, who threw the ball across the diamond and into the dirt near first baseman Rocky Nelson. 

 Mantillia was safe, and the perfect game was over, though the no-hitter remained intact. 

The next batter, Hall of Famer Eddie Matthews, sacrificed Mantillia to second base. 

Then Hank Aaron, who was leading the National League in batting, came to the plate. Haddix intentionally walked the future career home run king on four pitches. 

Adcock was up next, and he hit a drive that just cleared the fence in right-center field. 

In their jubilation over the win, the Braves became muddled on the base paths, and Adcock passed Aaron between second and third base. 

The umpire Frank Dascoli called Adcock out, changing his three-run homer to a two-run double after several minutes of deliberation.”


It was the greatest pitching performance ever but he lost the game.


Written by scantojr

May 26, 2018 at 9:15 pm

We remember Gene Oliver (1935-2007)

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We remember Gene Oliver who was born in Moline, Illinois, on this day in 1935.    He died in 2007.

Gene broke with the Cardinals in 1959.   He was traded to the Braves in 1962 and that’s where he enjoyed his best seasons:   .251 average, 56 HR, 184 RBI in 403 games.    He hit .270 plus 21 HR with the ’65 Braves.

Oliver retired a few years before the DH came into effect in the AL.   Wonder how many more at-bats & HRs he would have had under the DH rule?   He was the perfect profile for a DH!


Written by scantojr

March 22, 2018 at 5:16 am

Posted in Baseball

Joe Garagiola (1926-2016)

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Joseph Henry “Joe” Garagiola was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on this day in 1926.    

My first memory of Garagiola was when he hosted the pre-game show on NBC.   He was also on The Johnny Carson show once in a while.

Garagiola was a catcher with the Cardinals before going to the TV booth.   He was a great ambassador for the game, as well.   

He died in 2016.    

P.S.  By the way, he wrote a funny book years ago:  “Baseball is a funny game“.

Written by scantojr

February 12, 2018 at 12:35 am

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We remember Jerry Coleman who played baseball and served in the US Marines

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Jerry Coleman was born on this day in 1924.   He died in 2014. 

Back in 2014, I posted this about the passing of Jerry Coleman:

“”Coleman’s playing career was unspectacular:
His career batting average was .263, he had little power and he played only one season as a regular.
But that one season was impressive: As the Yankees’ everyday second baseman in 1950, he played 153 games, batted .287 and was named the most valuable player in the World Series as the Yankees swept the Phillies.  
As a Marine pilot, he flew in the Pacific during World War II and was recalled to fly during the Korean War.”

Coleman is probably better known to younger fans as the voice of the San Diego Padres and his work on post season radio broadcasts. I also recalled a good book about his life called “An American Journey.”   It’s a fun read and tells the story of a impressive man.

I am not knocking today’s players.  However, there is something about a guy who flew wartime missions and turned the double play!   

P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.

Written by scantojr

September 14, 2017 at 1:29 pm

Is the left killing the NFL, too?

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Over the weekend, I read a lengthy article about how identity politics driven by the party’s left wing is killing the Democrat Party. It is bringing their agenda down, according to Annis Shivani.  

Well, let me tell you something else that the left is bringing down, i.e. the National Football League.   

All of these political demonstrations are not playing well at all with the people who buy the tickets or watch it on TV.    
new post by Richard Deitsch raises the possibility:   

At least one sports television network president believes that national anthem protests last season were a factor in the decline of NFL ratings.

On Wednesday during its annual NFL Media Day in New York City, CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus said research his network did internally indicated that the protests played some kind of role in declining average viewers. He was emphatic, however, that it was merely a factor and not the cause. 


The average television viewership for the 2016 NFL season dropped roughly 8% last year from 2015.

“We did research and it was relatively proprietary research, to be honest with you,” McManus said. “But I think if you look at some of the reasons why NFL viewership was down last year, that is a reason that’s mentioned by a fair amount of viewers. It is something they don’t find attractive or they find don’t compelling in coverage of the football game. How big a factor it was? I don’t really know. But it was one of the factors that I think perhaps led to the slight decrease in ratings last year.”

There are a couple of factors here that irritate me, and I follow sports a lot. I’m the type of guy who follows the Rangers, the Cowboys, the Mavericks, the Stars, and college football. I’m into sports just about every day of the year.

First, you have the total ignorance of people like Colin Kaepernick who talk about repression and then praise the repressive government of Cuba. Did you go to school, Colin? Go talk to a Cuban major league baseball player and he will clear you head very quickly about that Che T-shirt that you are wearing. Ask them about how their family have been treated after escaping Cuba.

Second, NFL players are employees using their work time to pursue political objectives. Why don’t they hold these marches on their own time? I think that a lot of fans, specially the many people who buy the company tickets, understand that. March on your own time, Colin!

Finally, we watch sports to get away from the daily grind of life, from business to politics. It’s a great escape for most of us. It’s family time, as it is with my sons or it was with my late father.  It is a time to enjoy a meal with your friends, as many do with NFL broadcasts. It is our time off and we don’t like for athletes to spoil it.

It’s probably too early to know for sure but my anecdotal evidence suggests that many fans are furious or have had it with players who spoil our sporting events with political protests.   

Let’s hope that the NFL Commissioner is paying attention because some of these athletes are killing his brand.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.


Written by scantojr

September 6, 2017 at 7:15 am

Posted in Baseball, US politics

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RIP Rafael “Felo” Ramirez, 1923-2017

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My brother and I learned of Rafael “Felo” Ramirez from our parents.   They would tell us stories of pre-Castro Cuban baseball games on the radio.  

Those were the days when Almendares-Habana games were heard passionately across the island.   It was like a Red Sox-Yankees series but with the passion that Cubans added to the game of baseball.        

My mother rooted for La Habana in Ciego de Avila and my father for Almendares in Sagua la Grande.    I can confirm that opposites attract and maybe those night radio broadcasts had something to do with it.

In the 1980’s, I picked up Felo on the radio in Mexico City broadcasting major league baseball games to Latin America.  

Frankly, he was great and brought his conversationalist style to a game that he loved as much as anyone.  

He was behind the Spanish speaking microphone for Don Larsen’s perfect game in 1956, Roberto Clemente’s 3,000th hit in 1972 , and Hank Aaron’s 715th HR in 1974.

We learned today that Felo Ramirez passed away:   

Born in Bayamo, Cuba on June 22, 1923, it didn’t take long for Ramirez to fall in love with baseball. He played second base on a local team during his teens and dreamed of becoming a professional but said he wasn’t good enough.

One day during a game, he spontaneously began calling plays using a friend’s amplifier and microphone.   Ramirez then began his professional radio career at Radio Salas in Havana in 1945 before moving on to call games for teams in Puerto Rico and Venezuela including Cagua Natives, Santurce Crabs, San Juan Senators and Magallanes.

He also called many boxing fights including those of Muhammad Ali.    

In addition to being a play-by-play man, Ramirez shared the microphone with fellow Hall of Fame broadcaster Eloy “Buck” Canel on the “Gillette Cavalcade of Sports,” a show which aired on more than 200 Spanish radio stations all over Latin America.    

As my late father used to say, Felo and baseball on the radio were made for each other.    

In recent years, Felo was the voice of The Miami Marlins.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Written by scantojr

August 22, 2017 at 2:30 pm

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August 8, 1988: Lights at Wrigley Field

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As I recall, the game was rained out but the lights went on before the summer showers came.  

It all started at 6:05 pm when 91-year-old Cubs fan Harry Grossman began the countdown. “Three . . . two . . . one . . . Let there be lights!”

Grossman pressed a button and light towers were on.   Wonder if Mr. Grossman was around for the 2016 World Series title?  My guess is no but I don’t know for sure.

For years, Cubs’ fans had to watch day baseball.    It was charming, specially for kids during the summer school.    It made afternoon rush hour traffic a bit interesting on WGN radio.   It brought morning baseball to West Coast fans. 

Eventually, the economics must have caught up with the Cubs.    It’s hard to play day time baseball when TV viewership is crucial to pro sports.

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August 8, 2017 at 11:00 am

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Happy # 88 Don Larsen

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We say happy birthday to Don Larsen.    He was born on this day in 1929 in Michigan City, Indiana.    

Don played on several teams and retired with a 81-91 record.    

His big moment came in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.    He pitched the only perfect game in World Series history.     Larsen shut down a great Brooklyn Dodgers’ team that included future Hall of Famers Roy Campanella, Pee Wee Reese, Jackie Robinson and Duke Snider, along with power hitter Gil Hodges.     

The game ended on a called strike 3 on Dale Mitchell.

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August 7, 2017 at 1:00 pm

Posted in Baseball

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