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>From:         Eric J Krupka <[log in to unmask]>
Subject:      Re: OT - but worthwhile

Dana Dorsett wrote: > > Geoff Devine [[log in to unmask]] writes: > >
>> Um, what about golf? > > > >Cricket is the sport that has me completely
stumped. > > Cricket is about great defensive batting. There some
major-leaguer > baseballer(whose name escapes me) in the '50s famous for
the ability to > hit 15-20 fouls in successive pitches until he found one
he really > liked- he would have been a decent cricket player.<<

>That would be Luke Appling. It was also said he would direct those foul
balls into the opposing dugout and try to hit players that were heckling
him.<

Luke Appling is a Hall of Famer and a great player.  I looked him up and
he retired in 1950.  Actually thought it was far earlier.  Mention of his
name brings back a story.  There was an annual Old Timers All Star Game
held here at RFK stadium in DC for a few years.  One year Appling came up
to bat against Warren Spahn (363 wins, #1 all time lefty).  The fences had
been brought in to 275 feet and Spahn walked halfway to home plate and
indulgently served Appling a big fat juicy slow pitch which Appling hit
for a home run.  He was 75 years old!  Spahn clasped his hands to his
heart and did a pratfall on the field, then bounded up and jogged the
bases with Appling patting him on the back.  What a great scene that was!
They should have made that game an annual one forever.

Today every hitter wants to swing for the fence and most of them have
steroid enhanced bodies.  I believe that protecting the plate, especially
with 2 strikes, has become a lost art.  It is a concept directly descended
from cricket.  The best I ever saw at it was Yogi Berra, the most
dangerous hitter of his era in late innings with men on base.  Berra would
often foul off a dozen pitches and then single in a run.  His prime was in
the 50s.  Wonder if you are thinking of him.

Sorry to go further OT but couldn't help myself.

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