Films on Friday: Centerfield

This was awesome. Its from a few weeks ago, but we really need this now.

Happy Friday!

~ baseballrebecca

Mrs. Bodell and the Home Run Polka

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division

“The Home Run Polka” was composed by Mrs. Bodell of Washington, DC., in 1867, and was “Respectfully dedicated to the National Base Ball Club of Washington, D.C.” You can find the sheet music at the Library of Congress, and check out the video below which includes the song.

I couldn’t find any information on Mrs. Bodell, but I wonder if she was a baseball fan. But we know women’s baseball has been around for a long time, as so have women baseball fans.

According to DCist, the National Baseball Club of Washington, DC (also know as the Nationals), was made up of players who “were mostly government clerks from the Treasury, the IRS, and auditors’ offices. Their first games were played somewhere on Capitol Hill, but in 1865, they moved to a field in front of the White House (where the Ellipse is today). They competed in a tournament there, which attracted some pretty high profile fans.” One of those fans was President Andrew Johnson.

But I like to think another one of their fans was Mrs. Bodell.

Happy Women’s History Month!

~ baseballrebecca

Best of the Week: 7/28/2019 – 8/3/2019

The Washington Nationals and their fans are used to Gerardo Parra’s walk-up music by now, but apparently the Atlanta Braves’ Freddie Freeman is not. During Monday’s game, Freeman’s response was priceless:

I’m sure he also appreciates the fact that the tune is probably now stuck in his head, too. You’re welcome, Freddie.

~ baseballrebecca 




Llévame al juego de beisbol

On Sunday we went to see Las Piñatas de Erie (also know as the Erie SeaWolves) at Los Cangrejos Fantasmas de Chesapeake (also known as the Bowie Baysox) in Bowie’s first Copa de la Diversión game of the season. During the 7th Inning Stretch, we sang “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” in Spanish. It was awesome!

So that you can sing along when you attend a Copa game, I’ve posted the lyrics below and a version to sing along with!

~ baseballrebecca

Llévame al juego de beisbol

Llévame a la multitud

Compremos manies y unos cracker jack

No me importa si vuelvo jamás

Apoyemos a nuestro equipo

Y si no ganan también

Porque es un, dos, tres y ponchado en el juego de beisbol

(y repitan)

And to be truly bilingual:

Missing Baseball?

Seems like there are no MLB games scheduled for tonight. It’s been two days since the All-Star game, and the Triple A and Eastern League all-star games were yesterday. So what are we supposed to do tonight?

There are probably chores to do, books to read, or other things that we could be doing. But if you need a baseball fix, why not listen to The Baseball Project? (One of the most awesomest bands ever!) Since the All-Star Game was in Miami, and since Pitbull sang before the home run derby, I figured the Baseball Project’s song about Cuban baseball defectors was appropriate.


~ baseballrebecca

The Electric Slugger

indexWhat do the symphony and baseball have to do with one another? Apparently, a lot. Glenn Donnellan is a violinist with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. He is also the inventor of the “Electric Slugger,” which is kind of a violin made from a baseball bat. Last night he played the National Anthem on it at Nationals Park.

Here’s a clip of him performing the Anthem at Camden Yards in 2011:

Here he is at Nats Park a few years ago discussing his unique musical instrument:


This is so amazingly cool. Just another example of how baseball, music, and art influence one another…

Happy Friday!

~ baseballrebecca

Spring Training in Louisiana

Spring Training is almost here! In anticipation, I’ve included a link to the song, “Spring Training in New Orleans,” by The Baseball Project:


The cool thing about The Baseball Project is that they really know their baseball history! So, when did Spring Training take place in New Orleans? According to the Baseball Almanac, several MLB teams held Spring Training in towns across Louisiana between 1902 and 1939, including the St. Louis Browns, the Brooklyn Dodgers, and the New York Yankees:

Years Team City
1902-03 Cleveland New Orleans, Louisiana
1903 St. Louis Browns Baton Rouge, Louisiana
1903-04 Detroit Shreveport, Louisiana
1905 Philadelphia Athletics Shreveport, Louisiana
1905-06 Chicago White Sox New Orleans, Louisiana
1907 Chicago Cubs New Orleans, Louisiana
1908 St. Louis Browns Shreveport, Louisiana
1908-09 Philadelphia Athletics New Orleans, Louisiana
1910-11 Cleveland Alexandria, Louisiana
1911-12 Detroit Monroe, Louisiana
1911-12 Chicago Cubs New Orleans, Louisiana
1914-15 Cincinnati Reds Alexandria, Louisiana
1916-17 Cincinnati Reds Shreveport, Louisiana
1916-20 Cleveland New Orleans, Louisiana
1918 St. Louis Browns Shreveport, Louisiana
1920-21 Philadelphia Athletics Lake Charles, Louisiana
1921 Brooklyn Dodgers New Orleans, Louisiana
1921 Yankees Shreveport, Louisiana
1922-24 Yankees New Orleans, Louisiana
1925-27 Boston New Orleans, Louisiana
1925-28 Chicago White Sox Shreveport, Louisiana
1928-39 Cleveland New Orleans, Louisiana
1938-39 New York Giants Baton Rouge, Louisiana
1938-39 Philadelphia Athletics Lake Charles, Louisiana

Of course, Louisiana isn’t the only state that hosted Spring Training prior to today’s Grapefruit and Cactus Leagues. Cities from California to Massachusetts have hosted Spring Training, as well as Bermuda, Cuba, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. We’ll look at a few more over the next few weeks as we anxiously await the 2016 season.

~ baseballrebecca





Another Baseball Song


Latin America Stadium, Havana, Cuba (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Embassy in Havana)

This week we’ve covered MVP Bryce Harper, Cuban Baseball, rap music, and the baseball sociology of music. What better a way to round it all out with a song from the Baseball Project? The song, Hola America, is about Cuban players who defected to the U.S. (a favorite topic of mine). According to the band’s website:

“The emotional documentary about Luis Tiant,’The Lost Son of Havana’, was the catalyst for writing this song. Luis had a great career and became one of the most recognizable and beloved players of his era, but he had to escape from Cuba to make it happen. He left his family and friends behind much like Orlando Hernandez (the story behind the first 2 verses) and others who braved the dangerous journey to the U.S. with no promise of returning. Fame and fortune to be sure, but at a heavy price.”

Happy Friday!

~ baseballrebecca


Soñar en Azul


Cuban Industriales Mascot (Photo courtesy of Vassar College)

My last few posts about Bryce Harper and the songs about him got me thinking more about the sociology of music – or rather, the baseball sociology of music. Music is linked to both society and baseball. In the same way baseball functions in the society, music can reflect a society or a subgroup of people, or it can even be used to address a social issue. So what happens when baseball, music, and cultural values collide? Really great songs about baseball.

I recently stumbled across the Cuban pop group, Buena Fe. The duo’s members, Israel Rojas and Yoel Martinez, have covered a variety of social and political issues in their music. Even baseball.

Both music and baseball are integral to Cuban society, so a merger of the two is only natural. Both represent Cuban nationalism. In the early 2000’s, Buena Fe wrote a song for the documentary, Fuera De Liga, which is about the Cuban team, Industriales. The documentary, produced by Cuban documentarian Ian Padron, was banned by the government of Cuba. At least at first. Government censors objected to the documentary’s portrayal of the conditions faced by Cuban players as well as interviews with players who defected to the United States, include Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez. Eventually, however, they relented and the film was released in 2008.

The song title, Soñar en Azul, means “dreaming in blue” and refers to the Industriales’ team color. But the song is likely about more than just baseball. Translated, the lyrics include:

Rise up against the onslaught of a cruel offensive or stay trapped in a game of strikeouts. Could it be that baseball resembles life? Is it possible that without it, we could not dream?

You can judge for yourself with the music video, posted below.

~ baseballrebecca