Renaming of D.C. Stadium


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RFK’s brother, President John F. Kennedy, throws out the first pitch at D.C. Stadium, 1962

Forty-nine years ago, on January 18, 1969, the Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall announced that the District of Columbia Stadium would be renamed Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in honor of the U.S. Senator and Presidential candidate who had been assassinated just 6 months earlier.

Because the stadium sits on Federal land, the Secretary of the Interior is essentially the stadium’s landlord. The District of Columbia, through a public-private partnership with Events DC, owns the stadium but leases the land from the National Park Service. Because of this, eight years earlier Secretary Udall was able to put pressure on the Washington Redskins, the only remaining NFL team that had not hired a Black player.

RFK stadium was home to the Washington Senators from 1962 to 1971. Baseball returned to Washington and RFK in 2005 when the Montreal Expos relocated to DC and became the Washington Nationals. The Nationals played there through the 2007 season. After more than 21 seasons at RFK Stadium, Major League Soccer’s D.C. United played their last game at the stadium in October 2017.

~ baseballrebecca

 

 

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Thank You, Dr. King


Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. and baseball great Jackie Robinson met with Governor Edward T. Breathitt in March, 1964 to urge passage of a civil rights bill in Kentucky.
Jackie Robinson, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Kentucky Governor Edward T. Breathitt, 1964 (Source:  Jim Curtis photograph collection at the University of Kentucky)
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”

 

~ Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from the Birmingham jail, April 16, 1963

 

 

Best of the Week: 1/7/18 – 1/13/18


With this week’s arbitration filing deadline, several players got raises, including Manny Machado of the Baltimore Orioles and the Washington Nationals‘ Michael Taylor and Anthony Rendon.

Stat-urday, 1/13/2018


I don’t know anything about this organization, so this is not an endorsement, but they have some neat data and stats about the Top 5 MLB Stadiums. Check out their website and their video below and see if you agree with their conclusions.

I have to admit, I certainly agree that Oriole Park at Camden Yards is #1! Let me know in the comments what you think!

~ baseballrebecca

Home Run Derby, Bat Dog


Earlier this week, the baseball world paid tribute to Home Run Derby, the Bat Dog of the Trenton Thunder who died after a bout with cancer. In memoriam, Ben Hill of milb.com wrote a great piece today on baseball’s bat dogs. The Trenton Thunder announced that they will celebrate Derby Day on January 26th, Derby’s birthday.

 

Just to cheer us up a little, here is some adorable footage of Gleyber Torres playing with Derby and his son, Rookie:

 

Thanks for the memories, Derby! May you now get all the dog treats you want!

~ baseballrebecca

Senichi Hoshino, 1947-2018


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Senichi Hoshino, manager of the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, 2011, photograph courtesy of Wikipedia

I know very little about Japanese baseball – primarily because information about the teams in Japan is hard to come by if you can’t read or speak Japanese. But as I was doing my weekly review of news about baseball on Google yesterday, I ran across an article about the death of Japanese baseball manager, Senichi Hoshino. Hoshino passed away on January 4.

After reading more about him, it sounds like he was a pretty interesting guy. He was described as “passionate,” “emotional,” and “hot-blooded.” After Japan’s loss in the 2008 Olympics, he was quoted as saying, “One shouldn’t get feelings mixed up with winning and losing, but as a human being, sometimes I lead based on emotion. That sometimes moves fans and sometimes angers them. That’s a lot of fun.” According to his Wikipedia page:

Hoshino was drafted in the first round by the Chunichi Dragons in 1968 … The Yomiuri Giants had promised Hoshino that he would be their first round draft pick, but the Giants broke their promise, drafting another player instead. This betrayal made Hoshino develop a profound hatred towards the Giants, and he has battled the Giants ever since, both as a pitcher and as a manager. … He was known as the “Kyojin Killer” (Giants Killer) because he seemed to pitch unusually well against the Giants.

Hoshino spent his entire career as a player with the Chunichi Dragons, making his debut on April 13, 1969. During his career, he pitched in 500 games with a win-loss record of 146-121, 34 saves, and an ERA of 3.60. Five years after his retirement as a player, Hoshino became the manager of the Dragons; he managed them from 1987 to 1991 and again from 1996 to 2001. He also managed the Hanshin Tigers (2002-2003), the Japanese Olympic national team (2007-2008), and the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles (2011-2014). Hoshino led the Golden Eagles to the Japan Series championship in 2013. He was inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 2017.

Senichi Hoshino also happened to be the last manager of Masahiro Tanaka in Japan. Last week, Tanaka paid tribute to Hoshino on Twitter.

Rest in peace, Senichi.

~ baseballrebecca

 

Celebrating National Bobblehead Day


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Bobblehead Museum at Marlins Park, ca. 2012

Yesterday was National Bobblehead Day, which was celebrated around baseball with entertaining tweets and posts about everything bobble-related. One thing that always comes to mind on National Bobblehead Day is the amazing bobblehead collection that was on display at Marlins Park. With the selling of the team to Derek Jeter and his investment group, 900 of those bobbleheads left with the previous owner Jeffrey Loria. Loria has donated those to the Baseball Hall of Fame. However, 300-400 bobbleheads in the Marlins’ Museum were not part of Loria’s personal collection and will remain on display at Marlins Park.

While its still early for the annual Bobble List, there are a few teams that have released their preliminary promotions schedules, which, of course, include bobbleheads:

Happy Belated Bobblehead Day!

~ baseballrebecca