Monday, October 31, 2011

What can Texas Rangers' fans learn from the Brooklyn Dodgers?

Who do we turn to for baseball consolation?  How about the Brooklyn Dodgers, the team that is known today as the LA Dodgers.

In 1952 and 1953, Brooklyn lost to the Yankees in the World Series.  They came back and beat NY in 1955.

Like the Rangers, the Dodgers had a core group of players who played together for years.  They were Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Joe Campanella, Gil Hodges, Carl Furillo, etc.

The Dodgers had 1955, or the year that they finally won.  The Rangers will have their '55, too!

Check out our chat with Bill Katz, a huge Dodgers' fan:


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Sunday night is for political talk and opinions!

As we do every Sunday night, we spoke with Bill Katz of Urgent Agenda about politics.

We started with the tragic news out of Afghanistan and the death of 13 US nationals in another suicide attack.  As we posted before, the war is losing support.  

At the same time, Pres BO does not take the time to explain the mission, its purpose and connection to our national security.

Back home, the "marchers" are not making anyone happy.  The marchers are not too happy with Pres BO either, as a recent poll indicates

The marches started well.  However, they've degenerated into the kind of left wing madness and immaturity that we've seen before.   These marches need a message, a spokesman who does not look like he just smoked pot and people who go home after the day's events.

In other words, these marches are looking a lot like Woodstock and that did not work out really well for the left in the 1960's!

We also looked at 2012 and how it could change the courts.  The NY Times had an editorial about this topic.  I disagree with The NY Times' view of the courts but they are right about how the election will change the courts.
 
Last, but not least, we discussed the 73rd anniversary of Orson Wells's "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast.   It caused a lot of panic because many thought that it was real rather than just a radio show.  

Click here for the interview with Bill Katz:


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Tags: Sunday night political conversations To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A "Dracula story" for Halloween!

My kids have grown up and pursuing their careers, interests and other things.   Therefore, Halloween just doesn't mean as much as it used to.  I still enjoy seeing the little kids in their costumes but it's different.

As we approach Halloween, let's hear the real story of Dracula.


Dr. Ileana Johnson-Paugh wrote about Dracula and the castle during her recent trip to Romania:

"The inspirational castle of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula,” was strategically located on a rocky bluff, difficult to conquer, tiny by any definition of a castle, and surrounded by stone turrets. The savage nature of the landscape surrounded it with mystique." 

Click to hear Dr. Johnson talk abut Dracula:

 

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Still the best Halloween song after all these years!

My sons don't "trick or treat" anymore but it's still great to see the next generation with their costumes and surprises.

To say the least, Halloween is a great excuse for us adults to eat those chocolate treats.    I've had my share of "treats" over the years. 

Over time, we've seen movies, TV specials and have heard songs about Halloween.   I guess that The Charlie Brown special is my favorite.  The Disney stuff is usually good.  I don't care much for the "Friday 13th" movies.  It's a bit too scary for me!

Halloween song? My favorite, and # 1 after all of these years, is Bobby Pickett's "Monster Mash":


"I was working in the lab late one night 
When my eyes beheld an eerie sight
For my monster from his slab began to rise
And suddenly to my surprise

He did the mash He did the monster mash
The monster mash It was a graveyard smash
He did the mash It caught on in a flash
He did the mash He did the monster mash

From my laboratory in the castle east
To the master bedroom where the vampires feast
The ghouls all came from their humble abodes
To get a jolt from my electrodes

They did the mash They did the monster mash
The monster mash It was a graveyard smash
They did the mash It caught on in a flash
They did the mash They did the monster mash

The zombies were having fun The party had just begun
The guests included Wolf Man Dracula and his son

The scene was rockin', all were digging the sounds
Igor on chains, backed by his baying hounds
The coffin-bangers were about to arrive
With their vocal group, "The Crypt-Kicker Five"

They played the mash They played the monster mash
The monster mash It was a graveyard smash
They played the mash It caught on in a flash
They played the mash They played the monster mash

Out from his coffin, Drac's voice did ring
Seems he was troubled by just one thing
He opened the lid and shook his fist
And said, "Whatever happened to my Transylvania twist?"

It's now the mash It's now the monster mash
The monster mash And it's a graveyard smash
It's now the mash It's caught on in a flash
It's now the mash It's now the monster mash

Now everything's cool, Drac's a part of the band
And my monster mash is the hit of the land
For you, the living, this mash was meant too
When you get to my door, tell them Boris sent you

Then you can mash Then you can monster mash
The monster mash And do my graveyard smash
Then you can mash You'll catch on in a flash
Then you can mash Then you can monster mash"


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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Game 7: Baseball is the ultimate heartbreaker!

I think that all of us knows how David Murphy felt watching the other guys celebrate the 27th out. 

What was the turning point of game 7?  It was Molina walking on a 3-2 pitch that was simply too close to take.

Frankly, most umpires would have rung up the batter and given the pitcher the benefit of the doubt on a borderline pitch like that.    

As you know, Molina walked and it was 4-2 and the series was probably over.

Don't get me wrong.  I think that the Cardinals won fair and square.  They got the clutch hits and we didn't.  They threw strikes and our guys didn't.  They manufactured runs and we didn't.

Nevertheless, I believe that the Rangers ran into a very hot team that was meant to win the 2011 World Series.

What about the Rangers?  The answer is found in baseball history.

The Braves lost the WS in 1991 and 1993.  They did not panic and won the 1995 WS.

The Dodgers lost in 1977 and 1978 but came back to win in 1981.

The 2011 Rangers have a lot in common with the late 1970s Dodgers and the early 1990s Braves.  The Rangers have a young team and the core players will be back.  They also have a farm system that will send up some good young arms.

Yes, it hurts a lot today but this Rangers team will win.  I'm confident that I'll be writing a post someday about the Rangers winning the World Series.

Click here for the Saturday show with Bob McClary of Baseballbytheyeard.com!:


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Very sad Game 7 thoughts!

In every way, this one hurts a lot more than the 2010 loss to San Francisco.  However, there were many similarities between the two losses.

First, the Rangers were a better team.  YES YES!!

Second, the 2010 Giants and 2011 were both "teams of destiny", or teams on a run to end the season.  They were wild card teams that got hot and played perfect baseball for 6 weeks.

I don't know what else to say.  How do you explain game 6? 

We congratulate St Louis because they won the series.  Nevertheless, I still think that Texas is a better team.

Let's hope that the Rangers' fans don't get too disillusioned with their team.  I really believe that they will win one down the road.



Tags: 2011 World Series Game 7 To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Friday, October 28, 2011

YOU ARE RIGHT! I have never seen a crazier baseball game than game 6!


Yes, I was crushed last night.  It took me a couple of hours to unwind and go to sleep.  I can still see that fly ball to right field that turned into a 9th inning triple and tied the game. 

However, I don't blame you if you think that St Louis is a team of destiny and meant to win that game 6. 

For example, how do you explain the bottom of the 10th inning?

It starts with two weak lefty hitters getting on base against Darren Oliver, an established left handed reliever who has been getting batters out for years.  The second hitter, or John Jay, hits the ball down the left field line and it lands where no one can catch it.  The next batter bunts the ball in exactly the one place where no Ranger had a chance to catch it and turn it into an easy double-play.  Again, team of destiny!

Game 7 is tonight and I expect that Texas will win.  Of course, I am assuming that the Cardinals are finally out of miracles!

Click here for Friday's show:


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Tags: World Series 2011, Texas Rangers and game 6 of the 2011 World Series  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Another election and we are talking about China again....!

China is back in the news.  

A few months ago, Donald Trump played the "China card" and the crowds loved it.  He was basically blaming the Chinese for taking advantage of our leaders.

GOP candidate Mitt Romney is now talking about China, too:

"China is a case in point. Having embraced free enterprise to some degree, the Chinese government and Chinese companies have quickly divined the benefits of ignoring the rules followed by others. China seeks advantage through systematic exploitation of other economies. It misappropriates intellectual property by coercing “technology transfers” as a condition of market access; enables theft of intellectual property, including patents, designs and know-how; hacks into foreign commercial and government computers; favors and subsidizes domestic producers over foreign competitors; and manipulates its currency to artificially reduce the price of its goods and services abroad."

Is this just presidential election rhetoric or what?

I remember Bill Clinton hitting the first  Bush administration in 1992.  He changed in office and went on to expand trade with China.

Frankly, I'd wish that we beat China by turning the US into the best place in the world to invest and manufacture.  We can do that by encouraging more manufacturing here and revising our sick tax code.

Click here for our discussion about China:


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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thursday morning thoughts!

It's Thursday morning and the Rangers got rained out in St Louis.  I spent last night thinking about politics and some of the issues on the front page.

First, have you noticed how more and more cities are getting fed up with the "marches":

1) Atlanta, the party is over;

2) New York City, who is going to pay for the damages or pick up the garbage;

3) Oakland, a bit violent; and

4) ACORN is alive and well at the marches.


My guess is that people got the message and want the marchers to go back to work, or school or their parents' allowances.  I think that we can safely say that the public has had enough of the "hippies"!


Second, what was really behind The Washington Post's 'hit piece" on Senator Rubio.  

Could it be that the media does not know what to do, or react to, a conservative Hispanic?  Do they think that all of us are liberals and madly in love in Pres BO?

At the same time, did the media pursue candidate BO's past with such detail and energy?  They didn't and that's why so many of us found the attack on Sen Rubio to be rather bad.


Last, but not least, what's behind the chill between Gov Romney and The Tea Party?  Is it issues?  Is it that many Tea party partisans view Romney as an establishment candidate?


Click here for the chat with George Rodriguez:
 

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Tags: Mitt Romney, Tea Party and the Occupy Wall Street crowd, the attacks on Senator Rubio  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

The Iraq troops withdrawal is a bit confusing to me!

We learned last Friday that US troops will leave Iraq by the end of 2011.

To be fair, this is the agreement that Pres Bush negotiated with Iraq in 2008.

Nevertheless, the Status of Forces Agreement always contemplated that we would leave troops to protect Iraq and to send a message to Iran.

We are now reading that Pres BO was not engaged in the negotiations:

"Throughout the summer and autumn, as talks on a continued U.S. military presence in Iraq foundered, President Barack Obama and his point man on Iraq, Vice President Joe Biden, remained largely aloof from the process, logs released by the U.S. Embassy here suggest.

The omission would be an unusual one, given the high priority U.S. officials had given to achieving an agreement for some sort of residual U.S. presence in Iraq after the Dec. 31 pullout deadline, and the White House labeled the suggestion inaccurate. 

A spokesman said the logs released by the embassy were incomplete."(McClatchy)

Let's hope that the logs are indeed incomplete.  Otherwise, this is a major foreign policy oversight, or failure, for the Obama administration.

We've also heard reports that military officers are not happy with this outcome.  


We need further clarification because success in Iraq is in our national interest.  Frankly, it does not matter whether you did or did not support the war.  That's all history.  What matters today is success in Iraq and that will be hard without US troops keeping everyone in their place.

Check out my audio commentary on Wednesday's show:


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Tags: Iraq, Iran and what happens after we leave  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What's the point of federal immigration laws IF some cities get away with violating them?

Over the last few years, we've seen cities arbitrarily not enforce immigration laws.  The latest one is NY City:  Which Way, New York?

What sense does it make for city A to enforce immigration laws and city B not enforce them?  How chaotic would it be if we had no enforcement of speeding limits from one city to another? 


This is about common sense and the rule of law.  Our system was not designed to have different enforcement of federal laws from one place to another.

As we discussed today, we need absolute enforcement of existing employment laws, such as E-Verify. 

We will win this battle with illegal immigration when the jobs dry up, or when the magnet of jobs or social services ends.


Click here for our conversation with Jessica Vaugh of CIS:


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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

1764: Remembering the day that John Adams married Abigail Smith

We enjoy posting about The Founding Fathers.  

Today, we remember John Adams and his wife Abigail.  She was our second First Lady and the mother of our 7th president, John Quincy Adams.

On October 25, 1764 John and Abigail were married:

"This devoted couple's prolific correspondence during their married life has provided entertainment and a glimpse of early American life for generations of history buffs."

Their letters were awesome.  They wrote about marriage, their children and views on so many issues dividing the colonies.  The letters are a great window into the Adams' lives, feelings and thoughts during those difficult days of The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution and the new government.

A couple years ago, HBO had a great documentary about John Adams.  This is one of the best scenes:



P.S. Check out our audio commentary about John & Abigail Adams:


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Did you know that the late Paul Leka wrote "Na Na Na?

Like so many of you, I've heard "Na Na Na Kiss him goodbye" a million times. 

You hear that song on the radio or at the stadium when the visiting team makes a pitching change.  I've read that using this song at sporting events started with the White Sox organist in the late 1970s!

You hear it at local and national games.  It's part of the modern sports soundtrack!

"Na Na Na' was written by Paul Leka and released by a group called Steam in 1969.

I read today that Paul Leka died from cancer.   I didn't know that he had written so many songs or been involved with so many artists:

"Mr. Leka made his name in the Tin Pan Alley tradition, writing or arranging songs for other people.

He wrote and produced “Green Tambourine,” a No. 1 hit in 1967 for the psychedelic soft-rock band the Lemon Pipers; 

signed REO Speedwagon to its first record contract; 

and produced four of Harry Chapin’s albums, including 1974’s “Verities & Balderdash” containing the song that was Chapin’s lone No. 1 hit, “Cat’s in the Cradle.”"

Did you know that?  I didn't but I certainly recognize those songs!

Let's remember a couple of those very popular tunes:



"Drop your silver in my tambourine
Help a poor man fill his pretty dream
Give me pennies I'll take anything

Now listen while I play My green tambourine
Watch the jingle jangle start to chime

Reflections of the music that is mine
When you drop a coin you'll hear it sing 

Now listen while I play My green tambourine
Drop a dime before I walk away 

Any song you want I'll gladly play
Money feeds my music machine

Now listen while I play
My green tambourine..."



"Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na
Hey Hey Hey Goodbye
He'll never love you The way that i love you
Cause if he did, no no He wouldn't make you cry
He must be fooling baby For you my love
My love
So will you kiss him I wanna see you kiss him
I'm gonna see you kiss him, Goodbye
Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey
Goodbye
Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na
Hey Hey Hey Goodbye
He's never near you To comfort and cheer you
When all those sad tears are Falling baby from your eyes
He must be fooling baby Fooling my love
Its alright love I wanna see you kiss him
I'm gonna see you kiss him, goodbye
Na Na Na Na Hey Hey Hey Goodbye
Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Hey Hey Hey
Goodbye
I really love you girl I really need you
I need to have you near me everyday
You know that's true girl I really need you girl
I cant let you be with him When its not right......."





Tags: Pop music, Paul Leka and one-hit wonders  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

What was The Washington Post thinking when they published that "hit piece" against Senator Rubio?

In case that you've been busy with the World Series or other personal matters, Manuel Roig-Francia wrote a story about Senator Rubio in The Washington Post

"During his rise to political prominence, Sen. Marco Rubio frequently repeated a compelling version of his family’s history that had special resonance in South Florida.

He was the “son of exiles,” he told audiences, Cuban Americans forced off their beloved island after “a thug,” Fidel Castro, took power.  But a review of documents — including naturalization papers and other official records — reveals that the Florida Republican’s account embellishes the facts.   The documents show that Rubio’s parents came to the United States and were admitted for permanent residence more than two-and-a-half years before Castro’s forces overthrew the Cuban government and took power on New Year’s Day 1959."

So what point is Roig-Francia trying to make?  Is he saying that Cubans who left in 1956 looking for freedom were different than my parents who departed in 1964?

Senator Rubio responded with his article:

"But the Post story misses the point completely.  The real essence of my family’s story is not about the date my parents first entered the United States.   Or whether they traveled back and forth between the two nations.   Or even the date they left Fidel Castro’s Cuba forever and permanently settled here."

This is the definition of a "hit piece".

First of all, we don't divide Cubans in the US as pre-59 or post-59.  In our hearts, every Cuban who came here looking for freedom is part of the movement.


Second, did Manuel Roig-Francia write an article about candidate BO's story about his mother's death? 


Third, and most important, this is only the beginning of the left's war against Rubio.  In other words, Rubio has to be destroyed because he has the potential of crushing Pres BO's Hispanic vote numbers in 2012.


The bad news is that it won't be the last!  The good news is that we came to Sen Rubio's defense and put Manuel Roig-Francia in the defensive.

P.S. Check out our interview with Alberto de la Cruz of The Babalu Blog:



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Monday, October 24, 2011

Maybe Pres Bush gave Derek Holland a pitching lesson last night

It was very nice to watch Pres Bush throw the "first pitch" before game 4.  

Let me give my scouting report:  

He has good form.   He threw a nice inside pitch that Nolan Ryan missed.

To be fair, Nolan Ryan was not a catcher.  Also, you can't move that quickly behind the plate when you are wearing a jacket.

Overall, it was a good show.  It was the prelude to a great pitching performance by Derek Holland and some nasty closing fastballs by Neftali Feliz.



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Derek Holland was awesome AND don't forget Mike Napoli!

Remember the 2009 trading deadline?  

Remember when there was some talk around here of trading Derek Holland to Toronto to try to win the AL West in 2009?


They didn't make the deal.  They didn't "rent" Halladay for 50 games.  It would have been a very expensive "rent a pitcher" transaction.

Tonight, Holland and Napoli did everything that Ron Washington could have asked for:

First, he pitched into the 9th and saved a battered bullpen.  They really needed that "night off" after the Saturday night game.

Second, Napoli kept Holland focused the whole night.  He also hit a 3-run homer that made pitching a little easier.

It's a 2-2 series and someone will win this thing in St Louis!


Tags: Derek Holland, World Series 2011  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Iraq and the withdrawal of US troops

Pres BO went on TV to announce that the Iraq War was over.

He said that the troops would be out by the end of 2011. 

He also said that he was fulfilling a campaign promise! 

Sen McCain responded:

"“Today marks a harmful and sad setback for the United States in the world,” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in a statement Friday. 

“I respectfully disagree with the president: this decision will be viewed as a strategic victory for our enemies in the Middle East, especially the Iranian regime, which has worked relentlessly to ensure a full withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.”

The ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee added, “I fear that all of the gains made possible by these brave Americans in Iraq, at such grave cost, are now at risk.”" (Politico)

McCain is right again.

First of all, this is not what candidate BO promised! This is the agreement that Pres Bush negotiated with Iraq in 2008. 

Secondly, even The NY Times confirmed that the US was desperately looking to keep troops in Iraq:

"President Obama’s announcement on Friday that all American troops would leave Iraq by the end of the year was an occasion for celebration for many, but some top American military officials were dismayed by the announcement, seeing it as the president’s putting the best face on a breakdown in tortured negotiations with the Iraqis." (NY Times)

In other words, this is not the statement that Pres BO wanted to make.  He would preferred to tell us that an agreement was reached to leave troops in Iraq.

Third, what message are we sending Iran and Israel? The message is simple.  We are weak and will not stand up for our interests!

Fourth, Max Boot is right:

"If there is one constant of American military history it is that the longer our troops stay in a country the better the prospects of a successful outcome. 

Think of Germany, Italy, Japan or South Korea. Conversely when U.S. troops rush for the exits hard-won wartime gains can quickly evaporate. 

Think of the post-Civil War South, post-World War I Germany, post-1933 (and post-1995) Haiti, post-1972 Vietnam, or, more recently, post-1983 Lebanon and post-1993 Somalia."

Of course, we all want our guys to come home. 

However, Iraq has not been much of a war for 3 years. We have not been in combat. Our troops have been performing back up duties and serving as a reminder to Iran that we will protect our allies.

I don't get it.  It looks to me like Pres BO is trying to make up with the left that was furious with his continuation of the Bush-McCain policy in Iraq.

Bill Katz wrote about Iraq on Saturday.  We spoke about this with Bill on Sunday:


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Tags: Iran, Libya and the Iraq withdrawal by end of 2011  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Johnny Carson would have been 85 today!

Johnny Carson died in 2005 after a long and celebrated career as the king of late night TV.

Carson was born in Nebraska and took over The Tonight Show in the early 1960's.  He was a nightly entertainment "fix" for many of us.


My favorite two scenes were Carnac and the one about exotic animals on the set.  It was great to see Carson's face when he was holding the little animal.


Carson would have been 85 today.  He left a lot of memories, specially very funny memories!


Check out our conversation with Bill Katz about the life and times of Johnny Carson.  Bill worked with Carson and shared many memories of Carson and the show:


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Why don't we have a "video umpire" in the press box to overrule bad calls?

Let me make it very clear:  The first base umpire did not cause the Rangers' defeat.  However, his bad call made a big difference in the 4th inning.

Option A:  Harrison pitches with 2 outs and no one on base.

Option B:  Harrison pitches with a runner at first and 1 out.

I'd rather seen Harrison in Option A.

We just heard that the first base umpire admitted blowing the call.

Frankly, I don't blame umps for making bad calls.   They are human and some of these calls are so quick that it's easy to blow them.

Why not help umpires?  Why not add "a press box umpire" who can look at the video and reverse an obviously bad call?

Why put an experienced umpire in the position of having the world see that he made a bad call?  Every person watching that game on TV knew that he blew the call!

It would have taken 30 seconds last night to reverse that call with a video review.

Again, the ump did not blow the game but he made the 4th inning very difficult for the Rangers.


Tags: Baseball and bad calls from umpires  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

The best baseball song and movie!

As we enjoy the Texas-St Louis World Series, let me tell you about my favorite baseball movie and song.

I've seen lots of good baseball films, from "Eight Men Out" to the hilarious "Major League".  Let me also put a good word for "Field of Dreams", another classic.  Last, but not least, what about "It happens every spring" or the wacky story of the professor who uses some chemical to throw the best "breaking pitch" in history.

Nevertheless, "Pride of the Yankees" is # 1 for me.  It is the story of Lou Gehrig, the great Yankee first baseman who died in 1941.  Gehrig played first base on the 1927 Yankees, arguably the best team in history.  Gary Cooper played Gehrig and did a great job!

The second video is from Ken Burns' "Baseball" documentary.  It is one of my favorite scenes.   This is real footage of Lou Gehrig saying goodbye after his illness was announced. 

"Centerfield" by John Fogerty is my favorite song.  It is great.  You think about baseball and opening day every time that they play that song in March!

Enjoy the games on TV, enjoy the movie and the song.

Here are the videos.  Enjoy them!




"Well, beat the drum and hold the phone - the sun came out today!
We're born again, there's new grass on the field.
A-roundin' third, and headed for home, it's a brown-eyed handsome man;
Anyone can understand the way I feel.

Oh, put me in, Coach - I'm ready to play today;
Put me in, Coach - I'm ready to play today;
Look at me, I can be Centerfield.

Well, I spent some time in the Mudville Nine, watchin' it from the bench;
You know I took some lumps when the Mighty Casey struck out.
So Say Hey Willie, tell Ty Cobb and Joe DiMaggio;
Don't say "it ain't so", you know the time is now.

Got a beat-up glove, a homemade bat, and brand-new pair of shoes;
You know I think it's time to give this game a ride.
Just to hit the ball and touch 'em all - a moment in the sun;
(pop) It's gone and you can tell that one goodbye!..."

Tags: Baseball songs and movies To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

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