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Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Baseball & a Mouse

Today's History Lesson...baseball

At the heart of Awakenings are the American Classics - Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet! Heading the top of the classic list as you can see is baseball...Baseball IS America, America IS Baseball! It is not unusual in the Major League to witness many hits Outta' the Ballpark nor for a true baseball fan to reflect on an all-time great, such as Remembering #42: An American Hero and Two 'Kings' Remembered (one of which was a famous baseball player). Then, of course, there is the humorous side of baseball with the Abbot & Costello hilarious rendition of Who's on First! But, the question is..."What does a mouse have to do with baseball?"

This Day in History: July 14, 1967 & 1968
 Associated Press File Photo

When Eddie Mathews hit his 500th career home run in 1967,
he ranked seventh on the all-time list.

At the home plate, coming up to bat today in 1967 is Eddie Mathews, playing for the Houston Astros. This particular season had not been one of his greatest. Mathews had been traded by the Braves after 15 years to Houston in the off-season (the only player who could claim he was a Boston Brave, a Milwaukee Brave and an Atlanta Brave). Mathews was a quiet native Texan who was not up to much hoopla and pomp surrounding a momentous account. It is almost befitting that his milestone - 500th homer - was nearly upstaged by a mouse.
As Mathews stepped in for another Marichal pitch, Miller was startled by a mouse that had crawled out from under the Candlestick Park field boxes. From there, the mouse dashed in foul territory up the third base side until it noticed third base coach Jim Busby. It then made a right turn onto the field where third baseman Jim Davenport of the Giants scooped it up with his bare hand and playfully tossed it at umpire Chris Pelekoudas. The ump jumped as if he was avoiding a line drive.
The mouse understood now he was in trouble. He scrambled toward second base while shortstop Hal Lanier called time out. The crowd was beginning to realize what was happening, laughing and roaring at the unexpected guest. Lanier redirected the rodent into the outfield where Willie Mays took over, shooing the mouse with his glove further and further away from the diamond. Willie was finally able to coax it under the center field fence so play could resume.

 First News Report
THE NEW YORK TIMES, July 15, 1968

Second up to bat occurred on this day in 1968. This actually becomes a revisit to one of the greats whose first home run was celebrated on This Day in History: April 23, 1954 . That home run was just the beginning. On July 14, 1968, Atlanta Braves slugger Henry "Hank" Aaron scored his 500th homer, which did not slow him down a bit. Already 38 years old, Hank Aaron was at the age of which most players of his era experienced a rapid decline. Aaron ended his career with an all-time record of 755 home runs!

This Day in Baseball: July 14

It's only a hitch when you are in a slump. When you're hitting the ball, it's called rhythm.
~ Eddie Mathews

The thing I like about baseball is that it's one-on-one. You stand up there alone, and if you make a mistake, it is your mistake. If you hit a home run, it is your home run.
~Hank Aaron