By HAL McCOY
UNSOLICITED OBSERVATIONS from The Man Cave after picking the hottest day of the year to help Nadine clean the garage. Now I feel as if I went 11 seconds with Muhammad Ali. That’s how long it would take him to knock me out, even at his age and his residence in his ever-lasting resting spot..
—There is a strong possibility Sean Casey will be spotted hanging around Dayton next spring.
Casey’s oldest son, Andrew, plans to enroll this fall at the University of Dayton and will play baseball. “I’ll be there for a lot of his games,” said Casey, a member of the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame.
The Flyers hope Andrew Casey comes close to what his old man did his senior year at the University of Richmond. He led the NCAA with a .462 batting average.
One of the best descriptions I’ve heard about Sean Casey came from Kim Nuxhall, a son to Joe Nuxhall. Said Kim, “Sean is a character with character. He is the best.”
Casey and I were going to write a book called ‘Conversations at First Base.’ I noted that every time an opposing batter reached first base, Casey carried on a conversation with him. So I handed Casey a digital recorder and he used it after every game to record the conversations.
The book never came to fruition because most of it was, “Hey, how are you? How are the wife and kids? That was a nice at bat.”
That stuff wouldn’t fill too many pages, not even a pamphlet.
—QUOTE: From Sean Casey after he was knocked out when a runner crashed into him: “I have no memory of it, nothing between reaching for the ball. . .and then waking up and seeing catcher Jason LaRue standing over me, which wasn’t a good sight.”
—Hopefully, what happened at Bowling Green won’t happen at UD. The Bowling Green baseball program was dropped, a victim of the Covid-19 pandemic.
BGSU won’t be the only school to travel that path. Most college baseball program are not revenue-producing. UD doesn’t even charge admission.
Former Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Orel Hershiser and former Cincinnati Reds closer Doug Bair were Bowling Green products.
May have told this one before, but it is worth repeating.
Doug Bair was acquired from the Oakland A’s. His wife, Connie, was a beautiful woman, a professional dancer.
During spring training after Bair arrived, manager John McNamara and I were seated by a swimming pool at the team’s Tampa hotel. Connie Bair walked by in a skimpy bikini and spoke to me. Said McNamara, “Who is that?”
I said, “That’s Doug Bair’s wife.”
Said McNamara, “Well, he just made the team.”
—Always wondered how there could be so many murders in a small community like Cabot Cove on ‘Murder She Wrote’ or in small town Sparta in the show ‘In the Heat of the Night.’ Would you want to live in either place? Me, neither.
—There is a unique offer on Airbub. For $1,500 a night you can rent the ballpark occupied by the Pensacola Blue Whales, a Double-AA team that was an affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds until last year when the Minnesota Twins took over.
Says the ad: “Guests are welcome to hit from home plate, play catch in the outfield, run the bases, enjoy a picnic in the outfield or find other creative uses for the field.”
The offer includes use of the batting cages and clubhouses. There is a bedroom next to the clubhouse that sleeps 10.
Ten people equates to $150 a night. Sounds like the epitome of a Florida vacation to me. Bring your own gloves and spikes.
—You want to talk about a Control Freak? Saw this on Facebook from Kevin Henn and, as he said, “This is just insane.” Chicago Cubs/Atlanta Braves pitcher Greg Maddux faced 20,421 batters during his illustrious career and only 133 saw 3-and-0 counts.
—QUOTE: From Hall of Fame pitcher Greg Maddux, who seldom threw harder than 87 or 88 miles an hour: “I probably could throw harder, but why?” (Indeed, why? Cincinnati Reds pitcher Tom Browning pitched a perfect game and never threw pitch above 88.)
—How many swear words does it take before one finally gets a Slim Jim out of its wrapper?
—Stories like this make baseball what it is. ESPN’s Tim Kirkjian tells this one about manager Buck Showalter
“We (The Arizona Diamondbacks) signed pitcher Vicente Padilla during a trip to Nicaragua,” said Showalter. “He came to the signing riding a burro. We signed him, but he said he needed another $2,000 be cause he had to give his burro away when he signed. So we gave him another $2,000 so his burro had a good home.’’ (Fortunately, Padilla didn’t make jackasses out of the D-Backs.)
—QUOTE: From manager Buck Showalter: “Why do they call it a foul line? It should be a fair line, right?” (Right. And the foul pole should be the fair pole. And why is a pitch out of the strike zone called a ball? You use a ball to throw a strike, don’t you?)
—People always ask me my favorite sports moment and I always stun them with my answer because it has nothing to do with the Cincinnati Reds, although the Reds have given me scads of precious moments.
My favorite, though, is when my son, Brent, hit a three-point shot from the corner with two seconds left against Springfield to give West Carrollton High School the Western Ohio League championship. The Pirates were two points down at the time and I was holding a notebook. I threw it into the rafters when the shot swished.
When it came down, it landed, hard, on the head of an opposing player’s father. I had a lot of ‘splainin’ to do.