by Steven D. Johnson
Five hundred eleven – the wins of Cy
near three sixty-seven – the bat of Ty
But in baseball heaven, just blink an eye . . .
. and records will be broken.
Just look at Babe Ruth – seven hundred fourteen
. To tell you the truth, his home runs were seen
. to hold a record not passed – thirty-nine years, ‘til alas
Hank Aaron’s bat was woken.
Yet there is a record that will ever stand,
. but it’s not Ted Williams, and it’s not Stan the Man
. don’t look to Tris Speaker, don’t bank on Pete Rose
. for this baseball record every ballplayer knows
. belongs, yes it does, to another.
It’s not for stolen bases – though Oakland’s a believer
. nor is it held by aces – like Gibson, Ford or Seaver
No, the sole baseball mark that will hold in every park
. belongs to father, son, and brother.
The record that won’t break, held through highs and heartache,
is going seven-for-seven, every baseball season week
. since 1911 – now that is quite a feat!
It’s keeping baseball alive since 1925.
It’s zero games missed since 1886.
It’s giving ballplayers a reason
. to thrive in baseball season.
Yes, the only baseball record
. that will maintain its stand
. belongs to the beloved,
. committed baseball fans!
by The Village Elliott
With apologies to Rudyard Kipling and his “Gunga Din”
You may talk of those who bat
With reflexes like a cat,
Like Tony Gwynn, whose prowess was high art.
Played right field for childhood team,
Padre skipper’s Gold Glove dream,
A southpaw five-tool player, ‘ead and ‘eart.
Destined for the ‘All of Fame,
San Diego son became
Legend playing locally for twenty years.
Though big money thrown his way,
Stayed for “’Ometown Discount” pay,
Around the league fans paid him with more cheers.
Fans cheered, “Gwynn! Gwynn! Stalwart star!
Your sweet swing strikes spheroid far.
Though twice Series ring eluded,
When your career concluded,
Your .394 best season since World War.”
Padre uniform he wore,
Was nothing much before
And rather less ag’in when he retired.
But his two-toned Padre ‘at
An’ eight-time entitled bat
Was all the field equipment he required.
When Dog Days of Summer’s ‘eat
Has grim gamers in retreat,
Avoid high ‘eat that makes one’s average skid,
‘Eat didn’t wither, make Gwynn faint,
Hit another where they ain’t,
And it dropped in like three thousand others did.
Fans called, “Gwynn! Gwynn! Tony Gwynn!
Eighth bat title you did win
Puts you in the Pantheon
For most NL titles won,
Only you and ‘Onus Wagner, Tony Gwynn.”
‘Allowed ‘all in Cooperstown
Honors players of renown,
With special nod for “Inner-Circle Member,”
Those elected first time out,
For the writers have no doubt
They’re Immortals whose careers fans need remember.
One Immortal who slid in
Was the Padres’ Tony Gwynn,
Second San Diego son to get so tapped.
Though first two less bat crowns wrest,
William’s lifetime average best
Though Gwynn’s.338 best since Ted first uncapped.
Fans cried, ”Goodbye, Tony Gwynn!
End in town where you begin.
Now you play on Field of Dreams
Where Immortals field the teams.
You belong on their first ballot, Tony Gwynn.”
The Village Elliott lives in Stinson Beach, California. His bio is a poem in itself–watch this space for further details.
By Stuart Shea
The Cubs have the buzz
For all their young players
Approaching the mark,
But aren’t out of the dark–
Their best catch of the year
Came from a fan
Snagging a ball
Hit out of the park.
by James Finn Garner
Darwin Barney is out of a job
One more part of the unemployed mob
. To see his kid’s birth
. He ceded his berth
Now at the playground will hobnob.