Pee Wee & Popeye. Double Duty. The 1913 Grays. Julio. Air Jordan.
Pee Wee Reese and Don Zimmer of the Brooklyn Dodgers practice infield drills during Spring Training in 1955. Ole’ Popeye, or “The Gerbil” as Bill Lee calls him is now 80 years old and a coach for the Tampa Bay Rays. He is currently the last remaining former Brooklyn Dodger with on-field responsibilities in Major League Baseball.
A great photo of Ted “Double Duty” Radcliffe blocking the plate as a base runner attempts to score. Something that caught my eye in this photo is that the Umpire is white and I assume this is a Negro League game? I’d like to think that I am pretty knowledgeable of the Negro Leagues and while I know that many of the Umpires in the Negro Leagues were retired players themselves; I am just not sure if their were White Umpires in the league? I guess the answer to this would have to be yes there were due to this photo unless this is a photo of Barnstorming teams playing each other?
The 1913 Homestead Grays. Holy shit this photo is incredible.
Julio Franco being awarded the MVP award of the 1990 All-Star Game. As a kid I loved Julio and his whacky batting stance. I remember practicing his stance and thinking it felt SO weird and unnatural. In 2007, at age 49 Franco played his last season in the big leagues as a member of both the Braves and Mets. He let it be known that he wanted to keep playing past 50 and I was rooting for him like crazy but it wasn’t in the cards as he announced his retirement in Spring of 2008. In 2009 he was awarded the Managerial position of the Gulf Coast Mets, the rookie level team of the New York Mets. Even now as a retired 52 year old Manager I think he could get out there and smash. All hail Julio Franco.
Michael Jordan as a member of the Scottsdale Scorpions during the 1994 Arizona Fall League. He hit .252 for the Scorpions as a 31 year old Rookie and showed much improvement from his season with the Birmingham Barons where he struggled and hit .202/.289/.266. I really would like to find the rest of his Arizona Fall League stats online but just can’t seem to. All I know is what was reported in the ESPN 30 for 30 special “Jordan Rides The Bus” which was that he showed incredible improvement and was beginning to turn heads of those who had already wrote him off (cough* Sports Illustrated *cough) and people were starting to take his Baseball intentions more seriously. I believe the 1994 player’s strike was one of the driving forces to him hanging up the cleats which is just one more reason why the strike was retarded. Just think, what if Mike made it to high Minors or even the Majors?? I guess the 14 year old boy in me will always wonder.