Overshadowed by the tragic death last week of Nick Adenhart at the hands of a drunk driver, and the passing on Monday of the beloved Harry Kalas, was the death of Mark Fidrych.
Fidrych also died on Monday, at the age of 54. His death was apparently an accident – he was found by a family friend underneath a dump truck that he appeared to have been working on.
Fidrych was one of baseball’s true characters, known for talking to the baseball while on the mound, and for grooming the mound to his liking from his hands and knees.
He was named the AL Rookie of the Year in 1976, with a 19-9 record and a league-leading 2.34 ERA.
Rest in peace, Mark Fidrych.
Paint It Black
Whoever was in charge of painting the outfield wall at the new Citi Field in New York must have been listening to too much of the Rolling Stones. Whereas most ballparks have either green or blue outfield walls, Citi Field’s walls look a bit, well, ominous.
According to an Inquirer columnist, the wall color was being discussed on New York’s WFAN-AM, and supposedly the proper name of the color is “soot”. Hmm. Considering the source, one can never be 100% sure of the veracity of this information. However, if that is truly the correct name for the color, it seems like perfect grist for smart-alecky comments. I’ll start to think of some.
Also in today’s Inquirer, a report that in addition to dropping weight and working on his defense, Ryan Howard is attempting to improve his game by wearing a high-tech mouthguard that is alleged to improve athletic performance.
It is supposed to be similar to the one worn by Manny Ramirez, which we saw way too much of outside of his mouth during the playoffs last fall. (Hey Manny, it only works if you wear it inside your mouth!)
Made by Bite Tech, Inc., the theory behind it is that it prevents the wearer from clenching their jaw and creating pressure within the temporomandibular joint, thereby restricting the flow of blood to the head and brain.
Is the benefit physiological, or psychological? Who knows – either way, it’s all in their heads.
They’re not cheap, either. Though no prices are listed on the website, the Pure Power Mouthguard (Manny’s brand) costs around $2,000.
Well, considering Howard got that nice big contract, I guess he can afford it.
But please, Ryan, keep it IN your mouth, OK?