The Mets have found ways of losing that I never knew existed.
Baseball provides escape. Furthermore, there is no other place
in our society that I know of in which the perimeter of play
and the rules are clearly defined and known to everyone -
in which justice is absolutely equal and sure. Three strikes,
you're out. I don't care if you hire Edward Bennett Williams
to defend you; three strikes, you're still out. Baseball is
an island of stability in an unstable world.
Players have been bought, sold and exchanged as though they
were sheep instead of American citizens.
John Montgomery Ward
They give you a round bat and they throw you a round ball
and they tell you to hit it square.
Also attributed to Hank Sauer, Pete Rose,
Ted Williams, others.
All the bushleague batters
Are left to die
On the diamond.
In the stands
The home crowd scatters
For the turnstiles.
In the great department store of life, baseball is the toy
No game in the world is as tidy and dramatically neat as baseball,
with cause and effect, crime and punishment, motive and result,
so cleanly defined.
There are three things in my life which I really love: God,
my family, and baseball. The only problem - once baseball
season starts, I change the order around a bit.
A baseball game is simply a nervous breakdown divided into
I see great things in baseball. It's our game - the American
game. It will take our people out-of-doors, fill them with
oxygen, give them a larger physical stoicism. Tend to relieve
us from being a nervous, dyspeptic set. Repair these losses,
and be a blessing to us.
Back then, my idol was Bugs Bunny, because I saw a cartoon
of him playing ball - you know, the one where he plays every
position himself with nobody else on the field but him? Now
that I think of it, Bugs is still my idol. You have to love
a ballplayer like that.
I don't want to play golf. When I hit a ball, I want someone
else to go chase it.
With those who don't give a damn about baseball, I can only
sympathize. I do not resent them. I am even willing to concede
that many of them are physically clean, good to their mothers
and in favor of world peace. But while the game is on, I can't
think of anything to say to them.
That's baseball, and it's my game. Y' know, you take your
worries to the game, and you leave 'em there. You yell like
crazy for your guys. It's good for your lungs, gives you a
lift, and nobody calls the cops. Pretty girls, lots of 'em.
Good pitching will beat good hitting any time, and vice versa.
Every hitter likes fastballs, just like everybody likes ice
cream. But you don't like it when someone's stuffing it into
you by the gallon. That's what it feels like when Nolan Ryan's
thrown balls by you.
Strikeouts are boring - besides that, they're fascist. Throw
some ground balls. More democratic.
Bull Durham (movie)
Baseball players are smarter than football players. How often
do you see a baseball team penalized for too many men on the
Nolan Ryan is pitching much better now that he has his curve
ball straightened out.
I don't care how long you've been around, you'll never see
Poets are like baseball pitchers. Both have their moments.
The intervals are the tough things.
You can't steal second base and keep one foot on first.
Say this much for big league baseball - it is beyond question
the greatest conversation piece ever invented in America.
The charm of baseball is that, dull as it may be on the field,
it is endlessly fascinating as a rehash.
It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart.
The game begins in spring, when everything else begins again,
and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and
evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops
and leaves you to face the fall alone.
A. Bartlett Giamatti
The Green Fields of the Mind, Yale Alumni
Magazine, November 1977.
The designated hitter rule is like letting someone else take
Wilt Chamberlain's free throws.
Baseball is almost the only orderly thing in a very unorderly
world. If you get three strikes, even the best lawyer in the
world can't get you off.
Wives of ballplayers, when they teach their children their
prayers, should instruct them how to say: "God bless
Mommy, God bless Daddy, God bless Babe Ruth. Babe Ruth has
upped Daddy's paycheck by fifteen to forty percent."
The difference between the old ballplayer and the new ballplayer
is the jersey. The old ballplayer cared about the name on
the front. The new ballplayer cares about the name on the
Trying to sneak a pitch past Hank Aaron is like trying to
sneak a sunrise past a rooster.