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Thread: What do I have to do to have a callout thread?

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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    Legend has it that this is the first-ever version of one of Springsteen's most clever lyrics. It's different from the recorded version in a couple of places.


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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    Bon Scott has been dead for nearly 35 years. What he is, what was, what might have been. AC/DC.


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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    ...and now for something completely different. This remains a compelling video if you're seeing it for the first time. But I got to admit, it lost me when the midgets showed up..


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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    Answer this: can a song be retro and ahead of its time simultaneously? Can it be dated, yet totally cutting edge by today's music standards?

    Answer: I dunno. But all that goes through my mind when I head the studio version of this ELO rocker. From TIME.

    Last edited by rico43; 08-03-2014 at 08:25 PM.

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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    History will show that when Isbell, Cooley and Hood fronted the Drive-By Truckers, a bona fide Southern supergroup walked the earth.

    Two examples:





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    This was one of the most erotic videos (I thought) I'd ever seen when it came out. Time and maturity have tempered it, but it's a perfect video for the song.


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    Director of Minor League Reports rico43's Avatar
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    Who do we have to bribe or kill to get the Feat in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?


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    AUGUST 12, 1984

    THE DAY OF SHAME

    Like the Hatfields and McCoys, no one is really quite sure what caused the feud between the Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres. Some pointed a finger at Alan Wiggins, the Padres’ electric leadoff man who had a pair of bunt singles the previous – albeit a tight 4-2 win.

    San Diego pundits believed it was petty jealousy on the part of the Braves, who were plunging in the standings while the Padres were 9 1-2 games ahead of everyone and well on their way to a division championship. The Sunday series finale was delayed 90 minutes because of rain and Fulton County Stadium was a quagmire. On the plus side, fans had an extra 90 minutes to drink beer and generally be rowdy as they pleased. They were also allowed to move down into the reserved seats as there were considerably less than the announced attendance of 23,912 when Pasual Perez finally threw the first pitch.


    That pitch nailed Wiggins in the lower back. He points and yells at Perez on his way to first and his teammates gather on the grass in front of their dugout. But Tony Gwynn grounded into a double play and Perez (who would go on to allow two more baserunners in the inning) escaped.

    Perez had hit only two batters in his previous 135 innings. The tone for the day was set.

    The Braves jumped ahead 2-0 on a Claudell Washington homer, so Perez came to the plate for the first time in the second inning with a man on and one out. Crusty, ill-tempered (on his good days) Ed Whitson was on the mound for the Padres, and he took aim at Perez on his first pitch. Perez, who was looking it, bailed and a wild pitch ensued. Perez wielded his bat like a weapon as catcher Terry Kennedy took steps towards him. Both benches emptied but no one was ejected. Plate umpire Steve Rippley warned both benches any further action would lead to ejections.



    Perez batted again in the fourth. Whitson threw three straight inside fastballs, missing each time. But the third earned Whitson his ejection, and along with it, manager Dick Williams. Greg Booker came on and gave up two runs, but was still in the game when Perez batted again in the sixth. Booker took aim at Perez, missed, and would be the next Padre ejected, along with acting manager Ozzie Virgil out of the game.

    But the game’s first actual skirmish ensued, but no punches were thrown and no one else was ejected.

    Meanwhile, Perez was pitching a gem, leading 5-0 when Graig Nettles homered for the Padres leading off the seventh and exchanged glares with Perez as he circled the bases.

    Perez would bat one final time, in the eighth. Craig Lefferts was on for the Padres and he did not miss.



    Both benches cleared at full speed and despite Steve Garvey trying to deter the bums rush towards the mound and Lefferts – who was already leaving the field – a major pileup occurred with fists swinging. Perez, seeing that the Padres were headed towards him en masse, actually took off towards the Braves dugout.



    Ten minutes after the brawl started, the Padres’ Champ Summers, a grizzled military veteran, spotted Perez in the dugout and headed his way. But there to meet him was Bob Horner, his hand in a cast. Horner had hurried down from the press box to pull on his uniform and join his teammates. Joining him was pitcher Rick Camp and a fan from the stands, who jointly tackled Summers.



    As the Braves and Summers clashed near the stands, fans threw beer and more than one jumped down onto the field to throw punches themselves. Players in the main skirmish saw this and everything shifted over by the Braves dugout.



    When the umpires finally restored order, they ejected Lefferts, acting manager Jack Krol, Summers, Camp, the Padres’ Bobby Brown and the Braves’ Gerald Perry – Brown and Perry locked up in a highly visible part of the brawl. Braves manager Joe Torre also elected to replace Perez with a pinch-runner; he would be fined but not ejected.

    Five fans were arrested handcuffed on the field and led away.

    Crew chief John McSherry took Torre aside.

    “This ends it,” he said. “One of their players was hit. One of yours was hit. I don’t want any more of it.”

    But then came the ninth inning.

    Replacing Perez on the mound was top reliever Donnie Moore. Leading off was Nettles, and he promptly took a fastball off his ass to set off one more brawl than anyone expected or new how to deal with.

    “I didn’t care who was batting,” Moore said. “I was going to throw at somebody. I have to protect our hitters.”



    Nettles charged the mound but was spun around by Moore and tackled by Chris Chambliss. Big Padres reliever Goose Gossage pursues Moore and the fight intensifies. Gerald Perry sucker punches the Padres’ Tim Flannery. Kurt Bevacqua climbs on top of the dugout and challenged a fan who threw beer at him. A shirtless Whitson emerged from the clubhouse brandishing a bat, but was restrained from joining Bevacqua in the stands.



    Gene Garber struggled to get the final out, but the Braves came away with a 5-3 win. On the way off the field, another Braves fan threw a beer at Kurt Bevacqua, and security guards had to restrain him after he went into the stands.

    “That was the most I’ve been on the field all year,” the veteran utilityman quipped..

    The aftermath of the ugliness was not pretty, either.

    Crew chief John McSherry, who found himself on the ground trying to quell one skirmish, was beside himself when he called his boss, Blake Cullen, NL umpire supervisor.

    “John is usually a pretty placid man,” Cullen told San Diego writer Phil Collier. “He was second guessing himself for not forfeiting the game to the Braves. He couldn’t understand why the Padres kept throwing at Perez.”

    “It was the worst thing I have ever seen in my life,” McSherry said in a later interview. “It was pathetic. It took baseball down 50 years. … The only aleternative we had was to forfeit the game, but I would have had to do it to the Braves because they started the second fight, and they were obviously not responsible for this mess.

    “It was a miracle somebody didn’t get seriously hurt,” he added. “We were very lucky.”

    Cullen was less sympathetic to the Braves. His strongest punishments were for those who participated in the ninth inning fight despite being ejected from the game earlier. Padres general manager Jack McKeon, who accused McSherry’s crew with losing control of the game, cited Gerald Perry and Steve Bedrosian in particular. Perry got into a particularly nasty one-on-one with Padres outfielder Bobby Brown.



    “The guy who lost control was in their dugout (Williams). Joe Torre handled himself excellently, better than we could have asked for,” McSherry responded. “We threw out players, managers and coaches. We cleared the benches in the last inning. This was the most irresponsible thing I’ve ever seen.”

    National League president Chub Feeney had his hands full, but he dropped the hammer on both teams. Padres manager Dick Williams was suspended for 10 days and fined $10,000. Four Braves, including manager Joe Torre, suffered three-game suspensions, as did Champ Summers.

    “Perez is a head-hunter. There’s no question we went after him,” Williams said later. “I’m responsible. I’ll accept the penalty, but I think it’s pretty steep.”

    Nine Padres were fined, including the three pitchers who threw at Perez, along with two of their coaches. Six Braves suffered fines as well. Perez’s fine was $300.

    Torre called Williams “an idiot” and “gutless,” then doubled down: “He should be suspended for the rest of the season. Those were Hitler-like tactics.”

    Catcher Terry Kennedy summed it up: “It would’ve been a lot better if we’d just hit Perez his first time up. We missed him, three times. It got ridiculous; it’s bad to have kids watch something like this.”

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  11. #30
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    March 24, 1995

    The Braves Want You To Forget Dave Shotkoski



    I thought it was time to remind Braves fans of an episode all of you have forgotten. It is forgotten because the Braves want it forgotten. More than a man died on a West Palm Beach sidewalk that night.

    It was the spring of 1995. This should have been the spring of the Braves' World Championship season. But due to a baseball world gone insane, this was also the year of the replacement players -- a completely bogus spring training with rosters filled with has-beens, never weres and a small number of truly talented players getting their shot.

    When the strike was over, 99 percent of the players were cut loose, sent back to wherever they came from, with stories, gear and friendships and enemies made.

    The Braves still trained in West Palm Beach, and one of those friendships was struck between outfielder Terry Blocker and pitcher Dave Shotkoski.

    Blocker was a genuine talent -- once. A former first round pick of the Mets, he logged two seasons with the Braves and several years in Mexico but had been out of baseball for two years when the Braves brought him back as a replacement player at age 36. Shotkoski, 30, had been out of the game for four years after six seasons in the Braves and A's farm systems. He, too, was going for the dream once last time, risking the wrath of former teammates, with a wife and eight-month old baby girl waiting for him back home in Illinois.

    "It wasn't even a decision," his wife, Felicia, recalled. "No one ever promises you a chance to fulfill a dream in life. He knew once the strike was over, he wasn't going to stay. With Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, there wasn't exactly much room. But Dave was hoping maybe he'd get into baseball scouting or coaching. He just wanted to get his foot in the door."

    Shotkoski had thrown only one inning that spring due to an ankle injury, but told his wife how thrilled he was to have a chance to work with Bobby Cox and Leo Mazzone -- something that would surely help him towards his goal of being a youth coach. Blocker, who had also become a Pentecostal deacon during the years since his big league debut, was talking religion with Shotkoski one afternoon following a game, but the pitcher begged off, promising to have a future talk.

    "We had just gotten paid, and he was going to wire money to pay the mortgage and to his wife," Blocker said. "I could relate to that, because I was going to do the same thing."

    That talk never took place. Sometime before 6:40 p.m., about 500 yards from the hotel, a man rode up to Shotkoski on a yellow bicycle, pulled out a .22-caliber revolver and aimed it at him. West Palm Beach police said there was "a brief encounter" with no signs of a struggle. Three shots rang out. The assailant rode off on his bike. Shotkoski ran for about a hundred yards before he collapsed on the sidewalk near an office building, where he died from multiple gunshot wounds.

    "A couple of the guys called me and told me what happened," Blocker told the New York Times. "It brought tears to my eyes. I sat there for a while, feeling maybe I hadn't witnessed as well as I should have. Then I started shivering. I got down on my knees. It wasn't like I wanted revenge for Dave Shotkoski. I was asking God what I could do."

    Blocker spent the next three days on the dark and dangerous streets of Pleasant City, asking questions and doing whatever he could to locate his teammate's killer. He used his own money for tips and leads.

    Detective David Atherton of the West Palm Beach Police Department said, "He went out on his own. Nobody asked him to do it. He doesn't think he's a hero, but if some people had known what he was doing, he would have been in danger."

    Two days later, West Palm police -- acting on a tip given them by Blocker -- arrested Neal Evans for the crime. A printout of his criminal record was seven feet long. Two years later, Evans, who killed Shotkoski for drug money, was convicted and sentenced 25-to-life.

    Blocker refused the $10,000 reward offered by the Braves and West Palm police. Instead, he requested it be given to Felicia Shotkoski.

    "That was not my motivation," Blocker said in 1995. "I was looking for satisfaction of a different kind. A life was taken, but now I have the opportunity to go out and tell people about this experience I had.''

    Blocker, a Nashville native, said afterwards. ''Maybe it will help other people come to the kingdom of God.''

    The Braves released Blocker, saying a bad knee that ended his career the first time prevented him from being an effective replacement player.

    "I knew it was meant to be," Blocker said. "I wasn't bitter. I had 14 years of baseball, and now it's over."

    The strike was soon settled, all of the other replacements players, to a man, were sent home. The regular Braves had a brief spring training of their own, and Dave Shotkoski was, for the most part, not to be discussed. The Braves, who wound up with one non-Atlanta replacement player on their team, did not fully embrace the family due to the hard line union stance of player rep Tom Glavine.

    Team president Stan Kasten, the man in the middle, did what he could in the charged atmosphere, often behind the scenes. The team "invited" his widow to Opening Day, but she had to pay her own way. Kasten and the Braves saw to it the family got His $10,000 insurance settlement, but Kasten refused to meet her publicly.

    "And he didn't want the media to say anything," Felicia recalled. "He said it might upset the players."

    One or two players, rumored to be John Smoltz and a very low-profile Glavine, worked behind the scenes on a fund-raiser at a minor league game in Pennsylvania, Braves Chairman of the Board Bill Bartholomay attended a ceremony in Shotkoski's hometown near Chicago as a street was dedicated in his name.

    One player and his wife -- rookie Chipper Jones -- reached out to speak with Felicia Shotkoski, and mentioned that wives of some of the union players gave Chipper's then-wife a hard time for even being friends with a replacement player's wife. In the '95 playoffs, she attempted to attend a game with Chipper's wife, and the club made her pay for her tickets.

    Shotkoski's daughter is now 21 years old, and has kept a photo of her father with her every day of her life.

    Terry Blocker still lives in Stone Mountain, and even though he played for the Braves in 1988-89, he has never been invited back to participate in any Old Timer's ceremonies.

    Neal Evans, who had been arrested 17 previous times, was released from prison after 17 years -- 10 years early -- in 2012. For good behavior, don't you know.
    Last edited by rico43; 07-27-2016 at 09:46 PM.

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