My dad was an avid baseball fan.
He would have been overjoyed to see this report in the newspaper a few days ago:
“It was 40 years ago today that Henry Louis "Hank" Aaron did what most thought was impossible. On April 8, 1974, the Atlanta Brave hit home run number 715.
It broke Babe Ruth's all-time home run record.
Aaron finished his career with a record 755 homers, a stat so impressive it has been bested by only one player, Barry Bonds, who finished his career with 762.”
After my dad died, I found a little notebook containing many more baseball stats written in his familiar handwriting.
Along with the news about Hank Aaron’s achievement, he had written many others. Here are just a few:
Oct. 8, 1956... Don Larsen pitched a perfect game in the World Series! He pitched the game against the Brooklyn Dodgers. The Dodgers pitcher was Sal Maglie.
October 13, 1971... the first World Series night game was played at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pa. – between Pittsburgh Pirates and Baltimore Orioles. Pittsburgh won the game 4 – 3. Attendance – 51,378.
1971 World Series
- Baltimore – 5 to 3
- Baltimore – 11 to 3
- Pittsburgh – 5 to 1
- Pittsburgh – 4 to 3
- Pittsburgh – 4 to 0
- Baltimore – 3 to 2
- Pittsburgh – 2 to 1
June 16, 1978... Tom Seaver pitched the first no-hit game of his baseball career. It was also the first no-hit game to be played at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio. He beat the St. Louis Cardinals 4 – 0.
July 24, 1978... Pete Rose tied Tommy Holmes batting record for the most consecutive hits at 37. On July 25, he broke his own record with 38 hits and on July 26, he hit number 39.
I guess you could say my dad loved statistics, especially about baseball.
He also liked to brag that he, himself, once played “under the lights” at Watt Powell Park in Charleston, WV.
He passed away in January, 1979... six months after his last entry.