Sunday, April 1, 2012


This was going to be the day (April 1) where we would announce to you the unimaginable news that we are joining forces with the Baseball Prospectus...but even in the music-hall chairs environment of the current numberologistic echolaliaists (try rapid-fire repeating that four times, friends...), we figured that such a joke would simply not make it off the launching pad.

So, instead, let's celebrate some classic baseball photography as we wait for the season to re-open (and we try to ignore the giant sucking sound made by Tom Verducci as he kisses the Commissioner's ass in his recent SI post about the A's-M's epic...I mean, jeez, Tom, do you want a job with MLB that bad? Of course, remember that we're the folks who--metonymically, at least--strapped that pitching machine to BS's ass back in 1996, and advocated it being set to "rapid fire" idea whose time is always now!).

Alas, no photos of that devoutly wished annihilo-consummation, but we have a consolation prize in some spiffy retro-work from Neil Leifer.

Neil Leifer getting tricky: the double play as seen from the second base bag, Dodger Stadium, 1966. (Baserunner Willie "3-Dog" Davis knocked the tiny camera for a loop when he completed his slide...)
Browsing around in a variation of our usual twilight state waiting for a certain combination of meds to kick in, we discovered that Leifer's volume of hardball photography, Ballet in the Dirt, is on sale for some ridiculously low prices at outlets both virtual and real (though, yes, that ratio is about 93/7 last time we checked).

Numbers make him sweat: Thomas Gomez
in Force of Evil...
Amidst Leifer's great in-game images, this posed shot is
the most amusing--each member of the A's shown here 

took a powder from owner Charlie Finley (center)
just as soon as free agency permitted.
Though we know that the i-Pad revolution (just one of 4,141 such epochal events currently underway as we type this) will someday soon give us a hyper-pixillated glow of boundless imagery, there is still something palpable in Taschen's approach to book-making (and we are not talking about the backroom shenanigans in Force of Evil, though we could be easily talked into it...) that adds a sense of engagement. Viewing these images while holding them in your hands (before they are cold and dead, at least) is still the way to go.

And since they're basically giving it away--Jeez, a coffee-table book with nearly 300 pp. of indelible 60s and 70s baseball images for less than five bucks??--you should just take our word for it, head over to Amazon, and see if you can resist such a good deal.

No foolin'!