2016 Season Edition No. 5 March 4, 2016



Baseball is back!


If there is anything better than watching a Grapefruit League Spring Training baseball game in a sun-splashed ballpark during the month of March, somebody will have to prove it to me and with at least clear and convincing evidence.



On Tuesday, March 1, I found myself decamped to Goodyear Ballpark in Goodyear, AZ, for the first Grapefruit League game of the season, between the Cincinnati Reds and the Cleveland Indians, who share the Goodyear Park venue. Although I was somewhat surprised at how few of the Indians and Redsí projected starters actually played in the first game, I did get to see Joey Votto rake a couple of hits, and also witnessed home runs by Indians first baseman Carlos Santana and Reds up-and-comer (and a native of Tirebiterís hometown, Cedar Rapids, Iowa), Scott Schebler.




I am able to confirm with absolute certainty the rumors that Goodyear Ballpark serves the coldest beer in the Valley, regardless of which type of draft beer is ordered and irrespective of which beer vendor is patronized. The obligatory salted peanuts were beyond satisfactory, as was the mustard-drenched red hot.


My only mistake was not laying over for another couple of days to catch a few more games. One of these springs, I am going to spend the entire month of March watching Spring Training baseball.




Inside the Secret World of

Major League Baseballís

Power Brokers



I recently finished reading a book efficiently titled The Game, by Jon Pessah, and I would suggest to all of you that it is one of the best books that you will ever read about the business of baseball during our years of fandom, essentially picking up where Lords of the Realm (John Helyar 1994) left off. The Game does not house an abundance of snappy, quotable prose as one finds in books by Roger Angell, Roger Kahn, and Tom Boswell, but it is a precise and articulate recountal of the inner workings of baseball between the unholy alliance of the owners, the players, and the commissioner. If anyone wants to borrow my copy, let me know.




Lastly, I share with you now [link], an absolutely wonderful Law Review article recently published in the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, entitled Time to Drop the Infield Fly Rule and End a Common Law Anomaly. This article, authored by Andrew J. Guilford (a United States District Judge in the Central District of California) and Joel Mallord, a law clerk to Judge Guilford, is required reading for any true fan of the game.


I am confident that you will not read a baseball article that is pithier and more adroitly footnoted as this one. It made me LOL, more than once.


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See you in exactly four weeks from tomorrow, for the funnest day of the year for the brethren of the Hot Stove League.