Sad news: Another Brooklyn Dodger passes away

Today former Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca passed away at the age of ninety.  Branca played for three teams during his 12-year major league career. He will be best remembered as the pitcher who gave up the homerun to Bobby Thomson (the shot heard around the world) in a 1951 play off game vs the …

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Ballparks around the World: Dodger Stadium

During my vacation in the US, earlier this year, my good friend Javier took me to Dodger Stadium for a tour. It is hard to believe that Dodger Stadium, erected in 1962, is the third oldest ballpark in Major League Baseball. It is a ballpark without the modern bells and whistles in which baseball fans …

Do the Yankees need a new pitching coach?

This year the Yankees pitching isn't performing the way it should, which is quite an understatement. The new pitchers that were acquired last year, Luis Severino and Nathan Eovaldi, are performing worse than they did last year. Eovaldi's numbers are not much worse but still he declined from 4.20 to 4.76. Severino had a solid …

Rangers and Indians extend PDC

The Texas Rangers and the Spokane Indians (A Short Season, Northwest League) have extended their player development contract with two more years through the 2018 season. The cooperation between the two clubs started in 2003. Since the two clubs became partners the Indians have won three Northwest League titles. One in the inaugural year of …

Reds PDC news

In the ever moving world of player development contracts and affiliations there some news to tell. The Cincinnati Reds and their Pioneer League (Advanced Rookie) affiliate, the Billings Mustangs have extended their PDC with two more years through the 2018 season. When the new contract expires the cooperation between the two teams will have lasted …

Minor League history: Eastern Carolina League

There were two Eastern Carolina Leagues. Both operated in the Eastern part of North Carolina. The first run lasted from 1908 through 1910, the second lasted two years: 1928-1929. In both cases the league got a class D classification. 1908-1910 cities represented: Fayetteville, NC: Fayetteville Highlanders 1909-1910 Goldsboro, NC: Goldsboro Giants 1908-1910 Kinston, NC: Kinston …

Minor League history: Coastal Plain League

The Coastal Plain League was a class D league between 1937 and 1952. It grew out of a semi-pro league that ran from 1935 through 1936 and that carried the same name. Through the years it appeared to be a rather stable league as no team moved during a season. Only in 1951, the Tarboro …

First televised baseball games

When you ask the average baseball fan what the first televised baseball game was, they will probably answer the one in which the Brooklyn Dodgers hosted the Cincinnati Reds. Wrong!!! The first televised baseball game took place in the same year, 1939, but not on August 26 but on May 17. The college teams of …

Should Jackie Robinson’s statue be at Dodger Stadium?

Sixty years after Walter O'Malley traded Robinson to the arch rival of the Dodgers, the New York Giants, the Los Angeles Dodgers will erect a statue to honor Jackie Robinson. California-based sculptor Branly Cadet will create the Robinson statue ,which will be ten feet tall, around the theme, “Leveling the Playing Field.” With the help …

Toronto and Boston to play exhibition in Montreal in 2016

After two previous years in which the Toronto Blue Jays played a couple of exhibition games in Montreal, it looks like it starts to become a tradition for the Blue Jays to there before the regular season starts. Next year the Blue Jays will take on the Boston Red Sox to conclude the 2016 Spring …

Baseball Miscellaneous 6

Dodgertown in Vero Beach saved Dodgertown, the former spring training complex of the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers was left alone by the team in 2008 when they moved to Arizona. The facility used to be a naval air station that was converted into a spring training camp with barracks, stadium, practice fields and a golf course …

MLB mulling on Spring Training games in Cuba

Since the US government changed it's stance towards Cuba, the island republic is hot. Not only did the Biloxi Shuckers attempt to arrange games vs. Cuban teams, some MLB teams are doing the same. Today, the website of FOX Sports headed that MLB is considering to play Spring Training games in Cuba. According to Baseball …

1955, the season that was next year

                                                                          After the New York Giants won the World Series in the previous year, the Dodgers started the season hopeful as ever. How many World Series had they played without winning one? 1916 and 1920 as the Robins, 1941, 1947, 1949, 1952 and 1953. In five of these World Series appearances, the hated Yankees were …

Will Gil Hodges finally be elected into the HOF?

Gil Hodges, the manager that guided the Mets to their very first World Series title during their miracle run of 1969 (sorry Cubs fans), will mostly be remembered as the first baseman of the Brooklyn Dodgers. With him the Dodgers won their only World Series as Brooklyn Dodgers in 1955.           …

Walter O’Malley, a visionair or a fraud?

I wrote the following piece for my monthly colum in the Cuban baseball magazine Universo Beisbol. In this piece I want to share my point of view on the move of the Dodgers to Los Angeles. Over the years, the LA press and especially the O’Malley family have re-written history in favour of Walter O’Malley. …