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Friday Mid-Day Reading

Quick hit today; I think we'll be hearing from Dave and Chico soon.

Mets Manager Jerry Manuel apparently feels about his starters what Manny Acta was feeling about his bullpen last Sunday: not good. The latest to stumble -- the Mets were swept by the Cards this week -- is Livan Hernandez. The only one not on notice, apparently, is tonight's starter, Johan Santana.

Good news: Looks like Cole Hamels will be okay for his next start despite getting tagged by a Prince Fielder line drive Thursday. Bad news: His next start is Tuesday against the Nats.

Brian Oliver has a daily offering of the action down on the farm. Check it out.

The forecast for the Mets series is fabulous; a little cool tonight (low of 52), but Saturday will be 80 degrees and Sunday 84. I'm sure the players don't like the Friday-Saturday turnaround, but I love Saturday afternoon baseball. Reminds me of the old "Game of the Week" and Vin Scully and learning to score a game with my dad. It's hard to imagine now that that was the only baseball we could SEE: one game a week. Maybe some of you -- OldDude? -- remember that as well.

By Tracee Hamilton  |  April 24, 2009; 11:25 AM ET
 
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Comments

The Nats are going introduce Santana to the frustration the other Mets starters are experiencing.
We'll shell that dude. He won't last 3 innings.

Go Nats!

Posted by: usmc53 | April 24, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

I may not be OldDude, but I have fond memories of the Sat. afternoon NBC Game of the Week as well. Except my memory soundtrack has Joe Garagiola and Tony Kubek doing the announcing. However, I think we'd all agree that we prefer the current every game on TV situation.

Posted by: macman3 | April 24, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet.

Posted by: nunof1 | April 24, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

We'll shell that dude. He won't last 3 innings.

Posted by: usmc53 | April 24, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

*****************
Along the Dunn theme of the day, I'm not sure about shelling, but we'll sure *wait* the heck out of those pitches.

Posted by: NatsNut | April 24, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Carnac rips open envelope, blows on the the end, takes out a card and reads: "Name three things you buy, and one thing you buy out."

Posted by: nunof1 | April 24, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Not OldDude either, but an old dude. And then there were the handful of Senators games every season on Channel 9. My first memories were the radio play by play guys, Dan Daniels and John McLean taking turns doing TV each game, and later Warner Wolf with his guest celebrity sidekicks. I have this unsettling memory of Flip Wilson doing commentary as Geraldine one game. Ah, Event TV.

Posted by: mojo6 | April 24, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of Saturday Game of the Week with Kubek & Gowdy:

I usually watched the games, but one particular Saturday I was pumped for some baseball. I had just played all morning with my friends, and came inside, cooked a Chef-Boy-Ar-Dee Pizza and sat down in front of the TV, looking forward to some serious baseball.

At 1:00, instead of hearing the intro music, there was a slide with the word "rainout" on it. A voice said, "There has been a double rainout, both the game of the week and the back of game has been cancelled."

Then Channel 4 played a Charlie Chaplin movie.

That was, what, almost 40 years ago and I remember it like yesterday.

Oh, first Senators game I ever saw on TV was against the Indians, in 1968. I had a hard time telling which team was which because they both wore red.

Posted by: rushfari | April 24, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

You young whippersnappers talk about Vin Scully (who is a great announcer); I remember Dizzy Dean doing the commentary on game broadcast in glorious black and white.

Posted by: greggwiggins | April 24, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Looking forward to my first visit to Citi Field tonight - hopefully we can pull one off against a shaky Mets club, even with Santana pitching. If not, at least there's Shake Shack!

Posted by: KurtNYC | April 24, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Regarding Senators broadcasts, the duo I remember was Ray Scott & Warner Wolf. Every game was on the road because Bob Short was afraid he'd lose fannies in the seats if the home games were televised.

I remember one game when my dad and I were driving literally right by the stadium on a Saturday, heading off to who remembers where. Ron Menchine said to begin the broadcast, "Hello everyone and welcome from RFK Stadium, where it's a beutiful day with plenty of seats available." I looked towards RFK and could barely make it out because of the thunderstorm. Seems Short made them say that regardless of the weather.

Another particular memory (not that anyone cares): 1969, Senators were playing at Comisky against the White Sox. Howard had homered, and Mike Epstein had already hit two. Back then three homers in a game was almost unheard of. His second flew into the upper deck and into walkway tunnel, then bounced into the lower deck.

He had a chance to hit a third homer in the 9th -- he hit a long one about 10 feet foul and then...... double play.

30 homers in about 400 at-bats. Ted Williams helped him that year.

Posted by: rushfari | April 24, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I remember reading a story about Dizzy Dean, that the St. Louis school teachers were trying to get him pulled off the air because many of the school children were beginning to talk like him which, if you ever heard him speak, you would understand why.

Posted by: rushfari | April 24, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Yo the game of the week was the bomb back in the day!(ok,ok,enough of that hip hop talk) I waited for certain matchups mostly national league where I could see my favorite players Gibson,Flood,Brock,Cepada,Bench,and the rest, the then Senators were so bad that you could only take so much except the 69 season when Teddy Ballgame was the manager.I have the MLB package on Dir.TV so of course i watch the Nats and curse like a sailor but i like to watch the Yanks just to see them struggle(can you believe the homers that are flying out of that park?) This will be a tough road trip i'd be happy with 3-3.

Posted by: dargregmag | April 24, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"Every game was on the road because Bob Short was afraid he'd lose fannies in the seats if the home games were televised."

Was it that, or was it the blackout rule? I remember occasional Redskins home games in that era where there was worry that the game might be blacked out because it wasn't sold out 72 hours in advance or whatever it was. I also remember hearing of folks who would install special television antennas on their roofs or in their attics so they could watch blacked-out Redskins games on the Richmond TV channels. No Senators home game aside from possibly the opener would ever even be close to a sellout, so by definition they would be blacked out on local TV.

Posted by: nunof1 | April 24, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Day baseball is the best baseball... I go to every weekday day game that isn't a holiday... Just hit work a bit early, take a 4 hour lunch and work a bit late (an understanding boss is a big help here)... Though I have a very soft spot for the TwiNight Double Header... I think that my Dad and I went to every one between '68 and '71...

TGotW was required viewing for me. My first memories of it are with Curt Gowdy and Sandy Koufax. Scully and Garagiola were, however, the best team.

Posted by: OldDude | April 24, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Ah Afternoon games!! My fondest memory is my grade school teacher allowing us to listen to the world series on radio. Night TV is not the same.

Posted by: kgwcoach | April 24, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I grew up in St. Louis listening to Harry Carry and Jack Buck do the Cardinals games on both radio and TV. When the Cards were on the road, one would do the TV while the other did the radio, and they would switch off after three innings. The only time we would get to see anything other than the Cardinals was Saturday afternoon. Then we listened to Curt Gowdy and Pee Wee Reese. And I remember when instant replay wasn't even in color, even though the games were.

Posted by: twinbrook | April 24, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I enjoyed the Game of the Week, but growing up in New York, I could watch a lot of baseball on TV. For free. Didn't have to pay $100 a month to get cable TV, so we could watch our home team's games.

Posted by: fischy | April 24, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Great that so many remember "ol' Dizz" in the booth in the 1950s and 60s with his "pardner" Peewee Reese. Remember Falstaff Beer? Those were the golden days...

Posted by: VirginiaNatsNut | April 24, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Right, Gargiola and Kubek; I had forgotten that tandem. But I do think G. and Scully were the best.

I think when I began collecting baseball cards in earnest I bought a Tony Kubek card. (Also Jim Bouton, Bob Uecker ... my collection is bizarre.) I think the Kubek card was one of those you cut out of the back of Post cereal box. I'll have to dig it out someday.

Posted by: traceeh | April 24, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I know that early GotW broadcasts were not allowed by stations that were within 50 miles of a MLB park... As far as I know baseball has never used a blackout rule tied to selling out the stadium...

Posted by: OldDude | April 24, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

And I'm jealous of anyone who got to hear Dizzy Dean. That must have been a riot. Just a little bit before my time, sadly.

New post up.

Posted by: traceeh | April 24, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

It is sad that you "old" people consider old times to be in the '60s. Machman3 is showing hisyouth by mentioning Kubek and Garagiola. Rushfari seems close to my era. But here is the "rest of the story". There were two games of the week (Sat. and Sun.)on CBS. At first its was Lindsey Nelson and the great D. Dean. Neleson was gamer and Dean did color (Boy did he do color!) But Lindsey could'nt stand him. So, L goes to NBC and fame. Dean becomes gamer (I was well into my 30s when I out where Beaumont, TX was)and the great Pee Wee Rease became color. Sorry, Old Dude this was the best team. Speaking of the Cardinals (my second team since the NATS), how great was it to see Dean and Reese on TV then get to listen, during the week, to Harry Caray and Joe Garagiola. Tracee- Dean and the Colonel.

Posted by: adhardwick | April 24, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Why, I remember back in the old spark-gap transmitter days, we had Honus Wagner doing color commentary and...ahh, who am I kidding?

Posted by: BoteMan | April 24, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I vaguely remember Dizzy and L. Nelson, but the first ones who made an impression on me were Dizzy and Pee Wee. They taught me baseball. Nobody in my family was particularly athletic, so I relied on those two guys from TV to tell me what was what. (And I can also remember those Falstaff beer ads.)

Posted by: shepdave2003 | April 24, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Meh.

Growing up on Long Island, I remember Mel Allen and Red Barber broadcasting Yankees games on WPIX TV, channel 11 out of New York City, with Allen pimping Ballantine beer.

When the Mets came to town, they had Lindsey Nelson and Ralph Kiner doing the broadcasts. They had a pre-game show hosted by Roy Campanella and post-game show hosted by Ralph Branca. First time I saw Branca - I was about 11 or 12 - my reaction was, "Wait, isn't he the guy who was pitching to Bobby Thomson when...?"

There were giants in those days.

Posted by: gilbertbp | April 24, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I love Saturday afternoon baseball. Also This Week In Baseball. I can't believe that I forgot to start watching that again. I think it threw me off when they changed it from being right before the Fox Saturday game to several hours before.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 24, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Also, I didn't live here then but I always like hearing/reading people's memories of Senators games.

I remember my dad and brothers listening to A's and Giants games on the radio. Don't remember watching games of the week. Do remember the Wide World of Sports. The thrill of victory...and the agony of defeat. Good training for baseball fans...

I have some quirky baseball cards myself. Maybe next off day we could have a baseball card post? Sacrilege now I suppose but didn't they make a cool sound in the bicycle spokes?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 24, 2009 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Aah, 1a1, baseball cards... there's still a pang reliving the pain when my entire collection was lost in our move from LA to DC in 1962.

You all have better memories than me - I remember most of the voices mentioned but not the early pairings. I know I listened to them, because I watched plenty of games when Tony Kubek was next to Cletis Boyer on the left side of the (hated) Yankee infield.

Geezer

Posted by: utec | April 24, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

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