Stacey May Fowles is a Toronto-based award-winning writer. Her recent book, Baseball Life Advice, is a collection of essays that looks at everything from bat flips to the politics of booing and everything in between. Fowles currently writes about books for The Globe and Mail, baseball for Jays Nation and The Athletic, and is author of the popular weekly Baseball Life Advice e-newsletter.
Earlier this spring we took a day trip to St. Marys, Ontario for a mini baseball tournament on the fields of Canada’s Baseball Hall of Fame. I had never been to the CBHOF. I was amazed at how small the actual Hall is.
The Hall (and Museum) is located in a former home on a parcel of land donated to the Hall by the St. Marys Cement Company.
While the home may be small, there is so much on display on the main floor and even more stored away on the second floor.
I remember watching this game in my parents living room. George Bell was, and always has been, my favourite baseball player.
Toronto once tried to acquire the Giants baseball team. They even had stationary made!
Yes, the Babe played in Canada before his MLB career began.
Ari Shapiro is one of Toronto’s foremost experts on baseball and the Toronto Blue Jays. His work has appeared in Sportsnet and Jays Journal. He can also be heard on radio stations across Canada. On the Blue Jays 2017 home opener, Ari and I sat down inside Pacific Junction Hotel to chat about your Toronto Blue Jays!
Recorded live at Girth Radio.
In today’s episode I speak with the founder of The Real Sports Zone website and podcast, Adam Virani.
In this episode we discuss:
– The first 100 days of the 2016 Toronto Blue Jays season
– Adam’s recent visit to the Dominican Republic to coach and teach baseball
Music by Afraaz Mulji.
Rogers Media recently released number from Numeris that report on TV and radio numbers of the Toronto Blue Jays.
- the first 81 games of the season had an average audience of 825,000 viewers on Sportsnet. That’s an increase of 51% over 2015
- 30 games have been watched by more than one million viewers
- When it comes to radio, more listeners are tuning in to Jays coverage this year than last as well: on Sportsnet 590 The Fan in the Toronto market up ratings are up 86% for adults 25 to 54, and 32% for men 25 to 54
The success of the Jays gave Sportsnet a 5.9 audience share with an average audience of 216,000 for the month of June, which translates to a year-over-year increase of 29%.
The above numbers were first reported by Media In Canada.
This podcast was originally published on: May 31, 2016 on Girth Radio.
Arturo Marcano is a Toronto-based author who writes about the problems in Latin American countries caused by the globalization of baseball, specifically Major League Baseball (MLB).
In this hour-plus long conversation Marcano shares with us:
– how MLB has helped shape the cycle of poverty in the baseball-talent rich nations of Venezuela and the Dominican Republic
– why this same problem doesn’t exist in Mexico or Japan
– why there are not a lot of players in MLB from Mexico
– the upcoming battle between Cuban baseball and MLB
and much, much more!
Congrats Josh Donaldson.
According to MLB.com:
Donaldson led the Blue Jays to the postseason for the first time since 1993 with one of the best offensive performances in franchise history. He hit .297 with 41 home runs and led the Majors with 122 runs scored while pacing the AL with 123 RBIs and appearing in all but four games. Donaldson was also first in the AL with 84 extra-base hits, second to Trout with 8.7 WAR and third with a .939 on-base plus slugging percentage.
George Bell was the first Blue Jays player to win the AL MVP in 1987. In the last several weeks, Donaldson has won the Hank Aaron Award, the Players’ Choice Most Outstanding Player Award and an AL Silver Slugger Award as the league’s top offensive third baseman. He finished fourth in voting for the AL MVP in 2013 and eighth last season as a member of the A’s.
By now you’ve either read my blog post on the topic or seen the gifs or videos of Jose Bautista’s epic home run from Wednesday night’s ALDS Game. And his bat flip.
And of course you’ve heard and or read the many opinions of those who know better that Bautista disrespected the pitcher, the Texas Rangers and the game of baseball as a result of his emotional response.
Esquire had a nice piece on the bat flip and it’s place in sports history.
From a cultural standpoint those who had a problem with what Bautista did lack cultural understanding and awareness.
These same people had a problem with his temper over the years. They had a problem with how Jose Reyes played the game and celebrated the game with joy. They don’t like the way Johnny Cueto sometimes does a jig before he pitches. And I’m sure there’s so much more they dislike.
But there are also things they like that I have no patience for. They like hitting batters to send a message. They like it when a veteran assults a younger player to teach them a lesson. They like batters who never celebrate a home run. Lest they anger the baseball gods.
These people can also be found in other sports. Here in Canada you can find them in hockey. And everywhere else.
You know who I’m talking about. They are not necessarily wrong. Nor are they right.
It’s like Harold Reynolds saying that Canadians can’t catch. He’s not right. And he’s not wrong. He’s ignorant. Of course we can catch.
And Jose Bautista is not disrespecting anyone or anything. This is how he displays his passion and love for the game. The same game he’s been playing since he was a kid playing baseball in the Dominican Republic. The same game Cole Hamels had been playing in the States.
And it’s the same game. However people play this game all over the world. I’ve had the opportunity to watch baseball in Taiwan. And to watch an international game played between Canada and the Dominican Republic. And of course Blue Jays baseball.
To expect an homogeneous baseball culture in 2015 is not just ridiculous. But short sighted and ignorant.
Let’s enjoy the game and how people doing all over the world play it. On the biggest baseball stage in the world. Major League Baseball.
The founder of Pitch Talks, Kevin Kennedy recently joined me in Girth Radio studios in Pacific Junction Hotel in Toronto.
Music by Afraaz Mulji.