Thursday, April 1, 2010

4 of Baseball's Famous Flakes

Babe HermanImage via Wikipedia

The countdown continues...4 days until Opening Day of the 2010 Baseball season! Since today is also April Fool's Day, I thought it appropriate that today's list look at 4 of baseballs daffiest players:

4. Jay Johnstone
Over a 20-year big league career, Johnstone was well known as both a solid utility player and one of baseball's great clowns. Whether it was dressing up as part of the groundskeeping crew and dusting off the infield between innings of a game, or climbing over the top of the dugout and marching through the stands in full dress uniform to go get a hot dog, Johnstone always something mischievous up his sleeve.

3. Babe Herman
Often called "The Daffiest Dodger," Herman was a good player who just seemed to get into odd situations. Decades before it happened to Jose Canseco, reporters insisted a fly ball had bounced off of Herman's head into the stands - not true, Herman insisted! It bounced off his shoulder... Herman is also the only man in history to double into a double play. Trying to stretch a double into a triple, he failed to see that the runner ahead of him was already standing there - or that the runner heading home had turned around and headed back to third, leaving 3 men on one base. Of course, his reputation was made when he was summoned to the phone while chomping on a cigar. Herman put the cigar in his coat pocket and took the call. Afterwards, he pulled the still-lit cigar from his pocket and resumed puffing away as though nothing were amiss...

2. Rube Waddell
In the early part of the 20th century, few pitchers were as accomplished as Waddell. He had pinpoint accuracy and an array pitches that flabbergasted hitters. He also had a bad habit of disappearing from the club, sometimes in the middle of an inning. He was entranced by fires, and if he heard a firetruck pass he drop whatever he was doing and run to chase it. Opposing teams' fans discovered they could easily distract Waddell by holding up small puppies. Waddell was one of a kind.

1. Bill Lee
Any player whose nickname is "The Spaceman" has got to lead this list! Lee earned his nickname basically through his outspoken, offbeat opinions and philosophies about the game and the world, most famously, The Cosmic Snowball Theory: "A few million years from now the sun will burn out and lose its gravitational pull. The earth will turn into a giant snowball and be hurled through space. When that happens it won't matter if I get this guy out."

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