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Monday, February 04, 2013

Baseball Researcher: The Pride of the Seeknay

Ever hear the story about the classic movie “The Pride of the Yankees” and how director Sam Wood turned the hopelessly right-handed actor Gary Cooper into a believable version of lefty baseball legend Lou Gehrig? Here’s how Jeffrey Meyers related it in his biography of the Hollywood star, Gary Cooper: American Hero:

Since Cooper couldn’t hit left-handed, the technicians devised an ingenious method of getting around the problem. They reversed the number on his uniform, had him run to third instead of first base and then reversed the print of the film.

...So, did it really happen? We’ll see.

You should probably read the article for the answer, because a lot of work went into it and it’s interesting.  But if you’re lazy and willing to admit it, mouse over:

as far as the final cut of “The Pride of the Yankees” goes, Gary Cooper never wore a backwards Yankees uniform of any sort. He never batted right-handed or ran to third base after swinging. He did indeed learn to bat left-handed. And only in a handful of shots during a brief sequence portraying Gehrig’s days at Hartford did the movie-makers resort to flipping footage in order to make Cooper appear to be a natural left-hander.

The District Attorney Posted: February 04, 2013 at 04:39 PM | 6 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, lou gehrig, movies, the pride of the yankees, yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 04, 2013 at 11:59 PM (#4362849)
Worth watching just to see Babe Ruth, Bill Dickey, Bob Meusel & Mark Koenig playing themselves, as did sportscaster Bill Stern.
   2. esseff Posted: February 05, 2013 at 12:37 AM (#4362854)
I'm more impressed by the technology The District Attorney used to camouflage the answer to the question than the technology the filmmakers used to make Cooper hit left-handed.
   3. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: February 05, 2013 at 09:06 AM (#4362923)
Really. I mean people are always complaining about being able to block quote stuff correctly and DA is doing this fancy-dancy font thing. Show off.
   4. depletion Posted: February 05, 2013 at 09:17 AM (#4362934)
Thanks for the post, DA.
   5. BDC Posted: February 05, 2013 at 10:09 AM (#4362992)
The DA's right, though: RTFA, it's the tracer of all tracers. Great stuff.
   6. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: February 05, 2013 at 01:50 PM (#4363215)
Fascinating. Was expecting another A-Rod article. This was much better.

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