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Monday, July 15, 2013

John D’Acquisto: The Alternate

Another must read from D’Acquisto! Which sounds like my being a ####### alternate for the 1966 NJ Little League team that went to the final game in Williamsport. #stillbitter

Now imagine this happening in your hometown, the town where you were born, where you were raised, in the same stadium where you tried out for the majors eight years earlier. Your Mom, your Dad, brother and sister sit right behind home plate alongside the league VIPs, beaming with pride, leaning over to catch a glimpse of your face in a dugout surrounded by future Hall of Famers. You receive a nod from your hometown buddy Graig Nettles across the field, with whom you also downed a few beers at one of the three functions you attended last night.

Yeah, you feel love all right. You feel recognition, you feel affection, you feel things in this game you’ve never felt before, like you’re in the right place at the right time and your badass, 100 MPH-throwing right arm brought you here.

Imagine it’s July 11th, 1978 and you’re at the Major League All Star Game in San Diego, California.

Imagine 51,549 fans, mostly locals, a time when a family of four from La Mesa could afford and access All-Star tickets, fans that know your name, that want to see you on the field in the worst way, in front of Commissioner Bowie Kuhn and former President Gerald Ford, who’s about to toss out the first ball.

Now imagine if you could change just one critical element to this picture…….

Repoz Posted: July 15, 2013 at 11:24 AM | 16 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: disco sucks, giants, history

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. . . . . . . . . . . Posted: July 15, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4494639)
I enjoy fiction too, Repoz.
   2. Bob Tufts Posted: July 15, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4494641)
Bill Almon was the 1st overall pick in the 1974 draft, not a 4th rounder. Have to stick up for the Ivies even if it is Brown (add appropriate "Family Guy" reference here....)

John is truly an entertaining read, but...... I await his 1981 Salt Lake City Gulls stories so that I can verify what I know from other players.
   3. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: July 15, 2013 at 12:48 PM (#4494721)
Bill Almon was the 1st overall pick in the 1974 draft, not a 4th rounder.

Ozzie Smith was the 4th rounder who pushed Almon off his position.
   4. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: July 15, 2013 at 12:54 PM (#4494731)
I think this is a mistake though:

Hendrick is shifting through gears, squeezing the accelerator, the odometer on the verge of 100
   5. Bob Tufts Posted: July 15, 2013 at 12:57 PM (#4494735)
My bad - that's what I get for reading pre-coffee.

I will always remember the first time I saw Smith in instructional league when he was running sprints and did that damned somersault.
   6. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 15, 2013 at 01:00 PM (#4494740)
Cool story, love the inside stuff about how there's an alternate.

Alvin Dark was fired. It was only the second time in baseball history that a manager was fired in Spring Training


Anyone know who the first was?
   7. ursus arctos Posted: July 15, 2013 at 01:03 PM (#4494749)
   8. asinwreck Posted: July 15, 2013 at 02:02 PM (#4494836)
Best George Hendrick story ever.

Where the hell has D'Aqguisto been the past thirty years? He should be on his tenth book by now.
   9. ursus arctos Posted: July 15, 2013 at 02:12 PM (#4494855)
Well, there was the decade in prison for fraud (two separate stints).
   10. asinwreck Posted: July 15, 2013 at 02:15 PM (#4494857)
Sure, but it seems that would give him plenty of time to write. One ex-colleague of mine is currently doing 14 to 30 for shooting a cop. He's continued to publish since relocating to the state pen.
   11. ursus arctos Posted: July 15, 2013 at 02:38 PM (#4494893)
I wonder if D'Acquisto was concerned about any potential profits having to go towards restitution.
   12. salvomania Posted: July 15, 2013 at 04:20 PM (#4495031)
Great stuff. It seems like he really loved the life of a ballplayer.

One quibble though is that he says Ozzie won the Rookie of the Year award, beating out Bob Horner. It was actually the other way around.
   13. djordan Posted: July 15, 2013 at 04:28 PM (#4495036)
@ salvomania, it sure was the other way around. Nice catch. Fixed to reflect the error.
   14. spike Posted: July 15, 2013 at 08:54 PM (#4495249)
Very compelling and insightful story. Thanks for posting.
   15. fastballjohnd34 Posted: August 29, 2013 at 01:06 PM (#4530541)
ursus arctos Posted: July 15, 2013 at 02:12 PM (#4494855)


Well, there was the decade in prison for fraud (two separate stints).

Ursus it was one stint ran concurrent 5 years...BTW

Thanks for the positive responses on my stories... there is more to come...and Bob when I write my Salt Lake story I will personally let you know about it.
   16. Joe Kehoskie Posted: August 29, 2013 at 06:01 PM (#4530804)

BBTF: Now with two former major leaguers!

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