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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Extra Innings (1978)

Jim Bouton, former sportscaster, former actor, former author, former 20-game winner for the New York Yankees, arrives at his usual post at the edge of the bleachers’ behind the Richmond dugout. He can’t go on the field and he’s not willing to sit in the stands, so he loiters around the hot dog concession, looking around absently like a man who’s lost his bearings. At the age of 39, Bouton no longer resembles a fresh-faced Army recruit, as he did in 1964 when he won two games in the World Series. The hair is short again, but it’s graying, and the eyes are attracting crow’s feet. To the fans in Richmond, he must look like somebody’s dad trying to get a peek in the bullpen to see if his son is warming up. But it’s his own youth that Bouton is searching for, and tomorrow night when the anthem concludes before the exhibition game with the Atlanta Braves, Jim Bouton will walk to the mound and face a major league club for the first time in eight years.

Folks around here probably know of Alex Belth for his long-running blog Bronx Banter. More recently, he’s been doing The Stacks Reader, a site devoted to curating great print journalism from the past. This is a 1978 NY Times piece on Jim Bouton’s attempted comeback as a knuckleball pitcher.

Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: July 11, 2019 at 07:58 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: alex belth, jim bouton, ted turner

 

 

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