— Gotten quite a bit of dissent on this piece about this video essay on Jackie Robinson West. My argument is that Little League got it very wrong, that they punished the wrong people, they punished kids — kids who accomplished something extraordinary and who even the hard-liners don’t blame for whatever rules violations were committed — and that what Little League should be worried about more than crashing down on Jackie Robinson West is building on what they did and use that expand baseball into the inner cities, something I think they’ve done very poorly for a quarter century. I’m not saying there should have been no consequence at all; I am saying that stripping the title was beyond excessive.
Many people have reached out to say that I’m defending cheating, that I often defend cheating, and that I don’t understand these things at all. Perhaps.
This gets into a much longer and deeper conversation about crime and punishment, about rewriting history, about what I think is often an over-the-top reaction to make sure that “cheaters” don’t get away with it rather than a measured response that maybe doesn’t satisfy the pound-of-flesh wishes but actually does some good.
— I am very slowly — VERY slowly — trying to get some of my old blog archives up over at the JoeVault. Here’s one I had forgotten all about from 2010 — I listed the 10 best players who hit a home run in their first plate appearance. I haven’t had time to update it, but might be fun to read for you — it also includes the fun trivia question of the time: Who is the oldest Hall of Famer to have hit a home run in his first plate appearance? The answer then was Ace Parker, who was in the Pro FOOTBALL Hall of Fame. Ace Parker, though, died in 2013.