Sunday, June 20, 2010
Father's Day 2010
The modern athlete has taken a toll on his love for the game (and sports in general, truth be told) and the Players strike in 1994 was the final straw. He has not set foot in a Major League Baseball stadium since....although he will take in a Minor League Game on occasion. As with many fans who grew up in the 50's and 60's, my Dad's favorite player is Mickey Mantle, and "the Mick" is the reason he became a Yankees fan. Even though he has sworn off the rituals of being an active fan, he does still read a few books about the game and its history, and surprises me with a story or two about players that he has seen. One of my favorite baseball/Dad memories is watching the movie "61*" with my Dad. It was a fairly well made movie, and for those of you who haven't seen the film, it tells the story Mantle's and Roger Maris' chase of Babe Ruth's single season home run record during the 1961 season (one which many would argue he still has). My Dad actually feels bad today at the thought of how pro-Mantle he was at the time, and says that he remembers my uncle taking a club or a bat to a tree in their backyard any time Maris would homer and Mantle would not. My Dad is the reason that I love the New York Yankees -- even though he isn't as big of a fan as he was when he sat me down to watch Reggie Jackson back in the late 70's, it is still something that means a lot to me because it is something I share with my Dad.