Some of the treasures the shrine holds include the shoes of Shoeless Joe (he picked up the nickname as a youngster who couldn afford proper foot attire). The baseball museum also has Christy Mathewson piano (with baseball bats as supporting legs), Babe Ruth bowling ball, Moe Berg medal for wartime spy service, a 17 foot bat carved as a gift for Ted Williams, a whisk broom used by umpire Jocko Conlan, and a crown given to Carl Hubbell. Even before the latest expansion work started, it housed five million newspaper documents, 200,000 player data cards, 125,000 photographs, 100,000 autographs, 15,000 baseball books, 2,000 pamphlets, and 400 videotapes, plus radio tapes, movie reels, sheet music, team files, team publications (including yearbooks and media guides), baseball magazines, and various documents of the game dating back to 1840..
But no centralized program will create the kind of player who creatively dribbles and dances his team to victory. In fact, the more you plan and the more you dictate, the less likely youare to rise beyond mediocrity. It is an interesting paradox: in its sports culture, the nation that prides itself on a free wheeling and nearly unbridled individualism actually encourages unquestioning submission in its popular sports and, far too often, you see well meaning soccer parents preach to their children about iron discipline when they ought to tell them to express their free spirits on the field..
And bless them all, but the political media doesn’t get out of this election clean, either. If you’ve been wondering why a universe of political reporters and pundits seem to be blissfully unaware of the problems that ordinary people are facing almost as if they are content to reduce huge calamities like the pervasive unemployment crisis to mere obstacles that block the ambitions of affluent, celebrity politicians you should know that the media gave up on covering the lives of Americans in the Crisis Years a long, long time ago. They had their reasons, as they’ll readily admit: all of the powerful political figures they had “access” to stopped talking about it, so what were they supposed to do? Talk to some poors? No one covets access to poor people..
Add both inept ownership and an organization pillaged by both Jeffrey Loria and MLB, and you have a recipe for disaster. No market not Philadelphia, St. Louis or Boston could thrive under generations of hopelessness, where maningful September baseball is something for other towns to experience..