Anything is possible… for one day anyway. Will the San Francisco Giants continue their year-to-year progress? They finished last season next to last in their division, a marked improvement over 2017 when they had the worst record, not just in their division, not just the National League, but in all of Major League Baseball.
In May 1895, Oscar Wilde entered Newgate Prison in London to begin two years hard labor for his crime of “gross indecency.” On June 17, 2016, the Tampa Bay Rays drew their largest crowd in a decade. The Rays hosted the San Francisco Giants with 40,135 in attendance on “Pride Night,” dedicated to the victims of the shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. Average attendance for the Rays is 16,037, second lowest in the major leagues.
Last night the Kansas City Royals beat the New York Metropolitans – Mets for short – in the first game of the World Series. They did it in fourteen innings played over five hours in fifty-five degree weather. The last time a World Series game went that many innings was in 2005 when the White Sox beat the Astros in game three. (The White Sox swept the Series in four games.) That game lasted five hours and forty-one minutes. It hasn’t always been this way. In 1916, the Red Sox beat the Brooklyn Robins – aka Dodgers – in fourteen innings. That game lasted 2:32.
During the Independence Day weekend, the downtown plaza in Sonoma (population 10,600) was filled with people enjoying the holiday entertainment and browsing the surrounding shops and restaurants and wine-tasting venues. Two blocks beyond the plaza, three hundred baseball fans watched the Sonoma Stompers take on the San Rafael Pacifics. The finale was a Sunday double-header: afternoon game in Sonoma, then a thirty-mile ride to San Rafael for the evening contest. The Pacifics won both.