Marking Time Using Baseball History As a Calendar or Clock


Time marches on. Time waits for no man. Nobody can stop time. Get the point?

We all have our way of remembering things, marking time, if you will. Maybe a song has a positive anchor in your subconscious and every time you hear it, you go right back to that time and place in your mind. Come on! Don’t look at this article like that, you know it’s true.

It may be a smell of Old Spice that your old man use to wear. You smell it and you remember the first time you noticed it on him. These are anchors that our subconscious mind have established and we have a fresh recollection each time the anchor is triggered.

Not all anchors are positive. For example, the song, Theme From a Summer Place instantly rewinds me to 1960 when my brother’s fiance was killed at the tender age of 17 by a drunk driver. Unless I would get hypnotherapy or something, it always will.

I learned all that anchoring stuff from Tony Robbins.

I mark time by baseball history.

1961 was the year of the home run. It seemed that everyone hit career highs in homers that season. You are aware of course that ’61 is the same year that Roger Maris broke the record held by Babe Ruth since 1927. He hit 61 in 61. It was also the year that the Reds played the Yankees in the World Series.

1969 was the only time I ever experienced a live All-Star game. It happened at RFK Stadium and I wrote an article about it here. Oh yeah, some guy named Armstrong walked on the moon a few days before the game. What can I say, it wasn’t baseball?

1970 was the last year that Crosley Field would host a ball game. It was also the first year that the Reds played in the “cookie-cutter era” style stadiums, Riverfront. I just read a piece the other day about a guy who took years in collecting signatures on a baseball of all nine players who were on the field for the last pitch at Crosley. What a piece of history, I believe it is on display at the Reds Hall of Fame.

In 1974 Hank Aaron beat Ruth’s all-time home run record with a blast off of Dodger southpaw Al Downing. It was a strange coincidence that Aaron and Downing both had the number 44 on their uniforms.

In 1985 Pete Rose beat Ty Cobb‘s career hit record when he notched his 4,190th base hit. I, like most of you will never forget it.

1994 shall always be remembered by me as the year baseball died.  Bye, bye Miss American pie. The players held a strike that stopped the season after only 115 games were logged. I was pissed boy. I boycotted the game for over a decade. True story. I Didn’t watch a game, read about it or anything.

To me it didn’t actually resurrect until about 2006. Oh I followed it prior to that but more from a distance.  I was aware of the huge surge of home runs by Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa. I also realized that all was not right in the world when Brady Anderson hit 50+ HR and that Luis Gonzalez hit damn near 60.

Since the rebirth of baseball (for my eyes only) I have followed the game more closely than ever. I use to have to buy those huge tomes called Baseball Encyclopedia. They were great to use but were obsolute after the first game was played the next season. Now, with the internet and with sites such as Baseball-Reference, The Baseball Cube, Fangraphs and all the others, a person is kept right up to speed.

So, you may have your way of marking the passage of time, but I bet it isn’t any funner than mine. Except the year Baseball died, you know how it is.