Category Archives: Baseball

Dock Ellis & The LSD No-No

One of the best things about the giant sporting industrial complex is its infinite capacity to surprise and entertain, both in its present form and many folds of its history. I remember commissioning a piece by dormant DeadBall guest poster Mark Tierney last year when Mark Buerhle pitched a perfect game. In that I found out (belatedly, I have to acknowledge) about the no hitter, which happens but once or twice a season. This season’s been notable for the volume of no hitters, as I understand it, but here I’m going to show you a clip about a no-hitter from 1970. The reason it has become infamous is that its creator completed the feat while under the influence of LSD.

Which is pretty fucking amazing, I reckon. Anyway, here it is:

Really nicely put together, right? And just the kind of heart-warming story that makes you reconsider your retirement from psychedelic drugs. I have to thank a DeadBall reader Shayne Carter (NAME DROP!!!) for sliding that one our way. His Mum just put out an Elvis covers record, and he interviewed her about it in the new Real Groove – out Monday. You should read that then buy the album.

– Duncan


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I ♥ NY

This is a clip from when I went to a New York Mets game.  It was pretty sweet.


– Henry

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The DeadBall Interview: Daniel Vettori

I interviewed the current New Zealand Cricket captain Dan Vettori late last year for my employer,  Barkers Men’s Clothing (you can read the better, fancier feature at the Barkers blog), and thought I’d post the transcript of the interview for your reading pleasure. Bear in mind that the interview was conducted four months ago, so there was still hope for the season at the time. Or that faint patina of hope that all New Zealand Cricket fans know and ‘love’.

That soon faded. But the thrill of interviewing Vettori never will. He was an exceptionally impressive fellow, well-spoken, thoughtful, opinionated… Everything you’d like a sportsman to be, but so rarely encounter. I happened to be reading Michael Lewis’ excellent sabermetrics tribute Moneyball at the time, and self-consciously had it lying on the table between us when he came down. I figured it was as good a way as any to see how curious he was. I figure most All Blacks don’t even look at the book. Dan Vettori not only looked at it, he made keen observations about its content (tragically before I switched my dictaphone on) and had, in fact read it twice, the second time after he had made a concerted effort to appreciate the intricacies of baseball so as to see what that new knowledge altered in terms of his appreciation for the book.

Which is just great. We’ve now had two straight captains who are serious students of the game – but not just the game they happen to excel at, but games in general. For a side like the Black Caps, cursed by population and temperament to never have the resources our opposition has at their beck and call, this attribute is incredibly important. God knows where we’d be without his influence. Anyway, without further rumination, here is the transcript of our conversation,

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The Skinny Post: Freeway Baseball Baby – BRING IT ON

October – Baseball Playoffs and sexy Halloween costumes

October – Baseball Playoffs and sexy Halloween costumes

LA is on fire right now.

No, not in the usual way it’s on fire.

That happens too often for anyone to get excited about it (unless you’re trying to hide from the flames in your hot tub) but LA is EL FUEGO for the Dodgers and Angels right now, two teams separated by about 40 miles of the 5 freeway. The Angels are actually in the city of Anaheim of course, but three years ago became the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, so essentially Orange County was annexed for marketing purposes. Imagine Hamilton’s Super 14 team calling itself  The Auckland Chiefs of Waikato and you get the idea.

No matter. New York and New Jersey have been pulling this crap for years, so why not LA? Continue reading

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Guest Post: 2009 Baseball Playoff Primer – Part 2: National League


So, the National League… Called the Senior Circuit – cos it was the first before ‘dem upstart American Leaguers bubbled up at the turn of last century – the Nats have fallen on lean times this decade. Last year’s champs the Philadelphia Phillies hail from the National League, as do 2006’s St Louis Cardinals.

But honestly, it’s easier to remember them cos they are the exception rather than the rule. And the American League All-Stars have not been beaten by their National League counterparts for 13 years. Dominance. Continue reading

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Baseball Playoff Primer 2009

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It’s business time for the great American game. A season that began among the octogenarian havens of Florida and Arizona in Spring Training, spanned 2430 Major League games across 30 teams (who play 162 games per season, or about six per week), has come down to eight teams vying for World Series glory.

Why its a ‘World Series’ when all but one team – Toronto – hails from the US is a testament to both the power and arrogance of American marketing. But oh well, get over it and enjoy the spectacle.

That odyssey has ended for all but eight teams, most recently for Detroit, where the Tigers have just completed one of the greatest meltdowns of recent history by losing a one-game playoff decider to rivals the Minnesota Twins. Continue reading

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Kenny Powers: A DeadBall Icon

When my ass was 28 years old, I lost my shit watching Eastbound & Down.*


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