Monday, March 27, 2017


MARCH 27, 2017

To the sounds of John Fogarty’s Centerfield, Red Sox fans await next Monday’s season opener vs. Pittsburgh. Baseball lovers delight in the games, the plays, the special moments that define a game. And there are 162 of those games.

Attempts are being made to speed up baseball (fewer commercials?). FootJoy and I were talking about this, and we both felt that baseball is a special sport with no fixed time and we like it that way. We don’t mind the length of games. Each game is different. FootJoy and I do agree that there are areas where the game could be sped up to the betterment of the fan. Fewer catcher visits to the mound. Only 1 infielder allowed in mound visits, and replays that take no more than 30-45 seconds with an announcement to the crowd about the nature of the challenge and the conclusion (those are all FootJoy’s).

Now we get to enjoy this BoSox season. This team has the potential to be very special with its superior starting pitching and young emerging stars. There should be a full year of Andrew Benintendi (baseball gods – please, no injuries).

The defense should be better with Benintendi in LF and Moreland at 1B. Could this year be one of redemption for Pablo Sandoval? His pre-season play has been good both defensively and with the bat.

Yesterday I saw Christian Vazquez pick off a runner at 2nd and then throw out a guy trying to steal 3rd. Oh and he hit a 3-run HR to put the Sox ahead. The extra time to recover from the Tommy John surgery is evidencing itself in Vazquez’s play. Sandy Leon will also catch with Blake Swihart at Pawtucket, honing his catching skills. The future is the tandem of Vazquez and the switch-hitting, faster than you think, Swihart.

Things in Pawtucket should be interesting as Marco Hernandez, Sam Travis, Rusney Castillo, Alan Craig, Steve Selsky and Swihart should add some pop to the every day lineup. The starting pitching will be its Achilles’ Heel until Brian Johnson, Henry Owens and the injured Roenis Elias start figuring out how to pitch effectively. The PawSox will
have the benefit of ex-Phillie Kyle Kendrick, who based on pre-season could be the #1 starter for Pawtucket. The PawSox home opener is a week from next Monday (4/10) vs. Syracuse. As a season ticket holder, I’m ready. Put me in, coach. I’m ready to play.

Well my brackets are busted, but I did have NC and Gonzaga in the Final Four.

BU lost to Minnesota-Duluth in OT 3-2 and missed the Frozen Four. In their 1st game, BU beat ND in OT with D Charlie McAvoy scoring the winner. McAvoy can’t sign with Boston until he finishes final exams this week. Given the Bruins D, McAvoy could help.

Per Bill Chuck (Cafardo/Globe – 3/26) BoSox AL games in ’16 were the longest (3:14)

Raise your hand if you know the US won its 1st WBC beating Puerto Rico 8-0. Marcus Stroman had a no hitter into the 7th. Stroman originally said he’d play for Puerto Rico.

Look at what Oregon has done (Final Four). Look at what URI did to the Ducks for most of their game before falling at the end. With no help from Hassan Martin.

Answer to Last Issue’s Quiz:
Chuck Berry, very timely.
Matt Dawson
Right you are, Matt. It's Charles 'Chuck' Berry who left us on March 18 at age 90. Chuck Berry left us with some of the greatest rock n' roll songs ever written. - Z

Must be Chuck
David Annese
You are right, David. It's Chuck Berry. RIP Chuck, who left us recently at age 90 but left us with many of his great songs. - Z

Re. Ed Cooley: Okay, you convinced me. I'll give Coach Cooley another year. 
Re. The Quiz: Gotta be Chuck Berry. An excellent piece floating around about Geo Wein's ambivalence about adding Berry to one of the early Newport Jazz Fest lineups (1958?). I'll try to find it. 
An excellent piece - including the video. Subject: Remembering Chuck Berry's Scandalous Stand at the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival BShea Thanks Bill, this is quite a treat. Chuck Berry’s place in RI history. Readers, enjoy. - Z
On URI’s NCAA Tournament win over Creighton and then fall to Oregon: Jim Both huge and amazing in URI's game #1 was 28 of 29 from the free throw line for the five starters, with Dowtin & Matthews both 10 for 10! Overall the Rams were 28 of 31, and controlled the pace and the boards, unlike what happened in game #2. Go Rhody in 2017-2018 - the future is bright!! Rick Nadeau
Thanks, Jim! Great issue. Sorry that the Rams couldn't keep it going for one more round, but still an impressive performance against a formidable opponent.
Quiz Answer: Chuck Berry
Richard Flinn
Yes Richard, it's Chuck Berry. A true original. A founder of rock n' roll. - Z

On Bleacher Report showing a photo of Heidi Watney instead of Jessica Moran:
RE: proofreading and Heidi Watney- must be the same proofreader that ProJo uses.
Roger Boudreau
Rog, when I've complained to the Pro Jo (usually sports dept), they tell me the paper is put together in Texas so they have little control. The ProJo probably fired the proof reader as too expensive and a luxury. - Z

Hi Jim -
Don't know the quiz answer, but my all-time "movie with a big affect" has to be Easy Rider, the ending scene with the shotgun from the pickup truck. I couldn't move from my seat for many minutes after seeing that slaughter! Must be the old hippie in me... Great 'zine, as always!
Buffalo Steve
Ah yes, Easy Rider. Great soundtrack. Tough ending. The Bear and I once saw it in a German cinema in German so Hopper’s campfire line was “Ah, das ist gut!”.
Some other scenes you won’t soon forget- Alien – the chest bursting scene. Texas Chain Saw Massacre – when Leatherface opens the metal door. Pulp Fiction – the shot of adrenalin. The Deer Hunter – the Russian Roulette scene. The cop trussed up in a warehouse, tormented by Michael Madsen in Reservoir Dogs. Readers yours? - Z

On the thief who stole Tom Brady’s jersies:
a short clip of who & how he got the jersey.
Paul Beaudette
Thanks Paul. Something else to share with Zine readers. - Z
Sportzine is available at thanks to Buffalo Steve Lenz
Beau saw me taking notes for the Hot Club section and said, “Pull up your britches and hide your cats. No one’s safe”.

Told Charlie Clancy that I was reading Seth Mnookin’s book Feed the Monster. In it, I learned that Larry Lucchino was the back up point guard on the Princeton team that went to the Final Four. His roommate was Bill Bradley.

In the same book, it’s revealed that Sox co-owner Tom Werner was almost on the Boston flight (Flt 11) that crashed on 9/11. After meeting with John Harrington and bidding to buy the Red Sox, he decided to meet Katie Couric in NY for a dinner date. So he left on a flight that night instead of leaving on his scheduled Boston flight the next day.

We were talking about the current state of affairs in America. My mind went to the lyrics of an old rock n’ roll song: “Oh God, Pride of Man, broken in the dust again.” Any of you recall what group sang that?

So who was it that sued the Beach Boys and Beatles over songwriting credit and won settlements as well as having 6 Top 10 hits from 1955-1964? Why Chuck Berry, of course. A bunch of you got it – Matt Dawson, David Annese, Richard Flinn, and Bill Shea. Chuck Berry sued the Beach Boys over Surfin’ USA (1963) which used the melody of Sweet Little Sixteen and won a song writing credit. He also sued the Beatles’ John Lennon over Come Together which used a near line from Berry’s You Can’t Catch Me. Lennon settled out of court. Chuck even had to sue over the song writing of his first #1 hit (on R&B charts) Maybellene (1955) when DJ Alan Freed and Russ Fratto were listed as co-writers. It took Chuck until 1986 to win sole song writing credit.
The pioneer of rock n’ roll was heavily influenced by country music. His only #1 pop hit was My Ding-a-Ling (1979). His song Johnny B. Goode is on gold records aboard the Voyager I and II spacecraft. He did Live at the Fillmore Auditorium (1967) backed by the Steve Miller Band. (Sources: Wikipedia, Rolling Stone, and NPR)

This Texas troubadour passed this mortal coil way too early, but left a number of great songs behind including one that’s been covered by multiple artists (a duo hit #1). He influenced Dylan, John Prine, Neil Young, and Emmylou Harris among others. His songs have been used in many films and TV programs. Who is this artist?