Grading Kramer & Kramer’s 2016 baseball predictions

Grading Kramer & Kramer’s 2016 baseball predictions

Eugene stayed up past 2:30 a.m. to watch the October 10/11th Cubs vs. Giants

In Street & Smith’s now defunct. Here is Kramer & Kramer’s Official 2016 Yearbook you read the fearless predictions of Eugene and David Kramer.

Before getting to the final grades and postseason photo montage, let’s review our spectacular season.

Last year, you read about Willie Mays, the 1973 World Series and Yogi and Dale Berra and also saw playboy George Brett in Playgirl.

The season began on Opening Day when the Royal beat the Mets just as they had in the 2015 World Series.

In May, we celebrated the 70th anniversary of the day when Jackie Robinson broke the color line at Red Wings Stadium.

In August, we were back at Silver Stadium when the p.a. announcer told us Nixon had resigned.

September was the 45th anniversary of the day the Pittsurgh Pirates fielded an all African-American lineup.

October was the pain of re-living the ball roll through Buckner’s legs and skinny dipping in Rhode Island.

Well, as for those predictions:


AL East: Toronto; AL Central: Kansas City; AL West: Texas

Wild Cards: Seattle, New York

NL East: Washington; NL Central: St. Louis; NL West: San Francisco

Wild Cards: Chicago, New York

World Series: San Francisco over Kansas City.

Correctly picked 6 of the ten post season teams.  The Mariners, Royals and Cardinal made late runs but let me down. Lost interest in the Yankees after A-Rod retired. Was way off in the post season. I self-grade a C plus.


World Series: Mets over Yankees.

The Mets did make the wild card game but lost. The Yankees didn’t make the playoffs.

Grade: D.

Aunt Janet made a late prediction, writing on May 26th: “You have my season prediction, Royals vs. Cubs.”


One high point of the playoffs was the Toronto – Texas series. In 1977, my father and I watched three Blue Jays – Rangers games at old Exhibition Stadium in Toronto. Street & Smith’s now defunct. Here is Kramer & Kramer’s Official 2016 Yearbook

That’s too little, too late in my grade book. Janet didn’t even say who would win. Grade D or Incomplete (if feeling charitable).

UPDATE: Janet has petitioned for a grade change, writing: I was not late! I answered your email as soon as possible my dear nephew.  And, you didn’t ask me who would win as I recall, just which teams would be in the World Series.

Fine.  I’ll raise to B. I will note that Janet was given ample opportunity for extra credit. I wrote to her:

1) You ought buy the complete set of the inaugural season of the Royals and create another shrine. 2) find and scan articles in the Seattle press about the 1945 world series, the last time the Cubs were in the world series 3) in your opinion make some point that you are picking the Royal because George Brett was a playboy or despite George Brett being a playboy.

Janet’s only response was: “I’ll think about it.”

We at K & K firmly believe that fans watching on tv can influence outcomes. So, during the playoffs, we dressed in appropriate outfits to support our teams, including “hexing” the opposition.


Mets v. Giants Wild Card Game 10/05/16 We mixed feelings on this game. My father had predicted the Mets to win it all. But his granddaughter living south of SF roots for the Giants. I am wearing SF football 49ers hat and Stanford University shirt. Eugene has on a generic NY sports hats and holding picture of Yogi Berra when he managed the Mets in 1973.


Throughout, I rooted for the Nationals and Bryce Harper because I own his autograph (on screen). The better Bryce does, the more the autograph accrues in value.


Dodgers vs. Washington, NL Division Series. Eugene in LA hat and holding framed picture of Jackie Robinson


Toronto vs. Texas, AL Division Series. This series was a rematch of the three Rangers vs. Blue Jays game we saw in 1977 at the old Exhibition Stadium. I am waving Canadian flag. Eugene has a Texas Ranger pennant from the 1970s. He is also wearing an authentic Texas Ranger hat.


We were rooting against the Cubs so we “hexed” the Scrubs. We marked an X on the Chicago Bears football card autographed for Eugene by Hall of Famer Gayle Sayers when Sayers was in Rochester for a health expo.


Cleveland vs. Boston 10/07/16 Eugene was for Boston. He is holding picture of Ted Williams and Babe Ruth, using a red mitt to cover Ruth. I am wearing a Cleveland Browns football shirt and a baseball figurine that looks like the great Indian, Nap Lajoie.


Two Rams. David Kramer (left), ss, and Joseph Volpe, 2b, Narragansett Bay, RI circa 1998

Throughout the playoffs, I was rooting for Cleveland where my friend Joe Volpe is an attorney. Joe and I were grad students in English in the mid 1990’s to early 2000’s at the University of Rhode Island.


Joe Volpe at bat, URI Rams, mid 1990s, Bill Beck Field, Kingston, RI

Initially, Joe tried to get us World Series seats, but tickets were over 700 dollars and counting for standing rooms only. We also considered going to Progressive Field where on huge TV screens Indians fans watched the games in Chicago.

Actually, Joe and I have a long baseball history. At URI, we both played for the Rams. One year we made the Atlantic Ten first team, myself at short and Joe at second.


Joe at bat; me on deck, URI Rams, mid 1990s, Bill Beck Field, Kingston, RI

Until this season, Joe had drifted away from baseball, but the Tribe’s magical season revived his love for the game.  During the seventh game, we spoke on the phone for the last several innings. In Joe’s voice, I heard that same passion from our days on the playing fields of Kingston.

During the rain delay after the ninth inning, Joe checked for himself the stormy skies of northern Ohio, determining the delay would be short. It was a short delay, but when play resumed the Indians hopes were themselves short lived. The Cubs rallied for two in the top of the tenth while the Indians could only answer with one of their own.

Joe, don’t despair. Next year K & K picks the Tribe in six.


“An early-spring renewal of the spirit” over 10,000 fungos later

About The Author

Welcome to Talker of the Town! My name is David Kramer. I have a Ph.D in English and teach at Keuka College. I am a former and still active Fellow at the Nazareth College Center for Public History and a Storyteller in Residence at the SmallMatters Institute. Over the years, I have taught at Monroe Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology and St. John Fisher College. I have published numerous Guest Essays, Letters, Book Reviews and Opinion pieces in The New York Times, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, the Buffalo News, the Rochester Patriot, the Providence Journal, the Providence Business News, the Brown Alumni Magazine, the New London Day, the Boston Herald, the Messenger Post Newspapers, the Wedge, the Empty Closet, the CITY, Lake Affect Magazine and Brighton Connections. My poetry appears in The Criterion: An International Journal in English and Rundenalia and my academic writing in War, Literature and the Arts and Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Starting in February 2013, I wrote for three Democratic and Chronicle  blogs, "Make City Schools Better," "Unite Rochester," and the "Editorial Board." When my tenure at the D & C  ended, I wanted to continue conversations first begun there. And start new ones.  So we created this new space, Talker of the Town, where all are invited to join. I don’t like to say these posts are “mine.” Very few of them are the sole product of my sometimes overheated imagination. Instead, I call them partnerships and collaborations. Or as they say in education, “peer group work.” Talker of the Town might better be Talkers of the Town. The blog won’t thrive without your leads, text, pictures, ideas, facebook shares, tweets, comments and criticisms.


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