ABOVE Lee surrenders to Grant at Appomattox Court House, April 9th, 1865, The Soldier’s and Sailor’s Monument in Washington Square Park [Photo: David Kramer]; BELOW From Sports and the ’60s’ at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Highland Park
Maybe I shouldn’t say this but I don’t much miss professional and amateur sports. I do listen to Syracuse basketball on the radio. With the cancellation of the National Invitational Tournament, we missed the chance to see the Orange play in Rochester. As the Carrier Dome is undergoing repairs, Syracuse needed an alternative site for a “home” NIT game. The Blue Cross Arena was considered a strong possibility.
I’ve been to one NCCA postseason game — the immemorial 1989 Georgetown-Princeton #1 vs. #16 match up at the Providence Civic Center — and would have trekked downtown for the first ever postseason tournament game in Rochester history. SEE RECENT SPORTS STORIES AT END
I don’t follow the NHL except on the rare occasions when the Buffalo Sabres are good. I only watch the NBA when it’s Lebron vs. the Warriors in the Finals. Golf, auto racing, tennis, rugby and soccer, not so much. I really don’t tune into baseball until May. I like RCAC baseball at Cobb’s Hill, but not in early-to-mid April when it’s cold.
Perversely, the only league I was watching was the XFL. I have a sado-masochistic relationship with the XFL. As seen in Waiting for the XFL to be the Ex-XFL, I rail against the XFL, but kept watching. Go figure.
Like most sports fans, I semi-compulsively scan the box scores in the papers (print editions of the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle and The New York Times). There are no current box scores, but for me — and I may not be alone — this void is filled by THIS DATE IN SPORTS.
Not only do the events trigger memory waves, but they can send you right to Talker. For example, as seen above and in Sports and the ’60s’ at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Highland Park, 58 years ago today Arnold Palmer won the Masters.
As seen in Why I don’t care that much about the Houston Ass – terisks*, 55 years ago today Mickey Mantle hit the first home run in the Astrodome.
107 years ago today, Ebbets Field opened in Brooklyn.
As seen in Now gone from living memory, the last time the Dodgers (Robins) and Red Sox battled, three years later Ebbets Field hosted three World Series games.
39 years ago today, Fernando Valenzuela pitched a five hit shut out against the Houston Astros, opening the tumultuous 1981 season that saw a strike to be adjudicated in Rochester.