The Pinetar Rag

January 19, 2013

Great Polish American Changes Worlds

Stan Musial passed away today. He was a class guy by all accounts.

This reminds me of a story The Swami told me about going into Ebbet’s Field, and in the rotunda, seeing Musial walk by him on the way in. He was just getting over that when Carl Furillo blew by.

Musial famously owned the Dodgers at Ebbet’s Field. He was so dominant that the Dodgers fans actually acknowledged that. That harkens back to my impression of going to games as a young boy at Shea and watching how my dad behaved. Things like applauding off the opposing starter and what not; these little elements of decorum, of class, have faded. Musial was part of THAT world. No tattoos, no poses, no pants down over the stirrups and sanis, draped on the shoes. No special handshakes and acting like a kid–Just hits.

The last NL team to win 3 consecutive pennants? The Cardinals of 1942-43-44, with Musial, Marion, Kurowski, Shoendiest etc. Had Posey not been wiped out by a dopey football play, the Giants would have had a shot at that, but, it’s more important for baseball to have that one dopey football play.

Recall Keith Hernandez telling of one of his greatest nights: a superbowl in which he was in the same suite as Stan Musial. A couple of St. Louis First Basemen talking; what I would give to have heard some of that. Enormous guy. Did you know he was Polish descended? Most did not.

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