Do folks, especially kids, get all hyped up today about the World Series like we did as kids many moons ago?
Major League baseball, like all other professional sports today, is a different animal.
Sports idols in earlier times were setting examples and signing autographs — not beating up their wives or fluttering around aimlessly in the world of drugs.
Perhaps about the worst they did was get involved in a few barroom brawls.
The 2021 World Series featuring Houston and Atlanta started last week.
Today there are so many teams and different divisions in the National and American Leagues it is difficult to keep up with them all.
In the 50’s, the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees were pretty much the cream of the crop.
Both teams in New York quite often featured one another in the World Series and there were some legends on the playing field at that time.
Older folks like the old days when baseball was baseball.
In sandlot baseball across America, kids more often than not shared gloves, bats and baseballs were often taped up.
In the Majors the players had their own gloves and bats.
There was simply the American League and the National League.
Players did not make zillions of dollars then either, and they did their best to entice youngsters to do well and work hard because dreams do come true.
Those were the guys out on the playing field day after day setting examples of working hard.
Some did play hard off the field and a lot of mamas were not too happy about that kind of carrying on and example setting.
Billy Martin, a then-fiery second baseman for the New York Yankees during the ’50s, was notorious for his off-field antics. He usually started barroom brawls and got his teammates involved, too.
He, Mickey Mantle, first baseman Bill “Moose” Skowron, Yogi Berra and pitcher Whitey Ford were all among the guilty.
They were often fined and scolded, but most of the time it was an attitude of “boys will be boys.”
There was never any cutting or shooting.
Even from time to time there would be an onfield brawl between the teams.
Today that is normal at a hockey game.
And, in all fairness to major league baseball players, we have never seen any of them take to a knee during the national anthem and rarely, if ever, is a MLB player in a scrape with the law.
They still set examples and still have an attitude of “I am getting paid for something that is fun to do.”
The times have certainly changed.
In 1956, Yankee pitcher Don Larson pitched the only perfect game ever thrown in World Series play.
It was game five of the series. The Yankees won 2-0 and went on to win the series in seven games against the Brooklyn Dodgers.
There was no team in Houston and the Braves, then, were in Milwaukee.