Results tagged ‘ George Bush ’

See what happens when games start early

The television ratings for the World Series between the Giants and the Rangers have been dreadful. Oh, how Fox would have loved Yankees vs. Phillies.

I hope that the ratings for Saturday night’s Game 3, which started an hour before the others, are impressive enough that the powers that be in baseball realize that World Series starting times have been too late for a sizeable part of the population and will hold fast in the future on a first pitch at 7 p.m. Eastern time.

I can dream, can’t I?

I always go back to this situation. When Bill Mazeroski homered to win the World Series for the Pirates against the Yankees in 1960, I as a schoolboy saw it happen. When Joe Carter homered to win the World Series for the Blue Jays against the Phillies in 1993, my school-aged children were in bed. Game 7 in 1960 was a day game. Game 6 in 1993 was a night game with a first pitch of about 8:45 Eastern.

It helped that there was a decent game with enough drama going on Saturday night to keep channel surfers stuck to the Series.

The drama was clearly from the Texas point of view. Down 2-0 in games, a loss by the Rangers would have been disastrous. Colby Lewis, whom I had suggested was as deserving of Most Valuable Player designation in the American League Championship Series as Josh Hamilton, had another gutting start and gave up two runs on solo shots by Cody Ross and Andres Torres in 7 1/3 innings.

For all those experts that chided Rangers manager Ron Washington for not getting rookie closer Neftali Feliz’s feet wet in the Series at some point in the first two games in San Francisco, the smoke the righthander threw in the ninth inning was all the evidence needed that his knees have stopped banging together in the post-season.

And it was all over in 2 hours, 51 minutes. Go ratings!

Helicopters were hovering over Rangers Ballpark In Arlington as part of the security coverage with former President (and Rangers owner) George Bush in attendance. Sunday night, he and his father, another President named George Bush, will be in Arlington to throw out the ceremonial first pitch(es). My money is on No. 43 throwing a strike the way he did during the 2001 World Series at Yankee Stadium after the terrorist attacks, still among the most spine-tingling moments I have ever witnessed.

Special day rekindles fond memory

One of the coolest rewards for a team winning the World Series is a trip to the White House during the next season. Although other Presidents met with teams and players on a few occasions, Ronald Reagan made it pretty much an annual event during his two terms in office in the 1980s continuing through today with the Yankees set to meet Barack Obama.

It may seem old hat to the Yankees’ famed Core Four of Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada since they will be feted by their third President, joining Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. The event has expanded quite a bit over the years with media coverage that is much more widespread these days.

I had a chance to experience such a visit in 1987 with the Mets the year after they won the World Series. It always reminds me of Arthur Richman, a baseball behind-the-scenes legend who died last year after 20 years as a special consultant to the Yankees as part of a 50-year connection with the game first as a reporter and then as a team official.

Arthur was the travel director of the Mets at the time and made the arrangements, which included inviting 10 writers to travel with the team on a charter flight to DC. Unlike today where reporters have to make a separate entrance through the press gate and view the ceremonies from afar, the writers back then were part of the traveling party and got an up-close view of the proceedings in the Rose Garden.

I never got to meet Reagan, but shortly after the ceremony while the players were milling around the President, Arthur came up to me and said, “Follow me. I want you to meet somebody.” We entered this side room and there was the senior George Bush, then the Vice President, with a small group of people around him.

Arthur had known him for years and was so friendly with him that when he brought me up to him he said, “Jackie, say hello to Bushie.”

Bush never flinched and held out his hand, so I was able to shake hands with a Vice President. Quite a memory, and one that flashes through today, a very special one for the Yankees.