World Series review

Milwaukee Braves, My-Sugar-Na, NFL, Nostalga, Television

Yes, I know the Super Bowl (Side note - The MVP selection was a crockDavid Tyree caught one of the two TDs, and made the catch that saved the game for the Giants, and instead a marketing machine was named MVP) was just played yesterday, but on Saturday, I went to Long's Wong and attended a viewing of Game 4 of the 1957 World Series (the "Nippy Jones" game).

The Ken Keltner chapter of SABR (Society for American Baseball Research) and the Milwaukee Braves Historical Association are both very heavy into the history of the Milwaukee Braves.  Overall, the groups do a lot of research projects pertaining to baseball and the Milwaukee Braves.

Last February, I was unable to attend the showing of Game 7 of the 1957 series.  But knowing that Game 4 was the most exciting game, when I heard that it was to be shown, I made sure I scheduled my life around it.

While the game progressed, (Sponsor's Name Here)'s Official Son, Mitten, myself, my good friend - I'll call him John from New Berlin, and others within ear shot all delivered commentary, trivia and other noticements.  For example...

  • WTMJ-TV had provided the cameramen and technicians for the NBC broadcast, and Game 4 was only the second game (with Game 3 being the first) that had the centerfield camera that has become the standard for watching each pitch.  WTMJ-TV had also placed a camera in the first row of seats behind home plate at County Stadium that offered a phenomenal view of Perini's Woods.  Though I wasn't crazy about the camera angle for baseball reasons, it did offer a perspective that you don't often see these days.
  • The televised broadcast featured no replays, and the only graphics were big, block letters across the screen as a player came up to bat.  Replays are nice when done in moderation.  Believe it or not, I did miss the "Fox Box", giving the score, inning, and count.
  • About three pitches all day were in the dirt.  Curve balls started shoulder high and crossed the plate between the knees and waist.
  • In the top of the 9th inning, the Braves were leading 4-1 and Warren Spahn was still in the game.  Spahn had two runners on and the tying run at the plate.  NBC showed Ernie Johnson up in the bullpen, and Mel Allen stated "Johnson is throwing again, in case Spahn gets into trouble".  Maybe this is easy to say 51 years later, but if your starting pitcher laboring in the 9th inning with the tying run at the plate in the World Series isn't considered trouble, I am not sure what is.
  • The play in which Vernal "Nippy" Jones got hit by the pitch in the 10th inning was Jones' last major league plate appearance.
  • As opposed to baseball broadcasts these days, the parabolic microphones did not pick up the CD spinner playing snippets of "We Will Rock You", or "Centerfield", or "Car Wash" or a Briggs and Stratton lawn mower sound extorting the fans to make noise.  (What?  Those didn't exist in 1957?  And yet, the Braves were still able to win a game in extra innings?  And the crowd got excited on their own?  Sheesh, I didn't think that was possible.  Well if the crowds in 1957 were smart enough to know when to cheer, and the players were smart enough to know that a clutch base hit was needed, why aren't crowds and players in 2007 able to do that?)
  • There were a couple of commericals that were shown.  Once was of a very un-camera-friendly Henry Aaron talking about how the new Gilette razor gave him a comfortable shave.  Way, way cool.  Another was Art Linkletter pitching hair spray, complete with a pretty model spraying her hair, and combing it into style.  Then (and this must have been a problem in 1957) she mussed up her hair, and with a little water and a comb, she was able to re-style her hair.  The problem is that I don't remember the product name.  My-Sugar-Na has told me that if you don't remember the brand in a commercial, then it wasn't meant for you.  Quite true in this instance.
  • Who were the only two Braves players to have a home run in 17 consecutive seasons?  For clarification, this is not specifically a Milwaukee Braves question, as the Braves did not play here for 17 seasons.  (Take a guess in the comment section.  John, Bob, and Rick and Mitten aren't allowed to post the answer). 
  • As long as we are at it, Sports Illustrated's first issue featured the Braves' Eddie Mathews and Milwaukee County Stadium on the cover.  What pitcher gave up that home run to Mathews?

I can't wait to see what game they come up with next February.

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