"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Pretzel Logic


Every so often, when the mood strikes, my wife Emily likes me to feed her baseball trivia questions. We had a session on Sunday after the Yanks lost to the Marlins. My first question was, “What is ERA?” She got it right but did not agree with the number being divided by nine innings.

“What if it is the first game of the year and a pitcher only goes six innings, how can it go into nine?”

I calmly explained.


We moved on. And she got a good many of them right–or at least partially right. Her thinking made sense.  Who is known as Junior?  “Cal Ripken.”

What is a fielder’s choice? “That’s when the fielder gets to make the choice. See? I told you I was right.”

The infield fly-rule? “That’s when the infielder’s call off the outfielders and make the catch.”

And my favorite. What is a Baltimore Chop?

“That’s a kind of meat cut special in Baltimore.”

No, dear.

“That’s when they have everyone at Camden Yards come on the field during the seventh inning stretch and practice karate.”

I love my baseball wife.

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1 Diane Firstman   ~  Jun 23, 2009 11:41 am

We love her too Alex ...

Does she get her revenge on you by asking you photography questions? :-)

2 Alex Belth   ~  Jun 23, 2009 12:22 pm

No, she gets back at me by plaing board games, which I find...boring. We tried to play scrabble once and dude, although I love words, my mind just does not work in that way. I'm lousy at crossword puzzles too. I was sweating, all my words were "but" and "the."

We do play Monopoly once in a while but you really need a third person. But Em is fun to play games with, I confess, because she really enjoys it and gets fired up but she is not competitive.

3 a.O   ~  Jun 23, 2009 12:23 pm

Everybody knows the term Baltimore Chop refers to the waves created in Chesapeake Bay when Tex sends a bomb into the water.

4 The Mick536   ~  Jun 23, 2009 1:33 pm

Ask my wife a general baseball question and she replies, "you can never have too much pitching." Ask her who set this record for whatever, she replies, "Babe Ruth." If you say no, she replies, "Joe Dimaggio?"

In 1979 for my birthday during our first dating sequence she bought me "This Date in New York Yankee History" and took me to Peter Luger's for dinner, paying with her Peter Luger credit card. Two summers ago, she took me to St. Louis to see the Cubbies and the Cards during the SABR convention. She even sat through the trivia competition and laughed at Garagiola's lunchtime keynote (not I'm not sure she understood some of the best lines).

I don't play Scrabble with her either, as she is someone who plays anagrams at her desk during idle time and could play competitively if she wanted to. When we'd go to the Stadium, she'd take crossword puzzles which she filled in during BP and the game, in between keeping score, which she learned to do from an old Sporting News booklet I had since who knows when. She rarely watched, so when something happened, she would ask me or whomever was sitting next to her for a description and explanation. Then when fans needed to know who did what, she'd proudly tell them, as if she had been watching and knew what had been happening.

A keeper also, yes!

5 PJ   ~  Jun 23, 2009 1:55 pm

And to think all this time I thought a "Baltimore Chop" was Brooks Robinson's favorite cut of pork chop, a bone-in double thick "biggun'"...

: )

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver