DLD 7-7-11: Happy birthday, Satchel Paige



(Allegedly) 105 years today (allegedly), Leroy Robert Paige was born in (allegedly) Mobile, Alabama. Be patient as I try my best Don impression.

Yes, Satchel Paige was a Kansas City A — at age 58, after a 12-year hiatus from pitching. He started Sept. 25, 1965 as yet another Charlie Finley stunt and a Kansas City homecoming, but he was no sideshow. Satchel went three innings, allowing just one hit — to Carl Yastrzemski — and no walks, giving the ball to Diego Sequi with a 1-0 lead.

As David Lipman explained in Satchel's autobiography, "Maybe I'll Pitch Forever":

Finley indicated after the game that he was considering putting Satchel on the A's coaching list so that the pitcher could take another step toward qualifying for a major league pension under the five-year minimum rule. Satchel confided that he would have liked to join the Athletics as a coach, but he would not violate his contract with Abe Saperstein and the Harlem Globetrotters.

No, Satchel didn't play basketball... there used to be a Harlem Globetrotters baseball team.

Satchel, as many know, was also one of the most quote-able athletes in history:

"Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter."

"I never rush myself. See, they can't start the game without me."

"Ain't no man can avoid being born average, but there ain't no man got to be common."

"I never threw an illegal pitch. The trouble is, once in a while I would toss one that ain't never been seen by this generation."

"Just take the ball and throw it where you want to. Throw strikes. Home plate don't move."

"Don't look back. Something might be gaining on you."

"Don't pray when it rains if you don't pray when the sun shines."

"Money and women. They're two of the strongest things in the world. The things you do for a woman you wouldn't do for anything else. Same with money."

A's news:

Rich Harden starts tonight against his former team, Texas

With a 4-2 record against the first-place Rangers this season, the A's could have the formula to trim their 7 1/2-game deficit.

"It's definitely an opportunity, but so [was the Seattle series]. Whether it's Seattle, whether it's the Angels, whether it's Texas, you know you're going to lose or gain a game regardless on that particular team. All those teams are ahead of us, so they're all equally important," said A's manager Bob Melvin.


Jemile Weeks: AL Co-Rookie of the Month

Oakland brought up Weeks from Triple-A Sacramento on June 7. In 21 games in the month, he hit .309 (25-for-81) and stole six bases.

Weeks was enthused about the award.

"It's always a positive to come up and get an accolade in the major leagues when you're not used to even being here," he said.


Josh Willingham will likely play today


  Melvin on Willingham: "If he doesn’t hurt himself tonight eating dinner or whatever, I feel like there’s a good chance he’ll play tomorrow." via web



Jose Canseco is still active in baseball, as a player/manager of the Yuma Scorpions, along with Ozzie

There are many obvious punch lines to Jose Canseco experimenting with supplemental substances, but you don't need to spend much time with him to realize that the strongest antiaging agent for him is a round, white pill that weighs five ounces and has 108 red stitches.

"Going out there and playing tonight makes me feel like 25 again, even though I'm going to be 47,'' Jose says. "So for a brief three-hour time, you're transported back to when you were a kid, when you were in your prime playing baseball. And facing guys anywhere from 20-25 years old. It's almost like stopping time. You get to live in the moment, it's something you love to do, you've done it for so long, and even though I'm going to be 47, I can still play -- maybe not at the best level as when I was 25, but the feeling is the same, the memories are the same, the attraction is the same. The smells, the lights, winning, losing, the sounds of it, the textures of it -- it's still the same.

"Even though it's not the major leagues, it's the closest thing possible.''

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