Category Archives: softball

“Play Ball” — It’s Softball Season (And A Mention On The Radio)

Last Thursday, I was sitting at my desk working and listening to the Twins radio broadcast over streaming audio. As Dan Gladden prepared to give John Gordon and the radio audience the trivia question, which they do every game, I entered the email address in my browser window and waited for the question. “Which player holds the Twins record for HRs in their rookie season?” I entered “JIMMY HALL!” in the subject line and hit the send button.

Several minutes later, I received this reply:

Congratulations, you are the winner for today’s US Bank question of the game! Your name will now be entered into a drawing for a pair of Twins tickets.

You will be notified should you win the drawing.

I wasn’t really sure that I was the sole winner, so I didn’t think too much of it, but a few innings later “Dazzle” was going to give the answer, and he mentioned my name as the winner of the day’s contest. Half an inning later, he repeated my name as the winner as they continued to discuss the answer. A few of the gang at WGOM heard him mention my name, which was pretty cool.

And in case you haven’t heard of Jimmy Hall, here’s his baseball-reference webpage. He had an outstanding four years for the Twins, and his 33 HRs his rookie 1963 season was an MLB record until Mark McGwire shattered it.


Tonight is the first softball game of the season; I put a couple bucks into the batting cage last week, but whether I’m ready or not is up in the air. Being the oldest on the team (by only a few days) I get to play first base again; I have a pretty good stretch and scoop, but for many years I had to run like a madman around the outfield.

When I first moved out to LA in the mid-80s and got on a Hughes Aircraft league team, I bought a glove to replace the one I grew up with. It was a Rawlings “SG” 95 hybrid first baseman/outfielder glove, which I love dearly, and it’s served me well ever since then.

inside view of glove, with a mockingbird egg for scale

The glove requires the two smallest fingers to be in the same hole, which also makes it easier to snap the glove closed around the ball. Besides being great for extending skyward for a fly in the outfield, it is excellent for shoestring grabs. And of course low and high throws to first.

inside view of glove, with a softball, for better scale

I always store the glove with a softball in the palm and a softball in the pocket, sometimes with a rubberband around it, although at this point it isn’t needed.

exterior view of glove

How does it continue to look so good? Well, I use brown shoe polish in areas where the finish is wearing, and because my hand isn’t all that large I always wear a batter’s glove inside it, which incidentally also keeps skin oil off of it.