December 6, 2013
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Friday, January 23, 2009
My wife and I used to own a small but tidy little house in Columbus' Clintonville neighborhood. It was a great place. It was built in the 20s yet somehow no one over the ensuing decades pained over the wonderful woodwork, replaced the glass doorknobs, or ruined the floors with bad carpet or linoleum. Sure, the place needed some electrical work and I was never 100% confident that my basement would stay dry in bad weather, but I truly loved that old house.
Eventually, however, we had children and the place was just too small to suit the needs of our growing family. We put the old homestead on the market and it sold within five days, as we knew it would. The new owners -- a young, childless couple like we were when we bought the place -- seemed nice, and we actually had them over a couple of times to give them a longer look around before closing.
Like many soon-to-be-former homeowners, I had pangs of regret as I showed these new people my home. Though I would have no say in the matter after the money exchanged hands, I was concerned that they'd screw the place up. That they wouldn't take care of it like my wife and I did. That they would approach the necessary infrastructure renovations with a heavy hand and just ruin the charm of the place. In other words, I was a lot like the Tribune Company:
When Tribune Co. bought the last-place Cubs and Wrigley Field for $21.1 million in 1981, the park was antiquated and in a run-down neighborhood where fans sometimes were allowed to enter the bleachers free in the late innings.
Unlike my old place on Brevoort Ave., Wrigley Field is going to make the Cubs a lot of money going forward. Thankfully, there's a precedent in the form of what has happened to Fenway in the past few years, and the Ricketts family would do well to emulate what Henry and Werner did after taking over the Red Sox.
Some people will complain as the process goes forward. Renovations are disruptive and expensive, after all. But unless the Ricketts family truly bungles things, most folks will be pretty darn happy with the end result. After all, what's the alternative? Moving to a shiny new place in the suburbs? Listen folks, I've done that. And while it's awfully convenient and pleasant enough, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't make the same decision if I had it to do over again.
The Yankees are moving their stuff today:
Friday is moving day in the Bronx and, no, the crates don't have pinstripes.
I was part of an office move last summer. About a week before the move, they bring these big garbage bins and place them in the hallways to encourage you to really clean out your desk and file cabinets so as to make the move easier and to give you a fresh start in the new space. I got rid of all kinds of old and obsolete junk I wasn't using anymore, and I have to say, it was a truly liberating experience.
So I guess what I'm saying is that if you're into dumpster diving you could do worse than hang around Yankee Stadium this weekend. You could get some interesting old files. Or some Yankee knickknacks. Or a Hideki Matsui or a Johnny Damon.
I mean, they're just going to be shredded or dumped anyway, so why shouldn't you have them?
Several people notified me of the following development yesterday:
President Obama moved swiftly to engage on the Middle East on Wednesday, calling Israeli and Arab leaders on his first morning in office and preparing to appoint a seasoned peace negotiator and former senator, George J. Mitchell, as his special emissary to the region . . .
Yes, Mr. Mitchell served with distinction in the Senate and did wonderful work in Northern Ireland. Those of us who ply our trade in the world of baseball, however, have more recent data points with respect to the good Senator's work. If his work for Major League Baseball is any indication of how he'll handle Mideast diplomacy, be on the lookout for the following developments in his new position:
I don't know about you, but I feel safer already.
If you're like me, you can't bring yourself to pay 50 cents for a copy of the rags they write for, so I'm having trouble getting my mind around paying $225 to have dinner with them:
Tickets remain on sale for this Sunday's New York Chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America dinner at the Hilton at 6 p.m. The cost is $225, and may be obtained by calling 212-586-7000.
To be fair, there are going to be a bunch of ballplayers too, as Pujols, Pedroia, Lee, Lincecum, Soto, and Longoria receive their postseason award hardware. But that's not all! Check out these local awards the New York Chapter gives out:
Sid Mercer-Dick Young Player of the Year: Brad Lidge
Great. Now here comes the firestorm of articles about how the Casey Stengel You Can Look it Up Award never goes to the guy who is really the most lookiest up player.
Everything you ever wanted to know about waivers but were afraid to ask.
Well, not everything, but an awful lot for a mainstream news article.
Things to to read as you ponder the disconnect between the nice things people say about you after you die and the occasionally nasty person you were while you were alive:
As for me, I don't have any regrets. They can talk about me plenty when I'm gone.