Wednesday, January 11, 2006

No Call From the Hall

I was going to write a whole long piece about how "Rice should have been inducted!" and "Look at the stats!" and "Compare it to all the coke heads of the era! He was great!" A little song and dance but then I realized... I wasn't there. I can only watch old games and look at stats. I was too young. So I am gonna go to the bullpen and lay it in the hands of the crafty vet. My dad has the final word on Jim Rice:

"1975 . . . It was the season that Sox fans had been waiting for since, well you know, we continued to wait until 2004. But, in the beginning of ‘75 everyone was tuned in to the two new kids on the block; Fred Lynn and Jim Rice... the 'Gold Dust Twins'. They got called up late ‘74 and tore up Fenway. The next season it had to be the Sox year: Yaz, Fisk, El Tiante, Spaceman Lee, Rico, Lynn and Jim Ed Rice. They lost the series by a whisker, and everyone knew if Rice didn’t break his wrist in September and misses it, the World Championship would’ve been in Boston 29 years earlier.

After that, the Sox had some pretty lousy teams, but always you could count on some excitement from Rice. 40 yrs of the 'Green Monster' and only three guys played out there: Williams, Yaz, and Rice. In ‘78 he hit 46 HR w/139 RBI and batted .315, but the Sox couldn’t 'get r-done' in the playoffs against the dreaded Yankees.

My favorite Jim Rice moment: in Yankee Stadium, Rice makes a long run line from deep left, chasing what ended up being a foul about a row deep behind 3rd base. Half into the stands, he comes up empty and loses his cap. Some Yankee fan picks it up and takes off up the aisle. A very large, muscular, and pissed off Jim Rice, vaults the wall and goes after the guy. The crowd freezes and there is nowhere for this guy to hide. He stops at the top of the section, turns, and realizes he’s going to die. No one wants to get in the way of Rice churning up those stairs to help this guy. Luckily for him Security steps in and returns Rice’s hat and removes the idiot for his own good... I really disliked Yankee fans after that."

So that's it. From a man who remembers. Rice almost killed a Yankee fan? The Baseball Hall of Fame isn't good enough for you sir. Not good enough by a long shot.