For reasons not worth explaining, I’m always forced to wait until late March or early April to do my taxes. By that time, my accountant’s schedule is tight, and I end up having to take whatever time slot he has available. As a result, there have been several years when I’ve had no choice but to meet with him on Opening Day.
When it comes to the pain/pleasure continuum, you’d be hard-pressed to find more powerfully charged polar opposites than the 1040 and the 6-4-3. But I really outdid myself in 2004, when circumstance forced me to have a root canal and have my annual tax session with the accountant before running home and watching the Mets open their season in Atlanta. That was the game when Kaz Matsui hit the first pitch of the season (and of his MLB career) for a home run — a potent palliative for the multiple forms of suffering I’d endured that day.
And so it was that I found myself driving to Queens yesterday afternoon to meet with Mr. Accountant. It was a beautiful day, and doing my taxes was about the last way I wanted to be spending it. Heavy Easter traffic made the trip that much more annoying. A few hours and one financial bloodbath later, I got back in my car and headed home. Traffic still sucked.
What I’m trying to get at is that I was in a rather foul mood by the time I sat down to watch the Yanks and Bosox. But it only took a few pitches for me to feel the familiar sensation of baseball coursing through my bloodstream like a narcotic. Goddamn that feels good. Quick, gimme another hit — and don’t cut it with baking soda this time. Yeah, good, that’s the stuff. [A little glassy-eyed now.] Mmmmm, baseballllll. Wait, what else happened today? I dunno. Who cares? Yo, cut me another line of baseball, wouldja?
And the Yankees lost! [Eyes roll back into head.]
Here, take a few hits yourself:
• First uni anomaly of the season: As several readers noted, CC Sabathia started last night’s game wearing gray spikes but quickly switched to black. (Screen shots courtesy of Don Schafer.)
• And here’s the first typo of the season. (As captured by James Wortham.)
• The rest of last night’s Yanks/Bosox game was largely uni-uneventful. But as Jason Varitek and his captain’s “C” trotted out along with all the other Sox bench players during the pregame introductions, I wondered to myself if any other bench player has ever worn the “C.” At least two relievers have been “C”-clad (John Franco of the Mets and Rick Aguiliera of the Cubs), but I can’t think of any other second-stringers who’ve worn the designatory letter. Anyone..?
• I’ve already reported that the Astros will be wearing 1965 throwbacks on Saturday. But I’ve just learned that the best uniforms that day won’t necessarily be the ones worn by the players. Remember how the Astros’ grounds crew used to wear spacesuits back in the Astrodome’s early days? Reader James Poisso brings news that they’ll be doing that again for next week’s throwback game. The woman in that photo is wearing a “spacette” uni, modeled after the ones worn by the Astrodome’s original ushers (which I can’t find an old photo of — little help?). Is that awesome or what? Further info here.
• Alan Tompas attended yesterday’s Mets workout at Shea and took lots of photos. Among the highlights: The rotunda is now much more Mets-centric. … Mike Pelfrey was wearing a “Sweat It Out” logo on the back of his undershirt (apparently from this product line, which I’d never seen until now). … The new Mets Hall of Fame features some very cool artifacts, including handwritten notes from Casey Stengel and Tommie Agee’s glove from the ’69 Series. … It’s time for longtime beat writer Marty Noble to seriously consider salad. … And here’s Alan, posing with the 1969 championship trophy.
Today should be even better — I’m putting myself on a steady baseball IV drip that’s gonna run all day long. And this time there won’t be any traffic or accountants to worry about. Play ball, y’all.
Uni Watch News Ticker: The U. of Houston doesn’t wear road grays — more like road charcoals (with thanks to Dwight Ternes). … Neal Shaffer has posted a lengthy interview with Mitchell & Ness honcho Peter Capolino. Takes a while to read through it, but it’s worth it. It begins here and continues here. … Cricket note from Shaun Helsen, who reports that Kumar Sangakkara of Sri Lanka has been wearing the cricket equivalent of the S100. Compare it to the more traditional helmets. … Oooh, check out the awesome jersey that Frosty recently made for Denver Gregg‘s fantasy team. “He was great to work with, even though I was a pain,” says Gregg. … Bengie Molina recently discussed how he chooses equipment in his blog (with thanks to Tremaine Eto). … Jonathon Binet notes that Justin Morneau has added a more formal-looking uni number to his arm sleeve, compared to the more crude-looking number he had last year. … The Oneonta Tigers have moved to Connecticut, which of course means new uniforms and logos (with thanks to Paul Barrett). … There’s a uni-related question in the middle of this Q&A session with Colorado football coach Dan Hawkins — just search on the word “uniforms” (with thanks to Matthew Robins). … According to the second item on this page, those new UVa football uniforms will be unveiled later this week (with thanks to Justin Eller). … Jeremy Brahm reports that some Japanese baseball teams are making special uniforms for women who throw out the first pitch. … It’s “Green Week” in the NBA, which means green headbands, green warm-up shirts, green padding, and green promotional basketballs, among other things. … No way to authenticate it, but it’d be pretty cool if this really is Fred Lynn’s game-used stirrup (nice find by Dave Shucosky). … Jonathan Cain was watching the Bulls/Bobcats game on Saturday and noticed Derrick Rose wearing a pair of red-trimmed black shorts under his game shorts. It’s tough to see in those photos, but Jonathan says they were definitely baggy shorts, not compression shorts. Rose attended Memphis, so those can’t be his college shorts. Anyone know more? …
There are throwbacks, and then there are throwbacks. Love that ribbed texture! (Big thanks to JK Chaney.) Nope, it’s an April Fool’s gag. … A scoreboard is for showing the score, although you’d barely know that from the New England Lacrosse Classic, which was held on Saturday. “You kind of have to hunt for the score amidst all the advertising and logos,” says Tris Wykes. … Speaking of Tris, here’s a shot of him wearing Cooperalls in the early 1980s. … Yanks bullpen coach Mike Harkey nearly ran afoul of the team’s dress code the other day. … Here’s the logo for next season’s AHL all-star game. Yes, that’s a Hershey’s Kiss at upper-right, which would be cute if it weren’t so gratuitous. … Man, that’s a lot of tape Venus Williams was wearing on Saturday. … Interesting tassles — or maybe just gathered-up shoelaces? — on John Ruiz’s boots during his bout against David Haye on Saturday night. … Philip G.‘s nomination for the best team name ever: the Pensacola Dudes. … You know how baseball players used to put cabbage leaves under their caps to keep cool? The Belgian team in the 1935 Tour de France apparently did the same thing (great find by Sean Clancy). … Man, the Nats can’t do anything right. That shot is taken from this video clip of their scoreboard (good catch by David McGee). … Gerry Dincher has noticed a brand of sneakers called Gravity Defyer. with a logo that looks like a sperm cell. … The Japanese soccer team Nagoya Grampus will be giving a special jersey to their five-millionth fan (with thanks to Jeremy Brahm). … Jeff Mayer has noticed some new NOB styles in the cycling world. Details here. … While looking for something else, I came across this KC Chiefs baseball jersey. … Here’s an weird find by Paul Wiederecht: Braves farmhand Ron Jackson wearing a rather unartfully repurposed Braves jersey. The “L” on the cap indicates that he was playing for the Louisville Colonels, but what’s up with the “W” on the jersey?