Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Fisk and Shits

Quick: Do you remember where you were on this date 40 years ago?

The correct answers are "of course not" and "who cares."

As it turns out, it was 40 years ago today that Carlton Fisk hit the 12-inning homer to beat the Reds in the 1975 World Series. It was Game 6 before there was "Game 6."*

And that's what The CHB wants to tell us about.

Here's the problem: Fisk's moment was transcendent. The date doesn't matter. It's an iconic moment, not in baseball history, not in New England history, but in SPORTS history. For years it was part of opening sequence to the NBC Game of the Week, and the Bat in the Night is part of a display in Cooperstown.

What's more, everyone and their dog is trotting out pieces on it this week. Even The Boston Globe Magazine beat Shank to the punch.

Oh, the problems with the piece are rampant. The CHB says Fred Lynn was the "best center fielder we’d see until Jackie Bradley Jr. came around." Not even close. Coco Crisp -- the prototype for JBJ -- was twice the defensive CF that Fragile Freddy was. Even Rick Miller, Lynn's contemporary, was a superior OF.

He calls Luis Tiant the "best best big-game pitcher we would ever see." El Tiante had a 2.86 ERA and 20 strikeouts in 34 post-season innings. Jon Lester has a 2.85 ERA and 87 K's in 98 innings -- in a higher octane offensive era. (Perhaps Shank keeps his eyes closed when Lester is on the mound.)

All in all, Shaughnessy's homage is familiar in tone and content to Clark Booth's writeup from 2004.
Fisk's home run is memorable. The CHB's hasty, crappy memory of it, not so much.

*Screw you, Buckner!

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