Goldman: If you can’t make a sentence about baseball, it probably isn’t worth reading

From SABR member Steven Goldman at The Hardball Times on September 13, 2018:

Back in the golden age of radio, Fred Allen was a comedian who anticipated both Johnny Carson’s version of the “Tonight Show” and Jon Stewart’s run on “The Daily Show.” A veteran vaudevillian with the precise diction of an escapee from Cambridge, Massachusetts (“I have just returned from Boston. It is the only thing to do if you find yourself up there,” he once said), he was endlessly quotable: “He is so narrow-minded that if he fell on a pin it would blind him in both eyes.” “The last time I saw him he was walking down lover’s lane holding his own hand.” “A committee is a group of men who individually can do nothing but as a group decide that nothing can be done.” “Hollywood is a place where people from Iowa mistake each other for stars.”

A personal favorite: In a wonderful invocation of onomatopoeia, Allen pointed out that the full name of the venerable advertising agency BBDO—Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn —sounds like a trunk falling down stairs.

As with any great line, it is incumbent upon the baseball-obsessed to determine how it applies to the game.

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Originally published: September 14, 2018. Last Updated: September 14, 2018.