With the World Series just past, here are some entertaining and interesting quips and quotes from the world of baseball.
Babe Ruth, when asked by a reporter how he could hold out for a salary of $80,000 when that was more than President Hoover was making: "Maybe so, but I had a better year than he did."
Jack Aker, Cleveland pitching coach, after White Sox fans subjected the Indians to a barrage of seat cushions on Seat Cushion Night in Chicago: "I'm definitely not showing up on Bowling Night."
George F. Will, noted columnist and ardent baseball fan: "Pitchers say the split finger fastball is like sex. When it's good it's terrific, when it's bad, it's still pretty good."
Hank Aaron, musing about golf and baseball: "It took me 17 years to get 3,000 hits and then I took up golf and got 3,000 hits in one afternoon."
Dave Collins, quipping an analogy: "I'd rather have lunch with my ex-wife's attorney than play in the minors."
Mets outfielder Lenny Dykstra on former teammate Kevin Mitchell: "Mitch found God in spring training. Then every night, he'd go out and try to find a goddess."
Mike Rentko, ex-Western Maryland College gridder and outfielder for the Sheatown (PA) Ramblers, describing an inning in which his team loaded the bases on an infield scratch hit and two bunts: "It was our short yardage offense."
Rick Monday, Dodger outfielder, on Braves pitcher Phil Niekro's baffling knuckleball: "It actually giggles at you as it goes by."
Steve Lyons, Chicago White Sox utility man on his 44 year-old teammate Carlton Fisk: "He's so old, they didn't have history class when he went to school."
John McNamara, Red Sox manager, philosophizing: "It's better to be quiet and ignorant than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."
Chicago White Sox pitcher Charlie Hough, 43, on his age: "When I broke in, we didn't have bats. We just grabbed a branch off a tree."
Richie Hebner, a grave-digger during the off-season, after finishing a two-mile run in spring training: "I've buried people in better shape than I am."
Reds rookie Steve Foster, when asked by a Canadian customs agent if he had anything to declare: "Sure - I'm proud to be an American."
Earl Weaver, Baltimore manager, optimistic despite a series of setbacks: "We've got plenty of time. We've climbed out of more coffins than Bela Lugosi."
Casey Stengel, offering advice: "They say you can't do it, but sometimes it doesn't always work."
Terry Puhl, after Astro third-baseman Enos Cabell made five errors in eight games: "We took his glove to confession this morning."
Mets reserve Lee Mazzilli on turning 32: "Girls used to come up to me and say, 'My sister loves you.' Now they come up to me and say, 'My Mother loves you.'"
Doug Rader, on why he used to call Nolan Ryan "The Exorcist:" "He scared the devil out of you."
Bob Uecker, on the respect he received as a hitter: "I'm up in the bottom of the ninth against the Dodgers, two out, the bases loaded, and the count 3 and 2. I look over to the Dodger dugout and they're all in street clothes."
Tommy John, Yankee pitcher about his arm surgery: "When they operated on my arm, I asked them to put in Koufax's fastball. They did. But it turned out to be Mrs. Koufax's."
George Brett, Kansas City third baseman, describing his 6-foot-4 185-pound teammate Jamie Quirk: "He looks like a greyhound, but he runs like a bus."
Pete "The Gladiator" Browning, Louisville outfielder, on hearing of the assassination of President James Garfield in 1881: "Yeah, what league was he in?"
Mitch Tullai is a historian and humorist who resides in Lutherville, Md. He is an occasional contributor to Voice of the Fan.