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" The modern era of Cape Cod baseball dawned in 1963 when the league became a showcase for the collegiate elite. "
" By the 1880s, baseball was entrenched in the Cape's sandy soil. Semipro teams, commonplace before World War I, were organized into the first Cape Cod League in 1923 - Orleans joined the four original teams five years later. By 1940, the league had foundered on financial shoals and disbanded. "
" Indianapolis proved to be the perfect Super Bowl city, accommodating in the truest sense of the word. "
" At a book festival in Fort Lauderdale, I met David Eisenhower, Ike's grandson, who was promoting his book 'Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower,' in which he describes attending the Yankees' 154th game in 1961. The whole family had been following Mantle and Maris chase Babe Ruth's home run record across the country. "
" Naming is a privilege of reason and the province of bullies. We name to tame and to maim; to honor the great, the dead, and ourselves. "
" Claire Hodgson, born Clara Mae Merritt, was the daughter of a prominent Georgia attorney who had once represented Ty Cobb. She was still a teenager when she married Frank Hodgson, a gentleman caller nearly twice her age. "
" For most of my adult life, I dreaded the day I woke up and saw my mother in the mirror. It never happened. But, I had grown into my father. I shouldn't have been surprised. Everyone always said I was the son he never had. "
" On winter Sundays when I was a child, we waited for my father to return from his tennis game with bagels and sturgeon and for my mother to object when the 1 P.M. Giants game began. "
" In the spring of 1957, Mickey Mantle was the king of New York. He had the Triple Crown to prove it, having become only the 12th player in history to earn baseball's gaudiest jewel. In 1956, he had finally fulfilled the promise of his promise, batting .353, with 52 homers and 130 RBIs. Everybody loved Mickey. "
" Babe Ruth didn't become her father until 18 months after he married her mother, Claire, on April 17, 1929, Opening Day of the baseball season. Julia was 12 years old. "
" For Mantle, the Yankees' locker room was a sanctuary, a safe haven where he was understood, accepted and, when necessary, exonerated. "
" By the time I joined the 'Washington Post' sports staff in 1979, Red's Runyonesque notion of sports writing was obsolete. "
" Cape Cod baseball dates back to the time of the Civil War. A poster at the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown touts a round-trip train ride from Hyannis to Sandwich on July 4, 1885 - the occasion of the 14th annual baseball game between Sandwich and Barnstable. "
" Mantle didn't want to stick out, but he did. He didn't wish to be treated as special, but he was. He was uncomfortable being the center of attention, but he was the centerfielder for the most famous franchise in sports. "
" In Naples, Fla., I met a self-made man, a multimillionaire, whose round penthouse apartment is home to Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Claude Monet, Henry Moore, and Mickey Mantle. He had purchased the most coveted items auctioned by the Mantle family at Madison Square Garden in December 2003. "
" Some scholars attribute the decline in nicknaming to the evolutionary process that turned folk heroes into entrepreneurs. The truth is: George Herman Ruth, the namely-est guy ever, exhausted our supply of hyperbole. "
" Wherever Mantle went in the great metropolis - Danny's Hideaway, the Latin Quarter, the '21' Club, the Stork Club, El Morocco, Toots Shor's - his preferred drink was waiting when he walked through the door. Reporters waited at his locker for monosyllabic bons mots. Boys clustered by the players' gate, hoping to touch him. "
" The world is not kind to whistleblowers - a term of art with particular resonance in football, the most hierarchical and repressive of organized sports, a world of 'systems' and 'programs' and scripted plays, where reading a medical report requires a security clearance, and practice fields are patrolled like Guantanamo Bay. "
" When my father realized he was going blind, he took up golf. "
" There is no free speech in football. Information is parsed by monosyllabic head coaches, who dictate who gets to speak to whom and when. "
" In 1927, my father descended the heights and took his place as the newly appointed water boy for his beloved New York football Giants. "
" Trauma fractures comprehension as a pebble shatters a windshield. The wound at the site of impact spreads across the field of vision, obscuring reality and challenging belief. "
" Trauma is not the sole province of victims. If that were true, soldiers returning from Afghanistan wouldn't suffer from PTSD. "
" In the glory days of Orioles, when I was a newbie baseball writer for the Post, the roster of talkers was as good as the everyday lineup. Singy - Ken Singleton - Flanny, and Cakes - the underwear spokesman Jim Palmer - were my go-to guys, occupying stalls along one wall of the shabby chic clubhouse. "
" There is nothing incompatible about laughter and demons, nor about athletic achievement and depression. Mike Flanagan made me laugh, too. But mostly, he made me brave. "