Wednesday, September 07, 2005

September 7th, 1973

David Newhan Born

The son of long-time Los Angeles Times sports columnist Ross Newhan, David was a journeyman who had a low-level break out season in Baltimore last year at age thirty, although he seems to have regressed somewhat this year, batting just .204 and dubbing the Orioles' Triple-A home Ottawa as "a terrible place to be" featuring "bad weather, bad fans [and] bad atmosphere."

His grumpiness and poor performance this year not withstanding, Newhan was a key player in my favorite (non Yankee) play from 2004. It took place on July 21st at
Fenway Park. Newhan was facing Pedro Martinez with the O's up 6-4 in the top of the seventh. Newhan had runners on first and second but had gotten himself into a 1-2 hole against Pedro. Despite this he managed to launch a ball to deep center field in Fenway. Johnny Damon chased the ball all the way to the Stop and Shop Sign in centerfield (you can see it on the right of this photo) and made a leap but the ball was over his head and bounced away. Damon tracked it down and launched a throw towards the cutoff man.

Now, here is where the whole thing gets strange. Damon has a weak arm, and was probably hoping to hold Newhan to a triple with the ball reaching cut off man Mark Bellhorn. However, for reasons known only to himself (and maybe not even then) Manny Ramirez, the Sox left fielder, made a diving play on Damon's throw, cutting it off in the shallow left-center. Seeing this, Newhan, who had been slowing down at third base, promptly turned the jets back on and took off for home. Manny then--from his knees--threw the ball to Bellhorn who sent it home to catcher Jason Varitek.

It was too late however, as Newhan chugged home and slid around Varitek's late tag, finishing an improbable inside-the-park three run home run, thanks to a diving cut off from a left fielder and avoiding being tagged out on a play that would've gone 8-7-4-2.

Editor’s Note: Speaking of things involving Pedro Martinez, one of my esteemed guest writers, Evan Drellich, has deciding to try and make it own his own in the blogging world. His Mr. Met’s Words of Wisdom is one of the latest entries to the Mets’ blogsphere but I’m pleased to say it is already one of the best. I recommend you check it out.

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