Idol Chatter

October is for Halloween, and playoff baseball. Yesterday, the AP told a tale that suits both.
clevelandheadsm.gifThis Spring, an old bronze plaque turned up in a storage room at Jacobs Field, the Cleveland Indians’ home stadium, commemorating former Indians shortstop Ray Chapman, who was struck by a deadly pitch from Yankee Carl Mays on Aug. 17, 1920. The team added the plaque to a planned Heritage Park in March. What followed was one of the Indians’ strangest seasons on record.

In April, snowstorms hit, canceling nearly the entire first week of games, and causing the Indians to play some home games in Milwaukee. Several players had mind-boggling turnarounds, including the pitcher Fausto Carmona: 1-10 last year, he won 19 games in 2007. In August, the Tribe turned a triple play–the first-ever in the history of their 14-year-old park. Finally, at a crucial moment in the first round of the playoffs, a storm of tiny insects known as midges attacked Yankee reliever Joba Chamberlain, who promptly handed the game to the Tribe. They later advanced to play the Boston Red Sox for the right to go to the World Series.
Superstition has deep roots in baseball, but if the Indians go to the World Series, this story will go beyond coincidence. Consider: the first time the Indians franchise made it to the Fall Classic was 1920, the year Chapman died. And this year’s squad took sole possession of first place in the AL Central on, uh-huh, Aug. 17, the day Chapman died.
Indians fans have a lot to cheer about this year; do they owe it all to someone out there who says “boo”?

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