Saturday, August 18, 2012

Saturday Rerun: NASA's gone funky

Stop me if you've heard this story before.  It's true, and it says a lot about predictions.

Gaylord Perry was a major league baseball pitcher from 1962 - 1983.  When I say "major league," I mean it, because he pitched for just about every team in the major leagues.

His strong points as a pitcher were two: throwing spitballs, and making batters believe he was throwing spitters.  You know that putting a foreign substance on the ball - saliva, Vaseline, WD40, mayonnaise, tofu - is totally against the rules of baseball.  Wetting the ball makes the pitcher able to throw an elusive dipping pitch.  Making the batter think that an elusive pitch is coming his way is effective too - and drier!

Gaylord Perry
Gaylord won 314 games in the big leagues and was voted #97 in the Sporting News list of the 100 greatest baseball players.  This was not for his batting prowess.  In fact, his manager for the San Francisco Giants, Alvin Dark, said in 1964 that the US would put a man on the moon before Gaylord Perry hit a home run.

In 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon one warm Sunday afternoon.  An hour after Apollo 11 got to the moon and found a parking spot, Gaylord Perry hit the first of his six career home runs. While Neil and Buzz flipped packages of Tang to see who would hop out first, Perry ran around the bases on earth while the astronauts were on the moon.

And I read about it in the SUN!

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