A Press Democrat Blog

Old School

Robert Rubino connects current sports news with the past

Bud and Fidel at the ballpark, part 2

The Orioles’ trip to Cuba in 1999 was approved by the U.S. State Department, as was the Cuban all-stars’ visit to Baltimore (the Cubans won, 12-6) some five weeks later. The general idea was that friendly cultural exchange, even if it’s a brief symbolic gesture via the escapist entertainment of sports, is a more positive way to exist in the world, as opposed to decades of rigid, enforced enmity and isolation.

Bud and Fidel at the ballpark, part 1

In March of 1999, Venezuelan shortstop Ozzie Guillen was at spring training in Florida with the Atlanta Braves. He was about to begin the 15th season of a proud and productive big-league career, mostly with the Chicago White Sox, that had included a Rookie of the Year award, three All-Star Game selections and a Gold Glove award. If Guillen, who spent some time on the Baltimore Orioles just a year earlier, had been with the Orioles instead of the Braves… Read More »

All-time A’s home openers: No. 4

In a countdown to the 2010 baseball season, Old School blog will run brief descriptions of the most significant home openers in the history of the Oakland A’s and SF Giants — one a day, a total of five for each team. We already started with the A’s, picking the 1981 opener at No. 5. Next up: No. 4. April 1, 2002. Texas Rangers at Oakland. Attendance 43,908. This was the first game played following an offseason in which commissioner… Read More »