Monday, April 13, 2009

Mark Fidrych RIP

Mark Fidrych died yesterday on his farm near Worcester, MA, in an apparent accident. He was 54. Massachusetts-born and raised, Fidrych was a pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, for five years beginning in 1976. He was a brilliant pitcher but a little too strange for Major League baseball. (Among other things, he talked to the baseball between pitches.)
I admired Fidrych, as much for his inability to toe the very straight line demanded by professional baseball as for his obvious pitching brilliance.
Fidrych's career was cut short by injury, but I always wondered if he was just too different to (literally) play the game.
I am posting a song, "Moulty," by the Cape Cod garage-rock band the Barbarians, which tells the story of their drummer- Moulty - who lost a hand in an accident. (I believe he blew it off with a firecracker.) And yet still he continued to drum! I feel like Fidrych and Moulty are connected both by geography and Massachusetts accent, and by an eccentric New England-stubborn refusal to act their age.

The Barbarians - Moulty

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