By: Bill Kaufman  | 

On the Sidelines: “All American” Baseball (Vol.1, Issue 5)

Rumors of an “All-American” baseball team were confirmed when your scribe betook himself to the athletic field and beheld the far-famed antics of the daffy denizens of the Yeshiva diamond. On all sides of me was a vast array of baseball talent ranging from “Rah Rah” Sion, the Eastern Marquis (r is silent) to Jack Mazo of the Wolozoner Mazos. Although the boys weren’t exactly what we might call Beau Brummels of the diamond, lacking the customary sartorial elegance of the baseball player’s flannel fare, still they looked right smart in their uniform of gray shirts and black collars. Yes, sir! Even the mighty moguls of the S.O.Y. were there, who, being gents of a very metropolitan nature, soon learned how to manipulate the little white spheres with the wands of hickory.

Teams Chosen

Practice went on for a while and finally when the young men of Manhattan grew tired of aimlessly tossing around the horsehide, sides were chosen. The teams were Yale and Harvard (you know, the boys with the accents ? ? ? ?) and amidst a fanfare of applause the game was launched.


The impression left on my mind afterwards was that these Yeshiva ballhawks certainly talked a swell game. As is the custom of all Talmudic students, the widely practiced pastime of intense argumentation was not wanting. The game was accompanied by a wide array of sounds, more carefully analyzed as a continual flow of Islamic proverbs and several good, old-fashioned Lithuanian cuss words. As to the game, well it was just one of those things. The longest hit took place during the second inning when one of the Harvard bludgeoneers smacked one past the pitcher way out to the short-stop. Yep, it was good for a triple, but being a fast runner the batter, Nat Taragin, stretched it into a home run. Taragin looks like a natural, all right. He scrutinized the pitch as if it were a Brenner omelet, and swang with the grace of a Minsky debutante in an iron corset. The game soon ended after three gruelling innings with the casualties mounting; this time it was a sprained “shnozz”, incurred when the pitcher, lunging forward to catch a fly ball was hampered by his somewhat enlarged proboscis. This impediment his approach and alas, the horsehide alit upon it.