Anti Gravity: Fields of Dreams; May 2000; Scientific American Magazine; by Mirsky; 1 Page(s)
Dave Baldwin might qualify as a Renaissance man, if only they had played baseball during the Renaissance. Scientific American learned of the diamond exploits of the multifaceted Baldwin when he wrote to us after our expose of curveball aerodynamics. His letter, published in January 1998, describes how as a relief pitcher for the '69 Washington Senators, he unintentionally showed up his new manager. Pity poor Dave, as that manager was the legendary Ted Williams: Red Sox slugger, Marine captain and general misanthrope. According to Baldwin, Williams held fast to the conviction that pitchers (even his own) were "dumber than spaghetti" and challenged his staff to explain how a curveball did its twisty thing. The withering silence that greeted Baldwin's lucid curve commentary convinced Dave that pasta might indeed be his intellectual superior.
Other events, however, strongly indicate that Baldwin's brain works fine. He is surely the only person to publish in the Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington and to pitch for that town's team. For you younger fans, or you people who pay baseball no attention because you find it slightly less compelling than watching paint dry, Dave's Washington Senators are now the Texas Rangers, as opposed to an earlier team called the Washington Senators, now the Minnesota Twins.