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When I was growing up in the 1950s, certain players were described as being  
"bad ball" hitters . The prime example was Yogi Berra . I once saw Berra hit a ball  
off of his shoe tops at Fenway with the ball just curling around the Pesky Pole  
A more recent example might be Vlad Guerrero, although he seemed to be able to hit anything.  
Have you heard of  the term and can you think of other players that might qualify  
as bad ball hitters  
Many Thanks
Asked by: skowron

Answered: 5/15/2021
Roberto Clemente was very much a bad-ball hitter, probably more so than Yogi, and Manny Sanguillen was a bad-ball hitter.    Rafael Devers is a bad-ball hitter, although (like you) I'm not sure the term is used anymore, but that is how I think of him.  


In the animated category of similar movies that came out at the same time, Antz (Dreamworks) and A Bug's Life (Pixar) both came out in 1998 and though I am fairly certain I have seen both I am also fairly certain that I couldn't tell the plots of the two movies apart
Asked by: bhalbleib

Answered: 5/15/2021
 Right.  I have the same problem with them.  I know that my kids loved one of them and hated the other one, but I could never remember which was which.  


Re: situations where two similar movies came out in close succession, a couple of examples come to mind: the two magician-mystery movies, The Prestige and The Illusionist, released a couple of months apart in 2006, and (spread a little further apart) the two Steve Jobs biopics (2013 with Ashton Kutcher; 2015 with Michael Fassbender).  
Asked by: RipCity

Answered: 5/15/2021
 Oh, I didn't know about the Ashton Kutcher one.  I saw the Fassbender version.  
Knock knock.
Who's there?
Armaggedon Who?
Armaggedon a little tired of all these movies about an asteroid hitting the earth.
(You have to pronounced "tired" as "tarred", like a southerner, for the joke to work.  


Not an answer to your question but "Starman' with Jeff Bridges, about an alien coming to earth was put on hold because of the popularity of 'E.T'.
Asked by: mauimike

Answered: 5/15/2021
 Second ET reference of the day. 


In Knocked Up, they discussed the concept of dual movies:  
"Good things come in pairs, man, you know?"  
"Oh, for sure."  
"Volcano, Dante’s Peak, Deep Impact, Armageddon, right? Wyatt Earp, Tombstone."  
"Panda Express, Yoshinoya Beef Bowl."  
This link discusses several other dual movies if you are interested in a fairly comprehensive list.  
Asked by: tangotiger

Answered: 5/15/2021
 OK, thanks.  


Not the same stories, but there were two Hitchcock biopics in 2012.  One starring Anthony Hopkins (Hitchcock) the other starring Tobey Jones (The Girl).  
The former focused on his relationship with his wife during Psycho, the latter his relationship with Tippi Hedren during The Birds.
Asked by: rgonnelli

Answered: 5/15/2021
 No, that IS the same.  I did see both of those movies, and that's exactly the phenomenon I was talking about.    


Regarding your question about overlapping movies that came out at about the same time, there were Pre and Without Limits about the late runner Steve Prefontaine that were both released in the late 1990s. Dr. Strangelove and Fail Safe both involve the theme of accidental nuclear war and came out in 1964. Back to the Future and Peggy Sue Got Married came out within a year and both involve people traveling back in time to meet younger versions of their family members. And, of course, in 1990 we were blessed with two movies that came out about the lambada dance craze that nobody actually participated in.
Asked by: andyfelz

Answered: 5/15/2021


Regarding rtallia's comment "the Mets announcers noted that when the relievers come in, the game slows down", When I've scored games over the last 3 or so decades I've (irregularly) recorded the time that the innings finished. I'm not in a position to run the numbers right now (i.e. where did I put those files?) but my recollection is that back then the later innings took longer than the earlier, though I feel that the difference is larger now.  
I recall that in the 1970s Earl Weaver got some press for artificially delaying games so that his relief pitcher had time to warm up before the next batter. The current pace of the game is so slow I've seen many relief pitchers get up in the bullpen and get warmed up in time to come in to face the next batter without any special delaying tactics being used.
Asked by: jrickert

Answered: 5/15/2021
 Thanks.  If you ever find them, I wonder if Project Scoresheet could incorporate that information into there accounts for general study?  


Hi Bill,  
Can you please learn the difference between "effect" and "affect?" It's really starting to bug me. :)  
Asked by: djmedinah

Answered: 5/15/2021
 There is no difference; it's just people like you who like to PRETEND There is a difference so you can claim you are smarter than the 99% of us who know that there isn't actually any difference.  


Hi Bill,  
If you’ve read the Harry Potter books or seen the films (I have, but wouldn't say I think especially much of them), do you think that Rowling’s world owes something to the Blunt/Philby/& (possibly) Wilson business? There's that same sense of something going on "behind the scenes," betrayal in high places, & even the work of a secret police in both the real life events and the fiction. Or do you think that the idea has just become so imbricated in Britain's mental life as to be unavoidable?  
Asked by: djmedinah

Answered: 5/15/2021
 I have never thought of them that way.  I have read the entire Harry Potter series three times, with great admiration for Rowling's many skills as a writer.   The movies. . ..the best you can say is that some of them aren't as bad as the rest of them.  
The Harry Potter books are all about THE PAST; there were a long series of things that happened years ago, before Harry was born,and all of the books are really about figuring out what it was that happened and how this story is carrying on in the present time, all around Harry.  I always thought of it as a sort of re-telling of World War II; you can read "Voldemort" as "Hitler" and "Muggle" as "Jew" and it mostly makes sense.   Not exactly correctly stated; the people representing the Jews are the half-Muggle, half-Magical people like Hermione.   Not saying this is a better interpretation than yours; I'm just saying it is one way of reading the stories. 
The dificulty with the movies is introducing fantastical magical things without losing the thread of the story.  In the books, something magical happens and you don't know what it is, but the action continues and eventually it is explained what that creature was and where it came from, etc.  But in the movies, a magical creature is introduced, and everything stops and the characters ooh and aah about this magical creature for a minute or two and the wise person steps forward to explain it before the action resumes.  But I don't especially blame the movie producers for that; it's just hard to replicate the introduction of magical creatures, on screen, the way it is done in the books.  


The comedian Garry Shandling had a bit where he said he took a date to see "ET" and at one point, she muttered, "Yeah, right." To which he replied, "It's not a documentary."  
I think the James Bond movies have to be taken in that light (at least the ones before Daniel Craig), as a fun romp rather than as a possibly true spy story. Have you considered the Bond movies as a different genre than spy films?
Asked by: jimmyp

Answered: 5/15/2021
 I don't think I ever really thought about them as spy movies.   There is something slightly different about them that I don't like.  First, I don't think I would like ANY movie that you would describe as a "fun romp."   It's like. . .James Bond and Frank Sinatra and Joe DiMaggio would all be great friends, you know?   I could never stand Sinatra.  There's something about that too-cool-for-school-chick-magnet persona that just doesn't have any appeal to me.  


Speaking of Leavenworth, have there been any prison escapes from there since you've been around? I'm wondering what it's like in an area when a dangerous criminal escapes from prison. Is there a town of Leavenworth or is it just the prison?
Asked by: manhattanhi

Answered: 5/15/2021
 There are two towns connected, Leavenworth Kansas and Lansing.   They run together.  The two main industries of the area are (1) the "staff general college" for the United States Army. . .may not be the right name.   Anyway, if you are made General in the Army, you are sent to the staff general college in Leavenworth, essentially, to learn how to be a general.  There are lots of high-ranking military personnel there, and also high-ranking military from our Allies are sometimes stationed there are part of their educational process.   It's an unusually nice military post, which looks more like a 19th century Victorian neighborhood than a military post, and the post sets on a scenic location perched above a river.   
Other than that, the main industry of the area is prisons.  The Federal prison at Leavenworth is the most famous, but the United States Military Disciplinary Barracks are also there, on the post; it's just like a half-mile walk from the one big prison to the other.  If you get into really, really serious trouble in the United States Army, Navy, Air Force or Marine Corps, anywhere in the world, you will wind up in Leavenworth, at the Military Disciplinary Barracks. 
The KANSAS prison, where Richard Hickock and Perry Smith were held and eventually executed, is in Lansing, which is just a few miles from the other two big prisons, maybe four miles, maybe less.  And I think there are two or three other prisons in the town(s); I'm not sure, but I think the state women's prison is there or used to be there, and there are juvenile prisons, which they don't call prisons, and places to hold Mentally unstable people who commit crimes. . .I don't know what all, but I think there are several smaller prisons in Lansing/Leavenworth as well.  
It's actually a pretty nice town. . .well, parts of it are and parts of it aren't, you know, but the presence of the high-ranking military sustains some good quality restaurants.  There is a horrible dumpy-looking motel where people stay when they come to visit their relatives who are incarcerated, and then five blocks away there is a very nice shopping/dining district.  
With all of those prisons you do get prison escapes sometimes.  These will be on the news, but we're 25 miles away and Kansas City is 20 miles away (from Leavenworth) and it is easier to get to KC than it is to get to Lawrence, so we don't really worry about it.  It doesn't effect us.   There was a highly publicized escape a few years ago (from Lansing) when a lady who was teaching dog handling classes at the prison, intended to have a salutory effect on the inmates, fell in love with one of her students and helped him escape from the prison and ran off with him.  You hear stories like that once in a while.  
I had an in-law/relative/cousin type person maybe 30 years ago worked as a guard there.  Somehow the subject of escapes came up, and he said "We don't do anything when there is an escape.  We just call the police and let them handle it."  


Just my two cents, but the slow pace of the last three minutes of NBA games bothers me much, much more than the slow pace of baseball games. An endless series of foul-foul shot-T.O.-inbound rinse and repeat is not an approximation of basketball, to me. At least in baseball the reliever does eventually pitch to the batter in a normal way. One of the things that bothers us about the free runner on second base, I think, is that it threatens to subvert "normal baseball" so strongly. The defense is forced to deal with a threat that didn't arise out of gameplay.
Asked by: wovenstrap

Answered: 5/15/2021
 I am trying to learn to deal with it in a mature and healthy way.   I think the basketball issue does need a rules revision. 


About 10 years ago a documentary about the Central Park Five was released. I saw the movie at Lincoln Plaza Cinemas, on Broadway on West 63rd St. One of the main things that happens in the movie is that the five kids are collected and placed in a police precinct located in the middle of Central Park for several hours. It was impossible not to realize that those events had occurred about a 10-minute walk away from the cinema.
Asked by: wovenstrap

Answered: 5/15/2021


To the best of your knowledge,  did anyone ever connect the Villisca killings with the New Orleans ones that you covered in The Man From the Train?
Asked by: Manushfan

Answered: 5/15/2021
Are you asking about the New Orleans Axeman or the killings in a series of small towns north of Louisiana?  


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