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March 30, 2008

Nationals Park and Logo

Washington, D.C.
Nationals Park Opens

"They give us their logos but we need their checks,"
--Keith Stubbs, local promoter of youth baseball in Washington, D.C.

A new baseball park, home of Major League Baseball's Washington Nationals, a National League East team, officially opened tonight. (Nationals Park is, coincidentally, approximately one mile from the main campus of the Cosmic Baseball Research Alliance, CBA's educational arm.)

Washington Baseball Columnist Boswell It took 724 days to build the structure that is located in the city's Southeast quadrant, by the Anacostia River. The city spent $611 million from the citizens' treasury to build the stadium ($535 million in bonds were sold in 2006 to help underwrite the project.)

Today the 41,888-seat stadium stands as the city's newest national monument memorializing the sensitive nexus of politics and money in the United States.

Tonight's event was called "Presidential Opening Night" because the nation's first baseball fan, President George Bush, attended. He had the honor of throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.

As good neighbors of the new stadium, the Cosmic Baseball Research Alliance received two tickets to the game. Two COBRA scholars attended and sat in Section 404, Row B, Seats 7 and 8, in an area called the Upper Outfield Gallery. (The tickets retail for $10.00).

During the third inning, the two COBRA scholars were asked to visit the President's suite located in the Washington Suites section of the park. The COBRA Scholars had a three-minute visit with the President who expressed his hope that Nationals Park would lead to a renewed interest in baseball by children living in urban city environments. The President cited well-known statistics that indicate the sport of baseball has lost its appeal to inner-city young people.

Nationals Park is located in Wards 6 and 7 of the city, "where all the poor black kids are," the President observed. A founding partner and senior VP of external affairs for the Nationals explained that in 1995 nineteen percent of Major League Baseball Players were black. On opening day in 2008 that figure has declined to barely nine percent.

Crowded into the Presidential Suite was the director for the Institute of Diversity and Ethics in Sport (and soon to be the new Secretary of the Department of American Baseball, a new cabinet seat...if a Democrat is elected next November). The director pointed out that MLB teams can usually sign three or four Latin American players for every young African American prospect. This creates the disparity. The President said, "Obviously D.C. is a different kind of city in terms of demographics, so it can have a tremendous impact on its fan base if they can market not only the game but…create opportunities for children of color." (Editor's Note: Approximately 60% of the nation's capital is categorized by the federal government as "African-American".)

Also in the crowded Presidential Suite was a representative from Friends of the Earth, which is part of a coalition, called No D.C. Taxes for Baseball.

COBRA Web Page

During Washington's heated debate over the return of baseball to the city, Friends of the Earth campaigned vocally and financially to resist the building of Nationals Park in its current southeast location. An investigation into these contrary groups revealed that some of the opposition group funding came from Robert Siegel, who was described in a radio station newscast in December 2004 as a major landowner in the proposed area of the new stadium site. At that time, he owned 11 properties, several of which housed gay nightclubs. He also owned a gay porn shop and adult theaters. The point is that Mr. Siegel, part of the American sex and money complex, was looking out for his own financial interests. Those interests had their origins in the early 1970s just after Ted Williams stopped managing the old Washington Senators when police harassment of gay bars forced bar owners to seek out the city's Southeast warehouse district as a location where authorities would leave them alone. Over the next 30 years, a gay club "zone" evolved on the unit block of O Street, SE, where adult entertainment establishments catering to gay men as well as gay dance bars and a nightclub featuring drag performances lined the entire north side of the street. Veteran D.C. gay activist Frank Kameny, who was not in the Presidential Suite, said the area "is an historic gay block, we were down there because we were exiled by Police Chief Jerry Wilson in or around 1970." The President understandably was not interested in discussing the plight of entrepreneurs who capitalized on people's sexual activities.

Will Nationals Park help inspire DC's young to embrace baseball? Will homosexuals get into the Presidential suite? Will the sex-money complex overtake the military-industrial complex? Complicated questions and we only have 161 games left to come up with the answer.

The COBRA Scholars left the suite just as two of the city's former mayors (Anthony Williams and Marion Barry) walked in. Where was Adrian Fenty, the city's current mayor? (Somewhat quipped he accidentally went to RFK Stadium to watch the game)

It was a very good baseball game, and especially pleasant for Washington fans because it ended with a walk-off homerun by the Nationals' third baseman, Ryan Zimmerman (no relation to Robert Allen Zimmerman aka Bob Dylan who is, reportedly, a baseball fan.)

CBA Games

March 28, 2008

Cosmic Baseball Games
Recent Linescores

March 25, 2008

Link to Book Review

Paul Arthur, Former CBA Commissioner

It is with profund sadness that we announce that Paul Arthur, a former CBA Commissioner, passed away in White Plains, New York today. He was 60.

Named CBA's first commissioner on November 11, 1981, Paul served in that capacity until November 30, 1984. Subsequently, Paul served on the CBA's Board of Directors. On December 1, 1984, the CBA awarded its Association Award to Paul in honor of his outstanding and dedicated service to the Cosmic Baseball Association.

In addition to his interest in cosmic baseball, Paul was a film historian, scholar and critic well known for writing about American avant-garde cinema and documentaries. His 2005 book A Line of Sight: American Avant-garde Film Since 1965 is an important contribution to the study and practice of experimental film.

Everyone at the Cosmic Baseball Association will miss Paul Arthur. Our condolences go out to his family. Rest in peace old friend...

March 15, 2008

Link to Season 2008 Main Plate

2008 CBA Season Begins
Pisces Beat Dahlias

The season started with CBA's oldest team hosting its newest team. It was a pitchers duel and the one and only run scored by the home team came as a result of a walk given up by rookie Dahlia Zina Mertz. Veteran Pisces starter Vanessa Williams pitched a shutout and earned the game's MCP honors.

March 13, 2008

Ashley Dupré at

Cosmic Baseball Teams
Ashley Dupré Named New Dragon GM

We all had the feeling that the musician implicated in the recent transgression by the soon-to-be-former governor of the Empire State was going to get popular and be forced to endure her fifteen minutes of Warholian fame. Less than eight hours after her name surfaced in the mass media via the New York Times, Ashley Alexandra Dupré (born Ashley R. Youmans, legal name changed to Ashley Rae Maika DiPietro in 2006 and also known as Kristen) was named to replace Jean-Luc Ponty as the Delta Dragons' General Manager, effective instantly.

The announcement was made by a spokeswoman on behalf of team owner, John Lee Hooker. Ponty was not fired; he resigned, according to the spokeswoman.

It is a startling development. The Delta Dragons (CBA's team of interesting musicians) have been the CBA's best team twice in the past three years (2005, 2007). The tensions between Ponty and Field Manager Janis Joplin were kept mostly under wraps but insiders say those tensions ran high. Ponty was known to resent the fact that Joplin garnered most of the credit for the team's recent performance.

Little is known about DiPietro's connections to baseball. Her qualification to become general manager of the Dragons is based on her ambition to be a musician. According to the team's spokeswoman, DiPietro's connection to the field of prostitution was not a factor in team owner Hooker's decision to make her the team's general manager.

March 12, 2008

Link to 2008 Jack Kerouac Memorial Game

Personal Cosmic Baseball Game
2008 Jack Kerouac Memorial Game

Link to 2008 Jack Kerouac Memorial Game

The American writer Jack Kerouac (1922-1969) was a great fan of baseball. As a child growing up in Lowell, Massachusetts he both played the real sport of baseball, and created his own imaginary (fantasy) baseball league. Each year on Kerouac's birthday (he would have been 86 years old today) the Cosmic Baseball Association plays a baseball game in memory of the author. Kerouac has been a member of the Cosmic Baseball Association's Dharma Beats team since its creation in 1983. This year the Jack Kerouac Memorial Game pitted Kerouac family members against a selection of Kerouac homes.

March 9, 2008

Personal Cosmic Baseball Game
Hillary Clintons @ Barack Obamas

The Washington Presidents have to draft a rookie for their Season 2009 team roster. To help make the choice, the team's management has authorized a series of personal cosmic baseball games to generate decision-making ephemera. The latest in a series of those games was played today between the campaign staffs representing the two candidate rookies from the Democratic party. Detailed game data is sent to the Cosmic Baseball Research Alliance for analysis. We offer the Line and Box Scores here for interested fans.

Box Score

Other Personal Cosmic Baseball Games

March 8, 2008

Asteroid Fact Sheet @ NASA

Asteroids in Cosmic Baseball?

The Astronomical Planets, a new Cosmic Baseball team, has asked the CBA for permission to include officially designated asteroids on its official team roster. The Planets would like a pool of additional players because their official roster is small. CBA rules allow teams to carry up to 21 active players*. The Planet's roster currently consists of 11 players, and 3 of those (Sun, Moon, Pluto), are technically not planets at all. The Planets did not identify which specific asteroids they would add to their roster if granted permission. It is assumed carbonaceous asteroids would make up the bulk of additions. However, the pool of potential asteroids is always growing. It has been estimated that 5,000 asteroids are discovered a month. Conversion of asteroids into cosmic baseball players is not complicated, according to the Planets.

Early reaction from the CBA bureaucracy has been negative. The team's request came after the 2008 Official Team Rosters were published and there is reluctance to modify the official data for the current season. Others asked why the Planets did not request that moons and other astronomical objects be included in the pool of possible Planet players.

Most likely, CBA will appoint a team of Cosmic Baseball Research Alliance (COBRA) scholars to look into the request and make a recommendation. Nevertheless, there is probably not sufficient time for the roster expansion to happen this season (which starts in 7 days, on March 15.)

*Note: The Washington Presidents are allowed a maximum of 43 active roster players...a number which will change to 44 for the 2009 season.)

March 7, 2008

Website Plate (Page) Hits

There are over 1,100 pages at the CBA's public website. The top nine webpages ("plates") in terms of visitations are listed in the table below.

CBA website pages ("plates") with the most "hits" (visitor visits)
for the two months ended February 29, 2008.
(Data compiled by COBRA )

March 1, 2008

Season 2008 Main Plate

RF Neil Young
Caught Stealing

RHP Chloe Bloom
shuts out 2007 Cosmic Universal Series winners

Sharon Lopatka
C Sharton Lopatka Reactivated

Pre Season Cosmic Baseball Game
Delta Dragons @ Orchomena Dahlias

The Delta Dragons, one of CBA's most veteran teams and last season's CU Series winner went to play one of CBA's newest teams, the Orchomena Dahlias. Music, baseball, and women makes a nice blend. Experience does not always trump guile and grit and the Dahlias substantiated that claim in this game.

Lineup: Delta Dragons
Van Vliet         SS
Young             RF
Black             2B
Moog              LF
Lennon            1B
Presley           CF
Beethoven         C
Theremin          3B
Garcia            P
Lineup: Orchomena Dahlias
Lopatka           C
HelmanVa          1B
HelmanVi          2B
LaFave            3B
Morrison          SS
MacGraw           LF
Coulter           CF
Caulfield         RF
Bloom             P

Inn. 1: Dragons [Starter] Bloom Van Vliet 2 (Foul) . . . Young 2-3 . . . Black 5-3 . . . Inn. 1: Dahlias [Starter] Garcia Lopatka 8 . . . HelmanVa 7 . . . HelmanVi 4-3 . . . Inn. 2: Dragons Moog BB . . X Lennon 8 . . X Presley 1-3 . X . Beethoven 6 . X . Inn. 2: Dahlias LaFave E-3 . . X Morrison 5 . . X MacGraw 3UN . X . Coulter 5-3 . X . Inn. 3: Dragons Theremin K . . . Garcia 5-3 . . . Van Vliet 6-3 . . . Inn. 3: Dahlias Caulfield 8 . . . Bloom K . . . Lopatka 1B . . X HelmanVa 1B . . X X@3:Lopatka 7-5 . . X Inn. 4: Dragons Young E-4 . . X X@2:Young CS 2-4 . . . Black 5 . . . Moog 1B . . X Lennon 4-3 . X . Inn. 4: Dahlias HelmanVi 1B . . X LaFave 8 . . X Morrison 8 . . X *SB:HelmanVi SB . X . MacGraw K . X . Inn. 5: Dragons Presley K . . . Beethoven K . . . Theremin 4-3 . . . Inn. 5: Dahlias Coulter 1B . . X Caulfield 6-3 . X . Bloom BB . X X Lopatka 3B X . . 2 HelmanVa K X . . HelmanVi K X . . Inn. 6: Dragons *EX:Garcia (for PH) *PH:Gillespie 1B/E-9 . X . Van Vliet K . X . Young 9 . X . Black BB . X X Moog 1B . X X X@4:Gillespie 9-2 . X X Inn. 6: Dahlias [Relief] Parker LaFave 1B . . X Morrison K . . X *SB:LaFave SB . X . MacGraw BB . X X Coulter 6-4 F X . X Caulfield 9 X . X Inn. 7: Dragons Lennon 9 . . . Presley 4-3 . . . Beethoven 4-3 . . . Inn. 7: Dahlias Bloom K . . . Lopatka K . . . HelmanVa K . . . Inn. 8: Dragons Theremin 1B . . X *EX:Parker (for PH) *PH:Glass 1B . X X Van Vliet 9 . X X Young 4-6 F X . X Black BB X X X Moog 8 X X X Inn. 8: Dahlias [Relief] Nyro HelmanVi 3B X . . LaFave 3UN X . . Morrison 4 X . . MacGraw 6-3 X . . Inn. 9: Dragons Lennon 2-3 . . . Presley 3B X . . Beethoven K X . . Theremin 3UN X . .

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