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May 1999 News Archives

May 27, 1999
Pete Rose To Throw Out First Pitch

Banned baseball player Pete Rose is scheduled to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the home opener of the Sacramento Steelheads on May 28. The Steelheads are one of six teams in the five-year old Western Baseball League (WBL). Rose is not violating the ban which prevents him from having anything to do with professional baseball. That restriction, imposed on Rose in August 1989 by Major League Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti also prevents Rose from being considered for Baseball's Hall of Fame.

Whether or not Pete Rose bet on baseball games including games played by the Cincinnati Reds, which Rose managed, is investigated more thoroughly at the Cosmic Baseball Association's Pete Rose Hall of Fame Controversy page. Giamatti was personally convinced Rose did gamble on baseball games. Rose denies it. As recently as this month Rose told Sacramento Bee reporter Debbie Arrington that he did not commit baseball's mortal sin. "That's the one thing that drives me bonkers," Rose said. "People get that wrong."

Because the WBL is an independent professional baseball organization and not part of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues Rose is not restricted from participating in the WBL's affairs. He has been hired by the Steelheads as a "special instructor" and on Monday May 10 he delivered an extended motivational speech to the team. Dressed in a Steelhead uniform Rose also participated in the team's daily field and batting practice sessions.

However, Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig's office is investigating a report that Rose, in violation of the ban, spoke, prior to a game on April 29, to members of the Rockford Reds , a Cincinnati Reds Class A minor league team. The source of the story is Pete Rose himself. ``I talked with minor league players there.'' Rose told a reporter.

Rockford Reds general manager Bruce Keiter claims Rose signed autographs on a concourse during a pre-game promotion but at no time did he speak or have access to the players. Keiter said that Rose is "fabricating" the story. "Pete had absolutely no contact with my players at all. I cannot reiterate that enough." Keiter, in a telephone interview with an AP reporter said, " [Rose] cannot fabricate things and make it appear he's doing things that he's actually not doing. When he continues to fabricate these things, it only puts him in a dimmer light with the powers-that-be in major league baseball.''

According to news reports, Rose has twice violated the terms of the ban. In 1993 during a game at Riverfront Stadium Rose went into the broadcast booth. And, during the 1998 Spring Training season Rose went to the Reds' Sarasota, Florida complex to watch his son, Pete Jr. tryout for the team. During that visit Rose was invited to address the players, a violation of his ban.

In 1997 Rose sent a request for re-instatement to the Commissioner's office but to date he has received no response. Baseball is in no hurry to extend its arms and accept Rose back into its bosom. On the other hand, throwing out the ceremonial first ball for the Sacramento Steelheads probably won't do much to change Major League Baseball's disposition to not embrace this disgraced American beauty.

The Cosmic Baseball Association's position on Pete Rose has been stated before. We recognize that Rose was an outstanding professional baseball player. Rose always made the very most of his physical skills on the field of play. After reviewing the facts and opinions with regard to his gambling on baseball games, we believe Rose did bet on baseball games, including games played by a team he was managing. So, we believe that the first step in Rose's baseball rehabilitation has to be his willingness to confess the absolute truth.

May 24, 1999
Ted Hughes Enters Y2K Draft Pool

British poet Ted Hughes has entered the Year 2000 cosmic draft pool with the specific intention of being drafted by the Eden Bohemians. A rightfielder in the Sylvia Plath League, Hughes has been one of the more outstanding players in that league.

In 1984 Ted Hughes was named Britain's poet laureate. This was 21 years after his wife, the American poetess Sylvia Plath, put out cookies and milk for her children and then stuffed her head in a gas oven and kissed life goodbye. It was fifteen years after Hughes' lover, Assia Wevill, also took her own life and the life of her daughter Shura.

Just before Hughes died a more natural death than his lovers, on October 28, 1998, he published two well received, prize-endowed books: the 1997 Whitbred Award winning Tales from Ovid and the 1998 Forward Prize winner Birthday Letters. The latter book of personal poetry puts his final spin on his relationship with Plath.

May 17, 1999
James Broughton Passes On

Poet, playwright and filmmaker James Broughton died today at the age of 85. Born in Modesto, California in 1913 Broughton established himself as a significant influence within the avant-garde art circles of the 1950s.

Broughton's father was a banker who died when James was 5. His strict and very dominant mother sent him to military school but quickly took him out after she discovered some love letters he had written to another cadet. Broughton was excused from military service during World War 2 because of his confessed homosexuality. However, in the late 1940s he met and lived with the future film critic Pauline Kael. The relationship was tumultuous and it didn't last despite Kael's pregnancy.

In 1948 Broughton made the film Mother's Day, a comedic effort designed perhaps to ameliorate the damage inflicted on him by the problematic relationship he had with his mother. Avant-garde film theorist, P. Adams Sitney calls Broughton "the comedian of archetypes" and writes that Mother's Day is a "masterpiece of its genre...The film vibrates with witty imagery in a rapid succession of metaphors and visual surprises." In 1989 the American Film Institute awarded Broughton its "Maya Deren Award" for lifetime achievement.

Broughton considered himself first and foremost a poet. He was very much a part of the 1950s literary renaissance in San Francisco. In his notes to Mother's Day Broughton wrote,

The camera's challenge to the poet is that his images must be as definite as possible: the magic of his persons, landscapes, and actions occurring in an apparent reality. At this point something approaching choreography must enter in: the finding of meaningful gesture and movement.
James Broughton joined the Cosmic Baseball Association in 1986 as a firstbaseman for the old Visionville Beasts. He was deactivated after four fair seasons with the Beasts. In 1997 when the Beasts became the Bolex Poetics Broughton rejoined the team. He has since become the team's superstar starting firstbaseman. Last season he whacked 38 homeruns on his way to a .364 batting average. Broughton is the Poetics' starting firstbaseman again this season. His corporeal death will not affect his cosmic playing status.

James Broughton
Official Cosmic Record

Click Here for a RealAudio Interview with James Broughton recorded in 1997.

1999 Bolex Poetics Official Team Roster

May 16, 1999
Sylvia Plath Chronology, Part I

In writing about the writer Jack Kerouac, a biographer wrote: "Every personality is fragmented somewhere..." Locating the exact location of fracture in the poet Sylvia Plath's personality has occupied a fair amount of time by the literary-academic-psychoanalytic squads of the cultural elite. Despite her intense poetic style, it may be that Plath has never really broken out of this environment. As a woman, a wife, a mother, a poet, a human being, she has much to tell us about the fragmentation of the post-industrial soul.

Born in Massachusetts, always the home to some of our most reflective writers, she was educated at the well-respected Smith College in her home state. While in college she had an opportunity to work one summer as a guest student editor at Mademoiselle Magazine, a publication aimed indirectly at fragmenting the minds and souls of young pubescent women. Plath's experiences at the magazine and her attempted suicide at the end of that summer have found their way into her novel The Bell Jar, which was published in 1963, some ten years after the events themselves.

Also in 1963, Sylvia Plath succeeded in killing herself, at the age of 30, with cooking gas. It was an end to a tortured and fragmented physical existence that has been candidly transcribed in several posthumously published works such as Ariel and Winter Trees.

Plath was married to the English poet, Ted Hughes. The marriage was, as one would expect, problematic. When Plath killed herself, the marriage had already fallen apart; it had produced two children.

One commentator on the poems collected in Ariel has written: "In these last poems it is as if some deeper, powerful self has grabbed control; death is given a cruel physical allure and psychic pain becomes almost tactile."

Part I of the Sylvia Plath chronology covers the years 1932-1952. Part II is scheduled for completion in the Fall of 1999 and will cover the last tens years of the poet's life.

Plath is a pitcher for the 1999 Vestal Virgins

Click Here for the Plath Chronology Plate

May 11, 1999
Gilbert Millstein Passes On

Former Dharma Beat secondbaseman Gillbert Millstein passed away last Friday (May 7) in a New York City hospital. He was 83.

Millstein helped propel Beat Generation writer Jack Kerouac into the flame of fame by writing a very positive review of the novel On The Road. Writing in the September 5, 1957 edition of the New York Times Millstein called On The Road a "major novel."

There are sections of "On the Road" in which the writing is of a beauty almost breathtaking. There is a description of a cross-country automobile ride fully the equal for example, of the train ride told by Thomas Wolfe in "Of Time and the River." There are the details of a trip to Mexico (and an Interlude in a Mexican bordello) that are, by turns. awesome, tender and funny. And, finally, there is some Writing on jazz that has never been equaled in American fiction, either for insight, style or technical virtuosity. [see the complete article here]

Five years earlier, Millstein had been instrumental in getting John Clellon Holmes' essay "This Is the Beat Generation" published in the New York Times Sunday Magazine.

After working at the New York Times Millstein served, from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, as news editor of the "NBC Nightly News" television show.

Millstein began his cosmic baseball career in 1987 when he joined the Dharma Beats as a rookie secondbaseman. He showed great bat ability and registered a .301 average for the season. After a less successful second season in 1988 Millstein was deactivated and he returned to writing periodic book and art reviews. In 1995 he returned to the Beats with the expectation of being the regular Beat at the keystone position but on opening day after drawing a walk he announced his retirement.

Millstein was married three times and is survived by his current wife, Barbara Head and three sons, Ezra, of Manhattan; Joshua, of East Hampton, N.Y., and Jonathan, of Brooklyn; a stepdaughter, Tamar Losee of Queens; five grandchildren, and a brother, Ezra, who lives near Los Angeles.

Official Cosmic Record

Gilbert Millstein
1987 Beats 2b .301 399 120 9 44
1988 Beats 2b .233 480 112 11 53
1995 Beats 2b .000 0 0 0 0
Total for 3 Cosmic Seasons     .264 879 232 20 97

May 10, 1999

Some Cosmic Baseball Association history was made during this cosmic baseball game: The Littleton Magazines set a new CBA record of five doubleplays by one team in a regulation nine-inning game (former record was 4). Magazine shortstop, Dust, was involved in the middle of each doubleplay, establishing the new CBA record of most assisted doubleplays in a regulation nine-inning game (former record was 4). For the record here is the official scoring of the doubleplays:

  • Inning One: 6-4-3

  • Inning Two: 6-4-1

  • Inning Four: 5-4-3

  • Inning Six: 1-4-3;

  • Inning Eight: 5-4-3.

Click Here for the Game Report

May 9, 1999
Aurelia Plath- 1999 Cosmic Player Plate

It is not easy being the parent of a child who commits suicide. It's even harder when personal and intimate details about your relationship with your child are exposed for public consumption. Aurelia Plath had a very intense connection with her daughter Sylvia. Love-hate defines the relationship as it does for many.

Death, perhaps in any form, is harder on the living and Aurelia Plath's life transcribes the pain. Aurelia, it is a bitter-sweet mother's day greeting we offer.

Click Here for the Aurelia Plath Plate

Click Here for the 1999 Motherland Mothers Roster

May 3, 1999
Piet Cross- New Poetry

Selections from Piet Cross' new book of poetry Woe of the Wooer (published by Night Owl Press) are available here.

Cross, who lives in Rhode Island, has published more than fifteen books of poetry including Bodies of Knowledge and The Breeze Vectors. Selections from these earlier collections are available here.

Cross revealed in an interview done last summer for Rhode Island Arts magazine that "love" is the primary and proper subject matter of poetry. From Sappho to Ovid to Plath, Piet Cross continues along the romantic continuum. Woe of the Wooer suggests that the continuum is littered with emotional debris-- and this latest collection is an attempt to transcribe the detritus of passion.

May 1, 1999
Personal Cosmic Games

Concurrent with the 1999 Cosmic League Games, a variety of Personal Cosmic Games will be played over the next several months. Characters from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland are scheduled to play characters from L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz. Characters from the musical comedy The Music Man are slated to play a cosmic game with the characters from the musical drama Man of La Mancha.

A number of Personal Cosmic Game reports are currently available:

Members and guests of the Cosmic Baseball Association are invited to play a Personal Cosmic Game. For more information about Personal Cosmic Games click here.

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Published: May 24, 1999
Archived: June 1, 1999
Copyright © 1999 by the Cosmic Baseball Association