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July 16, 2008 / Sports / Brooklyn Cyclones / The Play’s the Thing

Nobody asked him, but…

for The Brooklyn Paper
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Every so often noted New York sportswriter Jimmy Cannon used to entitle his column “Nobody asked me, but…,” and Cannon would give a compilation of opinions on a variety of issues.

Borrowing his format, today’s column focuses on the Cyclones and Brooklyn baseball.

Nobody asked me, but the gates to Keyspan Park should be opened earlier than an hour before the game. Under the current schedule, fans entering Keyspan Park never see either team’s batting practice and can only catch the visitor’s infield practice. If the gates opened two hours before the game, fans could see all of the visitor’s batting practice and see both teams take infield. Perhaps once a week, let’s say on Saturdays, open the gates two-and-a-half hours before the game and fans could see the Cyclones hit.

Sure, the Cyclones would have a bit more overhead, but they would more than make up this expense with increased concession and souvenir sales.

Nobody asked me, but pick up a copy of the Cyclones’ Media Guide. You can buy it in the souvenir shop, and it’s outstanding. It covers not only all things Cyclone, but has information on the whole New York–Penn League. The guide was researched, compiled, and designed by Dave Campanaro, the Cyclones’ director of communications. Announcer Warner Fusselle and photographer George Napolitano also contributed.

Nobody asked me, but someone should announce the Mets’ score whether the parent club is winning or losing. Currently, the score is only given when the Mets are winning. This has become a source of amusement and denigration with Cyclones fans who feel patronized that they are only told scores in one direction. For instance, during a Cyclones’ game, fans may be told that the Mets are beating the Phils 3–0 in the third inning at Shea Stadium. When no further score is given in the next hour, fans know the Mets have lost the lead because nothing is announced. Fans feel that they are regarded as being too stupid to know what is going on.

Nobody asked me, but the stands behind the Cyclones’ dugout are getting quieter. Because of work commitments, Mark Lazarus, “the Mayor of Section 14,” has not been out to the ballpark as much as usual.

And Chuck Monsanto, formerly a ballpark regular, is serving with his Army Reserve unit in Afghanistan. Through the grapevine, we hear that once Chuck returns home, he can’t wait to get back to see the Cyclones play.

Nobody asked me, but the reduction in noise at Keyspan park seems to be continuing. Last year, the loud music played in between pitches was reduced, and fans appreciated some silence so they could talk to other fans. Brooklyn fans have an appreciation for baseball’s fine points and like to discuss the game as it occurs, and don’t need constant manufactured noise to enjoy an evening at the ballpark.

Nobody asked me, but the program situation at the ballpark needs some improvement. Fans entering by the main gate receive a free program, but the program doesn’t have the one-page insert that lists each team’s roster, with numbers and stats. Sometimes a fan can get the insert at the top of the stairs, but often he can’t. Some fans are learning that they can get the insert if they go to the information booth on the concourse, but most fans don’t know. Why isn’t it put into the programs that are given out at the main gate? Advertisers would be happier because more fans would take the programs if they received the insert sheet, and fans wouldn’t be kept in the dark by a program without its key component.

Channelling the Bard

Each week, The Bard of Brooklyn Baseball, Ed Shakespeare, evokes the spirit of his ancient ancestor with a bit of iambic pentameter. This week’s contribution is called, “Brooklyn’s Million Dollar Infield”:

“The Hundred Thousand Dollar Infield,” stays

The famous moniker of Connie Mack’s

McInnis, Collins, Barry, Baker days.

A dollar bought a lot when going back.

But Brooklyn’s infield is a rich quartet,

Not Hodges, Jackie, Pee Wee, Billy Cox.

But rather men of means, each bonus Met

Could pool his funds for millions — lotsa lox.

Despite inflation, money’s not given free,

There’s skill out there. At first, I like Ike —

Good genes from Ron, plus power you will see.

On second, Satin smooth. What’s not to like?

At short, a maven in Havens. Third is Lutz

He hits, he fields. No way that he’s a klutz!

Updated 5:56 pm, July 17, 2008
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