Should you Fear the Beard? The Sandlot is in Your Carleton Place Backyard!

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World Series Parade and Sam Bat Photos by Linda Seccaspina

There is no secret after following baseball in the bay area for years I am a huge San Francisco Giants fan. My favourite player of all time is– wait– are you ready?  The now unemployed former Giants and LA Dodgers pitcher Brian Wilson. I still follow his weekly antics because I relate to his craziness, and even have a framed World Series picture and a Brian Wilson bobblehead.

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Photos Linda Seccaspina World Series Parade San Francisco 2010

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It’s pitcher Brian Wilson.. I got his photo.. I love this guy

 

I have covered a World Series parade, and even as a Canadian gal, can say there is nothing like rabid baseball fans. Did you know During World War II, the U.S. military designed a grenade to be the size and weight of a baseball, since “any young American man should be able to properly throw it.” Or, did you know bank robber John Dillinger was once a professional second baseman, although he never made it to the major leagues?

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Did you know every single MLB baseball is rubbed in Lena Blackburne Baseball Rubbing Mud, a unique “very fine” mud only found in a secret location near Palmyra, New Jersey. Okay, the secret is out, the mud is taken from the Rancocas Creek  in Willingboro N.J. Many major league baseball players, including Moises Alou, Jorge Posada, and Kerry Wood, have admitted that they pee on their own hands during baseball season to “toughen” their grip. Pitcher Dock Ellis says he threw his June 12, 1970, no-hitter while under the influence of LSD.

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In 1999, New York Mets manager Bobby Valentine was ejected from the game. In the clubhouse, he put on regular clothes and a fake mustache and returned to the dugout. The commissioner’s office fined him $5,000 for returning after an ejection.

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So what does this have to do with Carleton Place? A lot! Tucked away on Industrial Avenue, in Carleton Place lies Sam Bat, The Original Maple Bat Corporation. Have you heard the crack from a baseball bat from your house?

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Did you know the president is a woman? If you read my story The Symphony of the Louisville Slugger and Sam Bat you know most of this. A month ago I was lucky able to attend their open house–and I can tell you I enjoyed every single second of it.

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Walking into Sam Bat made me miss the Bay area and the constant drone of the television during baseball season. It made me miss sitting in the stands at a Giants game, and trying to figure out baseball– although I was super impressed with the Pablo Sandoval Panda hats.

We have something very important in Carleton Place. Even if you never watched a baseball game you have to be proud of Sam Bat, Arlene Anderson, and the people that work there. They have given Carleton Place an International presence!

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I guess I will never understand the slow pace of the game, but today, as I write this tears are rolling down my face. Is there ever really crying in baseball? Maybe Tom Hanks was wrong when he uttered the famous movie line. But, It does exist–we’re all human. When you’ve got feelings, you cry.

There’s clearly emotion in baseball and I have seen it first hand. Behind every nameplate, behind every uniform, there’s a person, a life, and likely a family. The key to winning baseball games is pitching, fundamentals, and three run homers–
and the people that produce the bats at Sam Bat in Carleton Place.

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SHOP LOCAL FOR The Holidays- You can visit their gift store or shop online

The Sandlot is 20 years old, and here’s what the cast looks like today:

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About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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