Babe Ruth strikes out, walks!
My heart leaped when saw the news that the Associated Press is releasing one million minutes of video, via YouTube:
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The AP partnered with British Movietone, an organization with one of the world’s largest newsreel collections, to create the archive. The hope is that it will serve as a "video encyclopedia" for the public, according to the statement. The archive features more than 550,000 videos dating back to 1895.
Naturally, I went to the YouTube channel and expected to find stirring footage of Cap Anson in blackface and Shoeless Joe Jackson confessing to that newsboy in Chicago and all the rest of those things we’ve only read about.
Well, I haven’t found anything quite that interesting yet. So far, the best film I’ve seen are the highlights of Game 2 of the 1932 World Series, including the tidbit that Cubs stalwart Riggs Stephenson was nicknamed "Battleship" … by the corny announcer doing the voice-over anyway. Hey, seeing Babe Ruth bat a couple of times is pretty cool, too. Even if he doesn’t actually make any contact…
Another clip of note: The Dodgers celebrating in the locker room after finishing off the Yankees in the ’63 World Series. There are short interviews with Sandy Koufax and Walter Alston, but what I really enjoyed was the impromptu M-I-C-K-E-Y serenade of Moose Skowron at the end…
That’s the sort of detail you’ll never glean from Baseball-Reference.com, and is a testament to the ever-lasting value of primary source material. This’ll go in the next biographical article somebody writes about Skowron. Or should, anyway.
And this is really just the beginning. I merely searched for BASEBALL, but something more specific like WORLD SERIES will get you lots of long-lost (or -ignored) goodies.
I, for one, welcome our new video masters.