Thursday, January 27, 2011
John Lowenstein and the need for baseball on YouTube
Today is John Lowenstein's birthday and I was going to do a little tribute to a classic late 1970s player with great hair and ubiquitous in my packs of Topps cards.
He had the classic 1970s stache, the hair that poured out of his head and wore not only the bright orange Orioles uniforms from the great 1979 World Series but the ugly red unis worn by the mid 1970s Indians.
He was a colorful character who didn't want a fan club but an apathy club while with Cleveland. A write up of that club (and a lot of elements of Lowenstein's cool career) can be read at Urban Shocker's blog.
He was a fan favorite in Baltimore where he was a part time player but managed to come up big in two different post seasons.
One of his most beloved moments as an Oriole was in 1980 when he was hit in the neck by a ball thrown by an infielder. The deflection allowed the winning run the score but Lowenstein was on the ground. As he was being carried out on a stretcher, he sat up abruptly and pumped his fists to the screaming fans.
But his single greatest moment happened in Game 1 of the 1979 ALCS. The game was a tense battle between the favored Orioles and the upstart Angels. Both teams threw a future Hall of Famer (Jim Palmer for the Birds, Nolan Ryan for the Halos) and it became an extra innings battle of the bullpens.
In the 10th with a runner on and two outs, Angels reliever John Montague walked Al Bumbry to face Lowenstein. Lowenstein then hit an 0-2 pitch over the wall for a walk off homer. Memorial Stadium went bananas. So did Lowenstein as the Orioles were on their way to winning the pennant.
Seeing it is Lowenstein's birthday, I thought it would be cool to post that clip on a blog page.
You know, embed it here on the blog, have a few hundred people see it and maybe have Oriole fans pass it around.
I can't find the clip on line. And I LOOKED!
Why is that the case?
There are so many wonderful clips and memories about baseball that are sitting gathering dust in a vault. And they should be passed around and made available for fans to share their memories and have new fans get caught up in their teams history.
Imagine a young Oriole fan who has never seen a good team in Camden Yards watching a clip of the Orioles jumping up and down after a walk off homer by a guy with Juan Epstein's hair and a porn stache!
I made a joke on MY YouTube video about the Giants about how baseball needs to be on the Internets. And in a previous post I brought up how Susan Boyle, the Chocolate Rain guy and all of the other internet sensations have probably been seen by more people than most of the best plays in baseball.
Baseball should be the pioneers of making their clips available to be seen by new generations. And shared by fans who want to celebrate not only the major events, but fan favorite moments.
Why isn't the Lowenstein home run available for fans to see?
What good does it do sitting in a vault? What does it cost to upload a video?
My video cost exactly $0.00 to put on line. And a few thousand people saw it so far.
I think a lot more people who love the Orioles would be thrilled watching a Lowenstein homer this morning.
Maybe some people haven't seen it for a while and it gets them (and brace yourself for impact) thinking positive thoughts about baseball in the off season!!!
I shouldn't be the one saying this out loud!
Get on it, baseball! Start posting those clips.
And as I said before, you can stick an ad for Tide or Holiday Inn Express in front of it to make a few bucks.
Lowenstein has a birthday next year.
I want to post that clip.
And since baseball doesn't have a YouTube page, I'll just post MY video again and get a few extra hits.