For Memorial Day this year, I decided to finally learn more about my grandfather, and accidentally discovered an entire generation of would-be pro baseball players who sacrificed their shot at the big leagues to fight for America. Harry Alvin would have been 93 this year and all of his close family and everybody he mentioned serving or playing ball with has died. Before he went to Bethlehem Central High School in Delmar, N.Y., and lettered in baseball, football, basketball, bowling, golf and track, Grandpa played little league ball.
The Mets (19-26) open a three-game series against the Pirates (22-26) on Friday night at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. The Mets lost two of three games to the Padres earlier this week at Citi Field. The Mets are 3-7 over their last 10 games. ... They are fifth in the majors with 124 runs scored in May. ... The Mets are second in the majors with 43 runs scored in the first inning this season. Who is starting tonight for the Mets? Right-hander Jacob deGrom, (3.56 ERA/3.23 FIP, 1.31 WHIP), who had his start on Thursday skipped due to the threat of inclement weather, will be on the hill on Friday. deGrom tossed seven scoreless innings while allowing four hits, walking three, and striking out nine last
The clubhouse was Gift Ngoepe's home, an equipment storeroom his bedroom. The field, where the beginnings of his road to baseball history started, was his backyard. Never mind that Ngoepe's field of dreams was a bit patchy. Never mind that there was no home run fence. And never mind that the Randburg Mets' park is hidden away on the northern outskirts of Johannesburg, South Africa, where baseball is as obscure a sport as you could imagine. "I rolled out of bed and was on first base," said Ngoepe, now an infielder with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Ngoepe made history last month when he ran out for Pittsburgh against the Chicago Cubs, the first African to play Major League Baseball. To do it, he turned