Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Mendoza Line

I promised to relate what exactly the Mendoza line is. You could look it up on Wikipedia, but everyone knows how accurate that is.
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Here's the story: Mario Mendoza was a slick fielding, light hitting SS/IF who played in the mid-70's to the early 1980's. His career BA was .215.
Back in that time period, newspapers would print a top 10 batting list nearly every day, but the Sunday newspaper used to print an extended list of MLB averages. Every batter with the minimum qualifying average would be listed, in order of his average. Usually, Mendoza would be at or near the bottom of the list. Future HOF'er George Brett was struggling early one season, and he stated, according to various baseball sources, "The first thing I look for in the Sunday papers is who is below the Mendoza line." Some have attributed it to Tom Paciorek and/or Bruce Bochte, but considering Brett's place in baseball history, he gets all the credit. It is almost like Yogi Berra, who is often credited for things just because of who he is. That quote took on a life of its own, and it became a standard joke for anyone struggling in almost any situation. And in baseball, it is generally recognized that anyone below .200 is below the Mendoza line.

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"I didn't really say everything I said."



Go Yankees

2 comments:

Babchi said...

Awww, we love Yogi...thanks for the pic.

Leighanna said...

You write very well.

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Downtown, New Jersey, United States
Yankees fan. But the team hasn't been the same since Yogi retired. TV watching expert. Manly man.