Two baseball people are failing to get the recognition they would have gotten a hundred years ago.
Rockford, Ill., is boasting that Danica Patrick, of racing fame, is a native of that city. What happened to Albert Goodwill Spalding? He hailed from that city, too, and in 1911 he published his landmark book, America's National Game. Everyone connected with baseball knew of his multifaceted career as professional player, club owner, league eminence, and sporting goods magnate. How fleeting is fame!
In the case of another baseball man, Andrew Freedman, his name is being touted by The New York Times, but not in connection with baseball. The Times calls him a "philanthropist," which he was, but those of us who know baseball history realize that he is the same Andrew Freedman who in 1895 became the principal owner of the New York Giants of the National League, the same man who was eventually forced out because the other club owners didn't like his management style.
Now The Times is writing to inform us that his gorgeous house on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx is being made into a luxury hotel, "The Andrew Freedman Home." Too bad the developers didn't make it into a hostelry redone with baseball decor. It might have attracted well-to-do fans attending games at the new Yankee Stadium. They missed a chance to create the ultimate "man cave."