This Week in Boomer History: Jackson State … ‘Seinfeld’ Finale … Wallace Shot

Notable events from our shared experience President Richard Nixon nominates Anna Mae Hays (left) and Elizabeth P. Hoisington (right, with Mamie Eisenhower) the first female U.S. Army generals on May 15, 1970. On May 17, 2004, the first legal same-sex marriage in the United States takes place when Tanya McCloskey, 52, and Marcia Kadish, 56, say “I do” at City Hall in Cambridge, Mass. By day’s end, scores of other same-sex couples tie the knot. >> Sign up for the AARP Leisure …

Ralph Kiner: The Slugger Who Became a Hit Behind the Mic

As a left fielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians in the 1940s and 1950s, Ralph Kiner was one of baseball’s greatest power hitters. Kiner, who died on Feb. 6 at age 91 in Rancho Mirage, Calif., led the National League in home runs seven straight times, and once clouted 54 of them in a season, more than even Willie Mays or Hank Aaron ever did. Kiner had another gift. In his second career as a TV announcer …

Take Him Out to the Ball Game

Joe Price had just rolled back into town, looking weary but still possessing the excitable manner of a guy who might burst into song at any moment. He had just completed half a year on the road visiting 104 minor league baseball parks in 40 states, where he had sung America’s national anthem to start their games. It was a labor of love and academic duty. Price, who is 64, is a professor of religious studies at L.A.’s Whittier University, …

Lou Brissie: Baseball’s Wounded Warrior

During World War II, major league baseball stars who were called up to serve in the military often got relatively cushy assignments, working as physical education trainers or playing in exhibition games to entertain their fellow troops. But not pitcher Lou Brissie, at the time a promising prospect coveted by the Philadelphia Athletics’ Connie Mack. After leaving South Carolina’s Presbyterian College to enlist in the Army, the 20-year-old corporal nearly lost his life on an Italian battlefield in 1944, when a …

Baseball Brings People (and Places) Together

I am a lifelong baseball fan. I grew up going with my dad to Yankees Stadium and watching Whitey Ford throw fastballs. Decades later, when the Montreal Expos brought baseball back to Washington, D.C., and became the Nationals, I threw my support behind them. And even though my Nats didn’t live up to the media hype of this season, I’ll be with them through thick and thin. Over the past 20 years, cities across the country have been developing baseball …

All-Star Game Will Have Audience of One on Rooftop in Cuba

Major League Baseball’s young pitching phenom José Fernández, the sole Miami Marlin on tonight’s All-Star Game roster, is confident he’ll get the ball. “I talked to the pitching coach and most likely I’m pitching,” the rookie told the Miami Herald. “I don’t know what inning. But I’m good to go.” [Editor’s note: That inning was the sixth, and Fernández mowed down the heart of the American League lineup 1-2-3] That’s going to make one fan very happy. Olga Fernández, 68, …