The Daily Dose/Saturday, August 24, 2019

The Daily Dose/August 24, 2019
By Gaylon Kent
America’s Funniest Guy

Leading Off
Notes from around the human experience…

HIDE THE WOMEN AND CHILDREN: Baseballs are being hit out of major league stadiums at a record pace this year. Teams are establishing records for home runs hit and given up and it’s not even Labor Day yet. With so many baseballs being hit in the air we found ourselves wondering if outfielders are making more putouts this year than in past years.

Fabulous: Few enjoy research as we do here at The Daily Dose, so when we found ourselves still wondering about this vital stat the following day, we decided to find out.

Dry, Technical Matter: There are, of course, other ways for an outfielder to make a putout than to catch a fly ball. He could, for example, tag a runner out in the infield or be credited with a putout on spectator’s interference. Such instances are statistically insignificant and, for the purposes of today’s research, are ignored.

I’ll Take Dry, Technical Matter For $500, Alex: It wasn’t as hard as we thought. At first, we thought we might be obliged to actually add up the number of putouts outfielders had amassed – work we were prepared to do – but some research into the research required showed the numbers we wanted – like a lot of things in life – were there for the taking; all we had to do was show the diligence to find them.

We have a variety of sources we use for looking up stuff and we are not going to tell you what they are, but at one site all we had to do was click on a season, click on Fielding, then Outfield and BOOM!, there were the outfield fielding stats for each team for that season, with totals conveniently added up at the bottom. From there it was a simple matter to divide the total putouts by the number of games played for the average number of outfield putouts per game.

God Bless All Of You: While thrilled with this development, we weren’t prepared to research every goddamned season since 1876, so we figured the totals for 2019 and the 14 other seasons that ended in a 9.

Fly In The Ointment: The results weren’t as exciting as we thought they might be.  Actually, they were the opposite of what we suspected might be the case. We expected the number of outfield assists per game to be high, but so far in 2019 major league outfielders are averaging fewer putouts per game (12.1) than they were in 2009 (13.1), a figure that was unchanged from 1999.

FunFact: In fact, 2019 is the fourth-lowest of the years we sampled and the lowest since 1969 (11.1).

Now You Know: The year with the highest average of outfield assists per game was 1949 (14.3) and the lowest was the first year surveyed, 1879 (10.0)

Today At The Site
The Diary of a Nobody
Sparrow enjoys a rare Friday off. Today’s Diary. 

With no Veteran Service Office today (I report for annual training in the big city next week and that will take care of most of my hours for these two weeks) my goal today was to do as little as possible, a goal that was neither arduous nor unsuccessful.

It’s Sparrow, an average man passing an average life.

More drivel!
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On This Date
2006 – Pluto is dropped from the roster of planets in the Solar System by the International Astronomical Union. It is now classified as a dwarf planet, leaving the Solar System with eight planets. Some very smart people have very dull arguments about this, and the technical reasons for this are, of course, beyond both the scope of this feature and our comprehension. In laymen’s terms, though, Pluto was done in by the fact it is not gravitationally dominant in its area, as both Pluto and one of its moons, Charon, rotate around another point, called a barycenter in the trade.

1951 – Five days after sending a midget to the plate in a game, St Louis Browns owner Bill Veeck, trying to liven up an otherwise meaningless game against the equally lousy Philadelphia A’s, lets fans manage the team. Veeck gave 1,000 fans signs that said ‘yes’ and ‘no’ on them and, after letting them decide the starting lineup, let them run the game. They stuck with starting pitcher Ned Garver, who gave up three runs in the third, and he rewarded them with a complete game, won by the Browns 5-3.

In 1968 – The Rascals are at #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 for the second of five consecutive weeks with People Got to Be Free. The song also went to #1 in Canada, peaked at #14 on Billboard’s soul chart and was Billboard’s fifth-biggest song of the year. It was the third and final #1 song for the group, who had also hit the top with Good Lovin’ (1966) and Groovin’  (1967), both as the Young Rascals.

…America was not in a position to make demands, only to beg most humbly…Franklin was not subservient to our allies…he was pliable, humble…exceedingly polite…but absolutely unyielding.
David Schoenbrun
Triumph in Paris: The Exploits of Benjamin Franklin

Answer To The Last Trivia Question
Olivia Newton-John is the granddaughter of Max Born, who earned the 1954 Nobel Prize in Physics. 

Today’s Stumper
What were the other songs that spent at least five weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1968? – Answer next time!

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