The Yankees and Clutch Hitting 10-11-12

I have been a Yankee fan for more than 60 years and I have the baseball cards to prove it. Over the years the Yankees have had some great clutch hitters and a plethora of mid season pick ups and one years signees that have produced in the clutch.

Tommy Henrich was known as “Old Reliable” and others like Johnny Lindell, Enos Slaughter, the great Johnny Mize, Hank Bauer, Hector Lopez, and Johnny Blanchard were known for their timely hitting. There have been scores of others who have hit key and memorable homers like Bucky Dent, Jim Leyritz , Chris Chambliss, Thurmun Munson, Hidecki Matsui, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez, Bernie Williams and Jorge Posoda. Great hitters like; Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, Jeter and Cano seem to produce key game winning hits so often that many of those specific accomplishments are lost in the midst of a lifetime of exceptional play. Mantle’s game-winning, walk-off homer against Barney Schultz in the 1964 World Series was fabulous. But, the fact that the Yankees lost game seven to the Cards relegated that home run to just another great Mantle blast.

Up until the era of the playoffs, players had rare opportunities to shine in the few playoffs that were created only by statistical ties. The great, and most heralded performance, was that of Bobby Thomson in the 3rd game of the 1951 playoff series against the Dodgers. With his famous “Shot Heard ‘Round the World,” he became legendary.

Most players had few opportunities to shine on the national stage until the elongated post season arrived in the 1970’s. With the Yankees, who have dominated much of baseball history from 1921 through today, they participated in few real pennant races and therefore memorable walk off hits or home runs like Bucky Dent’s were few and far between.

Over the years, I have been watching an unlimited amount of Yankee games every year, and in that time I have been able to discern who I can expect to deliver a “clutch” hit. Now “a one” time “clutch” hit or even a great playoff series isn’t indicative of anything more then a lucky event, or just a hot series. Brian Doyle, Billy Martin, Aaron Boone, Bucky Dent and scores of others have had a key hit or a great series. That doesn’t make them a great player or a “clutch” hitter. Bobby Richardson was the hitting star of the 1960 World Series, but because the Pirates won in dramatic fashion, in game seven, with Bill Mazeroski’s walk off homer, Richardson’s incredible performance was more or less forgotten. Aside from that World Series, Richardson never had a similar week of production in his whole excellent career.

In my time, I was able to witness countless “key” hits and great at bats by people like Yogi Berra, Roy White, Elston Howard, Hank Bauer, Hector Lopez, Lou Piniella, Paul O’Neill, Hidecki Matsui, Don Mattingly and Derek Jeter. Those players aside from their yearly and lifetime numbers, seemed to get their “bat on the ball” when it counted. I am reminded of how well Keith Hernandez and Don Clendenon carried the Mets in two different seasons, by getting key hits after the 7th inning, with men on bases. Some players make almost every at bat count and sometimes someone with 85 RBIs is more productive then the player with 110.

As to Alex Rodriguez, who became the focus of last night’s remarkable victory authored by Raul Ibanez, the question remains; is he through? In all the years I have been watching baseball I have never seen a player with his career numbers, get so many meaningless hits. It seems to me that he homers when the Yankees are either way behind of way ahead. He certainly is the type of player who’s good enough to get a hit now and again, but he has seen his steroid-enhanced skills deteriorate in the same way as others who had preceded him. Look what happened to McGwire, Sosa, Giambi, Pudge Rodriguez and many others when their bodies were weaned off drugs. They lost power and that affected their timing. Too bad they have him signed for five more years. In the past, he would have been cut already. Now its hard to argue with 650 homers and oodles of RBIs, but with regards to the old cliché, “What have you done for me today.” When was the last time a Hall of Famer went without a homerun, or even an RBI, in 65 or so at bats?

This year’s Yankee team featured absolutely terrible hitting with men on bases. This Yankee futility has been well-chronicled. Their lack of comeback rallies after the 7th inning, for a team that led the league in victories, was astounding. They hit a team record 245 home runs, but their individual production was mediocre. Robinson Cano, their best hitter, had his statistics decline from last year. He went through weeks like he was sleep- walking. Jeter was great, what else is new?

But high paid talent like Teixeira and Granderson saw their production drop off from their 2011 numbers. Rodriguez and Martin had their second successive year of mediocre production and Swisher basically matched last year’s statistics. The following are the percentage of strike outs during the past season, per at bat, for Granderson (32%), Rodriguez (25), Swisher (21), Martin (22), Teixeira (18) and Jeter (13%). Each player but Jeter and Teixeira increased their strike outs dramatically.

The team, along with the great acquisition of Ichiro, was carried by role players who happened to have some hot stretches. Ibanez, Chavez and others, including even Jones were quite heroic at some time during the season. The regulars did not win the 2012 Division.

The bottom line is that the team is producing less, not hitting with men on base, relying on home runs, and is an aging team, which depended on its role players. The future status of Swisher is in doubt. Jeter, Rodriguez, Ichiro, Ibanez, Chavez, Pettitte, Rivera, and Kuroda are between 35 and 40 years old, and can the Yanks really depend on Sabbathia, Teixeira and Martin to continue to produce? So far I see no great future from anyone but Cano.

WVOX Celebrates Saint Patrick’s Day at Dudley’s Parkview And Honors Judge Sam Fredman and Doug Fleming March 16, 2012

The unequaled impresario of Westchester radio, Bill O’Shaugnessy, hosted the 53rd annual Saint Patrick’s corned beef and cabbage hoedown at Dudley’s, which is located at the New Rochelle Marina, across from Hudson Park and at the end of New Rochelle’s Shore Road. It was held a day earlier, because the real “the wearing of the green,” falls on the weekend.

The honored guests were Judge Fredman who served the City of White Plains and the State of New York for more than 50 years and Douglas Fleming, the Headmaster of Thornton Donavan. They are two long-time supporters of WVOX, the community radio station and Judge Fredman has been the co-host of the popular show, “The Judge and the Rabbi”. His radio partner, Rabbi Emeritus Amiel Wohl of New Rochelle’s Temple Israel, was at Dudley’s to join the celebration.

Even though the weather was not up to recent early spring standards, Dudley’s had a great crowd. The County Executive Rob Astorino, former long-time Assemblyman Ron Tocci, Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, super lawyer Murray Richman, and Phil Reisman, the ace Journal News columnist, joined scores of other guests.

It was great to see Judge Fredman and the famed, criminal defense lawyer, Murray Richman shake hands. It was like two giants of the legal community meeting on neutral ground. Judge Fredman and I go back 43 years to intraparty squablles within the White Plains Democratic Party. When Linda and I moved to White Plains, the GOP basically controlled every elected position and city board. Forty years later the Republican Party was financially and electorally broke and the Democrats controlled the City. A lot of credit must be given to Judge Fredman and other Democrats who fought the good fight against overwhelming odds in the 1950’s.

As usual Bill, held court with his WVOX mike and was assisted ably by Judy Fremont, Don Stevens, morning host Bob Marrone, David and Matt O’Shaughnessy and other WVOX staff helpers. Meanwhile “Erin Go Bragh” and everyone is Irish on Saint Patrick’s Day.

The Beginning and the End 3-4-13

I was one of the few, if any one, to be at that strange final game (Section I Basketball game, where MV lost at the buzzer) in 1961 and the one yesterday. I am sure there were some other Mount Vernon people who may have seen both, but I know of no one. Other then Mike Ansbro, Alan Rosenberg and Jim Finch, who I have seen at some of the games a few years ago, my generation has been long missing from not only Mount Vernon basketball, but Mount Vernon in general. It is no one’s fault, just a symptom of our time, the end of formerly enduring communities and the restless nature of Americans. Even twenty years ago, no one from our time was ever around.

Mount Vernon, like many other “bagel” suburbs, has gone through many “ups and downs” over the years. In 1945, my mother, who was a very sophisticated New Yorker, was born and bred in Manhattan, and wanted to move to Westchester. Her great friend, from their Bohemian days in Greenwich Village and who had subsequently moved to Scarsdale, advised her not to move to Mount Vernon, because it was on the decline. My parents had actually put a down payment on a very nice house off Fenimore Road in Scarsdale.

But, as things happen, my father was advised by his lawyer, Sam Miller, a partner of Scribner, Miller, where Tom Dewy had worked as a newly minted lawyer, that there was a wonderful house at the end of Prospect Avenue. It was a stone’s throw from his beautiful Tudor, “Fair Oaks,” which was located on Lorraine Avenue, right near the New Haven RR Station. (A few years late in 1948, Sam Miller wanted to sell that terrific house to my father. He told my father he was promised a job as an Assistant AG in the Justice Department when Tom Dewey was elected. My father warned him to keep his day job!)

So my father paid $41,000 for a big, old, red brick house, with six bedrooms, an outdoor porch and an upstairs billiard room. There was plenty of room for a live-in cook and housekeeper. Unfortunately, he made that decision without my mother, who from that time onward, regretted living in Mount Vernon. Personally, I loved Mount Vernon, my father could have cared less and my sister despised the city, had no real friends after Junior High School, and ran away forever. (She lives with her very rich husband in a townhouse in Belgravia, London, a large home on Nantucket Island, and has never looked back. She even went from adoring FDR to becoming a Republican!) My mother resigned herself to her fate, made many friends, was involved in UJA and AJ Congress politics, worked, on and off, in Manhattan and Westchester, painted and played world level bridge.

As it happened, I was one of the last of my “class” and background to hang around Mount Vernon. Even though we moved in 1965, I was still anchored to the area because of the “Draft,” and my decision to apply for the US Air Force’s Officer Candidate School. Because of my draft status, I couldn’t get a real job and I therefore worked as a permanent substitute at MVHS until my Air Force OCS class opened. During that period of time, I met my future wife, Linda Rosen, who was student teaching at MVHS. She had graduated Barnard College, and was finishing her Masters in Education at Columbia Teacher’s College.

To make a long story shorter, after I was married, I still kept my “hand-in” with regards to Mount Vernon sports. Even though I was running a business in Manhattan, keeping active in local White Plains politics, taking care of a house and home, by the time my second child came along, my activities, regarding Mount Vernon had peaked and started to decline severely.

By the late 1970s, most of what we knew about Mount Vernon had changed. The fight over integration in the schools, busing, the draft problems emanating from the demands of the Vietnam War, the resulting drug trafficking, the constant bomb scares at the high school and the “white flight” started to take its toll. Most of the teachers left the school system and many of the families, who could afford to move, got out.

As the years went on, I still paid attention to my home town. Some of the parents of my friends still lived there and I followed the teams and their progress. In 1993, with the death of my classmate and friend Jon Breen, I started the Jon Breen Fund and began a long relationship with MVHS. Recently, I also spent more than a year advising the City on issues regarding zoning, alternate energy, jobs and industrial development. All that effort came to naught. The leadership in Mount Vernon is, and has been, a total disaster for decades. Aside from the long decline of 4th Avenue as a shopping area, the failure of its schools, the crime, the mess at Memorial Field, the deterioration of the library and the complete erosion of its infrastructure, the worst aspect of the city is the incompetent, narrow and criminal nature of its government. The conflicts of interest, the payoffs, the investigations, the decline in its police force and the poor services are rife. It seems to have no end. Every decade or so, the City finds a new level to descend to.

Mount Vernon’s last gasp seems to have been its basketball program. Was this excruciating loss just a “bump” in the road, or a foreshadowing of the future? Bob Cimmino has been the heart and soul of this program and he has overcome an unlimited amount of obstacles. It will be interesting to see if their futures continue to be intertwined. I wouldn’t be shocked, if an opportunity came along that looked appealing, he would take it.

My guess is that when our generation disappears, the nostalgia about Mount Vernon as a wonderful place to grow up will fade quickly and the reality of the mean streets will take over completely. The new memories will be much different then ours, and as the poet has said, “Nothing lasts forever.”

“HYDE PARK ON THE HUDSON”- a Parody at Best! 12-20-12

The story is ludicrous – any reading of Geoffrey Ward’s book, “Closest Companion,” which tells their story through her letters and diaries, indicates no intimate relationship. I have been writing and lecturing on FDR for decades and I have not seen the film. From reading countless reviews and seeing outtakes I have no doubt that this film is more of a parody and its conclusions should not be taken with any seriousness. FDR was a powerful personality that attracted women admirers for decades. He was also an incredibly private individual who kept his inner thoughts to very few people. These few people did not keep notes, few wrote any memoirs (Louis Howe, Missy LeHand, Harry Hopkins and others wrote nothing) and the ones that did, knew little of his relationships and inner thoughts. That era was fraught with romanticism and life was quite fragile, relationships were close, warm and very often not intimate in the least. The idea that anyone could hear, report or remember even fragments of private conversations they were not part of is specious.

Historians and fiction writers make conclusions that are quite often totally unsupported by the facts. FDR kept no diary, his letters were not ones of intimacy and there are volumes of them to peruse. Margaret “Daisy” Suckley liked to listen, had no romantic relationships in her long life, and never bothered FDR with details, demands or pressure. He was able to relax with her and he often would give her insights and updates on some of the events that had unfolded or were about to happen. She, like the president, was quite discreet. Even her siblings didn’t even know that she knew the president.

He was very careful about what he wrote and he almost never revealed any clue of his intentions. I have over 400 books on FDR, thousands of articles, artifacts and collectibles and have devoted 27 radio broadcasts over six years on FDR, the New Deal, Eleanor Roosevelt and related subjects.

More Fall Out From the November Election! 12-7-2012

When South Carolina senator Jim DeMint made the stunning announcement that he would resign from Congress to lead conservative think tank The Heritage Foundation, it represented a major blow to the beleaguered Tea Party movement. Not long ago the dominant force in the Republican Party, the group now struggles both in the polls and at the ballot box. DeMint support every far out idea that the Tea Party wing of the GOP could fulminate. He has been a “birther” and a flat-earth thinker for years. He denies Darwin, he supports “Creationism” and has been at the forefront of anti-worker, anti-women and anti- minority rights. He’s the poster child for State’s Rights and Jim Crow.

But DeMint’s departure may be the least of the right wing’s problems. Here are five more signs that the Tea Party’s time may be up: The 2012 elections were tough on the Tea Party’s favorite congressmen. Although creative gerrymandering protected the GOP’s congressional majority, voters sent Allen West, Joe Walsh, and several other high-profile Tea Partiers packing on November 6th. Michelle Bachmann barely escaped being defeated and misogynist GOP candidates like Akins and Mourdock were soundly defeated.

Those Tea Partiers who survived the election may not like the Congress they return to. House Speaker John Boehner is consolidating his power by removing Tea Party favorites David Schweikert (R-AZ), Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) and Justin Amash (R-MI) from their plum committee assignments — and has also served notice that other Reps. who aren’t “team players” could suffer a similar fate. The GOP must make up its mind whether it wants to be a 19th Century party dominated by an anti-science, anti-intellectual, anti-women, anti-education, anti-minority block of intolerant troglodytes. Can the GOP sustain itself, while active members of its right-wing bloc advocate: secession, impeachment of the president, bigotry, xenophobia and gun worship?

FreedomWorks — one of the largest and most influential Tea Party groups in the country — faces an uncertain future after its chairman, former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, left the group due to a bitter dispute with its president, Matt Kibbe. When will the Tea Party understand that its far out issues are not really supported by the power brokers who fund GOP-leaning Super PACS. The billionaires support none of their social issues, but only want Congressional leverage for deregulation and low or no taxes. Armey will be fine — he is reportedly receiving an $8 million golden parachute on his way out — but after FreedomWorks’ highly unsuccessful 2012 results, the same can’t be said with certainty about the Tea Party PAC.

Without active promotion from Fox News, the Tea Party would literally not exist. After Fox and the rest of the right-wing media epically blew their electoral predictions, however, some Republicans — such as Bruce Bartlett and David Frum — have turned against the “conservative entertainment complex.”
As Bartlett wrote, “Living in the Fox News cocoon, most Republicans had no clue that they were losing [in 2012] or that their ideas were both stupid and politically unpopular.” If more Republicans figure out that they’ve been lied to, then the Tea Party will be dead in the water (maybe that’s why Fox banished failed pundits Dick Morris and Karl Rove).

The only factor more vital to the Tea Party’s success than Fox News is the financial backing of Charles and David Koch — and the billionaire brothers may be throttling back from the Tea Party movement. In an interview with Forbes, Charles Koch claimed that the brothers will spend the next year fighting against corporate welfare (hardly an issue that animates the Republican Party).

The Kochs have no intention of giving up the fight long term — David Koch told Forbes that “We’re going to fight the battle as long as we breathe” — but that may actually be a bad thing for the health of the Tea Party movement. After all, Koch-backed candidates failed miserably in the 2012 elections.
Remarkably, the Tea Party Republicans have now alienated their party’s most important constituency — the upper echelon of the business community. It is a profound irony that the issue raising friction between these politicians and their erstwhile backers is a fanatical partisan determination to defend the tax benefits enjoyed by those same wealthy executives.

The president’s opponents are backing themselves into a corner where even their own old friends cannot defend them. Meanwhile Obama may finally have learned that if he stands firm and refuses to negotiate with himself, he can win over public opinion and break the partisan obstructionism.

FDR and Yalta- An Answer! 10-3-2012

What a simplistic and sophomoric view of the reality in Europe and Yalta. The author should read Frank Costiglioli’s excellent book, “FDR’s Lost Alliances.” Truman made many mistakes, but learned the job quickly. Unfortunately, FDR’s deteriorating health and sudden death, created the vacuum that allowed the Cold War to begin. Harriman, a Cold Warrior from the start, advised Truman poorly about how to deal with the Russians, and later regretted his decision. But, in truth, it was only FDR who could have handled the post-war dilemma regarding peace or Cold War. As to Yalta, FDR comported himself quite well, and all the revisionist right-wing fiction can’t change the facts.

We could not have won the war without Stalin or the Soviet Red Army. They had 10+ million soldiers on the Eastern Front, they distrusted the Western Allies’ sincerity, especially Churchill, who had little clue how to lead a peace time nation. The Soviets feared a resurrected Germany, and its partition was well justified. Unfortunately, because of the ensuing Cold War, Germany escaped greater and more deserved draconian punishment. At least in the Soviet Zone they suffered more deservedly then in the three Western Occupation Zones.

The great cause of the failed peace was the death of FDR, because he was the only one with the skills and prestige to lead the West and insure the peace. Truman did as best as he could, considering his inexperience and poor advice. As to the West, its fear of communism obfuscated the crimes of the Fascists, Nazis and Eastern European strongmen, who brutalized Germany, Italy and all the countries east of the Oder-Niese. The dictators of Bulgaria, Hungary, Roumania were not democratically inclined and Poland was run by a military junta. FDR was not going to commit the US to go to war over Poland and he had stated that the Russians and Poles had hated each other for centuries and they both had blood on their hands. How correct he was. Poland was the trip wire with regards to Britain and France . They had no special allegiance to Poland and their treaties were signed to draw the line with regards to German aggression. As to the Soviet Union, they were making geo political deals to survive no differently then the West. As to Stalin, he was in a long line of oligarchs who had run Russia forever. The crimes of the Romanov’s, which had lasted 400 years, were not much different then the Bourbons of France and the other royal dynasties that disappeared in Austria and Spain. As Napoleon sagely said, “The victors write the history.” In the same sense, that the Soviets and the Russian people, after hundreds of years of oppression, turned to another system and, for better or worse, supported it.

Right Wing Sites and their Issues 4-20-12

It is always fascinating to me to see the subjects featured on this site: Land stealing by the president, impeachable offenses by the Attorney-General, constitutional shredding, the president’s legitimacy, his education, and every other specious claim invented by the authors. With all the other issues available for discussion few are ever mentioned. How should we deal with fiscal or monetary policy, our immigration laws; should they be liberalized, tightened or changed regarding quotas, defense spending, new weaponry, the budget:; new revenues, cuts in spending, states’ rights, federalism and who and how power should be shared. We have critical issues regarding our health care and how the new program can address obvious problems, education, why we are ranking so poorly and the disparity of income.

These problems did not start 3.5 years ago; they were decades in the making. They are not a result of Woodrow Wilson and the Federal Reserve, nor FDR and the New Deal. The problems of race have been with us from the day the first slave boat arrived in Virginia. The problem of federal versus state power has existed since the 1830’s with the debates between; Webster, Calhoun and Clay. The problems of energy began with a decline of our production and the increase in our needs in the late 1960’s. It was Jimmy Carter who first addressed its reality. Clean water and clean air were not issues until pollution, the death of our waters and smog began to affect everyone’s health. Budget deficits existed after every war, the New Deal created great deficits for the time, but WWII’s deficits dwarfed the New Deal expenditures. Ronald Reagan’s eight years featured large spending, tripling the National Debt, an average of over 7% unemployment until the last year and unprecedented scandals and massive shakeups regarding his White House staff.

There are so many issues that could be discussed. But, what do I see each day? I see insults to the president regarding his race, religion, education, birth, and philosophy. He is called every name allowed on the website. His name is twisted, abused, parodied with unlimited scatological reference. Is this Americanism? Is this toleration? Of course not! Every contrary assertion is greeted with: commie rat, fascist, pinko, Marxist, socialist, stupid, twisted, un-American, impeachment, lynching, forcible resignation, go home, or worse. More clatter regards the following: the election will be fixed, the elections will never be held, martial law will disarm and arrest all dissidents, Acorn thugs will cart “real” Americans to FEMA concentration camps and freedom of speech has been taken away, the Constitution has been violated and the country will be destroyed by Obama’s re-election. In truth, all of the above is idiotic, phony, provocative and never going to happen.

The key element to any debate, discussion or argument is to have two sides: a protagonist and an antagonist. Each side needs some intellectual grounding. Where is on this site?

NORTH BEND, Wash. (AP) — Peter Keller spent eight years carving his hole in the side of the mountain, camouflaging the rugged underground bunker with ferns and sticks and stocking it with a generator and ammunition boxes sealed in Ziploc bags. Suspected in the deaths of his wife, daughter and pets last weekend, he headed there prepared for the long haul with high-powered rifles, scope and body armor.
Seattle-area tactical officers who slogged for hours over dangerously steep, muddy ground to find him were prepared too. They pumped in tear gas, called for him over bullhorns, and, after 22 hours, set off explosives along the top of the bunker Saturday.
Keller was inside, already dead of a self-inflicted gunshot. A handgun was next to his body.
The 41-year-old hadn’t been seen since his wife, Lynnettee, and 18-year-old daughter Kaylene were found shot dead in their home last weekend.

The raid ended a tense week for law enforcement officials who tried to track down Keller, a gun enthusiast described by his family as having a “survivalist mentality.” That Keller was likely armed and on the loose in an extremely popular hiking and mountain-biking area east of Seattle kept many people on edge.

“The gas didn’t work, we’ve got fresh people here, it was time to take the next step,” said King County Sheriff’s Sgt. Katie Larson. “There’s been a huge sigh of relief. Our people are out safe, and the trails are now safe for the community to use.”
The bunker, tucked into Rattlesnake Ridge, was “amazingly fortified” with at least 13 guns inside, propane tanks, a large gun scope, gas cans and binoculars, said sheriff’s Sgt. Cindi West. Photos released by police showed stacks of ammunition in plastic bags on shelves.
SWAT teams spent a grueling seven hours in the Cascade Mountains foothills Friday morning, virtually crawling over terrain slick with mud from recent rains, before they found the bunker. A number of officers were treated intravenously for dehydration, and one broke his ankle, said sheriff’s Sgt. Cindi West.

The officers appeared exhausted, their faces smeared with camouflage paint, as they rode down the mountain in sport-utility vehicles or armored carriers to be replaced by fresher teams.
SWAT officers who kept watch on the bunker through Friday night said they saw lights going on and off, and they believed its occupant had everything necessary to remain inside for a long time — including a generator, food, gas mask, bullet-resistant vest and guns.

Photographs found in Keller’s home after they found his wife and daughter gave authorities an idea of where it was; in one picture that they enhanced, detectives could make out buildings in nearby North Bend. Combined with reports from alert hikers who remembered seeing his faded red pickup truck at the Rattlesnake Ridge trailhead, the sheriff’s office sent experienced trackers to the area, where they found off-trail boot prints confirming their belief that he was somewhere on the ridge.
They could smell smoke from its woodstove before they found it.

Authorities pumped tear gas into the structure Friday, but it failed to flush the man out, either because it didn’t penetrate deep enough into the structure or because the person had a gas mask.
Court documents described Keller as a loner who has a survivalist mentality and has been stockpiling supplies in the woods.

An arrest warrant issued Wednesday accuses Keller of two counts of first-degree murder and one count of first-degree arson; the home was set on fire after Lynnettee Keller, 41 and Kaylene were shot in the head.

Their bodies were found in their bedrooms April 23. The family cat and dog were also killed.
The fire at Keller’s home was stopped before the house burned down, and authorities said they found seven gasoline cans placed in different areas of the home.Kaylene’s boyfriend told detectives that Peter Keller had shown him his gun collection and several large-caliber rifles and handguns, court documents said. The boyfriend, who was not identified, said Kaylene had told him her father took long hikes on the weekends and was stockpiling supplies at a fort in the woods. Peter Keller withdrew $6,200 from a bank last week and told one of his co-workers at a computer refurbishing store in Preston that he might not return, according to court documents.

Gene Sarazen, Craig Wood and Louis Oostthuizen at the Masters 4-9-12

As I watching the Masters yesterday, a great and incredibly unique occurrence happened. On the 2nd hole, a par five, of 575, Louis Oosthuizen, a South African golfer, holed out from the fairway, a 253 yard shot for a double-eagle. In the 77 year history of the Masters that shot had never been done on that hole. There are usually about 96 golfers who are invited to play in this prestigious event. After the first 36 holes there is a “cut” and usually half the field is eliminated. So, in each tournament the 15th hole is played about 288 times. Over the years, there may have been slightly different fields and smaller cuts because of ties. But, all in all, that hole has been played over 22,000 times.

A double-eagle, which is 3 under par, is always quite rare. It is even much, much rarer than a hole in one, which happens often in almost every professional tournament, Of course, in each tournament, there is a number of par threes and the average professional golfer hits the green at a very high percentage. So it stands to chance that there will be holes in one.

The most famous shot in golf history was done by the legendary professional golfer Gene Sarazen. In the 1935 Masters, on the 15th hole, Sarazen holed out from the fairway for a double-eagle and wound up tying Craig Wood. In their only 36-hole playoff in history, to crown a champion, Sarzaen eventually beat Wood. Today, because of television, playoffs are restricted to either sudden death or the lowest total of strokes over three holes.

From 1957 through 1959 I had the pleasure of caddying at Winged Foot where the 1959 US Open was held. I was also there for the 1974 and 1984 Opens. Sarazen, who was famous for his “Plus Four” knickers, and one of the world’s greatest golfers, was one of the various, honorary starters at the Masters until 1999. He died at age 97 only a month after his last Masters’ tee off. In the 1960s thought the 1980’s, I used to see him every once in a while at Winged Foot, when I was there for a local tournament. Craig Wood, was Winged Foot’s club professional, before the late Claude Harmon took over in 1945. I followed him and my old buddy Billy O’Hara in 1967 as they played in a friendly $200 Nassau against two “suckers.” Wood smoked a cigar throughout the round, and often he would take a swig from a flask stored in his golf cart. He was quite rotund, but he could still hit a long and straight drive. It seems his lifestyle caught up with him, because he died in Palm Beach, at age 67, in 1968.