« Tom King's Blog

The Most Important Man In Baseball History?

by Tom King

Who is the most important man in baseball history? Was it Alexander Cartwright who set out some early rules for the game? Was it Babe Ruth who changed the way we look at the home run and its importance? Was it Kennesaw Mountain Landis, who, as the game's first commissioner rescued baseball from the gamblers? Maybe Jackie Robinson and Branch Rickey who broke the color line? Those are all good choices but one name that should be added to the short list is Dr. Frank Jobe. Jobe is the man, who in 1974, tried an experimental procedure on an injured pitcher. The procedure was called an "ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction while using the palmaris longus tendon". It became better known as "Tommy John" surgery. John was an excellent pitcher with the Dodgers who tore his elbow ligament in a game in 1974. This had usually meant the end of a pitchers career. But Jobe suggsted they try a pioneering operation where he would take an unused tendon from the pitchers right wrist and transplant it into his left elbow. It worked and John went on to pitch for many more years and thousands of people, many pitchers, have had their careers saved since that day. Dr. Jobe died on Thursday but his legacy will live on and even if Cooperstown can't find room for him someday you certainly can make the argument that Frank Jobe was the most important man in baseball history.

It's hard to argue that the Big Ten Conference wasnt the best mens basketball conference this year. Seeing good teams be upset on a regular basis wasnt even surprising as the season went along . So it really came as no surprise to me that the Nebraska Cornhuskers won the final game of the Big Ten regular season on Sunday night with a win over Wisconsin. the badgers were the best road team in the conference but Nebraska had only lost once at home and the Pinnacle Bank Arena was crazed last night. Here's hoping the Badgers can make a good showing in this weeks Big Ten Tournament and still get a good seed for the NCAA's.

I was at Quandt Fieldhouse in Stevens Point on Saturday night as the Pointer mens basketball team beat Central to advance to the NCAA D-3 Sweet Sixteen. Former Wisconsin Rapids stand-out Clayton Heuer had a career high 24 points leading 5 Pointers in double figures. Bob Semling's crew is a well rounded bunch who play swarming defense, bash the boards hard and can knock down three's as well as pound it inside to the big guy. The Pointers will host the sectional this weekend and will play Emory on Friday night. The other game will have Whitewater vs Texas-Dallas.

Songs Of The Day   (from my I-pod)

Happy Birthday to Neneh Chery (50) and Edie Brickell(48)

Buffalo Stance-Neneh Cherry (1988) hip hop was mostly a mans game when Don Cherry's kid took this top 5. I dare you to not move your feet or your seat


What I Am-Edie Brickell & New Bohemians(1988) from the same year came this slice of pop brilliance