Analysis: The Great American Pastime

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Now and Then From the beginning of recorded time a deep-seated desire to compete has lived within every man. The cavemen judged their worth according to their strength, medieval knights were shown great honor for overcoming their opponents in the joust, and the Wild West showdown left the best man standing. The need to be superior is as strong in today’s society as it was thousands of years ago. The 1920s ushered in the greatest form of competition the world had possibly ever seen, called “The Great American Pastime”- baseball. Since then American culture has witnessed changes in science, entertainment, and technology, but none so impacting on the world of sports as those in realm of baseball. How can these changes be so important?…show more content…
Shortstop is a much more demanding position than first base. John Mayes of Sporting News wrote that during Ripken’s sixteen years in baseball, he accumulated 402 , 2,991 hits, and 1,571 runs batted in. Cal had to contend with Astroturf instead of grass, which wears on the joints of the ball player. This surface forces a ball traveling at high speeds to bounce out of its original course. “Cal played in an estimated eight and two-thirds of every nine innings during his streak,” stated Cosgrove. He also had to deal with the jet lag of coast-to-coast airplane travel during the baseball season. Cal Ripken is hands down one of the most athletic ball players in recent history. The obvious difference between these two men is the era in which they played their sport. Lou Gehrig is best remembered for “making strong men weep” versus Cal Ripken who is best known for his athletic ability in breaking Gehrig’s consecutive game streak. Many people argue the questionable discrepancies between Gehrig’s record and Ripken’s record. Yes, times were different but men in his own respect deserve his own notoriety for an indisputable impact on the sport of baseball, and that is how they will ultimately be

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