Everything Old Is New Again

About 2 1/2 weeks ago, Rick Hahn described the ideal candidate to become the next manager of the White Sox: recent post-season experience with a championship organization.  Depending on your definition of recent, the White Sox found their man today, announcing that Tony LaRussa, who retired from the dugout after leading the Cardinals to a championship in 2011, would once again take the reins on the south side of Chicago.

LaRussa, who is third all-time with 2,728 wins, first became manager of the White Sox in 1979, under owner Bill Veeck.  After leading the team to the AL Western Division title in 1983, LaRussa was fired in June of 1986 by Ken Harrelson.  This has long been cited as the biggest sports-related regret for owner Jerry Reinsdorf.

 

LaRussa caught on with the A’s less than a month after leaving the White Sox, staying there for 10 years, winning 3 AL pennants and one World Series championship.  He then spent 16 years on the bench for the Cardinals, winning 3 NL pennants and 2 World Series championships, retiring after the final one in 2011.  Since then, he has spent time working for MLB and in the front office for the Diamondbacks, Red Sox, and Angels.

LaRussa, who will be 76 on opening day 2021, becomes the oldest manager in the major leagues and the oldest to take over a team since Jack McKeon in 2011.

The two biggest concerns, to my mind, are 1) has the move toward analytics changed the game enough in the last 9 years that he’s been left behind and 2) will the exuberant players on the White Sox roster, namely Tim Anderson, Luis Robert, and Eloy Jimenez, chafe under an older school manager who may not appreciate the bat flips and political outspokenness.  This will either end very well, with post-season success, or will bomb spectacularly.  There really will not be a middle ground.

You Ought To Be In (24) Pictures

Movie_Reel_22

Many years ago, using the weekly TV guide that came with the Sunday Chicago Tribune, I started keeping track of all of the movies I had seen over the course of my lifetime.  The guide would list the two main stars for each movie, and that is a tradition that I’ve carried on in my database ever since.  So, given those guidelines, and thanks to a corona virus inspired uptick to my movie watching this year, it is time to look at the 100 actors that have starred in at least 10 films that I have seen, as of July 1.

Today, we continue with the 3 actors that have starred in 24 movies that I have seen, a position that was left empty 3 years ago.

Ben Affleck

The first Ben Affleck starring role that I saw was in 1997, when I saw both Going All The Way and Chasing Amy.  In 1999, he kicked off a 6 year run where I saw 11 of his films, including 3 films in both 2000 and 2003.  There were 5 years total where I had seen multiple Affleck outings, most recently in 2011.  He’s picked up 2 additional films since the last time we did this, the most recent being Jay And Silent Bob Reboot from earlier this year.

Sandra Bullock

Scoring the highest total for a woman, Sandra Bullock burst on the scene in 1994’s Speed, but Dennis Hopper took home the second starring slot in that one, so her starring role the following year in The Net was likely her first entry on this list.  That kicked off a 9 year run where I saw a movie where she had a starring role.  I have seen multiple films starring her in 6 different years, first in 1997 and most recently in 2019.  Her most recent entry was the second of 2019’s flicks, the 2018 effort Ocean’s Eight.

Robert Downey Jr.

My first experience with Robert Downey Jr. was likely 1987’s The Pick Up Artist.  Things were a little slow after that, as I racked up only 7 films through the mid-2000s, likely in part due to Downey’s notorious partying.  Things picked up in starting in 2007, thanks to his taking on two classic roles in literature adaptations, Iron Man and Sherlock Holmes.  Those franchises have contributed 10 films to his total.  His greatest output in one year was 2008, when I saw four of his films.  My most recent experience with Downey’s work was last year, when I saw his final entry in the MCU, Avengers: End Game.

By The Numbers – 94

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

We continue today with our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams, continuing with #94.  A single player has donned #94 while playing in Chicago, for the 2001 Cubs.

When David Weathers was acquired by the Cubs at the trade deadline in 2001, Felix Heredia agreed to give up the number and flipped it around to become the first and, to date, only #94 in Cubs, and Chicago baseball, history.  Heredia became a free agent at the end of the season, ending his 2 month use of the number.

You Ought To Be In (21) Pictures

Movie_Reel_22

Many years ago, using the weekly TV guide that came with the Sunday Chicago Tribune, I started keeping track of all of the movies I had seen over the course of my lifetime.  The guide would list the two main stars for each movie, and that is a tradition that I’ve carried on in my database ever since.  So, given those guidelines, and thanks to a corona virus inspired uptick to my movie watching this year, it is time to look at the 100 actors that have starred in at least 10 films that I have seen, as of July 1.

Today, we continue with the lone actor that has starred in 21 movies that I have seen, the same number, and actor, as 3 years ago.

George Clooney

George Clooney was bouncing around Hollywood for a while before becoming a superstar on a little show called ER, whose pilot movie was his first entry on this list.  That launched him to great film success.  2 films is my high water mark for Clooney, one which I have reached 5 different times, most recently in 2012.  My most recent Clooney experience remains to be Money Monster, which I saw back in 2017.

By The Numbers – 96

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

Today, we continue our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams with #96.  A single players has donned #96 while playing in Chicago, for the 1950 Cubs.

Bill Voiselle, by default, is the best #96 in Chicago baseball history.  Acquired prior to the 1950 season for future big league manager Gene Mauch, Voiselle went winless with an ERA over 5 before making his final big league appearance on July 8th.

The Rick Renteria Era Has Come To An End

In a somewhat shocking development, the White Sox announced this morning that they have parted ways with manager Rick Renteria.  The status of the rest of the coaching staff will be determined in conjunction with the new manager, though pitching coach Don Cooper is also expected to move on.  Renteria originally joined the White Sox following the 2015 season as bench coach and was named the team’s 40th manager, replacing Robin Ventura, following the 2016 season.

General Manager Rick Hahn said that the ideal candidate to replace Renteria will have recent post-season experience with a championship organization.  Interestingly enough, two such managers, A.J. Hinch and Alex Cora, will be coming off their year-long suspensions following the completion of the World Series.  Both are thought to be on the shortlist for the opening in Detroit, though I’d be surprised if Cora doesn’t end up back with the Red Sox.  One name not in the mix is former White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who was told by owner Jerry Reinsdorf that he would not be considered.

In some ways, this move reminds me of one made by another Reinsdorf team back in the summer of 1989.  After reaching the Eastern Conference finals and losing to the Pistons, the Bulls fired coach Doug Collins, saying that while he had gotten the team from point A to point B, he wasn’t the right man to get them to point C.  If this move turns out half as well for the White Sox, everyone involved will be ecstatic.

 

You Ought To Be In (20) Pictures

Movie_Reel_22

Many years ago, using the weekly TV guide that came with the Sunday Chicago Tribune, I started keeping track of all of the movies I had seen over the course of my lifetime.  The guide would list the two main stars for each movie, and that is a tradition that I’ve carried on in my database ever since.  So, given those guidelines, and thanks to a corona virus inspired uptick to my movie watching this year, it is time to look at the 100 actors that have starred in at least 10 films that I have seen, as of July 1.

Today, we continue with the 4 actors that has starred in 21 movies that I have seen, an increase of three from 3 years ago.

Samuel L. Jackson

26 years ago, I first made the acquaintance of Samuel L. Jackson in 2 polar opposite films, Pulp Fiction and National Lampoon’s Loaded Weapon 1.  After 1994, I also saw 2 Jackson films in 2000, 2006, 2019, and 2020.  There was a 6 year break between Lakeview Terrace, which I saw in 2010, and Kingsman: The Secret Service, which I saw in 2016.  The last starring roles of Jackson’s I took in earlier this year were 2019’s Shaft and 2015’s Barely Lethal.

Scarlett Johansson

I was first introduced to Scarlett Johansson in 2001 when I saw the comic-book adaptation Ghost World.  Starting in 2004, there was a 6 year run where I saw 11 of the 14 films that make up this total, including 5 in 2006 alone.  Another 3 films came in 2014.  She is riding an active 3-year streak, with my most recent experience with her coming last year in Netflix’s Marriage Story.

Eddie Murphy

It’s hard to believe now, but at one time, Eddie Murphy was the biggest star in the land.  My first experience with him was likely Beverly Hills Cop.  7 of his films were seen before I started my database, so I can’t be entirely sure of when I first saw them.  Of the 7 years since that I have seen an Eddie Murphy film, 5 of them have been multiples.  After a 15 year absence, Eddie Murphy returned to my screen in 2019, when I finally took in 2003’s Haunted Mansion.

Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts burst on to the scene in 1990’s Pretty Woman, which was one of 2 films of hers I saw in 1991.  I’ve seen multiple films from her in 1991, 1994, 2000, and 2017, with her big year for me being 2000, when I saw 4 different films in which she starred.  My last Julia Roberts vehicles, 2016’s Money Monster and 2011’s Larry Crowne, were seen in 2017.

By The Numbers – 99

In 1929, uniform numbers appeared on the back of baseball jerseys for the first time, thanks to the Indians and the Yankees.  By 1937, numbers finally appeared across all uniforms, both home and away, across both major leagues.  Since that time, 81 distinct numbers have been worn by members of the White Sox, while the Cubs boast 76.

Today, we begin our look at those players, picking our favorite, if not the best, player to wear each uniform number for both Chicago teams, starting with #99.  A grand total of 3 players have donned #99 while playing in Chicago, 1 for the White Sox and 2 for the Cubs.

Manny Ramirez spent a little more than a month with the White Sox, acquired off waivers from the Dodgers at the end of August in 2010.  The White Sox were hoping there was still some life in the 38-year old slugger as they hoped to make up a 4 game deficit and overtake the Twins for the AL Central title, but he managed just a single home run and only 2 RBI.  Following the season, he became a free agent.

On the north side of town, of the two instances of a player wearing #99, the nod has to go to So Taguchi.  Appearing in 6 games in 2009, Taguchi hit .273 as he wound down his career.