August 26, 1939 was a significant day. That’s when the first baseball game was televised, but it still took another 40 years for the VCR to hit the mass market. So if you wanted to watch Sandy Koufax pitch game 7 of the 1965 World Series, you were out of luck and probably busy in a makeshift lab building a time machine.
Major League Baseball always had the footage back to 1939, but they guarded the clips like esoteric secrets, revealing only bits and pieces over time. The internet and the MLB made good bedfellows. For a nominal fee, we could watch classic games on the computer, but you couldn’t get them to your TV where the couch and beer was said to be. And then a few weeks ago it happened.
YouTube and mlb.com swung a deal and the entire original broadcasts of the Juan Nieves no hitter, Len Barker’s perfect game, Dave Henderson’s home runs in the 1986 playoffs, Bob Gibson pitching in the World Series. Yep, there’s plenty there all the way back to 1952. The world might never be the same. Goodbye grandfather clock of restrictions. Hello baseball time machine.
There’s no imaginary leap needed anymore to hop in the saddle and ride backwards to big bangs. No slow walks through a museum or book trusting someone else’s view. This is primary source material. This is the original broadcast; the same one our ancestors watched.
Just in case you’re curious or take this news like the free distribution of soma, well, it’s time again to tune in and drop out.