Jim “Catfish” Hunter

01241202Little Cameron woke up early this morning.  To give Mom a quiet house and a chance to sleep in today, we packed up a little bag of supplies and headed out to run some errands.  My parents live about 15 minutes away so we decided to bring “Sunny and Pappa-Daddy” Egg McMuffins for breakfast.  My birthday was last week so my Mom handed me a small gift bag with a gift and a page from last week’s Virginia Pilot.  The article was from the travel section and featured a quick story on the opening of the Jim Catfish Hunter museum in Hertford North Carolina.  Located in the Perquimans County Chamber of Commerce building, the exhibition takes up two rooms and features memorabilia from Hunter’s high school days through his major league baseball years with the Athletics and the Yankees.

At first glace, Jim Hunter may be seen as one of the more “colorful” baseball Hall of Famers.  The nickname “Catfish” gives that impression.  The nickname was actually given to him by the owner of the Oakland Athletics Charlie Finley.  When Jim Hunter signed his first professional baseball contract, Finley asked if he had a nickname.  “Jimmy” was Hunter’s response.

Seeing that “Jimmy” wouldn’t be giving Finley very many promotional opportunities, he fabricated a story on the spot – “You left home when you were 6 years old.  Your momma and daddy couldn’t find you.  When they did finally find you, you had landed two catfish and had a third on the line.  They have been calling you ‘Catfish’ ever since.”

After listening to this new story about himself, Hunter said, “Mr. Finley, no one has EVER called me ‘Catfish.'”

Finley simply said, “I just gave you $75,000.”

“Yes, sir.  My name is ‘Catfish,'” Hunter replied.

Hertford is just a few hours from me and makes for a nice day trip.  I’ll certainly be taking Cameron down there to check it out once he’s old enough to appreciate it.

The Jim “Catfish” Hunter Museum
118 W Market St (In the Chamber building located in Historic Hertford)
Hertford, NC 27944
(252) 426-5647



You’re never going to watch that…

01071201That’s what my wife said to me the “other day” as I opened up a package and pulled THIS beauty out of it.  She’s since said it about 100 more times.

Well, full disclaimer here – let’s use the term “other day” loosely.

Like, super-loosely.

Okay, so I’ve had this sweet VHS instructional video for almost 2 years now and no, I have not watched it.

But let’s be honest, it makes a great addition to my Gary Carter collection AND the fact that Seaver and Mantle are also featured in the video just sweetened the deal.

I remember my Granny renting this video from the local video shop and bringing it over to my house.  I was 1o and home sick from school.  She had come over to watch me while my parents were at work.  While I remember little of the actual video, I do remember watching it over and over (and over) for the 5 days that I had before the video needed to be returned to the video store.  01071202

This video was released in 1987.  Carter was already a big star with New York and just coming off of a World Series championship.  The year prior, Seaver had just finished up his Hall of Fame career with the Red Sox (the trade to the Red Sox would be great content for a future post) and Mantle of course, was a living legend.

My father in law has let me borrow his VHS player so that I can watch this tape.  It even has a built in DVD recorder so I can copy the tape over to a DVD and watch it all the time.

Who am I kidding. She’s right, I’ll probably never watch this thing.