Monday, April 5, 2010

Grabbin' Some Pine With Mike Krukow

Posted By on Mon, Apr 5, 2010 at 9:30 AM

click to enlarge Mike Krukow (left) with your humble narrator - JOHN BOITNOTT
  • John Boitnott
  • Mike Krukow (left) with your humble narrator
Back in 1987 your humble narrator's father had a breakthrough realization. If he managed to buy the cheapest and worst tickets for the National League Championship Series between the Giants and Cardinals, he discovered he could waltz right into the jury-rigged Candlestick Park media overflow section in the upper deck behind home plate without getting hassled.

These were his favorite seats anyway -- especially when Mike Krukow was pitching. From that angle, you could really pick up the break on Kruk's magnificent curveball. And, on that night, you could pick up even more. Since we were in the media section, television sets had hastily been set atop poles. I still remember the closeup shot of Krukow's face as he unmistakeably mouthed the word "Bullshit!" toward home plate, ostensibly arguing balls and strikes. He was masterful, tossing a complete game as the Giants won 4-2. Among many baseball memories, this one is right near the top.

I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Krukow, now a longtime Giants announcer, for a forthcoming story in SF Weekly. I recounted to him the above story, and he smiled. "That was a good day, wasn't it?" he said. He remembered the "Bullshit!" moment with alacrity -- but he noted that he certainly wasn't arguing balls and strikes.

click to enlarge Mike Krukow (left) with your humble narrator - JOHN BOITNOTT
  • John Boitnott
  • Mike Krukow (left) with your humble narrator
"I wasn't yelling at the umpire, Eric Gregg. It was Vince Coleman -- he stepped out of the box late when I was in my motion, and he called a timeout. And that was bullshit!" said Krukow. "Back then, when a guy did that, he was going to get hurt. I was taught that if you were in your windup and the hitter called timeout late, you went ahead and threw the pitch. And you threw it at the guy. So, that was my whole beef. Years later Gregg told me I was right."

It's a rare pleasure to learn a telling detail about one of your fondest childhood memories that makes it even better. Nicer still to meet a boyhood hero and realize you were rooting for a good dude. Nothing bullshit about that.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Bio:
Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" is a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly, which he has written for since 2007. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers... more

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook

Slideshows

  • Arcade Fire at Shoreline
    Arcade Fire opened their US tour at Shoreline Amphitheater to a full house who was there in support of their album "Reflector," which was released last fall. Dan Deacon opened the show to a happily surprised early audience and got the crowd actively dancing and warmed up. DEVO was originally on the bill to support Arcade Fire but a kayak accident last week had sidelined lead singer Mark Mothersbaugh and the duration of the west coast leg of the tour. Win Butler did a homage to DEVO by performing Uncontrollable Urge.
  • Comic Con 2014

    Comic book enthusiasts, Cosplayers, TV and movie fans, and celebrities descended to sunny San Diego for the annual gathering at Comic-Con International.

    Whether hitting up a panel to check out The Simpson's announcement of a cross over with Family Guy or Futurama. Or hearing a new movie with Sam Raimie based on a video game or accidentally rubbing shoulders with Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) in cosplay, being a cosplayer, San Diego Comic-Con is the place to be. Photographs by Christopher Victorio