Sports Columns

Jaywalking: Labor of Love

When Dick “The Rev” McKelvey was young, he had a pair of events shape what would become a passion for the rest of his life. It all happened well before McKelvey grew up and moved his family from Germantown, Pa., to Deerfield, where he became a well-known baseball coach and teacher at Deerfield Academy. This story starts in 1933, when he was living in Wilmington, Del., and his mother was a nurse. One of his mother’s patients happened to be the young son of Bill 0

Keeping score: Cagey stories

Good morning! The information booth inside Roger Dean Stadium was stacked with free copies of Baseball America programs for the day’s game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Houston Astros cost $6 and St. Louis Cardinals T-shirts were selling for between $25 and $53. Baseball was back in business on this warm gray day in early March. On a sidewalk near the center of this upscale Florida community a guitarist strummed ‘Sweet Caroline’ while a ruddy-faced scalper unabashedly hawked tickets as fathers all but shielded 0

On The Trail: Hermit tales

Mention in last week’s “Fish tales” column of a haggard roadside hermit familiar to travelers earlier in my lifetime along Route 5 and 10 between Greenfield and South Deerfield drew additional anecdotal information from near and far that’s worth reporting. The feedback started right off last Thursday morning, when waiting for me on my first email adventure was a comment from an angler who, like me, fished a section of Mill River containing the site of Deerfield’s first grist mill (1693) on Sawmill Plain, not 0

Keeping Score: Biding time

Good Morning! Two summers ago I was dropping off a Daily Racing Form for handicapper John Dobrydnio when the scent of his wife Paula’s marinara sauce drew me into the kitchen. She was ladling tomatoes that were simmering in a five gallon pot, careful not to overheat, while John cracked open the form and brother Myron was tending to the garden. “Just tomatoes?” I inquired of the pot’s contents. “No! Whattya kiddin’ me?” popped John. “Garlic, basil, onions all sortsa stuff! Ya can’t see it, 0

On The Trail: Fish tales

The cardinals have been singing their happy song this week, brightening my outdoor morning chores with the dogs as the snow cover shrinks. Who knows? Perhaps those beautiful red birds, too, can hear the brook gurgling through widening gaps in the thick, punky ice out back, massive, foot-thick ice chunks still strewn high along both banks, tangled among upslope trees but finally shrinking before breaking loose during the first major freshet. Or maybe my feathered friends can see that the roof slates are finally high, 0

Jaywalking: Top scorers

It was a good year to be a Pioneer Valley Regional School basketball player. The girls’ team won the Franklin County League South Division and wound up making it to Curry Hicks Cage for the WMass Division IV semifinals. The boys’ team also had a successful season, finishing third in a very tough Hampshire League with 14 wins for its best season since 2009-10. The Panthers were knocked out of the tournament in the WMass Division III quarterfinals but also had one of the youngest 0

Keeping Score: Letting go

Good morning! I wrote today’s column plucking away with my left index finger and my right arm in a sling. The good arm, the strong and useful limb, was broken while chasing a foul ball at a spring training game in Jupiter, Fla., last week. It could’ve been worse, people have died trying to get foul balls. At Arlington Stadium in Texas, a father fell over a railing and landed headfirst reaching for a ball that was tossed to him by outfielder Josh Hamilton. Pursuing 0

Jaywalking: Goal oriented

Nowadays, you can find Dr. Reza Namin at the Franklin County Jail, where he serves as the Chief Academic Officer for the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department. But once upon a time Namin was a soccer star in his native home of Iran as well as around New England. Namin was 19 years old when he moved from Iran to America in 1979. It wasn’t always his plan to come to this country. He was a star soccer player when he graduated high school in Iran, 0

Keeping Score: Stormy weather

Good morning! Spectators at last Saturday’s third round of the Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens got a lesson in what a “chance of showers” can mean in South Florida. The afternoon “mini-hurricane” delivered 60 mph winds and dumped four-and-a-half inches of rain in three hours. Putting a red Honda on a platform in the lake next to the 18th green had seemed like a good idea at the time. In the sun it looked like a mirage, but when the lake rose three feet 0

On The Trail: Legal issue

Midday has passed, it’s cold as a witch’s dark heart, wind blowing, ice getting harder and slicker by the second — and the phone rings. The caller-ID informs me it’s old pal Killer, a hunting buddy who spent many a day with me chasing pheasants and deer, more of the former than the latter but plenty of both. I gotta give the man credit: he consistently displayed the uncanny ability to bring down faraway ringneck roosters with his 12-gauge howitzer ... on his third shot. 0