Video: Mort Soule ’68 Delivers ‘Casey at the Bat’ to Fenway Faithful

Maine baseball legend Mort Soule, Bowdoin Class of 1968, recited the famous ballgame poem by Ernest Thayer, “Casey at the Bat,” at Fenway Park for the Red Sox’s annual Maine Day on April 28, 2013. For the pre-game ceremony, Soule had to trim his recitation of the 52-line poem, which typically takes hime six minutes to complete, to three minutes. Video courtesy of the Boston Red Sox.

Mort Soule ’68 Performs “Casey at the Bat” in Fenway Park Ceremony from Bowdoin College on Vimeo.

Comments

  1. Dave Stocking, Bowdoin '66 says:

    There sure was joy in Noblesville (Indiana) when Mort performed at Fenway. HE sure didn’t strike out. Instead, he hit as “homah”! Bravo, Mort. — Dave Stocking ’66

  2. Mort Soule says:

    Dave, how kind of you to recognize my humble effort.

  3. Great Job , Mort … I thoroughly enjoyed it … You look GREAT … Dick

  4. Tom Aceto says:

    Good work Coach as always …after all you are the IMMORTAL Soule !

  5. Peter Fenton '64 says:

    For many years my father, Al Fenton ’31, and Don Lancaster ’27 and several of their friends spent a week in May or June and another in September at various fishing camps, particularly Kidney Pond in Baxter State Park, and later at the Cobb’s Pierce Pond Camps in North New Portland. When not fishing the daily program included cut-throat cribbage games, an evening drink or two, lots of reading, and good talk.

    At some point, Dad and Don worked up a ‘skit’ which they performed in the dining room with Don reciting Casey at the Bat followed by my Dad reciting A Reply to Casey at the Bat. Herewith the reply:

    I’m just an ordinary fan and I don’t count for much,
    But I’m for writing history with a true and honest touch.
    It isn’t often that I knock, I’ll put you next to that,
    But I want to impose a word about Casey at the bat.

    I heard an actor-fan recite it thirteen years ago.
    He sort of introduced it in the progress of the show.
    It made a hit from gallery down to the parquet floor,
    But then I got to thinking and that guy he makes me sore!
    I’d like to know why any fan should be so off his nut
    About the Mighty Casey who proved himself a mutt?

    The score we’re told stood four to two with one inning left to play.
    Which showed the Frogtown pitcher had things coming out his way.
    Now in the ninth, with two men down, he loosened up a bit.
    Flynn scratched out a single and Blake a two-base hit.
    And then from stand and bleacher there rose a might roar.
    They wanted just that little hit they knew would tie the score.

    And there at bat was Casey, Mighty Casey, Mudville’s pride.
    But was the Frogtown hurler, Ginger Hagen, terrified?
    Now in the ninth with two men on and Casey at the bat,
    Most pitchers would have walked him, we all are sure of that.
    But Hagen was a hero, he was made of sterner stuff.
    It’s his kind gets the medals and the long newspaper puffs.
    He knew the time had come for him to play the winning role.
    He heard the fans applauding and ’twas music to his soul.

    He stood alone and friendless in that wild and frenzied throng.
    There wasn’t one kind word to boost his game along.
    But back in Frogtown where they got the play by fatal wire,
    The fans stood ready to set the town on fire!
    Now Hagen twists his body on the truest corkscrew plan
    And sends a swift in-shoot that cuts the corner of the pan.
    And Casey thought the first one pitched would surely be a ball
    And didn’t try to strike it to the great disgust of all.

    Again the Frogtown twirler out-figures Mudville’s pride;
    He thinks the next will be a curve, or else a slow one wide.
    He just shot through a straight one in the middle of the plate
    While Casey waited for a curve until it was too late.

    And now the might slugger’s a hanging on a string.
    If another one comes over, it’s up to him to swing.
    One moment Hagen pauses, grinds the ball into his hip,
    And then he hurls it from him so fast it’s just a blip.
    And now the air is rent and torn where the slugger tried to hit
    For Casey, mighty Casey, hadn’t figured on the spit.

  6. Dave Doughty '68 says:

    Howdy Mort,

    Excellent performance … never knew you had such a great stage presence when we were playing football together at Bowdoin. Hope to see you at our 45th reunion at the end of the month. Well done.

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