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Tag Archives: Red Sox

Alito on curve balls, playing second, and Stevens’ Babe Ruth moment

During the last World Series, DC Dicta wondered if there were any friendly wagers between lifelong Phillies fan Justice Samuel Alito and Justices Antonin Scalia and Sonia Sotomayor, lifelong Yankees backers.

Turns out, there was!

“Yes. Unfortunately I had a bet with Justice Sotomayor about the outcome of the World Series,” Alito told the Philadelphia Daily News in a baseball-themed Q&A. “She’s a Yankees fan. Justice Scalia is a Yankees fan. So we had a bet, cheesesteaks vs. Nathan’s hot dogs and I had to provide Nathan’s hot dogs.”

Alito, whose Supreme Court chambers is filled with Phillies gear and memorabilia, took his entire staff to see the Phillies play at Nationals Park for the first game of the season earlier this month.  The Trenton native – who played second base from little league until high school when nearsightedness and the use of curve balls put an end to his baseball career – told the paper that he could have easily been a Yankees fan like his two colleagues.

“I could have,” he said. “My father was a Phillies fan, so I guess that’s the explanation. But, yeah, my neighborhood was split down the middle. My friend across the street and his father were rabid Yankees fans. In those days there were some [Brooklyn] Dodgers fans and New York Giants fans, but I was a Phillies fan from the beginning, when I first became interested in baseball.”

And baseball is a popular topic among the justices of the Court, he said.

“Justice [Stephen] Breyer is a Red Sox fan and Justice [John Paul] Stevens is a Cubs fan. He claims to have been present when Babe Ruth called his shot [in the 1932 World Series] at Wrigley Field,” Alito said with a smile. “Although about 200,000 people claim to have been in attendance at that game, I trust him that he actually was.”

Sorry Pats – Justice Breyer’s all about the Red Sox

Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer may be from San Francisco, but his many years in the Boston area as a Harvard Law School professor and then as a judge on the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals caused him to leave his heart in Red Sox Nation.

So when the Court took up an antitrust case involving the NFL yesterday, Breyer was all ready with his sports hypotheticals. But clearly, football is not the justice’s game.

“I’m asking a question,” Breyer said to attorney Glen Nager during oral arguments in American Needle, Inc. v. National Football League. “And I just heard you say that you want, for example, you want the Patriots to sell T-shirts in competition with the Saints, or whoever.”

If Breyer was searching for an NFL rivalry, Pats fans know the New York Jets would have been a better choice for the hypo. But no worries – Breyer quickly shifted gears to baseball.

“The Red Sox, All right,” Breyer said, turning the question to more familiar territory. “You see the point? The Red Sox — I know baseball better. You want the Red Sox to compete in selling T-shirts with the Yankees; is that right?”

“The ability to compete, Yes” Nager said.

“Yes, okay,” Breyer said. “I don’t know a Red Sox fan who would take a Yankees sweatshirt if you gave it away.”

Sotomayor’s pitch

The Sotomayor tour continues. The next stop? Yankee Stadium.

Justice Sonia Soyomayor is scheduled to throw out the first pitch Saturday right before her beloved New York Yankees play their rivals, the Boston Red Sox.

If you recall, the Yankees/Red Sox rivalry was brought up several times during Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy is a devoted Red Sox fan. He decided to support Sotomayor anyway.

(In the interest of full disclosure, DC Dicta is firmly with Leahy on this one. Go Sox!)