A close viewing revealed that 'A Christmas Story' is actually a baseball movie
One of the joys of rewatching a favorite movie or rereading a favorite book is that, inevitably, each new encounter reveals a different experience or insight that you had not noticed before.
Fans of Christmas movies have annually found themselves watching 1983's classic "A Christmas Story" in the weeks leading up to December 25. A recent viewing by Twitter user @BeautyOfAGame revealed three baseball cards hanging on Ralphie's headboard.
Hall of Fame Senior Curator Tom Shieber was able to identify the cards in question:
1940 Play Ball John Rucker - New York (National League), T206 Ed Reulbach - Chicago (National League), T206 Jimmy Hart -Montgomery, Alabama (Southern League) pic.twitter.com/DxNMAlBQse- Tom Shieber (@tshieber) December 21, 2017
For a movie that takes place in 1940 in an Indiana town outside of Chicago, that's an odd selection of cards. Rucker -- the only then-current player represented on the headboard -- had no apparent ties to Chicago. He played six seasons for the New York Giants in the 1940s, tallying 711 hits and putting together the longest hit streak to start a season by a Giant (17), until Pablo Sandoval surpassed the mark in 2012. Hart, a switch-hitting first baseman, played 58 career games for the Orioles in 1901 -- hitting .311 with 23 RBIs. Only Reulbach, who played for the Cubs from 1905-1913, has any clear connection to the area. A Notre Dame graduate, he won 182 games, sported a 2.28 career ERA and won two World Series titles with Chicago. He's also the only pitcher to throw a shutout on both ends of a doubleheader.