A handful of Gheorghies have partaken in the decades-old board game Strat-o-Matic baseball through the years. We played the dice and cards board game as kids; we now play the online version against each other. It's a bit of a cult thing, and it can be addictive.
The premise is that most players from most seasons of pro baseball are represented in card form as parsed out by seasons. So everyone from Babe Ruth's 1927 season to Mookie Wilson's 1981 season are reflected not just in statistics, but in outcomes for dice rolls. They are facing real pitchers from history, so look out when Mookie steps in against Koufax's 1963 card. You pick a team from history or create a mish-mash team, make the lineups and rotations, and play it out.
It's a great game for kids. And adults with kids. Okay, and adults.
Yep. It's pretty nerdy. Any surprise that William and Mary alums like it?
I was introduced to Strat-o-Matic by my grandfather and uncles, and they routinely hammered my teams after I was given the game as a Christmas gift. I had the 1979 season. They could make the Orioles beat my Pirates every time and mocked me incessantly. They're bullies.
In the summer after our sophomore year, Rob and I lived in Williamsburg and took some classes. And worked as Pizza Hut delivery guys. And drank 40's. And played out individual seasons from the 1985 set, him with the Red Sox and me with the Mets. No idea how our teams ended up doing, but I can tell you how we ended up doing with the ladies that summer. And I just remember the catcalls from our fratres across the den as we occupied the dining room table with dice, cards, and homemade box scores all summer. It didn't hold up to cool-guy scrutiny 26 years ago and still doesn't, but we had fun.
We even broke it out at an Outer Banks Fishing Trip one year. '86 version, and a Buckner error cost the Sox the rematch. Uncanny. Jerry was a witness.
Now it's online. For a small fee you can get into a league against either your dorky buddies or strangers, draft a team with a salary cap (hey, a novel idea) and have a go. What can I say, it's amusing.
And now there's a documentary released this year about the game. It's interesting to see which big league players new and old are also Strat-o-Matic players. Anyway, it's a neat little game that has lasted for 50 years. Not bad.