Intermetrics was a Draper Lab spin off, founded to commercialize technology developed during the Apollo program. To say it was an interesting place is an enormous understatement. More on I² soon.
Intermetrics had a softball team thanks to Bob Milosavljevic. What started as a beer game, morphed over time to a competitive fast pitch softball team and ultimately a championship team in Cambridge. Bob being a Cantabridgian was weaned on Cambridge fast pitch softball. Maybe Bob knows the exact time and place that he put two and two together. You see, besides being a rocket scientist, a competitive contract bridge player, a nationally ranked (hard ball) squash player, my father is also a pretty damn good fastpitch softball pitcher.
Back in the day, he actually won some city championships in Cambridge and I remember him playing on a team called “The Hobos.”
So, Intermetrics softball was born. I was privileged to play on this team for many years and to have so many memories and experiences. Here are a few of the more interesting highlights.
The Infamous Tux Game:
As legend has it, Bob found a bunch of baby blue tuxedos at building 19 1/2 and bought them. We proceeded to play a game on the Cambridge common dressed in baby blue tuxes. Here’s proof.
We followed that up a year later with another tux game and to this day, Intermetrics remains 2-0 all time in Tux games. (note, photo is from second year).
2-4-6-8 who do you appreciate?
To say we were a bit different doesn’t really do US justice. A radical high tech company in a tough gritty city league…. yeah, it’s sort like kids from Minnesota and Boston getting along on the 1980 Olympic hockey team. And we didn’t exactly help matters. Most baseball signals are hand signals, touch your belt – it’s a bunt, touch your cap – a steal, etc…
Not us. Nope, uh, uh…. Bob decided to use math. (How appropriate for geeks). He would shout out numbers as signals. for example, 7,4,3,1. The exact algorithm remains a team secret, but let’s just say it drove the other team nuts! Bob’s mad scientist genius was probably worth a few games (and fights) every year!
Hoyt Field was in Cambridgeport with a youth center connected. On one shining night, a group of youths decided to strut straight through our game in the middle of an inning. Having a few champion trash talkers (Derek) there was some yapping back and forth. Next thing we know a large metal trash barrel is being hurled onto the field… Fortunately calmer heads prevailed.
My father was the Intermetrics pitcher for years. He was our only pitcher and was in my humble opinion pretty damn good considering he was facing young bucks. As years passed, he passed the torch to younger pitchers. As it always happens there are games when it’s hard get a full team. My father, in his 70’s, and having not pitched, was rushed back into duty for one game. All we cared about was at least we didn’t have to forfeit!! Strange things happen sometimes… he wasn’t exactly lights our or overpowering, in fact, he struck out no one. But he threw strikes and when they hit it, it was right at people. Next thing you know, we win, 7-0. Yup a shutout. As we are leaving the field after the final out, clear as day we hear the now infamous quote; “We were shut out by fucking Abe Lincoln!”
So many more good tales, but as Gettyburg addresses go, this was a good one!