Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Graphic Designers Play Artball

The Mitchell Report has kicked up some response from players, if not front office folks. Bluster and creepy taped phone calls from the Rocket--Houston, we have a major problem--and a confession measured in microns from Andy Petitte. After next month's Congressional testimony (just as pitchers and catchers are reporting to camp) Major League Baseball will limp into the 2008 season.

No matter! Artball can still be played sans cynicism, since it's all metaphorical anyway. No juicing in this league! In what's either a timely pre-season bulletin or a terribly tardy bit of reportage hanging over from last season (Shhh!) GT brings you two Artball lineups staffed with giants from graphic design.

Heather Corcoran (who knows design) Gregg Thompson (who knows baseball) and little Margaret (acquainted with both people and before long, both subjects) have assembled a dominant lineup from mostly today and recent decades. Their team, the Bridgeport Nine, echoes the real-life exploits of the Bridgeport Bluefish, an entry in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball, unaffiliated with MLB. Interestingly the latter club is managed by Tommy John, presumably still recovering from that surgery.

Anyway, Gregg recalls a fondness for the Bridgeport can-do spirit, embodied by the slogan, Bridgeport: We’re working our way back! (Which presumably beat out Nowhere to Go But Up!)

Given my own predelictions as a practictioner and critic, I am especially impressed by the double historian-designer keystone combination of Heller and Warde. I like Paul Rand at third and Carter in left, but I'm not sold on a DH batting 7th. Lupton catching is good.

Meanwhile, Scott Gericke (excuse me, Scooter McGerk) has delivered a tour de force of lineup card design, in which the desiger's name has been entered "in the manner of." See below. Very nice touch.

I'll be the motion on Saul Bass's throw across to first is a handful. And imagine the action on a Kyle Cooper slider!

Images: Scott Gericke, DesignLab, Baseball "Eye" Logotype, 2007; McLaughlin Baseball Game, 1886. (Peruse comparable vintage game displays.)

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