With the Dow hitting new all-time highs, the price of oil trading near $75 and gold over $1,200, this is the stuff legends are made of.
The Stuff Legends Are Made Of
October 3 (King World News) – Today’s note from legend Art Cashin: On this day in 1951, a very unique event occurred. Er…… Make that a spectacular event. Oh. Hell! Before I run out of paper and adjectives let me simply quote what the great writer Red Smith said about it the day after it happened.
“Now it is done. Now the story ends. And there is no way to tell it. The art of fiction is dead reality has strangled invention. Only the utterly impossible, the inexpressively fantastic, can ever be plausible again…..”
The event was a baseball game. More correctly “the” event was how the game ended. If you had reached the age of reason by A.D. 1951, you probably know what it was, particularly if you lived east of the Mississippi and if you are short in the soul department you probably call it “Bobby Thomson’s Home Run”.
But if you know about epics and heroes and miracles and tragedies it was something special and you may never forget it.
A visit to the library might tell you that it was a special pennant race. The Giants had lost 11 in a row in April and wallowed way back in the pack. Durocher moved Thomson to 3rd and replaced him in centerfield with a kid named Willy Mays. The Giants played okay ball thereafter but lagged their arch-rivals, the spectacularly talented Dodgers. In mid-August they were 13 1/2 games behind the “Bums”.
Then the miracle started. The Giants won 16 games in a row with Thomson (the Flying Scot) a key factor. In the final week they caught the Dodgers and forced a playoff. The Giants won the first of three by a score of 3-1. The Dodgers answered with a 10-0 drubbing. Thus the stage was set for great drama.
Game three – – all about America and baseball. In the 1st inning Jackie Robinson singled in a run. Dodgers up 1 in the 2nd inning Thomson sends a drive into left and tries to stretch it to a double. Unfortunately when he reaches 2nd he finds it already occupied by his team mate Whitey Lockman. Thomson is tagged out in a chorus of boos.
In the 7th the Giants manage to tie the game. But in the 8th the Dodgers pull ahead 4-1 on a couple of hits and lots of sloppy fielding by Thomson. As the inning ends, boos, thrown beer cups and a lynch mob are looking for Thomson as he heads for the dugout.
Finally, the last of the 9th in a hopeless situation. But, Al Dark singles, Don Mueller hits a grounder just past Hodges and the stands come alive. Dodger manager Dressen checks on his pitcher Don Newcombe but leaves him in to face the cleanup hitter, Monty Irvin. Irvin pops out. But Lockman doubles down the left field line sending home Dark but causing Mueller to sprain his ankle sliding into 3rd. As the stretcher came out for Mueller, Dressen went to the bullpen – – for his ace Ralph Branca even though he had pitched a full game 2 days ago.
Thomson was the batter and there was a smattering of boos. On deck was the whiz kid Mays (who had struck out and hit into a double play) but why put the winning run on base. So Branca pitched to Thomson.
The first pitch was a sizzling strike right over the plate. The second probably should have been a ball but Thomson stepped back in the bucket and hit this high inside fast ball in a huge arc toward left field. The fans, the broadcasters and even Andy Pafko the Dodger left fielder watched in amazement as the ball cleared the Polo Grounds wall by 18 inches (just above the 315 foot mark).
For the next 67 years this event would pale other great deeds in the American male psyche. Goats as heroes. Heroes as goats. Logic a victim of legend. Homer and Shakespeare would have loved it. And Thomson might have become the eternal symbol of the Giants – – but they traded him two years later.
To celebrate, stop by the Bottom of the Ninth. Have a couple of sliders and tell the Rookie on the stool next to you that baseball is like Wall Street. Here too there are chances to redeem yourself. Here too you can become an instant legend – – of course that’s provided you don’t strike out.
The Dow hit a bit of a homerun Tuesday, closing at a new record high but most of the other indices struck out and struck out badly.
Multiple Personalities Persist In Tuesday’s Markets – Recent crosscurrents in the markets reversed on several fronts. As you may recall, amid all the bluster about trade wars in recent months various sectors staked out specific territories.
If trade wars were to break out, you would want the protection of owning companies with little or no exposure in international trade. That led you to smaller localized companies. Thus, the Russell and the retailers drew a lot of attention.
Now that NAFTA – the sequel – has brought trade peace to North America (and offered promise elsewhere) many of those defensive positions had to be reversed. Many were yesterday.
Once again, the Russell led on the downside as traders rushed to rotate out of small domestic companies. Heavily hit were the retailers, stung by wage pressure after Amazon hiked the minimum wage for their employees.
Another weak sector saw many of the tech stocks come under pressure. The financials also were a bit of a drag.
The always insightful Jason Goepfert, the head guru at SentimenTrader noted the dichotomy of numerous stocks making new lows even as the Dow was setting records. Here’s a bit of what Jason wrote:
A dramatic divergence. Several times in recent weeks, we’ve looked at the conspicuously large number of securities sinking to 52-week lows despite good performance in the major indexes. On Tuesday, the Dow Industrials closed at a new high, yet there were more than three times as many securities hitting a 52-week low than a 52-week high on the NYSE. Dating back to 1965, there has been only one precedent – December 28, 1999.
Talk about a market with multiple personalities.
Overnight And Overseas – In Asia, Shanghai remains closed for Golden Week. Hong Kong was down fractionally. Japan saw a moderate loss but India got dinged smartly on continuing worries about non-bank lending.
In Europe, equity markets are generally seeing fractional gains in light volume. Among other assets, Bitcoin is down slightly, trading just below $6500. Gold is little changed, hanging just above $1200. WTI hangs tough just above $75, despite rather weak inventory data. The euro is basically flat against the dollar and yields are a few ticks higher.
Consensus – Seven Fed speakers today, with a rerun by Powell. Small caps need to circle the wagons. Stay wary, alert and very, very nimble.
***KWN has released the powerful audio interview with Gerald Celente and you can listen to it by CLICKING HERE OR ON THE IMAGE BELOW.
ALSO JUST RELEASED: One Of The Greats Says The Move In Gold, Silver And The Miners May Be Real & Much Bigger Than People Expect CLICK HERE TO READ.