Quote: Baseball: they ain't nothin' until I call 'em (attrib Charley Moran 1947 August 30)

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu May 26 18:01:23 UTC 2011

Fred Shapiro wrote:
             [about the saying: "It ain't nothing till I call it."]
> Note that this famous quote is in The Yale Book of Quotations, under
> Bill Klem's name, although the earliest attribution I found (1948) is to
> a different umpire, Charlie Moran.  Perhaps Garson or Bill or Sam or
> Stephen or Ben or someone else can find it earlier than 1948.

I can push the date back to 1947, but the umpire named is still Moran
and not Klem.

Cite: 1947 August 30,  Los Angeles Times, Sportraits by Al Wolf, Page
7, Los Angeles, California. (ProQuest)

[Anecdote told by California Club, Baseball Commissioner Happy
Chandler about umpire Charley Moran]

"I attended a game one day that he worked and kidded him afterward
about a ball he called foul, a decision that cost the home club two
runs. 'That was a pretty close one, wasn't it?' I asked.

"'Naw!' Moran said. 'None of 'em are close. They're either fair or
foul—and they  ain't nothin' until  I  call 'em.'

(end excerpt)

The anecdote is repeated in the Chicago Tribune a couple weeks later.

Cite: 1947 September 12, Chicago Tribune, In the WAKE of the NEWS by
Arch Ward, Page 29, Chicago, Illinois. (ProQuest)


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list