In baseball, 1968 is known as the Year of the Pitcher, and Pappu, who writes “The Male Animal” column for The New York Times, focuses on two of the greatest in his re-creation of the 1968 World Series between the Detroit Tigers and the defending champions, the St. Louis Cardinals. Bob Gibson, pitching for the Cardinals, was black and embodied the hopes of a generation who looked to integration as a way to racial equality. He set a major league record that year with a 1.12 ERA. His rival, the Tigers’ Denny McLain, was white and was more interested in self-promotion than in team spirit. He won more than 30 games in 1968—a record that still stands. Together, the two pitchers changed the sport forever.
Pappu will be in conversation with Michael Schaffer, editor of The Washingtonian.