Requiescat In Pace - Coronado Eagle & Journal | Coronado News | Coronado Island News: Opinion

Requiescat In Pace

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Posted: Monday, October 28, 2019 10:25 am

I was so saddened to learn that Coronado High classmate, baseball teammate, and longtime friend John McClimon has entered into rest. He was 61.

Back in the daze (sic) of our “yoot,” Big John was that most fearsome southpaw whose blazing heaters and cray-cray curveballs were nearly unhittable. With John McClimon on the bump, no-hitters seemed to be the norm, with possible perfect games always in the offing. When we were but wee 12-year-olds (some of whom were not so wee), Big John helped lead Coronado Little League’s 1970 All Star team to within an eyelash of a coveted trip to Williamsport, losing in the Regionals after sweeping through the Area, District, Sectional, and Divisional rounds as the best team in all of Southern California, and one of

the top 16 teams in the nation.

Three years later as 15-year-olds, our 1973 Senior Little League All Stars just missed the Regionals. In my all too brief years of hardball, Big John was by far the toughest, nastiest pitcher I ever faced. His smoke looked like aspirin tablets, and his twisted junk was beyond sick. Most at bats would wind up with the ump yelling, “Strike one,” followed by, “Strike two,” and ending with, “Stee-ee-rike three!”

Good morning. Good afternoon. And good night. Now, go pull up a nice piece of pine. And while you’re at it, send up the next victim. Ouch.

One fine day, however, I managed to break up one of Big John’s would-be no-hitters by leading off the bottom of the final inning with a pathetic, weakly-struck bloop single, a woefully feeble Texas Leaguer which barely cleared the outstretched glove of the second baseman. Sorry, Johnny. No “no-no” today! Big John was not amused. Conversely, nothing could wipe the smile off my face! Nothing, that is, until Big John proceeded to strike out the next three batters to end the game, thus securing yet another McClimon shutout. Ouch, and double-ouch.

Yes, sir, folks. Big John could bring it! May he rest in peace.

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