The Poet and the Pitch

Marianne Moore, Class of 1909, garnered fame as a poet—and a baseball fan.
Marianne Moore with Baseball

One of America’s foremost poets began her writing career as a contributor to Bryn Mawr’s literary magazine, Tipyn O’Bob. Marianne Moore, Class of 1909, was also a diehard sports fan who wrote the liner notes for I Am the Greatest, Muhammad Ali’s spoken word album, and rooted for the Brooklyn Dodgers, and, after the Dodgers' departure to Los Angeles, the New York Yankees.

She immortalized her love of the game in Baseball and Writing, and famously threw out the first ball of the Yankees’ season opener on April 10, 1968.

Moore got a Nov. 15 birthday shout-out on Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac.

From the Writer's Almanac blog: “She went to Bryn Mawr College, where she hoped to study English literature, but after a professor wrote a disparaging comment on one of her papers, she switched to biology. Working in a laboratory had a profound effect on her writing. She said, ‘Precision, economy of statement, logic […] drawing and identifying, liberated [my] imagination.’”

Fanaticism? No. Writing is exciting
and baseball is like writing.
You can never tell with either
how it will go
or what you will do ….

— Excerpt from Baseball and Writing, 1961