To Crash Davis, former home run king: Sporting News is sorry

Editor’s note: Sporting News is issuing a formal apology to longtime minor leaguer Crash Davis, who set the all-time minor league home run record in the late 1980s with no fanfare.Dear Mr. Davis, Please know that the lateness of this note does not diminish its sincerity.We owe you an apology. MORE: Mike Hessman in photos | The not-so-glamorous life of a 'modern-day Crash Davis'After we published our story about Mike Hessman breaking the all-time minor league home run record, we felt the time was right to correct a 27-year-old oversight. Related News Sporting News selects the most infamous moment for every team It came to our attention long ago (one of your female fans, Annie S. from North Carolina, was quite vocal) that Sporting News neglected to properly recognize you as the all-time minor league home run king when you set the record late in the 1988 season.“When Crash hit his 247th home run, I knew the moment it happened,” Annie said in 1988. “But I’m sure nobody else did. And The Sportin’ News didn’t say anything about it.”Sure, we mentioned it briefly several years after the fact, but we've never really done a mea culpa. For that, we’re sorry.Your accomplishment, achieved through years of toil in the minors, including long bus rides with (we’re told) cocky, immature and unappreciative rookie pitchers and others who failed to appreciate the nuances and beauty of your great game, deserved our recognition. Please forgive us.In our defense, Sporting News wasn’t covering minor league ball anymore by 1988, especially not the Asheville Tourists of the South Atlantic League. This was pre-Internet, remember, so information about the low-level minors often was hard to come by. However, had Twitter existed then, we’re sure we would’ve at least noted your record-breaker with an @ mention.MORE: Desert island draft, baseball movie editionWe hoped to speak with you before the publication of this note, but you’re a tough man to find. The last contact information we could find was from your days as a manager in Visalia, Calif. But we’d love to know what you’re up to these days.We did, however, track down your most prominent former teammate, Ebby “Nuke” LaLoosh, for some insight into your days with the Durham Bulls. However, despite Nuke’s enthusiasm, his comments were clichéd and unusable.We did reach Annie, your fan from North Carolina, but she declined to be interviewed. We suspect she still holds a grudge.We hope this apology removes any residual hard feelings you might have held for the past 27

years. You have our warmest regards and most sincere congratulations for your time as the all-time minor league home run champion.Take care, Crash. May your bat forever be quick.Sincerely,Sporting News editorial staff