Every year since 1985, on the anniversary of the Home Run, several hundred people have congregated on the Pitt campus at the site where Forbes Field stood until 1970 and where a part of the centerfield wall remains. At 1 p.m., the time Game 7 began, they start listening to a tape of the game's radio broadcast. At 3:36 p.m., sure enough, the announcer calls the Home Run.
Where the wall in left center used to be, a bronze plaque embedded in a sidewalk marks the spot where the ball sailed out to win the World Series. Mazeroski has never attended the ritual re-broadcast of the game. He has trouble fathoming all the fuss. He shifts in his chair at home. "Forty years ago!" he says. "I never dreamed when it happened that people would still be talking about it 40 years later. It has seemed to grow and grow and grow. Amazing, really amazing."
What he appreciates is that he was blessed to live the oldest of youthful dreams. As a boy in Skunk Hollow, he would go down to the highway with an empty bucket, fill it with stones and trudge back up the hill. He would then spend hours whacking the stones with broken broom handles.
"That is so clear in my mind, throwing those stones up and hitting them," he says. "All summer long. I didn't have anybody to play with. I'd hit it so far for a single, so far for a double, so far for a home run. I was Babe Ruth. Always. You always got in a situation when it was the seventh game of the World Series, everybody's counting on you. Then you hit the home run. I was no different from any other boy doing that."
Just one difference, really. He nods his white-thatched head.
"I got to do it in real life," he says.