Sidd seems to be the greatest April Fools’ day legend ever! Sidd Finch was the rookie baseball pitcher in April Fools’ Day hoax “The Curious Case of Sidd Finch” written by George Plimpton.
Plimpton reported that Hayden “Sidd” Finch was a rookie baseball pitcher in training with the New York Mets. Finch, who had never played baseball before, was attempting to decide between a sports career and one playing the French horn.
What was astonishing about Finch was that he could pitch a fastball at an amazing 168 mph, far above the record of a “mere” 103 mph.
SI featured the article about Sidd Finch in its April 1, 1985 edition.
“He’s a pitcher, part yogi and part recluse. Impressively liberated from our opulent life-style, Sidd’s deciding about yoga — and his future in baseball.” The first letters of these words (through “yoga”) spell out “Happy April Fools Day.”
Despite this clue and the obvious absurdity of the article, many people believed Finch actually existed. The magazine printed a much smaller article in the following April 8 issue announcing Finch’s retirement. It then announced it was a hoax on April 15.
Although the story was a complete work of fiction, thousands of people actually called the Mets office at the time seeking more information.
The internet as we know it today wasn’t around in 1985. I’m sure that helped. Now everyone has a channel to try out their april fool’s joke on the masses. Certainly, all April fool’s jokes since have paled in comparison.