January 25, 2015

May 10, 1984 - NL West 2, NL East 0

Game #387 - Los Angeles Dodgers, 4 @ Chicago Cubs, 2

The score was tied one each in the top of the sixth when Cubs starter Rick Reuschel ran into trouble.  Steve Sax knocked in two with a double, and later scored on a Steve Yeager single. Chicago picked up one more run in the seventh but L.A. held on for the win.

Winning Pitcher - Rick Honeycutt
Losing Pitcher - Rick Reuschel
Save - Burt Hooton
Player of the Game - Honeycutt, 8IP, 4H's, 4K's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

Game #388 - Philadelphia Phillies, 2 @ Houston Astros, 3 (10 innings)

Wouldn't you know it, Joe Niekro flirted with another no-hitter.  He had gone 6.2 innings before giving up his first hit, to Joe Lefebvre.  That hit also plated Len Matuszek, who had walked to start the inning.  Glenn Wilson then scored Lefebvre on a two-out single.  Just like that Niekro lost the lead.  Houston picked up a run in the bottom half of the inning when Mark Bailey stroked a hard double to score Ray Knight.

Fast forward to the bottom of the ninth - the Phillies still had a 2-1 lead.  With one out Larry Andersen gave up a hit to Kevin Bass.  Bass moved to second on a failed hit and run by Terry Puhl, with Puhl out at first.  One out from victory, Bailey was again at bat.  He knocked a single, and Bass went flying around third and scored, beating the throw from the outfield to tie the game and send things to extra innings!

In the bottom of the tenth Bill Campbell was on the mound.  With one out he gave up a surprise triple to Phil Garner.  Jose Cruz was up next, and squeaked an infield hit to plate Garner - Houston wins on the walk-off!!!

Winning Pitcher - Joe Sambito
Losing Pitcher - Bill Campbell
Player of the Game - Mark Bailey, 2-4, 2B, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Mike Schmidt

January 19, 2015

May 10, 1984 - Just Three Games in the AL

This was a bit random on the MLB scheduler's part, but there were only three American League games on May 10th back in 1984, so here are the last two...

Game #385 - Texas Rangers, 1 @ Chicago White Sox, 9

I did something I hadn't done this season in Statis Pro - I made a defensive replacement in the middle of the inning, after an error was made.  The culprit?  Jeff Kunkel.  His crime?  It was his third error in just five innings.  I brought in Wayne Tolleson to teach Kunkel a lesson.  I'm the one who got schooled, though, because Tolleson made an error five batters later!

Tom Seaver had his first great game of the year, going the distance and scattering five hits and two walks.  I would have made him "Player of the Game," but Ron Kittle had different plans.  He went yard twice, totaling five RBI's and three runs.  Rangers catcher Donnie Scott took a nasty foul tip off his hand and will miss the next 30 games.  Texas can't catch a break this season...

Winning Pitcher - Tom Seaver
Losing Pitcher - Dave Stewart
Player of the Game - Ron Kittle
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tom Seaver

Game #386 - Cleveland Indians, 6 @ New York Yankees, 4

Neither starter made it past the fourth inning, as both Rick Sutcliffe and Dennis Rasmussen each surrendered four runs.  It's no wonder Cleveland dumped Sutcliffe in the early going of the real 1984 - they must have been furious when he turned into a Cy Young pitcher in Chicago.  Both bullpens shined in this one, but it was the Cleveland trio of Tom Waddell, Mike Jeffcoat, and Ernie Camacho who were the brightest.  In five combined innings no runners reached base!  Brook Jacoby had the winning hit, plating two with a double in the seventh inning.

Winning Pitcher - Tom Waddell
Losing Pitcher - Clay Christianse
Save - Ernie Camacho
Player of the Game - Mike Jeffcoat, 2IP, 2K's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield

January 13, 2015

May 10, 1984 - Jays Sweeping

Game #384 - Toronto Blue Jays, 12 @ Baltimore Orioles, 2

I've made no attempt to hide the fact the Orioles are my favorite team.  So it stings when they're getting trounced by an AL East rival, but that's exactly what is happening on this home stand against the Blue Jays.

The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth when Toronto plated two runs off Storm Davis.  The Orioles got one run of their own in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI ground out from John Shelby that scored John Lowenstein. 

From the sixth through ninth innings the Blue Jays decided to impose their will on Baltimore.  They scored ten runs, including big homers by Cliff Johnson and Willie Upshaw.  There was no stopping Toronto as they continue to be the most dominant team in Statis Pro right now.

Winning Pitcher - Luis Leal
Losing Pitcher - Storm Davis
Player of the Game - Leal, 8IP, 4H's, 5K's, R
Hall of Famers in the Game - Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray

January 4, 2015

May 9, 1984 - Mom

Game #383 - San Diego Padres, 3 @ St. Louis Cardinals, 4

As it so happens, May 9th is my Mom's birthday, and her favorite team is the Cardinals.  She was born and raised in St. Louis, so it seems fitting the last game of her special day featured the Red Birds.

The Cardinals had to dig out of an early hole.  In the first inning Carmelo Martinez ripped a 2-RBI double and later scored himself on a Steve Garvey double to give the Padres a 3-0 lead.  But the Cardinals got two back in the bottom of the first from RBI singles by Terry Pendleton and Tom Herr.  David Green drove home Willie McGee in the third to tie things up.

The game was still knotted at 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh when backup catcher Tom Nieto crushed a solo shot to give the go-ahead run to St. Louis.  Bruce Sutter worked two innings of relief to notch his league-leading 9th save of the season.  This is already Tom Nieto's third "Player of the Game" awared on the season!

Winning Pitcher - Dave LaPoint
Losing Pitcher - Mark Thurmond
Save - Bruce Sutter
Player of the Game - Tom Nieto, HR, threw out Tony Gwynn on a steal attempt
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Gwynn, Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter

That concludes May 9th - standings and stats have been updated in the right hand column!

January 3, 2015

May 9, 1984 - Walk-Off All-Stars!

Game #381 - Cincinnati Reds, 6 @ Montreal Expos, 8

There must be something in the water in my neck of the woods, because I keep getting some dramatic finishes to these Statis Pro games.  This post is no exception!

The Reds took an early two run lead when Ron Oester doubled home Eddie Milner and Duane Walker to start the game.  Walker hit a solo homer in the top of the fourth that extended the Reds lead to 5-2.  A Walker error in the bottom of the sixth, though, closed the gap and made it a 6-4 game, still in favor of the red legs.

Fast forward to the bottom of the ninth, John Franco started his second inning of relief.  He walked pinch hitter Jim Wohlford and then gave up three singles in a row to blow the lead and let the Expos tie it up.  Franco got lifted in favor of Ted Power to face the right-handed Gary Carter with a runner on first and no outs.  There was a severe power outage (PUN!), though, as Power gave up a walk-off homer to The Kid!!!

Winning Pitcher - Dan Schatzeder
Losing Pitcher - John Franco
Player of the Game - Gary Carter, 2-3, HR, 2RBI's, 2BB's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Gary Carter, Andre Dawson

Game #382 - Atlanta Braves, 3 @ New York Mets, 6

This game was all goose eggs until the bottom of the fourth.  With Wally Backman and Keith Hernandez on base, Darryl Strawberry took Rick Camp deep for a three run lead.  The Braves tied things up in the top of the sixth, though, with an epic two-out rally that tied the game, including a bases clearing triple by Dale Murphy.

The game was still tied up at three apiece in the bottom of the ninth.  With two outs and a runner on first, Gene Garber walked Backman to bring up Hernandez.  The Seinfeld star put one into the right field bleachers to provide YET ANOTHER walk-off home run!!!

Winning Pitcher - Doug Sisk
Losing Pitcher - Gene Garber
Player of the Game - Keith Hernandez, 2-4, HR, 3RBI's, 2R's

December 28, 2014

May 9, 1984 - Late Game Heroics

Merry Christmas everyone!  I apologize I haven't had more posts over the holidays.  This is a time of year I usually get a lot of Statis Pro in, but we've been hosting family from out of town.  I hope your holidays have treated you kindly, and that you get to enjoy the break as much as I have!

Game #379 - Los Angeles Dodgers, 3 @ Chicago Cubs, 2

Larry Bowa has been uncharacteristically good with the stick in this Statis Pro season, and he continued his hot hitting in the bottom of the third.  He doubled off of Alejandro Pena and later scored on a Bob Dernier single.  The Dodgers answered back in the top of the fourth.  With one out, Dave Anderson ruined Rich Bordi's no-hitter with a surprise solo homer.

The score stay tied 1-1 until the bottom of the sixth.  Ryne Sandberg singled and then swiped second base off of Steve Yeager.  Gary Matthews was up next and singled him home to give Chicago the lead.  Once again, the Dodgers responded in the next inning.  Yeager hit a sacrifice fly that plated Greg Brock to keep the score tied.

Tim Stoddard was pitching in the top of the ninth when German Rivera doubled with one out.  Ken Landreaux singled to move Rivera to third.  Stoddard walked Bob Bailor to load the bases, and then walked RJ Reynolds to plate the winning run!

Winning Pitcher - Ken Howell
Losing Pitcher - Tim Stoddard
Save - Tom Niedenfuer
Player of the Game - Howell, 2IP, 0H's, 3K's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

Game #380 - Philadelphia Phillies, 6 @ Houston Astros, 9

I thought this would be a fun pitching match-up between all-star lefties, as Steve Carlton toed the rubber for the Phillies and Bob Knepper was on the mound for the Astros.  Neither made it past the third inning!  Knepper gave up five runs in 2 and 2/3 innings, including homers to John Wockenfuss and Mike Schmidt.  Carlton saw eight hitters come to the plate in the first, which included a Jose Cruz home run.

The score was tied 5-5 in the top of the seventh when Ozzie Virgil crushed a solo shot to give the Phillies the lead, but Enos Cabell answered back with a homer of his own in the bottom of the inning.  The score was still 6-6 in the bottom of the eighth when
Al Holland had two runners on and was facing Bill Doran. Doran hit an unexpected three run blast to give Houston the lead and eventual victory!

Winning Pitcher - Dave Smith
Losing Pitcher - Al Holland
Save - Bill Dawley
Player of the Game - Bill Doran, game winning home run
Hall of Famers in the Game - Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton

December 20, 2014

May 9, 1984 - (AL) Westward, Ho!

Game #377 - Seattle Mariners, 8 @ Oakland A's, 3

Chris Codiroli had a nightmare start to the game in this one.  Jack Perconte and Phil Bradley both singled, and then Alvin Davis crushed a home run to plate all three.  It didn't get any better for Codiroli, because he gave up a solo homer to Gorman Thomas in the fourth, followed by another three run bomb by Ken Phelps.

Winning Pitcher - Jim Beattie
Losing Pitcher - Chris Codiroli
Player of the Game - Alvin Davis, 2-2, HR, 3RBI's, 3BB's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rickey Henderson and Joe Morgan

Game #378 - Boston Red Sox, 3 @ Texas Rangers, 4

Speaking of three run homers...  In the top of the third Tony Armas deposited a ball over the outfield fence to score three off of Frank Tanana and give Boston a 3-0 lead.  But the Rangers scraped two from Al Nipper in the fourth inning.  Wayne Tolleson singled home Bobby Jones and Ned Yost hit a sacrifice fly to score Billy Sample.  The Rangers tied the game in the seventh when Mickey Rivers reached on a Jackie Gutierrez error.  Two batters later Buddy Bell doubled him home. 

The score was still tied heading into the bottom of ninth.  George Wright was brought in to pinch-hit for Yost and singled off of Steve Crawford.  Crawford struck out Rivers for the first out of the inning, but Gary Ward singled too to move Wright to second.  Bell then grounded out to third, but both runners advanced, leaving Wright 90 feet from home plate.  That's when Larry Parrish knocked him home - WALK-OFF SINGLE!!!

Winning Pitcher - Odell Jones
Losing Pitcher - Steve Crawford
Player of the Game - Larry Parrish, walk-off hero.
Hall of Famers in the Game - Wade Boggs and Jim Rice. 

December 13, 2014

May 9, 1984 - American League Excitement

Game #375 - Detroit Tigers, 3 @ Kansas City Royals, 4 (11 innings)

The Tigers put the first three runs of the game on the board, all off of Royals starter Mark Gubicza.  The first came in the second inning when Chet Lemon went deep for a solo homer.  Dave Bergman knocked in two in the fourth with a single. 

Dan Petry, meanwhile, was in cruise control until the bottom of the seventh.  Hal McRae hit a lead off single and then Steve "bye bye" Balboni went yard to pull K.C. within one.  With two outs in the same inning pinch-hitter Dane Iorg singled home Frank White to tie the game and force Petry to the showers.

Dan Quisenberry and Willie Hernandez, the two best relievers in the American League, each subbed for two innings without letting a run cross the plate.  In the bottom of the eleventh Aurelio Lopez was working his second inning of relief and had two outs recorded.  But Frank White came up and hit a home run to win the game!  WALK OFF!!!

Winning Pitcher - Joe Beckwith
Losing Pitcher - Aurelio Lopez
Player of the Game - Frank White, 2-4, HR, 2B, BB

Game #376 - Cleveland Indians, 9 @ New York Yankees, 4

The Inidans jumped on Yankees starter Joe Cowley early and often in this one.  Brett Butler led off the game with a single, stolen base, and run scored thanks to a Julio Franco double.  They tagged Cowley for three more runs in the fourth, though two of those runs were unearned due to a Omar Moreno error in center field.  But the Yankees kept pace scoring single runs in the second, third, fourth, and sixth innings.  Three of those runs were due to errors by Cleveland, making five total errors during the contest.

The score was tied 4-4 in the top of the ninth with Dave Righetti relieving for New York.  Tony Bernazard reached base because of a Butch Wynegar error and later scored on a Julio Franco single.  That was followed by five straight Indians reaching base.  Righetti got yanked (pun intended!) having only gotten one batter out, as Cleveland pounded the Bronx for the win.

Winning Pitcher - Bert Blyleven
Losing Pitcher - Dave Righetti
Player of the Game - Franco, 2-5, 2B, 2RBI's, R
Hall of Famers in the Game - Bert Blyleven, Dave Winfield

December 10, 2014

May 9, 1984 - Trouble on the Base Paths

Game #372 - Minnesota Twins, 1 @ California Angels, 3

Twins starter Ken Schrom stumbled out of the gate.  He gave up a two-run double to Gary Pettis in the first that scored Bobby Grich and Brian Downing.  He worked out of some other jams in the second and third, but was able to pick off both Dick Schofield and Reggie Jackson.

Meanwhile, Geoff Zahn was absolutely baffling the Minnesota hitters.  They didn't record their first hit until the top of the fifth inning.  Zahn went 8 2/3 innings before getting himself into a dangerous jam with runners on the corner.  That's when Don Aase came in to secure the victory for California.

Winning Pitcher - Geoff Zahn
Losing Pitcher - Ken Schrom
Save - Don Aase
Player of the Game - Zah, 8 2/3IP, R, 7H's, K
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #373 - Milwaukee Brewers, 8 @ Chicago White Sox, 5

The Brewers hit into FIVE double plays in this game, but still managed to put up big innings for an easy victory.  They scored six of their seven runs in the sixth and seventh innings, which happened to be when Robin Yount went deep, twice.  Each team had a runner caught stealing as well.

Winning Pitcher - Jamie Cocanower
Losing Pitcher - Salome Barojas
Player of the Game - Robin Yount, 3-4, 2HR's, 4RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Robin Yount

Happy Trails...  Tom Brennan

Tom didn't pitch a lot of games for Chicago in 1984, just four actually.  Let's look at how they compared:

Real 1984: 6.2IP, 4.05 ERA, 0-1, 1.65 WHIP, 3K's
Statis Pro:  8.2IP, 4.15 ERA, 0-1, 1.96 WHIP, 3K's

As you can see, both seasons were quite similar.  That's kind of amazing considering how small a sample size there was to work with.

That's all for now!  I've got a new poll posted - feel free to vote!!!

December 5, 2014

May 9, 1984 - Battle of the Birds

Game #371 - Toronto Blue Jays, 6 @ Baltimore Orioles, 1

This was game one in a double-header, and it featured each club's best pitchers:  Doyle Alexander and Mike Boddicker.  Unfortunately for the O's, Boddicker didn't have his best stuff.  He gave up two runs in the second inning, with one of those reaching base from an error of his own making.  But he really got into trouble in the sixth.  Toronto send nine batters to the plate and scored four runs.  A Rich Dauer error opened the flood gates this time.

On the flip side Doyle Alexander continued his dominant start to the season by silencing the Baltimore Orioles over eight innings.  The only run to score was Wayne Gross, who hit yet another home run.  (I'm worried Gross' HR rating on his card is too high.  He did knock 22 HR's in 340 AB's in 1984, but he's already halfway to that total in just 30 games...)

Winning Pitcher - Doyle Alexander
Losing Pitcher - Mike Boddicker
Player of the Game - Alexander, 8IP, 5H's, 3K's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Cal Ripken and Eddie Murray

Game #372 - Toronto Blue Jays, 13 @ Baltimore Orioles, 3

This game was actually pretty exciting until it wasn't.  The Blue Jays had a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the seventh when the Orioles but two runs on the board with RBI hits from Al Bumbry and Mike Young.  But in the top of the eighth the Orioles bullpen had what has probably been the worst inning of the Statis Pro Season.  The Blue Jays scored TEN runs.  They sent fifteen hitters up to bat.  The ringleader was Lloyd Moseby, who started the destruction by crushing a grand slam for the first four runs.  Sammy Stewart, Baltimore's best reliever, gave up five runs without recording an out.  Bill Swaggerty followed and fared little better, giving up five runs but notching two outs.  Dennis Martinez finally got the Orioles out of the woods, but not before losing their pride...

Winning Pitcher - Ron Musselman
Losing Pitcher - Sammy Stewart
Player of the Game - Lloyd Moseby, 2-5, grand slam, 5RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Cal Ripken and Eddie Murray

One interesting thing happened in the second game.  Cal Ripken got tossed from the game for arguing with the umpire on a Z card.  If I'm not mistaken, Ripken played every inning of baseball in 1984.  I slid Lenn Sakata over to short for the rest of the game, but I think I violated the laws of reality from the 1984 season...

November 30, 2014

May 8, 1984 - Thanksgiving Day Rumble

Game #380 - Los Angeles Dodgers, 2 @ St. Louis Cardinals, 8

As I mentioned in my last post my folks were in town for Turkey Day, and as it so happened, my dad's two favorite teams were playing next in this Statis Pro season.  He was born in Brooklyn while the Dodgers were still there, and so that's always been his favorite team, but when he was a young kid his family moved to St. Louis.  That made the Cards his second favorite.  My dad is the one who bought me this game as a kid, so it was fun to be back together playing again.

My dad took control of the Dodgers and made a couple of interesting lineup decisions, including batting Ken Landreaux in the third spot.  I quickly figured out why he did it:  Landreaux has a "hit and run" rating of 2, and my dad loves to use the hit and run.  When my dad bought this game for me it came with the 1985 season, and most of our games consisted of his Dodgers versus my Orioles.  For some reason Landreaux had a lot of timely hits in those games and those negative memories are still burned in my brain!

Bob Welch was pitching for the Dodgers and kept working in and out of jams.  The lead-off hitter got on base the first five innings in a row, and each one of them stole second base off a battered Steve Yeager.  All told the Cardinals stole six bases during the game, which is definitely the most I've ever stolen in a single game this season.  St. Louis put two runs on the board in the second with RBI singles from Darrell Porter and Ozzie Smith, but that was the only real damage done in the first seven innings.

The Dodgers offense was much worse, as Kurt Kepshire was pitching a career game through the first five innings.  Not a single Dodger had reached base with the exception of a Ken Landreaux (of course) walk.  But with two outs in the sixth and the no-hitter still intact Steve Sax reached on an error.  My dad then used Bill Russell's hit and run rating of 1 to push Sax to third on the first hit of the game.  Kepshire retired the next hitter to keep L.A. scoreless.

In the top of the eighth Kepshire put two Dodgers on the bases and was finally pulled for Bruce Sutter.  But Sutter gave up an RBI single to Bill Russell and an RBI ground out to Landreaux to tie the game.  That made it a 2-2 game going into the bottom of the eighth.

I'm not going to go into all the details, but the Cardinal offense exploded in the bottom of the inning.  Jerry Reuss and Burt Hooton gave up a combined six runs.  What went from an exciting game between father and son turned into a route.  It always feels good beating your old man in a game!

Winning Pitcher - Bruce Sutter
Losing Pitcher - Jerry Reuss
Player of the Game - Ozzie Smith, 2-3, 3RBI's, 2BB's, R, 2SB's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter