August 7, 2017

May 30, 1984 - Trust Your Veterans

Game #605 - New York Yankees, 6 @ California Angels, 7

I love awesome, back and forth games!  Let's jump into the recap...

The Angels went up 2-0 in the bottom of the third when light-hitting Bob Boone smacked a double with the bases loaded off Ron Guidry.  The Yankees answered in the top half of the fourth, though, when Don Baylor and Butch Wynegar each ripped an RBI single to tie things back up.

In the bottom of the fifth Doug DeCinces legged out a triple with no outs, and trotted home after an RBI hit from Fred Lynn.  But the Yankees came roaring back, once again, the very next inning.  Don Mattingly chased Tommy John out of the game with an RBI double that scored Ken Griffey.  Luis Sanchez took John's place, but a booted grounder by DeCinces led to two more RBI on a pinch hit double from Steve Kemp, giving New York a two run lead.

They maintained that lead in the bottom of the eighth.  Reliever Clay Christianse induced a ground out from Dick Schofield...but Roy Smalley made an error!  Schofield advanced to second on a sacrifice fly by Rod Carew that very nearly left the ballpark.  Gary Pettis came up next, and smoked a triple to score Schofield.  But he wasn't done!  Ken Griffey bobbled the ball in center and allowed Pettis to score - tie game!  That brought up Reggie Jackson, pinch hitting in the DH slot of the order.  What did Mr. October do?  H O M E  R U N!!!!  Don Aase worked a scoreless ninth and the Angels escaped with the come from behind victory!

Winning Pitcher - Bruce Kison
Losing Pitcher - Clay Christianse
Save - Don Aase
Player of the Game - Reggie Jackson, 1-1, HR, huge ego
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #606 - Toronto Blue Jays, 2 @ Chicago White Sox, 3

At the start of the game LaMarr Hoyt was pegged as having "bad stuff," meaning his normal 2-6 pitcher rating dropped to 2-4...against the best offense in Statis Pro!  But what did the steely veteran do?  He pitched seven innings of one-run ball, only giving up a solo homer to George Bell!  The White Sox scored three in the third off Jim Clancy and held on the rest of the way to put one in the win column!

Winning Pitcher - LaMarr Hoyt
Losing Pitcher - Jim Clancy
Save - Ron Reed
Player of the Game - Hoyt, 7IP, 7H's, 4K's, R

August 5, 2017

May 30, 1984 - Remember When They Were in World Series Droughts?

Game #603 - Chicago Cubs, 10 @ Atlanta Braves, 8

The Cubbies went up 4-0 in the first and never looked back, even though the final score made it look closer than it really was.  Leon Durham hit a 2-RBI double with the bases loaded, helping chase away Len Barker after three innings and seven runs of offense.  Durham added another RBI, again with a double, in the sixth.  But it was Rich Hebner, making an ultra-rare start in the outfield, who had the biggest day.  He went four for five with a RBI and three runs scored...plus an outfield assist!

Winning Pitcher - Chuck Rainey
Losing Pitcher - Len Barker
Save - Warren Brusstar
Player of the Game - Rich Hebner
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

Game #604 - Minnesota Twins, 0 @ Boston Red Sox, 7

The poor Twins lost this one almost as soon as it started.  In the bottom of the first Wade Boggs singled, Dwight Evans walked, and then Mike Easler homered to give them a 3-0 lead before they even recorded an out!  Bob Ojeda scattered nine hits and two walks in a complete game shutout, the first shutout of the year for any Boston pitcher.

Winning Pitcher - Bob Ojeda
Losing Pitcher - John Butcher
Player of the Game - Mike Easler, 3-4, 2B, HR, 5RBI
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Wade Boggs, Jim Rice

July 31, 2017

May 29, 1984 - Hit by Pitches

Game #601 - Baltimore Orioles, 2 @ Seattle Mariners, 3 (12 innings)

The Orioles were up 2-0 after five and a half innings, getting an unusually good outing from Dennis Martinez.  This despite the fact he plunked two Mariners in the bottom of the fifth.  But in the bottom of the sixth Seattle got its revenge when Ken Phelps launched a two-run blast to tie things up.

Mark Langston hit Gary Roenicke with a pitch in the top of the seventh and in my mind the imaginary umpire issued a warning to both sides.  Langston lasted nine innings, striking out eight but the game was still tied, so on to extras it went.

Neither team could advance a runner to second base until the bottom of the twelfth.  With two outs Tom Underwood walked Alvin Davis and then Steve Henderson.  That brought up Al Cowens...who lined a single to center!  Davis took off for home, and the throw from Al Bumbry was late - Mariners win on the walk-off single by Cowens!

Winning Pitcher - Edwin Nunez
Losing Pitcher - Tom Underwood
Player of the Game - Al Cowens, GWRBI
Hall of Famers in the Game - Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray

Game #602 - Kansas City Royals, 3 @ Texas Rangers, 10

Frank Wills of the Royals got lit up like a Christmas tree, surrendering six runs in less than two innings.  Paul Splittorff didn't fair much better, giving up another four runs in short reliever stint.  But Mark Huismann saved the bullpen by pitching the last 5+ innings, allowing zero runs, but plunking two Rangers.  Five different Texas players had at least two hits in the route.

Winning Pitcher - Danny Darwin
Losing Pitcher - Frank Wills
Player of the Game - Buddy Bell, 3-4, 2B, 3B, RBI, 3R's, BB

July 25, 2017

May 29, 1984 - 600 games!!!

Milestones are fun markers through this looong 1984 playback.  And we've hit another one!  That's right - 600 games played.  I can't believe I simulated 600 games...and that I'm not even a third of the way through the season!  As always, thanks for stopping by and reading the recaps.  On to the games...

Game #599 - Milwaukee Brewers, 4 @ Cleveland Indians, 2

Dion James continued his torrid play in this tangle with Cleveland.  He scored the second run of the game when Robin Yount doubled him home in the third.  In the fourth inning he hit a single with two on and two outs to pick up three RBI, and then added a double in the ninth.

Bob McClure darted in and out of trouble, allowing six hits but four walks in six innings.  Rollie Fingers pitched one and a third innings to pick up the save.

Winning Pitcher - Bob McClure
Losing Pitcher - Rick Sutcliffe
Save - Rollie Fingers
Player of the Game - Dion James
Hall of Famers in the Game - Robin Yount, Rollie Fingers

Game #600 - Detroit Tigers, 13 @ Oakland A's, 2

It seemed only fitting that the 600th game in Statis Pro was played by the real life world champs in 1984, the Detroit Tigers.  They didn't wilt in the spotlight, putting up an eight-spot in the fourth inning that included homers from Darrell Evans, Larry Herndon, and Chet Lemon.  Jack Morris pitched into he eighth while whiffing six A's.

Winning Pitcher - Jack Morris
Losing Pitcher - Steve McCatty
Player of the Game - Chet Lemon, 3-5, 2 2Bs, HR, 4RBI, 3R's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rickey Henderson, Joe Morgan

July 3, 2017

May 29, 1984 - First Place Bullpens

Game #597 - New York Yankees, 5 @ California Angels, 6

Ray Fontenot and Ron Romanick were posting goose eggs through the first three and a half innings when the Angels finally got on the board.  Rob Wilfong doubled to score Fred Lynn and then Doug DeCinces scored too when Omar Moreno overran the ball.

The Yankees came roaring back in the top of the sixth with big RBI hits from Willie Randolph and Ken Griffey, making it 5-2 in favor of New York.  But the Angels kept chipping away.  Lynn and Bob Boone drove in two in the bottom of the sixth, and Lynn hit a sacrifice fly in the seventh to plate Juan Beniquez and tie the game.

In the bottom of the eighth Boone reached on a Tim Foli error.  He moved to third on a single by Ron Jackson, which brought up Dick Schofield.  Schofield was non-existent on offense in the real 1984, and is doing even worse in the Statis Pro season, hovering around a .160 batting average.  So what was the call?  SUICIDE SQUEEZE  And it worked!  Schofield layed down a perfect bunt and Boone crossed home plate for the winning run.  Doug Corbett worked two innings of relief against the heart of the Yankees order to tally the win.

Winning Pitcher - Doug Corbett
Losing Pitcher - Bob Shirley
Player of the Game - Corbett, 2IP, six up six down, W
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield, Reggie Jackson

Game #598 - Toronto Blue Jays, 6 @ Chicago White Sox, 3

Richard Dotson surrendered three runs in the first, and then another in the second to put the Pale Hose in the early deficit.  Dotson actually really settled down after that, pitching into the ninth.  But Bryan Clark, making a spot start, dodged danger through 5 and 2/3 innings.  Jim Gott came in after that to record the long save.

Winning Pitcher - Bryan Clark
Losing Pitcher - Ron Romanick
Save - Jim Gott
Player of the Game - Gott, 3 1/3IP, H, K, R

June 30, 2017

May 29, 1984 - Sandstorm

Game #596 - Chicago Cubs, 5 @ Atlanta Braves, 0

Ryne SANDberg got the game off to a positive start with a first inning, lead-off homer to give the Cubbies a quick 1-0 lead.  They added two more in the seventh when Keith Moreland also went deep with the bases empty and then Jody Davis scored on a Rick Mahler balk.

Meanwhile, the Braves couldn't get anything going against Scott SANDerson.  He went eight strong innings, only giving up four hits and a walk.  Chicago tacked on two more in the ninth and Lee Smith finished the game for the North Side.

Winning Pitcher - Scott Sanderson
Losing Pitcher - Rick Mahler
Player of the Game - Scott Sanderson
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

June 27, 2017

May 29, 1984 - Gulden Nugget

Pittsburgh Pirates, 0 @ Cincinnati Reds, 1 (11 innings)

This game featured a potential all-star catcher...and I'm not talking about Tony Pena!

In both the first and second innings the Pirates managed to get a runner to third base, but Reds starter Jay Tibbs was able to pitch out of the jams to keep the game scoreless.  In fact, with two outs in the third, Tibbs retired the next ten batters in a row.

John Tudor countered for the Pirates with an even more dominating performance.  Over a span of eight innings he only allowed two hits and two walks while striking out six.  He got lifted for a pinch-hitter in the top of the ninth.  With the score still zero all, Jim Morrison reached on an error and then Lee Mazzilli singled.  Tibbs struck out Doug Frobel but Dale Berra reached on a Nick Esasky blunder to load the bases with one out.  But Ron Wotus lined out and then Milt May, hitting for Tudor, hit a harmless fly ball to Gary Redus to end the inning.

Fast forward to the bottom of the eleventh!  Don Robinson was working in his third inning of relief, having retired the first seven Reds he faced.  That's when Brad Gulden came in to replace Dann Bilardello.  What did Gulden do?  WALK-OFF HOMER!!!!!!!!  It was only the third hit of the game for Cincy, but all they needed to notch the win!!!

Winning Pitcher - Ted Power
Losing Pitcher - Don Robinson
Player of the Game - Brad Gulden, 1-1, PH Home Run
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Perez

Tony Pena has been a disappointment in this Statis Pro, hitting a listless .256 with no power, while Gulden has been hitting way above his weight class and has a good chance, if he keeps this up, to be an All-Star reserve come July...

June 25, 2017

May 29, 1984 - Off To See The Wizard

Game # 594 - St. Louis Cardinals, 8 @ Houston Astros, 4

This is the first game of the series against the two first place teams in the National League.  Houston featured HOF pitcher Nolan Ryan while St. Louis countered with up and comer Kurt Kepshire.

The Cardinals got on the board first when Ozzie Smith singled home two red birds with the bases loaded in the second inning.  Ozzie led off the top of the seventh with a walk from Ryan (already his fourth of the game) and a stolen base.  He scampered home on a RBI double by Willie McGee and Ryan got chased out of the game soon after.  St. Louis would go on to score five runs in the inning to pull away for good.

Ozzie Smith, who was a .257 hitter in the real 1984, is hitting almost 100 points above that in the Statis Pro season.  For the life of me I can't figure it out!  It's fun, though, because it's the Wizard, and everyone loves the Wizard.

Winning Pitcher - Kurt Kepshire
Losing Pitcher - Nolan Ryan
Player of the Game - Ozzie Smith, 2-3, 2B, 2RBI, 2BB's, SB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter, Nolan Ryan

June 24, 2017

May 28, 1984 - Lynn for the Win

Game #593 - New York Yankees, 3 @ California Angels, 4

This was the final game on the schedule for May 28, and it featured the Yankees on their long West Coast road trip pulling into Anaheim.  Phil Niekro toed the rubber and his knuckler was bouncing.  In fact, he didn't give up a hit until the fifth inning.  Gary Pettis singled, stole second, and then trotted home on the rare Bob Boon double.  That cut the Yankees lead to 2-1.

New York got a run back when Ken Griffey Sr. scored on a Bobby Meacham double.  But Fred Lynn homered in the bottom half of the sixth to tie things up at 3-3.  In the bottom of the seventh Lynn was once again at the plate with runners in scoring position.  He doubled for his third RBI, plating Rod Carew.  From there the California handed the ball to reliever Don Aase, who retired six of the seven Yankees hitters he faced for the save.  The Angels did suffer a loss of sorts, though.  Bobby Grich got injured on a Dave Winfield line out that will cost him the next twenty games.  Enter Rob Wilfong...

Winning Pitcher - John Curtis
Losing Pitcher - Phil Niekro
Save - Don Aase
Player of the Game - Fred Lynn, 2-3, HR, 2B, 3RBI, BB, OF Asst.
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield, Phil Niekro, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson. 

June 19, 2017

May 28, 1984 - Hall of Fame 3-Run Homers

Game #591 - Baltimore Orioles, 12 @ Seattle Mariners, 5

This game was a hot mess, so I offer some observations:


  • There are about five players in the AL who are so far outside their expected level of play it's incomprehensible.  One of those players is Oriole Mike Young.  In this game?  He got one hit...and FIVE walks.  His OBP is now over .500.  It makes no sense.
  • Eddie Murray recorded 5 RBI.  A three-run homer in the first, and RBI single in the sixth, and a bases-loaded walk in the seventh.
  • Noodle-armed John Shelby recorded two OF assists, giving him three for the season.
Winning Pitcher - Scott McGregor
Losing Pitcher - Ed VandeBerg
Player of the Game - Eddie Murray, 2-5, HR, 5RBI, BB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray

Game #592 - Detroit Tigers, 2 @ Oakland A's, 7

Juan Berenguer gave up six runs in the bottom of the second inning.  Dave Kingman and Carney Lansford hit solo homers and Rickey Henderson cleared the wall with two runners on.  It was brutal for the Tigers, who couldn't get anything started against lefty Ray Burris.

Winning Pitcher - Ray Burris
Losing Pitcher - Juan Berenguer
Player of the Game - Rickey Henderson, 2-3, HR, 4RBI, BB, SB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rickey Henderson, Joe Morgan

June 17, 2017

May 28, 1984 - Outfielders to the Rescue

Game #589 - St. Louis Cardinals, 5  @ Atlanta Braves, 6

St. Louis had an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Gerald Perry and Claudell Washington each launched solo homers to take the lead.  But in the top of the third Ozzie Smith hit an RBI double to plate Lonnie Smith, and the Wizard of Oz later scored on a Ken Oberkfell single to give the Cardinals the lead once again.

The Cardinals chipped in another run in the top of the fourth to give them a 4-2 lead.  That's when the Atlanta offense came back to life.  In the bottom of the fifth two runners were on with two outs when slugger Dale Murphy stepped up to the plate.  He promptly made it a 5-4 game by depositing the ball over the outfield fence!  Next up?  Chris Chambliss.  Result?  Another homer!  The Atlanta bullpen pitched for four innings, only giving up a run in the eighth to save the game.

Winning Pitcher - Craig McMurtry
Losing Pitcher - Bob Forsch
Save - Gene Garber
Player of the Game - Dale Murphy, 2-4, HR, 3RBI
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith

Game #590 - Kansas City Royals, 4 @ Texas Rangers, 2

It was a scoreless game until the bottom of the second.  With George Wright on third and Curtis Wilkerson on second, little Wayne Tolleson smoked a double to give the anemic Rangers offense a quick 2-0 lead.  Meanwhile, starter Dave Stewart was cruising along.  He made it until the eighth inning, when he allowed two hits and was lifted for Dave Tobik.  Tobik got out of the jam, and the Royals were down to their final three outs in the ninth, still trailing 2-0.

But that's when the improbable comeback started!  U.L. Washington walked and Leon Roberts singled, but with two outs it looked bleak.  That's when Willie Wilson hit a clutch double that scored Washington and moved Roberts to third.  Onix Concepcion was up next...and he hit a single to center field!  Roberts scored easily and Wilson took off, beating the throw to home by Billy Sample.  Hal McRae then batted Concepcion home and Tobik was finally lifted after choking away Stewart's excellent start.

Winning Pitcher - Bud Black
Losing Pitcher - Dave Tobik
Save - Dan Quisenberry
Player of the Game - Willie Wilson, 2-5, 2 2b's, RBI, R