November 19, 2014

May 8, 1984 - Flair for the Dramatic

Game #365 - Detroit Tigers, 7 @ Kansas City Royals, 2 (11 innings)

The two games in today's post were nail-biters, so let's jump right in!

Jack Morris of the Tigers was facing southpaw Charlie Liebrandt of the Royals, and I wasn't necessarily expecting a pitcher's duel.  The game was tied 0-0 in the top of the fourth, though, when Lou Whitaker rocked a double to start the inning.  Chet Lemon hit a sacrifice fly to move Whitaker to third and, one out later, Kirk Gibson hit a single to plate Sweet Lou and give the Tigers the lead.

It was still 1-0 heading into the eighth when Lance Parrish hit a single that scored Alan Trammell.  With the comfortable two-run lead, Jack Morris was looking to complete the shutout.  With two outs in the bottom of the ninth he was almost there, but DH Jorge Orta hit a single to keep the game alive for Kansas City.  That's when Frank White stepped up.  All he did was HIT A TWO RUN HOMER TO TIE THE GAME!!!  Just like that it was all tied up.  A disgusted Jack Morris struck out Dane Iorg before heading to free baseball.

Neither team did much in the tenth, but Detroit changed things in a hurry in the top of the 11th.  Larry Gura was toeing the rubber for his third inning of relief but walked Tom Brookens to lead things off.  It was all down hill after that.  Trammell tripled home Brookens, Whitaker doubled home Trammell, and a few batters later pinch hitter Darrell Evans launched a three run blast to cement the win.

Winning Pitcher - Doug Bair
Losing Pitcher - Larry Gura
Player of the Game - Alan Trammell, 2-5, 3B, RBI, 2R's

Game #366 - Seattle Mariners, 11 @ Oakland A's, 12

Mike Moore of the Mariners has been getting abused all season by teams, despite being a league leader in strike outs.  That was the case again in this game.  He gave up eight runs in four innings and his ERA is currently north of 8.00. 

Fast-forward to the ninth and Oakland has a 12-6 lead.  Larry Sorensen was pitching but quickly loaded the bases when Barry Bonnell stepped to the plate.  He must like lunch meats, because he produced a GRAND SALAMI!  All of a sudden the Mariners were only two runs down!!!

Oakland countered by brining in their best reliever, Bill Caudill.  The first hitter he faced, Spike Owen, went for the cheap shot and bunted for a base hit.  That's when pinch hitter Ken Phelps came into the game and single too.  With runners on first and second Phil Bradley dug in.  He too poked a hit into the outfield, and Owen scored to bring Seattle within one!  Unfortunately for the Mariners, the runs dried up.  Jack Perconte grounded out and so did Dave Henderson to end the game.

Winning Pitcher - Curt Young
Losing Pitcher - Mike Moore
Save - Bill Caudill
Player of the Game - Dave Kingman, 3-3, 2HR's, 2B, 6RBI's, 2BB's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rickey Henderson (back from injury!), Joe Morgan

November 16, 2014

May 8, 1984 - So You Had A Bad Day

Game #363 - Minnesota Twins, 2 @ California Angels, 4

The good news for Doug DeCinces is that his team won.  The bad news is he might have had the worst game of the Statis Pro season.  He was 0 for 3 with two strikeouts and grounded into a double play.  He committed an error that caused the only run Tommy John would commit, and to top things off, he got injured for 10 games.

Winning Pitcher - Tommy John
Losing Pitcher - Mike Smithson
Save - Doug Corbett
Player of the Game - Tommy John, 7IP, 8H's, 1K, 1 unearned run
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #364 - Milwaukee Brewers, 4 @ Chicago White Sox, 6

The Brewers had a big 3-run inning in the fourth, Bill Schroeder hit a solo homer and Charlie Moore doubled home Jim Gantner.  But Moose Haas couldn't keep the ball in the park.  Harold Baines, Marc Hill, and Ron Kittle all went deep for the Pale Hose and they pulled out a 6-4 victory.

Winning Pitcher - Bert Roberge
Losing Pitcher - Moose Haas
Save - Ron Reed
Player of the Game - Roberge, 2 2/3IP in relief, 0R's, win
Hall of Famers in the Game - Robin Yount

November 11, 2014

May 7, 1984 - Call It A Day

Atlanta Braves, 2 @ Philadelphia Phillies, 3

Rick Mahler and John Denny were dueling in this game, and it figured to be a good battle because they are two of the better pitchers in the NL.  However, the match-up didn't last long because Mahler got ejected in the bottom of third arguing balls and strikes with the umpire.  That put the already taxed Atlanta bullpen in overdrive.  Jeff Dedmon was tremendous, going 3 and 2/3 innings without surrendering a run and striking out four.  He handed the ball to Pete Falcone, but the Phillies tagged him for two runs and the loss in the game.  To make matters worse, the Braves lost catcher Bruce Bennedict to injury for 16 games.

Winning Pitcher - Al Holland
Losing Pitcher - Pete Falcone
Player of the Game - Garry Maddox, 3-4, 2B, 2RBI's

Los Angeles Dodgers, 4 @ St. Louis Cardinals, 1

Andy Stuper got his first action of the season for St. Louis.  He was weaving in and out of trouble throughout the game without giving up a run, but the Dodgers plated Steve Sax on a David Green error at first base in the sixth.  That tied the game at one apiece.  In the top of the seventh, though, Pedro Guerrero and Mike Marshall hit back to back solo shots to give L.A. the victory.

Winning Pitcher - Orel Hershiser
Losing Pitcher - Andy Stuper
Save - Tom Niedenfuer
Player of the Game - Hershiser, 7IP, 5H's, 4K's, R
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter

November 4, 2014

May 7, 1984 - NL East On The Rise

Houston Astros, 2 @ Montreal Expos, 8

Nolan Ryan started the game for Houston, but he didn't have his best stuff.  He struck out the side in the first, but also gave up a run on a wild pitch with the bases loaded.  Errors by himself and Denny Walling didn't help the Astros either.  Meanwhile, Montreal had a balanced attack and took advantage of 9 Houston walks.  Andre Dawson had four of those free passes.

Winning Pitcher - Steve Rogers
Losing Pitcher - Nolan Ryan
Player of the Game - Miguel Dilone, 3-5, 2B, RBI, SB, 3R's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Nolan Ryan, Gary Carter, Andre Dawson

Cincinnati Reds, 3 @ New York Mets, 4

Dave Parker cracked an RBI double for the Reds in the top of the first, but New Yor roared back in the bottom half of the inning.  Wally Backman stole second base with two outs and Darryl Strawberry batting.  Straw doubled him home, and then scored on an RBI single by Hubie Brooks, who was fresh off the injured lsit.  Brooks eventually scored too on a error by Tom Foley. 

The Reds tied the game in the top of the second, though, because Duane Walker hit a two run homer that made it 3-3.  The scored remained that way until the bottom of the fourth when light-hitting Ron Gardenhire poked a home run over the left field fence.  Jesse Orosco pitched two innings of relief and escaped a two-on, no-out jam when Dan Bilardello lined out to Backman who then caught Eddie Milner too far off second base. 

Winning Pitcher - Brent Berenyi
Losing Pitcher - Joe Price
Save - Jesse Orosco
Player of the Game - Orosco, 2IP, 2K's, save
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Perez

November 2, 2014

May 7, 1984 - Three Is Not The Magic Number

Game #357 - Seattle Mariners, 3 @ Oakland A's, 7 (rained out in the bottom of the 8th)

Things started well for Seattle.  They scored two runs in the top of the first, largely due to a Mike Heath outfield error.

(If I could start this season over, I would record errors by position in my spreadsheet instead of by total.  For folks like Mike Heath, it's hard to tell what errors occurred when he is playing outfield verses catcher, etc.)

But Heath made up for his blunder with an RBI single in the second inning and a second RBI later in the game.  The Oakland onslaught was steady until the bottom of the eighth.  Reliever Roy Thomas had loaded the bases when the heavens opened up and the rains came, putting Seattle out of their misery.

Winning Pitcher - Mike Warren
Losing Pitcher - Mark Langston
Player of the Game - Warren, 7IP, 8H's, 2 ER's, 8K's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Joe Morgan

Game #358 - San Francisco Giants, 3 @ Chicago Cubs 13

The blowouts aren't fun to play.  Once the floodgates open, you just want the game to end.  I can see why real world managers cringe in these situations, because they wreak havoc on your bullpen.  That was the case with this one.  Bill Laskey got shelled early and often, unable to escape the third inning.  In that span both Leon Durham and Jody Davis jacked homers.  The Cubs weren't done in that department, though.  Gary Matthews added two more of his own!  Meanwhile, starter Scott Sanderson was in cruise control.  He scattered eight hits over seven innings and struck out eight as well.

Winning Pitcher - Scott Sanderson
Losing Pitcher - Bill Laskey
Player of the Game - Sarge, 2-3, 2HR's, 5RBI's, BB, SAC
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

October 26, 2014

May 7, 1984 - Squeeze

Game #355 - Detroit Tigers, 5 @ Kansas City Royals, 6

Kansas City is starting a long stretch without their all-star third sacker, George Brett, who is out with an injury.  The Royals got things started the right way in the first, though, because Daryl Motley hit a solo homer and Frank White singled home Steve Balboni to give KC a 2-0 lead.

They had extended that lead to 4-1 in the top of the sixth when Royals starter Frank Wills ran into some trouble.  Alan Trammell doubled and then Kirk Gibson launched yet another home run to chase Wills out of the game.  Joe Beckwith entered but he surrendered a two run shot of his own, this time to Lance Parrish.  That gave the Tigers a 5-4 lead.  Pat Sheridan hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the inning that plated Greg Pryor, and that had the game knotted at 5-5.

That was still the score heading into the bottom of the tenth.  Willie Hernandez was starting his third inning of relief work when pinch-hitter John Wathan doubled.  Wathan advanced to third on an infield single by Pryor.  Don Slaught was next up but grounded out to Darrell Evans.  With one out, Buddy Biancalana came to the plate.  He's a terrible hitter, and Hernandez is a strong pitcher, so I opted for the suicide squeeze.  Sure enough, Biancalana laid it down and Wathan scored on the walk-off squeeze!

Winning Pitcher - Dan Quisenberry
Losing Pitcher - Willie Hernandez
Player of the Game - Lil' Buddy

Game #356 - Cleveland Indians, 3 @ New York Yankees, 4

Let's fast forward to the bottom of the sixth.  Toby Harrah tripled off Neal Heaton.  That brought up Bobby Meacham.  I was feeling it.  SQUEEZE TIME.  Meacham pulled it off, New York now had a 2-0 lead.

Tim Foli knocked in two more for New York to give them a 4-0 lead going into the top of the eighth.  Ray Fontenot, still in the game, gave up three straight hits, including an RBI double by Chris Bando.  Reliever Jay Howell took over but gave up a two-run double to pinch hitter George Vukovich.  That made it a 4-3 game.  Howell got back on track, though, and closed them out in the ninth for the save.

Winning Pitcher - Ray Fontenot
Losing Pitcher - Neal Heaton
Save - Jay Howell
Player of the Game - Tim Foli, 2RBI double
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield

October 19, 2014

Minnesota and Milwaukee Prove Midwest Dominance

Game #353 - Minnesota Twins, 4 @ California Angels, 2

Gary Gaetti singled home Kent Hrbek in the third inning to start the scoring for the game.  The Angels responded in the bottom half of the inning when Brian Downing and Fred Lynn hit back-to-back doubles to give California a 2-1 lead.  Mickey Hatcher tied the game in the fourth when an RBI that scored Randy Bush.  It was Dave Engle's RBI hits in the seventh and ninth, though, the secured the win for Minnesota.

Winning Pitcher - John Butcher
Losing Pitcher - Ron Romanick
Save - Rick Lysander
Player of the Game - Engle, 2-5, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #354 - Milwaukee Brewers, 10 @ Chicago White Sox, 2

I don't think there's been a worse offense in Statis Pro this season than the Milwaukee Brewers, but they busted out the whipping sticks against the White Sox.  Eight of their nine starters recorded two hits, with a grand total of 17 for the game.  Only three of those went for extra bases, but they added five walks on the way to the victory.  Not only did Chicago suffer a terrible loss, they will also be without the services of Hall of Fame catcher Carlton Fisk for the next 20 games.  Fisk took a foul ball off the hand from the bat of Cecil Cooper and had to exit the game.  Joel Skinner will replace Fisk on the roster, but the South Side is now missing one of their biggest offensive threats.

Winning Pitcher - Don Sutton
Losing Pitcher - Richard Dotson
Player of the Game - Dion James, 2-5, bases clearing double in the fourth inning that started the route
Hall of Famers in the Game - Robin Yount, Don Sutton, Carlton Fisk

October 18, 2014

May 6, 1984 - Make that EIGHT in a Row for the Cardinals

Game #352 - San Francisco Giants, 0 @ St. Louis Cardinals, 5

It wasn't until I started typing this post that I realized this 1984 series reflected the 2014 NLCS!  The 2014 Giants got the best of St. Louis, but the 1984 Statis Pro Cardinals swept San Fran to run their win streak to a staggering eight games.

The Red Birds started the scoring in the bottom of the first inning, as back to back doubles by Willie McGee and David Green - with two outs - eventually led to a 2-0 lead.  That would be all Danny Cox would even need.  Though he walked seven Giants, he only gave up four hits and went the distance for a complete game victory. 

Winning Pitcher - Danny Cox
Losing Pitcher - Mark Grant
Player of the Game - Cox, CG SHO
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith

That was the last May 6th game, I hope to have the standings and statistics updated later today.  As always, thanks again for following the blog!

October 15, 2014

May 6, 1984 - Pirates Plunder Dodgers for Two Wins

Game #350 - Los Angeles Dodgers, 0 @ Pittsburgh Pirates, 2

There was a major pitcher's duel in this one!  Rick Honeycutt faced Rick Rhoden and both brought their best stuff.

The score was 0-0 into the top of the sixth when L.A. finally got their first hit, a Terry Whitfield single.  In the bottom of the same inning Lee Lacy got a hit with one out and stole second base.  Johnny Ray was up next, and he also singled.  The third base coach sent Lacy home, where he was safe despite the throw.  Ray moved to second on the play at the plate, and then to third on a Tony Pena ground out.  Honeycutt uncorked a wild pitch, and Ray scampered home to give the Pirates a 2-0 lead.  That's all they would need because Rhoden was absolutely dominant.  He only gave up two hits in the complete game shutout.

Winning Pitcher - Rick Rhoden
Losing Pitcher - Rick Honeycutt
Player of the Game - Rhoden, CG SHO, 2H's, 3BB's, 6K's

Game #351 - Los Angeles Dodgers, 4 @ Pittsburgh Pirates, 12

This game was brutal.  The Pirates scored two runs in the first, third, fourth, and sixth innings, and added four more in the eighth because why not.  Fernando Valenzuela didn't escape the fourth.  Every Pirates starter had at least one hit, and four had as many as three.  Even starting pitcher John Tudor was 2 for 3!

Winning Pitcher - John Tudor
Losing Pitcher - Fernando Valenzuela
Player of the Game - Lee Mazzilli, 3-5, 2B, R, 6RBI's

October 13, 2014

May 6, 1984 - Chicki-Chicki Boom Boom

Game #349 - Cincinnati Reds, 5 @ Philadelphia Phillies, 4

The Phillies jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the second inning.  Ozzie Virgil and Joe Lefebvre hit back to back solo shots to give Philadelphia a 2-0 advantage.  They tacked on a third run in the third when Juan Samuel doubled home Von Hayes.

But the Reds came storming back in the fifth.  They tagged Shane Rawley for three runs to tie the game, including a triple for Nick Esasky.  Philadelphia answered back in the bottom of the inning when Jeff Russell surrendered his fourth run of the game on an RBI single by Glenn Wilson.  Unfortunately, Wilson got caught going to far past first base on the hit and was thrown out by Dave "Cobra" Parker.

The score was still 4-3 in the eighth when Cesar Cedeno jacked a solo blast to tie the game up off of reliever Bill Campbell.  Then, in the top of the ninth, the Reds took the lead when Wayne Krenchicki laced a triple to plate Parker.  Juan Samuel made it as far as third base in the bottom of the ninth, but was ultimately stranded when Virgil struck out to end the game.

Winning Pitcher - John Franco
Losing Pitcher - Larry Andersen
Player of the Game - Krenchicki, game-winning triple
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Perez

October 12, 2014

May 6, 1984 - Joe Niekro Nearly Throws No-Hitter

Game #348 - Houston Astros, 4 @ New York Mets, 0

I continue to hope and pray that this season of Statis Pro will deliver a no-hitter.  I almost got my wish today!

In the top of the second inning, Walt Terrell of the Mets gave up a two-out single to Craig Reynolds.  Ray Knight then launched a hard double that scored Reynolds to give Houston a one run lead.   

Joe Niekro retired the side in the bottom of the fifth, including strike outs of Mike Fitzgerald and Jose Oquendo.  It was about this point in the game I realized Niekro had yet to surrender a hit.  He had issued three walks, including two to Darryl Strawberry, but no hits.  In the bottom of the sixth it was once again three up, three down.

In the top of the seventh Houston extended their lead.  Terrell was lifted for a pinch hitter the previous inning so Brent Gaff was on the hill.  He ended up allowing three runs to score, including a Terry Puhl solo shot.  That brought up the Mets in the bottom of the seventh.  Two Mets starters, Hubie Brooks and George Foster, were missing from the line up because of injuries, but this inning would feature Keith Hernandez and Strawberry, New York's two best hitters.  Once again, though, Niekro retired the Mets three in a row, including a Strawberry whiff.

At this point I was very nervous.  We were six outs away from the no-no.  Mike Fitzgerald led off the eighth.  The Fast Action Card indicated the play would be off the pitcher card.  The next FAC was flipped:  18.  Single off the pitcher card.  No-hitter eliminated.  Niekro actually gave up two more hits but the Mets didn't score, and the knuckler finished the game for a shutout.

Winning Pitcher - Joe Niekro
Losing Pitcher - Walt Terrell
Player of the Game - Niekro, CG SHO, 4H's, 3BB's, 8K's