June 20, 2015

May 12, 1984 - Cheaper by the Dozens

Game #413 - St. Louis Cardinals, 2 @ Cincinnati Reds, 12

Cardinals pitcher John Stuper got straight SMOKED in the fourth inning.  Eleven Reds came to the plate, including Brad Gulden, who crushed a grand slam as Cincy scored eight runs in the inning.

Winning Pitcher - Joe Price
Losing Pitcher - John Stuper
Player of the Game - Brad Gulden, Grand Slam, 2BB's, Sac Fly, 3R's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith

Game #414 - Chicago Cubs, 3 @ Houston Astros, 4 (12 Innings!)

This game was much more suspenseful than the Cardinals/Reds match-up.  Ryne Sandberg led off the game with a single and a stolen base, then Mel Hall knocked him home for the first run.  In the bottom of the fifth, Denny Walling went deep for his first homer on the season to give Houston the lead, 2-1.  Ron Cey matched his third base counterpart by blasting his own two run bomb the next inning, putting the Cubs back in the lead at 3-2.  But Jerry Mumphrey scored Bill Doran on an RBI single in the bottom half of the inning to tie things up.

In the seventh the Cubs suffered a serious blow when a bloop hit by Mark Bailey caused Leon Durham and Gary Matthews to crash into each other for injuries, which will cause them to miss seven and six games respectively.  But neither team could generate offense until the bottom of the twelfth.  Jose Cruz led off with a single and then moved to third on a double by Enos Cabell.  Cruz got nabbed off third, though, when Jody Davis made a diving catch on a little pop up by Denny Walling.  That left two outs and Cabell on second base with Craig Reynolds at the plate.  Dickie Noles gave up a single and Cabell scampered home to win on the walk-off hit in the bottom of the twelfth!!!

Winning Pitcher - Joe Sambito (retired one batter)
Losing Pitcher - Dickie Noles
Player of the Game - Vern Ruhle, 1 2/3 IP of perfect relief
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg, Nolan Ryan

June 12, 2015

May 12, 1984 - Closers Combust!

Game #411 - Seattle Mariners, 11 @ New York Yankees, 10

This game was so exciting I'm going to give you an inning by inning breakdown!

New York jumped all over Seattle starter Ed VandeBerg.  They put up five runs, including a two run blast from Don Mattingly and a solo homer by Roy Smalley.  I thought this would be a blowout.  THAT'S WHY YOU PLAY THE GAME!

Ron Guidry cruised through the first but gave up back to back singles in the second.  Up stepped Barry Bonnell, who launched one over the left field fence.  All of a sudden it was just a two run lead...

Did I say Yankees lead?  Because Guidry gavem up four more runs as the Mariners batted around in the third.  Three of those runs?  I bases clearing double by...Bonnell!  He already had six RBI's by the third, how is he not the Player of the Game?  #SUSPENSE

With two outs Tim Foli doubled off VandeBerg.  Then Andre Robertson did too, plating Foli.  That was all for Ed.  Mariners were still out in front, 7-6.

Bob Stoddard was on the mound for Seattle, but he got abused by the potent New York hitters.  The Yankees scored three runs, two on an RBI single by Smalley.  That put New York back in front, 9-7.

Huh.  Nothing really happened in this inning.  Weird.

Alvin Davis, a rookie in 1984, has been tearing it up this season.  He hit a solo home run in the seventh, New York still winning, 9-8.

Jay Howell was pitching for the Yankees, and he hadn't given up a run all season.  But...Al Cowens hit an RBI single to tie the game!  But it doesn't last long!  In the bottom of the inning Tim Foli singles.  He moved to second on a sacrifice by Robertson.  Two batters later, pinch hitter Steve Kemp knocked him in.  New York in the lead again, 10-9.

Jay Howell settled down and got two outs right away.  With only one to go for the win, pinch hitter Ken Phelps singled!  Next up, another pinch hitter:  Dave Henderson.  With the flip of the first FAC card...BD!  Clutch batting!  Next card?  HOME RUN!!!  Seattle out front again!  Ed Nunez retired the Yankees in the bottom of the inning for the win!!!

Winning Pitcher:  Mike Stanton
Losing Pitcher:  Jay Howell
Save:  Ed Nunez
Player of the Game:  Dave Henderson - SECOND GAME IN A ROW!
Hall of Famers in the Game:  Dave Winfield

Game #412 - Pittsburgh Pirates, 6 @ Atlanta Braves, 4

That last game was so long in the recap, I'll skip straight to the good part for this one.  Steve Bedrosian took the mound in the top of the eighth with a 4-2 lead for the Braves.  Like Jay Howell, he had yet to surrender a run.  But he gave up FIVE straight hits and was lifted without recording an out as the Pirates came out of nowhere for the comeback win!

Winning Pitcher:  John Tudor
Losing Pitcher:  Steve Bedrosian
Save:  Kent Tekulve
Player of the Game:  Doug Frobel, started the rally against Bedrosian.

May 29, 2015

May 12, 1984 - Five For Fighting

Game #409 - Boston Red Sox, 0 @ Kansas City Royals, 5

Darryl Motley has been one of the worst starters in Statis Pro so far, but he was a big contributor in this game.  He launched a two run homer in the first to give KC the early lead.  The Royals would tack on three more runs in the seventh thanks in part to a pinch hit home run by Jorge Orta.  Meanwhile, Bud Black dominated the Red Sox hitters while tossing a shutout.

Winning Pitcher - Bud Black
Losing Pitcher - Bob Ojeda
Player of the Game - Black, CG SHO, 5H's, 3K's
Hall of Famers in the Game:  Wade Boggs, Jim Rice

Game #410 - Minnesota Twins, 3 @ Milwaukee Brewers, 5

This was the second game in a series between two of the worst teams in the American League so far.  The Brew Crew scored first in the bottom of the third.  Dion James doubled home Ted Simmons.  Minnesota responded in the fourth.  Tim Teufel hit his first triple of the year, and Gary Gaetti later knocked him in.

A two-out error by Don Sutton in the sixth, his second of the game, led to two more runs for the Twins.  But in the bottom of the seventh, Twins starter John Butcher self-destructed.  He allowed four straight singles before being lifted in favor of Len Whitehouse.  Whitehouse would hit a batter and then give up a bases loaded double to Cecil Cooper to secure the victory for Milwaukee.

Winning Pitcher - Don Sutton
Losing Pitcher - John Butcher
Save - Rollie Fingers
Player of the Game - Cecil Cooper, 2-4, 2B, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Don Sutton, Rollie Fingers

May 25, 2015

May 12, 1984 - Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day in the present, not 1984.  My dad served in the Air Force for the first 14 years of my life.  He finished his service by recruiting for the Air Force Academy for years.  I grew up on military bases and have a special place in my heart for this holiday.

Game #407 - Toronto Blue Jays, 15 @ Cleveland Indians, 8

Can I make a small confession?  I screwed up this game.  The Indians batted around in the third inning.  In the top of the fourth, I started at the top of their line up (Brett Butler) instead of the number eight hitter (Jerry Willard), who was supposed to have batted next.  I didn't catch it until I was recording the stats.  I know I should have erased the last six innings and started again, but after 23 combined runs and seven combined relief pitchers, I took the lazy way out.  Theoretically, it should have helped the Indians anyway, and they still lost.  Please don't think less of me!

Winning Pitcher - Bryan Clark
Losing Pitcher - Steve Farr
Player of the Game - Alfredo Griffin, 3-5, HR(!), 5RBI

Game #408 - California Angels, 4 @ Detroit Tigers, 3

With the Blue Jays winning the previous game, the Tigers were under increased pressure to keep pace in the AL East.  Unfortunately, Juan Berenguer didn't have his best stuff.  He gave up a solo homer in the second to Reggie Jackson, and a RBI double to Fred Lynn in the third.  Ruppert Jones of Detroit grounded into a double play in the fourth, but it plated Kirk Gibson in the process, cutting the California lead to one.  But in the top of the sixth Jackson went yard again off Berenguer, and the Tigers couldn't complete a comeback victory.

Winning Pitcher - Ron Romanick
Losing Pitcher - Juan Berenguer
Save - Don Aase
Player of the Game - Reggie Jackson, 2-4, 2HRs, 3RBI
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

May 16, 2015

May 12, 1984 - Dry Spells

It's been quite some time since posting, and even longer since playing Statis Pro.  Sometimes we get stuck in seasons of life where personal recreation takes a back seat to more important husband, father, employee, etc.  I'm hoping to get back on tracks soon!

In the meantime, here are a couple of games I completed a few weeks ago:

Game #405 - Oakland A's, 8 @ Baltimore Orioles, 5 (12 innings)

With two outs in the top of the 12th, Mark Brown hit Dave Kingman, walked Bruce Bochte, gave up a double to Mike Heath, and a single to Tony Phillips.  The Orioles loaded the bases with two outs, but Tim Conroy got Rick Dempsey to ground out to end the game.

Winning Pitcher - Larry Sorensen
Losing Pitcher - Mark Brown
Save - Tim Conroy
Player of the Game - Dave Kingman, 4-5, 2HR's, 3R's, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rickey Henderson, Joe Morgan, Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray

Game #406 - Texas Rangers, 1 @ Chicago White Sox, 6

Rich Dotson only surrendered three hits, but added five walks over 6 2/3 innings.  Texas only plated one run, because they are the worst team in the AL this season.

Winning Pitcher - Rich Dotson
Losing Pitcher - Dickie Noles
Player of the Game - Greg Luzinski, 3-4, HR, RBI

April 11, 2015

May 11, 1984 - Teeny Boppers

Game #403 - Philadelphia Phillies, 15 @ San Diego Padres, 3

400 games into this Statis Pro season, and I'm still conflicted on when to yank a starting pitcher who is getting shelled in the first inning.  I pulled Eric Show after two outs and seven hitters because he had already yielded four runs.  A fifth crossed the plate when Floyd Chiffer inherited a runner on third.  The Phillies added a bookend to the massive scoring in the ninth inning, when they scored six more runs.  Four of those came courtesy of a Len Matuszek grand slam.

Winning Pitcher - Shane Rawley
Losing Pitcher - Eric Show
Player of the Game - Len Matuszek, 3-4, 2B, Grand Slam, HBP, 3R's, 4RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Mike Schmidt, Tony Gwynn

Game #404 - Montreal Expos, 13 @ San Francisco Giants, 4

...and continuing the theme with early inning struggles...Giants starter Jeff Robinson was already losing 1-0 when five runners scored in the third.  The Giants bullpen was already taxed from their last loss, so I let him go back out there for the fifth.  He allowed two more runs and then loaded the bases before I finally sent him to the showers.  The Expos had a field day, none more so than Gary Carter.  He was perfect at the plate and scored three runs while driving in five.

Winning Pitcher - Charlie Lea
Losing Pitcher - Jeff Robinson
Player of the Game - Carter, 4-4, 2B, HR, 3R's, 5RBI's, BB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Gary Carter, Andre Dawson

April 4, 2015

May 11, 1984 - The East Is Least

Game #401 - Chicago Cubs, 3 @ Houston Astros, 5

Mike Scott got off to a rough start when he surrendered a lead off homer run to Ryne Sandberg in the top of the first.  But Houston chipped back and took the lead by the fifth inning.  Ron Cey brought the Cubbies back within one when he launched a two run blast of his own, but Dave Smith pitched a great two innings of relief, striking out four Chicago hitters in that span.

Winning Pitcher - Mike Scott
Losing Pitcher - Steve Trout
Save - Bill Dawley
Player of the Game - Dave Smith
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

Game #402 - New York Mets, 1 @ Los Angeles Dodgers, 2

In the bottom of the first Steve Sax singled off Ron Darling.  He then stole second base.  Two hitters and outs later, Mike Marshall doubled him home to give L.A. the quick 1-0 lead.

Darling helped his own cause in the bottom of the third by reaching first on a hit.  He moved to third on a line drive by Mookie Wilson, and then scored on a Kelvin Chapman ground out to tie the game.  The game stayed tied until the bottom of the sixth.  Ken Landreaux singled and move to third on two separate ground outs.  That's when Sax recorded his second hit to plate Landreaux for the lead.

Meanwhile, Fernando Valenzuela was dealing.  His only real trouble occurred in...the top of the ninth!  I had channeled my inner-Tommy Lasorda and was committed to Fernandomania finishing the game.  Hubie Brooks led off with a hit, but George Foster grounded into a double play.  Ron Gardenhire was up next, and he doubled!  Mike Fitzgerald stepped up and walked, putting two on with two outs in a one run game.  Wally Backman pinch hit in the nine hole, but Valenzuela got him to strike out for the complete game victory!

Winning Pitcher - Fernando Valenzuela
Losing Pitcher - Ron Darling
Player of the Game - Valenzuela, CG, ER, 9K's

March 8, 2015

May 11, 1984 - 400

Game #400 - St. Louis Cardinals, 10 @ Cincinnati Reds, 2

Howdy friends!  If you can't tell by now, I just played my 400th Statis Pro game for this 1984 season!  It's taken just over three years to get here, but nonetheless, we're here!  As always, thanks for taking time to read these silly posts.

This game actually started off quite suspenseful.  There were goose eggs on the scoreboard through the first four innings as Danny Cox and Jay Tibbs were holding their opposing hitters in check.  But in the top of the fifth Cox squeezed home Tom Herr and then Ozzie Smith hit a 2-RBI single to give the Red Birds a 3-0 lead.  They never looked back as Cox pitched eight innings while only giving up one run.

Winning Pitcher - Danny Cox
Losing Pitcher - Jay Tibbs
Player of the Game - Cox, his third straight POTG
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ozzie Smith, Tony Perez

February 26, 2015

May 11, 1984 - Change in Pitch

Game #399 - Pittsburgh Pirates, 4 @ Atlanta Braves, 1

I did something in this game I don't recall doing before in this Statis Pro season:  I didn't hit the pitcher in the ninth slot in the batting order.  I didn't even hit him in the eighth slot!  That's right, starter Rick Rhoden got penciled into the seven-hole.

Rhoden hit over .300 in the real 1984 and his hitting card looks a lot better than Dale Berra and Doug Frobel's, so I figured, what the heck.

Rick might have been distracted by the change in routine, because his first inning was a bit rocky.  Bob Horner doubled and then scored on a Claudell Washington double.  Dale Murphy struck out for the second out of the bottom of the first but Chris Chambliss singled.  Washington rounded third and was heading for home but Frobel gunned him down to prevent the second run from scoring.

Johnny Ray, meanwhile, had Rhoden's back.  He knocked a two run homer in the second and doubled home another run in the fifth.  Lee Lacy added a solo shot in the eighth to secure the win.  How did Rhoden do batting seventh?  He was 1-3 with a double!

Winning Pitcher - Rick Rhoden
Losing Pitcher - Rick Mahler
Save - Kent Tekulve
Player of the Game - Johnny Ray, 2-5, 2B, HR, 3RBI's

February 23, 2015

May 11, 1984 - Rain and Pain

Before I forget - there's a new poll to the right of this story!

Game #397 - Minnesota Twins, 8 @ Milwaukee Brewers, 3 (rained out after 5 innings)

The Twins jumped all over Bob McClure in the first inning.  Kent Hrbek hit a two run homer with just one out, driving home Mickey Hatcher.  Hatcher was on base after a fluke single caused Charlie Moore and Robin Yount to collide.  Moore will be on the shelf for 11 games.  The Brewers are so depleted with injuries I don't even have a position player to call up to the active roster.  Dave Engle doubled home two as well to give the Twins a 4-0 lead after one inning.  Hatcher hit a two run jack of his own in the second inning, and the only thing that could cool off the Minnesota bats was the unexpected downpour that ended the game after five innings.

Winning Pitcher - Frank Viola
Losing Pitcher - Bob McClure
Player of the Game - Hatcher, 2-3, HR, 2RBI's, 2R's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Kirby Puckett, Robin Yount

Game #398 - Seattle Mariners, 11 @ New York Yankees, 4

Here was Phil Niekro's first inning:

Jack Perconte, ground out.  Phil Bradley, hit by pitch.  Alvin Davis, walk.  Ken Phelps, hit by pitch.  Dave Henderson, walk, Bradley scores.  Al Cowens, fly out.  Larry Milbourne, single, two score.  Spike Owen, double, one scores.  Bob Kearney, home run, three more score.  Niekro lifted.

The old knuckler wasn't knuckling.

Winning Pitcher - Matt Young
Losing Pitcher - Phil Niekro
Player of the Game - Dave Henderson, 3-4, 2HR's, 4 RBI's, 3R's, BB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Dave Winfield, Phil Niekro

February 21, 2015

May 11, 1984 - Leftied Behind

Game #395 - California Angels, 4 @ Detroit Tigers, 11

This was the first game in a big series between the barely-second place Tigers in the AL East and the first place Angels in the West.  Mike Witt was on the mound for California, facing off against Milt Wilcox for Detroit.

The Angels struck first, in the first.  A Fred Lynn sacrifice fly plated Rod Carew and an RBI single by Reggie Jackson scored Bobby Grich.  The Tigers cut the lead in half in the bottom of the inning.  Chet Lemon ripped a two-out triple to send Kirk Gibson all the way around the bases.

In the next inning Mike Witt really got into a jam.  With the bases loaded and two outs, and the game now tied at two apiece, leftie Kirk Gibson went yard for a grand salami!  It's his second grand slam of the season, tying Jody Davis for the Statis Pro MLB lead.  Witt was still in the game two innings later when Lemon went deep off him again, this one scoring two runs.  It was a bad day for Mr. Witt...  The Tigers did lose Tom Brookens to injury for 16 games.  He was in as a mid-game sub for Lou Whitaker.

Winning Pitcher - Milt Wilcox
Losing Pitcher - Mike Witt
Player of the Game - Kirk Gibson, 3-4, grand slam, 5RBI's, 3R's, BB
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #396 - Boston Red Sox, 9 @ Kansas City Royals, 3

This game started off all K.C.  A Jackie Gutierrez error (he already has 10 on the season!) led to three runs in the bottom of the first off BoSox starter Bruce Hurst.  Rich Gedman homered in the top of the second to get Boston on the board, but it was a pitcher's duel after that until the seventh inning.  That's when rookie Bret Saberhagen gave up a three run blast to leftie Bill Buckner.  The Red Sox scored four more runs in the top of the ninth too to really put the game out of reach for the floundering Royals.

Winning Pitcher - Bruce Hurst
Losing Pitcher - Bret Saberhagen
Save - Charlie Mitchell
Player of the Game - Bill Buckner, 2-4, HR, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Jim Rice