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July 19, 2012

April 19, 1984 - Who is Kevin McReynolds?

Game #158 - San Diego Padres, 4 @ Los Angeles Dodgers, 1 (Extra Innings)

My rapid growth in learning all 26 MLB teams and a good chunk of their rosters came from my first baseball card set, 1985 Topps.  I would divide the cards by team, create starting lineups and pitching rotations, all that kind of stuff.  I distinctly remember not understanding why the Padres didn't seem to have a third outfielder with significant playing time outside of Tony Gwynn and Carmelo Martinez.  This trend continued for a couple more years until I received a set with McReynolds on the Mets.  I was dumb founded!  Who was this guy?  When I looked at the back of his card and saw all those stellar seasons on the Padres my jaw dropped.  (This seems funny in retrospect, given our 24 hour a day Sportscenter coverage and unlimited access to the internet - but hey, it was the 80's!)  I found out a while later, maybe through a Beckett Baseball Card guide or something, that McReynolds refused to sign the Topps contract because he didn't think it was enough.  Can you imagine not allowing yourself to appear on a baseball card?  Doesn't that have to be the best moment of your career - seeing your first card?  Just to add context, Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez are two more recent examples of guys who turned down Topps.  I suppose that's their economic right, but c'mon man, we want your card!  Anyway, I've always held a grudge against McReynolds since.

Lefties Tim Lollar and Rick Honeycutt were holding their respective lineups in check.  The game was tied 1-1 in the top of the ninth.  Despite a lead off double by pinch hitter Tim Flannery the Padres didn't score.  In the bottom of the ninth Goose Gossage got himself into a major jam.  He had the bases loaded with no outs, but retired Steve Sax, Bill Russell, and Pedro Guerrero to send the game into extra frames.  Dodger reliever Pat Zachry got two quick outs in the tenth, but got into his own bases loaded situation.  Unfortunately for LA, he plunked Flannery for the go ahead run, and Terry Kennedy added a two run single after that. 

Winning Pitcher - Goose Gossage
Losing Pitcher - Pat Zachry
Save - Greg Booker
Player of the Game - Kevin McReynolds, 2-5, R, RBI
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Gwynn, Goose Gossage

Dodgers SS Dave Anderson got injured for 9 games, and Steve Garvey suffered a minor ding and will have to miss his next game.

3 comments:

  1. I thought that maybe you were bringing to an end Garvey's consecutive games-played streak by sitting him in his next game, but I quickly did some research and saw that the streak ended in 1983, so I apologize for not trusting your skills as a Statis Pro Baseball enthusiast!

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  2. Yeah, I think he played in 159 games in 1984. His injury rating is a "1", so he escaped any serious time off...

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  3. I remember that about Kevin McReynolds. I think he did not appear on a Topps card for the first few years of his career. He did, however, appear on Fleer cards(That was one of the reasons why I bought Fleer in the mid 80's.) Being a Padre fan, McReynolds was my favorite player because he was very low key and quiet. I love your replay. I always loved baseball but this was the first year that I followed the Padres and therefore holds a special place in my memory and heart. Thanks for bringing back those oh so long ago memories.

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