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September 30, 2012

April 20, 1984 - Strawberry in Season

Game #171 - New York Mets, 8 @ Philadelphia Phillies, 6

Darryl Strawberry had five at-bats in this game.  In the first inning he knocked a two-out double to score Keith Hernandez.  In the third he reached on an error by Mike Schmidt.  In the fifth Shane Rawley managed to strike him out.  In the eighth he hit a solo home run.  And in the ninth he capped off his day with an RBI single that scored Mookie Wilson.  Strawberry is the hottest player in the National League since the season started.  And I always thought this was one of the best looking cards in the 1985 Topps set.

Dwight Gooden finally gave up his first two runs on of the season in his third start.  They came courtesy of solo homers from Ozzie Virgil and Tim Corcoran.  Innings-eater Wes Gardner let the Phillies back into the ball game when he surrendered three runs in a third of an inning, but the Mets hung on to win the game.

Winning Pitcher - Dwight Gooden
Losing Pitcher - Shane Rawley
Save - Doug Sisk
Player of the Game - Strawberry, 3-5, 2B, HR, 3RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Mike Schmidt

September 27, 2012

April 20, 1984 - Grandpa FTW! (100th Post)

Game #170 - San Diego Padres, 3 @ Los Angeles Dodgers, 8

If you read this blog with any frequency you might recall my father is a huge Dodgers fan.  He was in town this past week and as it so happened LA was the next game on the schedule.  For the first time this season I wasn't managing against myself - I was playing with another human.  And he happened to have a Dodger shirt with him, go figure...

Orel Hershiser escaped a first inning jam with runners on the corners, but Mark Thurmond couldn't do the same in his half of the inning.  He gave up four runs, five hits, and a walk in a mere 1/3 of an inning before getting yanked, and that's all my dad needed to cruise to victory.

Bill Russell went four for four and his double play partner Steve Sax went two for four with two runs scored.  Hershiser pitched seven innings and got three strikeouts on the day too, but Mike Marshall was the biggest star.  He went two for four with a double and a homer to bring the Dodgers to an 8-7 record on the season.

Grandpa was pleased...until his newest granddaughter spit up all over his Dodgers shirt...

Winning Pitcher - Orel Hershiser
Losing Pitcher - Mark Thurmond
Player of the Game - Marshall, 2-4, HR, 2B, 2R's, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Tony Gwynn

September 21, 2012

April 20, 1984 - Ray Gun

Game #169 - Pittsburgh Pirates, 7 @ Chicago Cubs, 4

I feel like every time I feature a new player on this blog I'm going on and on about how they were one of my favorite players as a kid.  Maybe they're all my favorites?  Johnny Ray is another one I have lots of love for. 

I played second base for most of my little league career.  I was the scrappy kid who couldn't hit worth a lick but caught most everything hit at him.  I dreamed of being a Johnny Ray type player - good contact, not a ton of power but dependable with the stick.

Pittsburgh got a good game out of Ray today.  Trouble started brewing for Chicago in the first.  Lee Lacy hit a two-out triple and Jason Thompson brought him home with a RBI single.  The Cubs answered back in the bottom of the first with two runs of their own.  Ray tied things up in the third with a solo homer and Bill Madlock added another bomb in the fourth to give the Pirates the lead. 

Chicago got the lead back in the fourth when pitcher Rich Bordi had an RBI single to score Ron Cey (Bordi had zero RBI's in the real 1984) and Pirates pitcher Larry McWilliams walked Gary Matthews with the bases loaded.  He struck out Leon Durham to get out of the jam, one of his ten K's on the day.  Ray tied things up in the fifth with an RBI hit and a third solo homer from Pittsburgh, this time by Doug Frobel, gave the Pirates the lead for good.

Winning Pitcher - Larry McWilliams
Losing Pitcher - Rich Bordi
Save - Kent Tekulve
Player of the Game - Johnny Ray, 3-5, HR, 2RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Ryne Sandberg

September 7, 2012

April 20, 1984 - Something Similar Going on Here...

Check out today's two players of the game.  It's practically the same card!

I haven't logged multiple games in the same post in months, so enjoy the double dose.

Game #167 - California Angels, 9 @ Toronto Blue Jays, 11

This was a long, strange game.  In the bottom of the first George Bell supposedly beat out a grounder up the first base line, but Angels starter Mike Witt, catcher Bob Boone, and first baseman Rod Carew were so enraged by what they considered a bad call that all three were ejected!  You've got to love Statis Pro and crazy "Z" plays like this.  The Angels had to use four relievers just to finish this game after the early exit of Witt.

Dave Stieb was cruising through the first five innings of the game, but then another "Z" play happened:  rain delay.  I actually pulled out my history book of baseball stadiums to verify Toronto wasn't in a dome in 1984.  I pulled Stieb after the rain delay and Jimmy Key proceeded to surrender seven runs over two innings.  Lucky for the Blue Jays they had built an insurmountable lead.  Fred Lynn was 3 for 5 in the losing effort, with a triple and two homers. 

Winning Pitcher - Dave Stieb
Losing Pitcher - Bruce Kison
Save - Roy Lee Jackson
Player of the Game - Willie Upshaw, 3-5, 2B, HR, 3RBI's
Hall of Famers in the Game - Rod Carew, Reggie Jackson

Game #168 - Houston Astros, 3 @ Atlanta Braves, 4
On paper this looked like a pitcher's duel, as Joe Niekro and Rick Mahler have both been aces in the early going of this Statis Pro season, but both gave up three runs before getting pulled.  Mahler made it through six innings, but with all the runners the Astros stranded the damage should have been worse.  Niekro was grooving until he reached the eighth.  A Claudell Washington walk, Dale Murphy single, and Bob Horner homer (for his first RBI's of the season - after a twelve game drought) had the game tied and both pitchers facing a no decision.  It stayed that way until the bottom of the ninth.  There were two outs and Astros ace reliever Bill Dawley on the mound.  Gerald Perry dug into the batter's box and hit a...WALK-OFF HOMER!!!  BRAVES WIN!!!

Winning Pitcher - Donnie Moore
Losing Pitcher - Bill Dawley
Player of the Game - Gerald Perry, 2-4, BB, Game Winning Home Run