Happy Birthday–November 17

George Stallings (1867)
Mike Garcia (1923)
Orlando Pena (1933)
Gary Bell (1936)
Tom Seaver (1944)
Brad Havens (1959)
Mitch Williams (1964)
Paul Sorrento (1965)
Jeff Nelson (1966)
Eli Marrero (1973)
Darnell McDonald (1978)
Ryan Braun (1983)
Nick Markakis (1983)

 George Stallings managed in the major leagues for thirteen years.  He is best remembered as the manager of the 1914 Miracle Braves.

Continue reading Happy Birthday–November 17

Happy Birthday–November 16

Mike McGeary (1850)
Joe Quest (1852)
Paul Foytack (1930)
Frank Bolling (1931)
Harry Chiti (1932)
Minnie Mendoza (1933)
Don Hahn (1948)
Herb Washington (1951)
Glenn Burke (1952)
Curt Wardle (1960)
Dwight Gooden (1964)
Chris Haney (1968)
Pete Rose (1969)
Julio Lugo (1975)
Juan Centeno (1989)

Sprinter Herb Washington played for Oakland for two seasons as a pinch-runner.  He appeared in 105 games but did not play in the field and did not bat.  He stole 31 bases in 48 attempts and scored 33 runs.

Continue reading Happy Birthday–November 16

1991 Rewind: Game Thirty-eight


Date:  Tuesday, May 21.

Batting stars:  Kirby Puckett was 1-for-4 with a home run (his fifth) and three RBIs.  Kent Hrbek was 1-for-2 with two walks.

Pitching star:  Terry Leach pitched a perfect inning and struck out one.

Opposition stars:  Rafael Palmeiro was 2-for-3 with two doubles and two walks.  Steve Buechele was 2-for-4 with a two-run homer (his sixth), two runs, and two RBIs.  Julio Franco was 2-for-4 with a walk and a stolen base, his fifth.

The game:  In the first inning, Dan Gladden got an infield single, stole second, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on Puckett's sacrifice fly to give the Twins a 1-0 lead.  The Rangers tied it in the third on doubles by Jeff Huson and Palmeiro.  The Twins went back up 3-1 in the third when Chuck Knoblauch singled and Puckett followed with a two-run homer, but Texas tied it again in the fourth when Kevin Reimer singled and Buechele followed with a two-out two-run homer.

The Rangers went into the lead to stay in the fifth.  Palmerio hit a one-out double and scored on Franco's two-out single.  They added a couple of runs in the eighth.  Singles by Gino Petralli and Buechele and a walk to Huson loaded the bases with one out.  Jack Daugherty hit a sacrifice fly to make the score 5-3 and put men on first and third, Huson then stole second, Brian Harper threw the ball into center field, and Buechele scored to make it 6-3.

The Twins came back in the bottom of the eighth.  Hrbek singled and Chili Davis doubled to put men on second and third with none out.  With one down, Harper hit a two-run double to cut the margin to 6-5.  The tying run was in scoring position, but Randy Bush and Al Newman each grounded out to end the inning.  The Twins went down in order in the ninth.

WP:  Bobby Witt (2-3).  LP:  Kevin Tapani (2-4).  S:  Jeff Russell (9).

Notes:  Bush was the right fielder in this game.  Gene Larkin pinch-hit for Mike Pagliarulo in the eighth, with Scott Leius coming in to play third.  Shane Mack pinch-ran for Harper in the eighth and remained in the game in right field, with Junior Ortiz coming in to catch.

Harper was 1-for-4 and was batting .367.  Knoblauch was 1-for-4 and was batting .311.  Puckett's average went to .308.  Tapani had an ERA of 3.28.  Steve Bedrosian gave up two runs (one earned) in one inning and raised his ERA to 3.09.  Leach went down to 2.51.

Bush went 0-for-3 with a walk and was batting .184.

It was the fourth loss in a row for Tapani.  Over that span he had pitched to an ERA of 4.55 and his season ERA went from 2.10 to 3.28.  The Twins had scored a total of eight runs in those four games, with five of them obviously coming in this game.

Memory had told me that Bobby Witt always pitched well against the Twins.  Memory was right.  He was 17-7, 3.63, 1.36 WHIP against them.  That's the most wins he had against any team.  The only American League team against whom he had a better ERA was Boston (3.26).  This was the only start he would make against the Twins in 1991.  For his career, Witt was 142-157, 4.83, 1.57 WHIP.  Looking at that career, he wasn't nearly as good as I remembered him being, so I suppose his success against the Twins skewed my memory.

Record:  The Twins were 19-19, fifth in the American League West, four games behind Seattle.  They were a half game behind fourth-place California.

Remodeled basement. Same half-baked taste.