Legendary Games

For the 16th Legendary Game on Baseballisms we went in a slightly different direction.  We usually seek out intense back and forth affairs in a memorable World Series or playoff, as we present a batter by batter account of the game. This scoreboard represents the final out from a regular season game that we consider legendary for different reasons.

Legendary Game 17 Scoreboard

This force out at second represents an at bat by player-manager Mickey Cochrane of the Detroit Tigers, as called by radio (and PA) announcer Ty Tyson on WWJ.   According to this YouTube post, this is the oldest complete radio broadcast of a game known in existence.

If you have some time,  transport yourself back to an era when the lone radio announcer delivered the entire experience to a listening audience.  Picture yourself lying on the floor in a two story walkup in Detroit, under the buzz of an RCA, Philco or Emerson console radio, using your baseball card collection spread before you representing the action you hear.

Or maybe, you just ran into your grandfather’s house on this Thursday afternoon and came upon him sitting in his favorite chair, grumbling about how tough this Yankee lineup is, even with Babe Ruth taking the day off.   He is in a pretty good mood however because this Tigers team is on it’s way to winning over 100 games and the 1934 AL pennant before getting dunked by the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series.

Before you get into the game action, recognize the sponsorship of the White Star Mobile Gas company.

There are some fun moments along the way in the game such as when Tyson has to speak to others in the press box to catch up on the action or official scoring.  He also uses some unique words and phrases that help you immerse in the moment.   We do not want to step on your own experience of the broadcast, but here are a few of the favorites we encountered. [click to continue…]

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For the 15th Legendary Game on Baseballisms we decided to look back for a positive outcome for the many Chicago Cubs fans who visit this site regularly. We have had conversations with book authors who believe the Cubs may have initiated The Original Curse, and have had a Fan Submission detailing the birth of a baseball tradition during that same Series.

Now we have come to the conclusion of Game 6 of the 1945 World Series, as presented in our ongoing batter by batter account summarized by yesterday’s final scoreboard.

 

In the bottom of the 12th inning, the Detroit Tigers’ Dizzy Trout, going on his fifth inning of relief after having been the winning pitcher in Game 4, came on to face the 8 – 9 – 1 hitters in the Cubs lineup. After a routine groundout by catcher Dewey Williams, Trout gave up a single up the middle to pinch hitter (and future MLB Umpire) Frank Secory. Cubs manager Charlie Grimm sent in Bill Schuster to pinch run and with two outs he scored all the way from first on a double to left field by star third baseman Stan Hack!

Seeing the historic names from the past is certainly part of the fun with these Legendary Games, but they also provide a glimpse into the way games were managed and how they have changed over the years. Can you imagine the howls on Twitter when Grimm had the second batter of the game execute a sacrifice bunt or in the very next frame gets bitten after issuing an intentional walk to load the bases, when starting pitcher Claude Passeau walks the very next batter sending home the first run of the game! The Ron Washington critics would have lost their minds.

Stan Hack | Chicago Cubs | Baseballisms.comCubs fans will enjoy seeing the production from familiar names at the top of this lineup including the aforementioned Stan Hack going 4 for 5, and popular Andy Pafko contributing two hits. There was 1945 NL MVP Phil Cavarretta knocking in two with a single in the fifth and sending Tigers started Virgil Trucks to the showers.

A Baseballisms hat tip goes out to the Tigers Hank Greenberg who launched a mammoth home run to cap off the four run rally in the top of the 8th, to send this game into extra innings. It was during the summer of ’45 that Greenberg returned to MLB action after having volunteered for military service after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

For Cubs fans it has been a long time since this type of edge of the seat action took place on the grand stage, but in the meantime, this game truly belongs in the pantheon of Legendary Games for all baseball fans.

We hope you enjoy these little games that we present .. tomorrow we start our 16th Legendary Game. Let us know in the comments if you have any guesses as to which Game we are presenting. The first to guess correctly gets a Baseballisms t-shirt!

We would also like to thank a couple of web sites that are so valuable to pulling these Legendary Games together. The Baseball Almanac helps us with the rosters and uniform numbers, while the extraordinary Baseball-Reference gives us the play by play accounts of the game. Thanks again for all of your awesome work!

We would love to hear from you. Send a Tweet to @baseballisms with a quick message, or send us an email. We look forward to sharing the poetry of the game of baseball!

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For the 14th Legendary Game on Baseballisms we did not have to go very far in the history books.  After one of the greatest days in baseball history (I dare you to not shake your head in wonder), when the baseball viewing audience was jumping from game to game on every device available, we were treated to an equally spectacular Game 6 of the 2011 World Series, as summarized by yesterday’s final scoreboard.

This represents the game winning homerun by the hometown hero David Freese off of righthanded reliever Mark Lowe,.  The at bat prompted Fox announcer Joe Buck to channel his dad and break out his “we’ll see you tomorrow night“.  For all of the Joe Buck criticism out there (he really does like football better), you have to admit that it was a fabulous tip of the cap and anyone would love the chance to have been in his position to pull it off.  It was not contrived or forced, it was meant for that perfect moment.

The call and the blast to center capped a great comeback victory by the Cardinals and actually overshadows the tremendous clutch hitting by Lance Berkman, so we wanted to acknowledge him here on Baseballisms.

Enjoy the game tying moment from the seats:

 

A game that truly belongs in the pantheon of Legendary Games for all baseball fans.

We hope you enjoy these little games that we present .. tomorrow we start our 15th Legendary Game.  Let us know in the comments if you have any guesses as to which Game we are presenting.  The first to guess correctly gets a Baseballisms t-shirt!

A big thank you and shoutout to friend Greg Hoffman, who provided us with some great baseball cards for this game.  We were sitting at lunch in Roswell Georgia this past summer and when he mentioned his collection of Nolan Ryan cards, Rookie Cards, Mickey Mantles and numerous Chicago Cubs, we knew we had to get them on.  Thanks Greg!  If you have cards you would like to share, please let us know.

We would also like to thank a couple of web sites that are so valuable to pulling these Legendary Games together.  The Baseball Almanac helps us with the rosters and uniform numbers, while the extraordinary Baseball-Reference gives us the play by play accounts of the game. Thanks again for all of your awesome work!

We would love to hear from you. Send a Tweet to @baseballisms with a quick message, send us an email or visit the Your Own Story page.  We look forward to sharing the poetry of the game of baseball!

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Baseball scribes made a few references during this postseason to the fact that the last time a visiting team won a Game 7 in a World Series, it was when the Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Baltimore Orioles in the 1979 classic.  Of course, we were acutely aware that we were running this daily Scoreboard easter egg on the site, and thought it would be a great coincidence to follow up a Texas Rangers win in St. Louis by finishing our 13th Legendary Game to match.  Alas, the Cardinals took the 2011 Series in stunning fashion, and the We Are Family Pirates remain the holder of this interesting distinction.

As this final scoreboard shows, Kent Tekulve finished off pinch hitter Pat Kelly for the final out, inducing a lazy flyball that landed in the glove of the speedy centerfielder Omar Moreno, and we are left to marvel at the lasting legacy that Chuck Tanner’s club embedded in our brains.

Final Scoreboard

 

The Black and Gold Bucs had a unique charisma that young fans in that era had rarely seen on the World Series stage, especially coming off back to back years of Yankees vs Dodgers, a matchup of the traditional powerhouses.  It is arguable that if you were to randomly ask fans who were in their formative years at that time to recall their top 5 most memorable teams, these Pirates would appear on a majority of the ballots.

This team had larger than life superstars in Willie “Pops” Stargell and Dave “Cobra” Parker.  There was the stringbean reliever with the glasses and the submarine delivery, Kent Tekulve, who made everyone wonder if their math teacher had somehow found a sinkerball.

Then there were the intangibles that caught the attention of casual fans including the pillbox hats with the “Stargell Stars” to represent good play on the field, multiple uniform variations and of course the theme song, Sister Sledge’s disco hit We Are Family.

It’s a challenge for some to remember that it was an Earl Weaver led Baltimore Orioles team, including Cy Young Award winner Mike Flanagan, that lost both games 6 and 7 at the old Memorial Stadium.  (BTW, this game has played a few times on MLB Network and it’s incredible to see how dark and dingy that place was .. even during a World Series)

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As many of you know, we post a daily scoreboard that represents a batter by batter account of a Legendary Game in baseball history.  If you go back to April 7, 2008 on this site, you will find a post with the following quote;

“There are three things in my life which I really love: God, my family, and baseball. The only problem – once baseball season starts, I change the order around a bit.”

-Al Gallagher

The post also contained a graphic of a scoreboard showing the top of the first inning as Guest prepared to bat against Home. Over the course of the next three plus years, we have shown a scoreboard every single day.  We have had alot of fun with these “easter eggs” as they have generated some great comments from the community.

It has also given us a chance to dig a little bit deeper into each of these ballgames, shedding light on the less notable moments that have taken place within the context of these epic games, as well as the crucial at bats. We have reminisced about the players we idolized, and we have reflected on where we were when the games occurred. At other times, these games were well before our time, and have their own special reasons for appearing as part of the Legendary Games Series.

On this occasion we are presenting a game that is considered by some the culmination of the best World Series ever.  It has direct personal connections to our lives and we decided to honor it by recording a podcast.  We hope that you enjoy listening to a couple of Atlanta Braves fans discuss where they were on the night that John Smoltz dueled Jack Morris in Game 7 of the 1991 World Series.

Legendary Game 12 Final Scoreboard | Baseballisms.com

We hope you enjoy these little games that we present .. tomorrow we start our 13th Legendary Game.  Let us know in the comments if you have any guesses as to which Game we are presenting.  The first to guess correctly gets a Baseballisms t-shirt!

We would also like to thank a couple of web sites that are so valuable to pulling these Legendary Games together.  The Baseball Almanac helps us with the rosters and uniform numbers, while the extraordinary Baseball-Reference gives us the play by play accounts of the game. Thanks again for all of your awesome work!

We would love to hear from you. Send a Tweet to @baseballisms with a quick message, send us an email or visit the Your Own Story page.  We look forward to growing a community of fans interested in the poetry of the game of baseball!

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