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Archive for the ‘MLB Classic Games’ Category

Tom SeaverSource: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

To me at least, Tom Seaver and Steve Carlton are the two best starting pitchers of the Baby Boom era. Pitchers who came up in the 1960s and 70s and pitched into the 1980s or so. To me they are the two best pitchers post Sandy Koufax and Bob Gibson, from the generation before them. The only other pitcher I would consider with Seaver and Carlton, would be Jim Palmer. And not, not because I’m an Orioles fan, but he had the career, numbers, big games, everything else that puts him in the same class. Tom Seaver earned all of his victories, pitching for some mediocre New York Mets teams in the late 1960s and 1970s and some Cincinnati Reds teams that were in decline post Big Red Machine of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Not sure there was a better big game pitcher than Seaver of this era.

Classic MLB 11: MLB 1985-Chicago White Sox @ New York Yankees: Tom Seaver Goes For 300th

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on Blogger

Perhaps the best MLB playoff game at least in my lifetime. And the biggest choke in my lifetime at least in MLB with the Angels blowing a 3-1 series lead with the opportunity to win the American League Championship at home with their offense, defense and pitching. And they simply didn’t close the door to a team they probably should’ve beaten at least in six games if not five. Wally Joyner not in the Angels lineup certainly hurt them in-game 5. But you got to know that they had the Red Sox beat in the ninth inning with their closer Donnie Moore who was lights out most of the 1986 season on the mound. He makes a bad pitch to Dave Henderson and that forces the game to extra innings. But Joyner would’ve been a big force in the Angels lineup in-game 6 and 7, when the Red Sox blew out the Angels at Fenway Park.

Anaheim Stadium

Anaheim Stadium

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on Blogger

Playing an all-star baseball game at a football stadium. The Kingdome despite being fairly close to the action for baseball and a very loud stadium for both baseball and football, was basically a football stadium, because of its size, sixty-five thousand seats for football. And in the high fifty-thousands for baseball, but this was a great game. Where Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Dave Parker who was a five- tool player up until the mid 1980s, throws out a baserunner from the outfield wall unassisted. Perhaps the best defensive play in MLB All Star game history.

For all the talk about this game being a slugfest with the lineups that both teams had and the stadium they were playing at, this game could’ve been played at Shea Stadium in New York, or Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Kaufmann Stadium in Kansas City. Because this was a pitchers duel with the Americans beating the Nationals 3-2. Goes to show you that great pitching, especially when that great pitching throws hard with control, will beat great hitting. Especially if those great hitters are expecting a big game because of the ballpark that they are playing at.
Nolan Ryan Pitching During All-Star Baseball Game

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Attachment-1-156Source: Baseball Classics: MLB 1980- 10-05-80-Anaheim Angels @ Chicago White Sox: Full Game

Not a good way to end a Major League Baseball season other than to see a game at the great Comiskey Park than to have the 65-95 Anaheim Angels vs the 70-90 Chicago White Sox. Which is what the records of these two clubs would be after this game no matter who won or loss. The White Sox of the 1970s were like their brothers from the National League the Chicago Cubs in the 1970s. You knew basically when the season would start that they would probably have a losing record. The question would be whether they would finish in last place or not. The Angels were very different especially in the late 1970s after requiring star player like pitchers Nolan Ryan, Frank Tannana, hitters like Don Baylor, Brian Downing and several others, Rod Carew would be another one. They won the AL West in 1979 and at least going in the 1980 season were probably thinking they would at least contend for the AL West if not win the American League all together. Interesting that they would go from being a first place team in the AL West, to sixth place team in just one season.

 

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1986 Angels

Source: NBC Sports

The 1986 Angels were a very good, if not great all around team. Hitting, pitching and defense that should’ve at least gotten to the World Series. But of course lost three straight games in the ALCS after having a 3-1 lead in that series.The Angels, who contended both in 84 and 85 in the AL West, which was back before the wildcard came into both leagues. Looked like the team to beat in the AL West both seasons. 1986, they weren’t expected to win the AL West, especially the way that they did by being in first place most of the season. But in 86, they put it together for the whole season. Both with their offense and pitching. And managed to avoid fading in August and September like they did in 84 and 85. The 1986 Brewers, were somewhat in transition. Especially with their pitching and weren’t contenders at all and about a 500 ball club.

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Anaheim Stadium

Anaheim Stadium

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▶ MLB 1986-GOW-6/14/86: Kansas City Royals @ Anaheim Angels: Don Sutton Goes For 300: Full Game – YouTube.

Three hundred wins not something that we’ll see many if any pitchers achieve in the future. Because of how prominent bullpens are now in Major League Baseball and how easy managers. Look to their bullpen when there’s any sign of trouble in the middle and late innings now in. Close games with some many close games being played now with all the parity. And Don Sutton a Hall of Fame pitcher and one of the best all time achieving this back in 1986.

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Lucky Guy

Lucky Guy

Both the Yankees and Royals missed the AL Playoffs for the first time in a while in 1979.

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