April 27, 2017

Visiting Aging Lefty Warren Spahn in 1989

September 7, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

Warren Spahn was tending to his southeast Oklahoma cattle ranch or, more accurately, relaxing at the Broken Arrow country club near the ranch when journalist David Lamb met him while traveling cross-country in his RV in 1989. (A couple years later, Lamb published a book, Stolen Season, about his journey and the minor-league baseball he […]

Harvey vs. Scherzer is Like Deja Vu All Over Again

August 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Tomorrow’s bout between the New York Mets and Detroit Tigers at Citi Field would most likely be ignored outside of New York and Michigan but for the anticipated match-up of two of the game’s best pitchers—24-year-old phenom Matt Harvey and 28-year-old all-but-guaranteed-to-win-the-AL Cy Young Award, Max Scherzer.  Granted the Tigers don’t have anything clinched yet, […]

“The Greatest Game Ever Pitched” At 50

July 2, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Today is the 50th anniversary of a pitching duel I chronicled in a book called “The Greatest Game Ever Pitched.” On July 2-3, 1963, 42-year-old Warren Spahn of the Milwaukee Braves and 25-year-old Juan Marichal of the San Francisco Giants staged a 16-inning, 428-pitch clash that might still be going if it weren’t for a […]

Glory Days of the 50s and 60s

January 19, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Oh, for the good old days when Major League Baseball meant two leagues, 16 teams and a playoff format spelled WORLD SERIES. That’s right … the best team in each league, best-of-seven, and Shazzam! Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t go around talking about walking five miles to school in two feet of snow. […]

Juan Marichal recibio leña en Caracas (Juan Marichal received firewood in Caracas)

El 13 de junio se cumplen 48 años del no hit no run de Juan Marichal sobre el equipo de los Colt 45 de Houston. ese dia Juan demostró todo su potencial como futuro Hall de la fama. Ese dia Marichal subió al monticulo con una racha de 5 victorias en fila y termino el […]

Measuring a Pitcher’s Ace Factor

March 13, 2011 by · 6 Comments 

Below is a statistical collection of the seasonal performances of every starting pitcher between 1950 and 2010. Each pitcher’s season, represented by a blue diamond, was measured by a calculation that didn’t consider any of the usual suspects typically used in measuring a pitcher’s effectiveness, such as ERA, strikeouts, WHIP, shutouts, or even ground ball percentages, contact […]

The Greatest Pitching Duels of the Century

March 10, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

Sticking to my policy of reviewing only books I can highly recommend, I bring you a gem by Jim Kaplan, long-time “Sports Illustrated” writer and author of a dozen previous baseball books, including a fine biography of Lefty Grove. His new volume, titled The Greatest Game Ever Pitched: Juan Marichal, Warren Spahn, and the Pitching […]

Chuck Tanner: El manager que siempre veía oportunidades de ganar. (Chuck Tanner: The manager who always saw a chance for winning)

February 15, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Probablemente la madre de Tanner le habló de las hazañas de Honus Wagner, Bill Abstein, Fred Clarke, Vic Willis, Howie Camnitz, Lefty Leifield y todo el equipo de los Piratas de Pittsburgh que ganó la Serie Mundial de 1909, 4-3 ante los Tigres de Detroit. O compartió con Chuck el seguimiento de los Piratas que lucharon por el banderín de la Liga Nacional en 1938 y llegaron segundos a 2 juegos de los Cachorros de Chicago. Seguro pasaron momentos de silencio y tristeza consolándose porque los bucaneros se quedaron fuera de competencia. Ni que decir de que en 1960 a lo mejor su señora madre llamó a Chuck eufórica por el jonrón de Billy Mazeroski que le dio la Serie Mundial a los Piratas o que pudieron compartir la gesta de Danny Murtaugh, Roberto Clemente, Steve Blass, Manny Sanguillén, Richie Hebner, Al Oliver, Bob Moose, Dock Ellis y todo el equipo de Pittsburgh de 1971.

The Anatomy of a Hall of Famer

February 5, 2011 by · 6 Comments 

It’s been a month now since Roberto Alomar and Bert Blyleven were introduced as the two newest members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. I think both deserve it. I also think Blyleven should have been a Hall of Famer a long time ago, but that’s neither here nor there. He’s finally in and […]

Just How Good was Bert Blyleven?

January 10, 2011 by · 3 Comments 

Bert Blyleven is in the Hall of Fame at last!!  It took fourteen years on the ballot to do it but the writers finally saw the light.  This was a true victory for sabermetrics – as recognized in the following clip from the Associated Press. “The great curveballer won 287 games, threw 60 shutouts and […]

Hall of Famers at War – Warren Spahn

March 12, 2010 by · 4 Comments 

Warren Spahn, the winningest left-handed pitcher in major league history, received a battlefield commission in 1945. Warren Spahn was born in Buffalo, New York on April 23, 1921. He played first base for the Buffalo City Athletic Club and pitched for South Park High School in Buffalo where he led the team to a series […]