Saturday, October 24, 2009

Vintage Baseball

I just finished watching Game 7 of the NLCS on the MLB network between the Braves and Pirates. First of all, if you have access to the MLB network you should take advantage. Their "baseball tonight" style show is much better than anything ESPN is doing. Plus they show classic games like this one all the time. Besides the awesome mustaches, early 90's baseball was fun to watch.

To review, Doug Drabek was pitching against a young John Smoltz and Steve Avery for the NL pennant. Drabek was pitching on 3 days rest and this was his 3rd start in 8 days and he was pitching a shutout into the bottom of the ninth. (Drabek was responsible for 2 unearned runs in the 9th to get the loss.) He threw 129 pitches in Game 7. That is vintage baseball. CC Sabathia has been great, but only 15 years ago, what he does on short rest would be considered normal.

Jim Leyland is forced to bring in Stan Belinda to try to finish the 9th after an error by Jose Lind. (Ironic= Lind wins his only Gold Glove in 1992) Leyland's other option in the bullpen with the bases loaded, I kid you not, a guy named Bob Walk. WALK!! You would think at some point in Bob's life someone would have told him to move from pitcher to the outfield on account of his name alone.

AAA call up Francisco Cabrera, who had 10 ABs all season, singles to score the tying and go ahead run in the bottom of the ninth. Sid Bream scores from second. Now keep in mind, at this point in Sid Bream's career he was running about as well as Vlad Guerrero on a good day. Bream barely beats the throw. The left fielder who's throw is about 3 feet up the first base line, none other than Barry Bonds.

Maybe we can get back to some vintage baseball this postseason and mustaches. Mustaches are never a bad idea.


Dan said...

I notice that picture of Bream you posted shows him in a Pirates uniform. How's that for paying back your old team?

Dennis said...

The MLB network show is superior because of the live look-ins and the entertaining as well as knowledgeable analysts. I particularly enjoy Sean Casey, Harold Reynolds, Mitch Williams, and Dan Plesac. Williams in particular brings a unique point of view that forces you to think about the game in a different way.

Two complaints though. First, John Hart is the president of the Rangers and blatantly unwilling to criticize anyone. Employees of teams should not be analysts. I can get that from ESPN.

Second, Clint Hurdle is terrible. Usually, a bad analyst has good knowledge of the game, but is bad on TV (think Buck Showalter), or is good on TV but has little knowledge (Like Steve Philips). Clint Hurdle is bad on TV and has no idea what he is talking about.