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Monday, October 01, 2012

Game 161 by John D’Acquisto

Some athletes become heroes when they make it to the big stage of baseball with playoff implications. Some choke it up. Some never get the opportunity to find out. 1980: Phillies. Expos. John D’Acquisto tells the story of Game 161 from his seat in the bullpen…waiting for the call.

djordan Posted: October 01, 2012 at 09:03 AM | 23 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: expos, history, mlb, phillies

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   1. depletion Posted: October 01, 2012 at 10:24 AM (#4249797)
Great article. This is devastaing:
“Why didn’t you pitch me? You know Schmidt’s batting .181 with 10 strikeouts against me. Bull (Luzinski’s) just as bad.”
“Why didn’t you tell me that,” Dick fired back. “I didn’t know this.”
   2. TomH Posted: October 01, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4249851)
D'Acquisto versus Schmidt. Sounds like Mike would draw a walk about 40% of the time.

Great article tho.
   3. Mayor Blomberg Posted: October 01, 2012 at 11:57 AM (#4249897)
#2 - 2 BB/8 K in 24 PA. 0.190 average for Schmidt career over D'Acquisto; 4 singles, 1 double 5 RBI.
   4. TomH Posted: October 01, 2012 at 12:33 PM (#4249968)
talk about using small samples....
   5. djordan Posted: October 01, 2012 at 12:35 PM (#4249973)
@ Tomh, they didn't have much else to go on back then besides gut. The computer stats began a few years later with Davey Johnson using stats with his minor league club and bringing that to the Mets in '84. Glad you liked it.
   6. SoSH U at work Posted: October 01, 2012 at 12:42 PM (#4249980)
Screw any self-linking complaints I might have, keep the links to John D's stuff coming djordan. His may be the only baseball byline that I absolutely won't pass up right now. I never really gave a whole lot of thought to the perpsective of a guy itching to get into the game in a big moment but who doesn't get the chance. Really good stuff.

   7. winnipegwhip Posted: October 01, 2012 at 12:48 PM (#4249988)
“Why didn’t you pitch me? You know Schmidt’s batting .181 with 10 strikeouts against me. Bull (Luzinski’s) just as bad.”
“Why didn’t you tell me that,” Dick fired back. “I didn’t know this.”


There should be a recall on his HOF induction just because of that!!!!

Didn't Earl Weaver have all this stuff on index cards when he managed? His book with Terry Pluto from the early 80's discussed how Weaver relied on this stuff heavily to plan matchups. I used to think this would have been basic prep stuff for managers but was Weaver that far ahead of his contemporaries?
   8. esseff Posted: October 01, 2012 at 01:00 PM (#4250002)
So when the Cardinals and Giants did the John Curtis for John D'Acquisto swap, they were basically trading writers?
   9. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: October 01, 2012 at 01:03 PM (#4250009)
Nice article. I remember playing racquetball that afternoon, figuring the game would get rained out. When we were all showered, we hung out in the club and saw Schmidt's HR on a tiny TV in the lobby.
   10. Gary Truth Serum Posted: October 01, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4250018)
Didn't Earl Weaver have all this stuff on index cards when he managed? His book with Terry Pluto from the early 80's discussed how Weaver relied on this stuff heavily to plan matchups. I used to think this would have been basic prep stuff for managers but was Weaver that far ahead of his contemporaries?

Yeah, Weaver did that stuff before 1980. I remember one anecdote where he pinch hit Mark Belanger against Goose Gossage because his index cards showed him that Belanger had a lifetime average of .400 against the Goose in something like 15 at-bats. The response from the media, if I recall, was something like "Wow, how savvy, I didn't know anyone had that good of an average against Gossage" and not "Why the hell is he hitting Belanger based only on a small sample size?"
   11. McCoy Posted: October 01, 2012 at 03:06 PM (#4250145)
Tal Smith was using computers to compile stats well before 1984 for the Astros.
   12. I Am Not a Number Posted: October 01, 2012 at 04:10 PM (#4250227)
The response from the media, if I recall, was something like "Wow, how savvy, I didn't know anyone had that good of an average against Gossage" and not "Why the hell is he hitting Belanger based only on a small sample size?"

Mathematics hadn't been invented yet.
   13. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: October 01, 2012 at 05:47 PM (#4250318)
Didn't Wrigley sign a contract with IBM to develop computery stuff for the Cubs in like the 60's? I thought I had read something like that somewhere along the line.
   14. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: October 01, 2012 at 05:54 PM (#4250325)
I remember one anecdote where he pinch hit Mark Belanger against Goose Gossage because his index cards showed him that Belanger had a lifetime average of .400 against the Goose in something like 15 at-bats.

wow--in 25 PAs, he was 421/542/579 against Goose with only one K
   15. McCoy Posted: October 01, 2012 at 05:55 PM (#4250326)
The Cubs had a guy in the 60's who was their version of Branch Rickey's Roth. I forget his name and I doubt anybody besides occasionally Wrigley ever listened to him.
   16. Steve Treder Posted: October 01, 2012 at 06:11 PM (#4250336)
Are you guys thinking of Colonel Robert Whitlow, hired by Wrigley to oversee the "College of Coaches" in 1963?
   17. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: October 01, 2012 at 06:51 PM (#4250375)
Are you guys thinking of Colonel Robert Whitlow, hired by Wrigley to oversee the "College of Coaches" in 1963?

his main job was organizing physical fitness routines, including weightlifting, which was taboo at that time in MLB
   18. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 01, 2012 at 06:57 PM (#4250382)
tony larussa had a computer on his desk while in oakland

then he moved to st louis and became old blood and guts tony
   19. Dan Evensen Posted: October 02, 2012 at 01:29 AM (#4250662)
I've got this game on DVD. It's the complete, original Philadelphia broadcast. Haven't had the time to actually watch the whole thing yet, though.

Great article.
   20. winnipegwhip Posted: October 02, 2012 at 01:58 PM (#4251181)
I have the broadcast as well. I will watch it as soon as Schmidt's home run lands.
   21. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: October 02, 2012 at 02:04 PM (#4251196)
tony larussa had a computer on his desk while in oakland

I think that's more associated with his time in Chicago
   22. djordan Posted: October 02, 2012 at 08:57 PM (#4251770)
I actually have Reds-Phils '76 NLCS on DVD. For some of you I know it's not your favorite. Not mine, either, but I haven't seen much game footage of Dick Allen. Would love to know where I could track down Phils/Expos '80 DVD.
   23. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: October 02, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4251995)
I’m lounging back, seat reclined, eyes closed, my light slumber brought to you by the soundtrack of Robert, Jimmy, and the rest of Led Zeppelin


Arbitrary nitpick: There are only four guys in Led Zeppelin. You should at least be able to remember the name of the drummer.

Having said that, I loved everything else about this story.

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