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Monday, September 03, 2012

HHS: How did Bob Gibson’s career end?

Natch…a LaCock and bull story.

On this date in 1975, according to the Baseball-Reference.com Bullpen entry for today:

  On the final pitch of his Hall of Fame career, Cardinals great Bob Gibson gives up a grand slam to Pete LaCock. It will be LaCock’s only bases-loaded homer of his career.

I have heard this fact many times–it’s a sad thing.

But a fellow on Twitter named Al Yellon (@bleedcubbieblue) pointed out to me that this “fact” is not a “fact” at all.

Bob Gibson replaces Larry Lintz (PR) pitching and batting 9th
Fly ball
Walk
Single
Walk
Ground out
Wild pitch
Intentional walk
Home run (by Pete LaCock)
Ground out (end of inning)

...So, the grand slam clearly did not come on the last pitch of Gibson’s career, since he recorded a ground out following the home run.

What gives? Why does this story about Gibson persist when it is so obviously false?

Repoz Posted: September 03, 2012 at 10:50 AM | 69 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history

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   1. BDC Posted: September 03, 2012 at 11:36 AM (#4225479)
So the last pitch he threw resulted in a groundout by Don Kessinger: presumably not the only such groundout in Kessinger's career :)

I dunno, so it was the next-to-last batter faced of Gibson's career; close enough for a story. It wasn't like he pitched five more games with completely uninteresting results, or something.
   2. Gonfalon B. Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:06 PM (#4225494)
I can't believe some guy would exaggerate about LaCock.
   3. JE (Jason Epstein) Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:28 PM (#4225504)
Gibson was not in the starting rotation? That makes me a little sad.
   4. Howie Menckel Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:38 PM (#4225509)
not with a bang, but a whimper

which is how too many LaCock stories end


   5. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:47 PM (#4225513)
The only time I ever saw Gibson pitch in person was in this April 1975 game at Shea, when he was matched up against Seaver. He got hit so hard that day that it was painful to watch, left the game with a 6.26 ERA, and for the rest of the year he had only one "Gibson"-like game.
   6. Mike Emeigh Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:53 PM (#4225515)
Gibson was not in the starting rotation?


He was not. Gibson was pulled from the rotation twice, once at the end of May and again in July; he didn't start a game after July 8th and while he pitched pretty well in relief (two wins and two saves in his first four appearances) he was bombed by Atlanta on August 16 and was basically relegated to the last man in the bullpen spot after that.

-- MWE
   7. Mike Emeigh Posted: September 03, 2012 at 12:56 PM (#4225516)
I just missed Gibson's 1971 no-hitter in Pittsburgh. I went on both Friday night and Sunday afternoon but wasn't able to go Saturday. It took another 41 years before I attended a no-hitter in person.

-- MWE
   8. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:13 PM (#4225525)
Pete La #### is Peter Marshall's son (the guy from Hollywood Squares.)
   9. The District Attorney Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:22 PM (#4225532)
I did not know that about Pete LaD?ngwrangler.
   10. Dale Sams Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:26 PM (#4225536)
But a fellow on Twitter named Al Yellon


I think Al should get a little more respect than 'A fellow on twitter'.
   11. Greg K Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:26 PM (#4225537)
I always remember the 2004 ALCS as Kevin Brown's last outing in the majors. But apparently he made 13 memorable starts in 2005.
   12. JE (Jason Epstein) Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:29 PM (#4225540)
he was bombed by Atlanta on August 16 and was basically relegated to the last man in the bullpen spot after that.

Except for the game in question, of course, which Gibson entered in the seventh inning with the score tied.
   13. Gonfalon B. Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:30 PM (#4225542)
Pete LaCock is Peter Marshall's son (the guy from Hollywood Squares.)

And was also Paul Lynde's favorite player.
   14. Gonfalon B. Posted: September 03, 2012 at 01:40 PM (#4225549)
Cy Young's last start ended with 8 consecutive hits. Walter Johnson was relieved during a 6-run inning in his last game (but hit a home run). Nolan Ryan's last start lasted 0.0 innings, with a single, three walks, a grand slam, and another walk. Ryan tore a ligament in his arm during the fourth walk, but threw one more pitch before being relieved, which was clocked at 98 MPH.
   15. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: September 03, 2012 at 02:01 PM (#4225556)
These guys went out with a bang
   16. BDC Posted: September 03, 2012 at 02:17 PM (#4225560)
I saw most of the National League Hall of Famers from the 1965-75 era, having gone to numerous Cubs and Phillies games in those years; but I missed Koufax, Gibson, and Marichal, and I never saw Hank Aaron in person, oddly enough. I guess I just didn't see a Braves game till much later on.

I'm sure everybody wanted to know that, and can now go back to their usual Labor Day activities :)
   17. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: September 03, 2012 at 02:24 PM (#4225565)
I saw most of the National League Hall of Famers from the 1965-75 era, having gone to numerous Cubs and Phillies games in those years; but I missed Koufax, Gibson, and Marichal, and I never saw Hank Aaron in person, oddly enough.


My very first game featured appearances by both Mays and Aaron - and neither was in the starting lineup. That couldn't have happened very often.

   18. Bob Tufts Posted: September 03, 2012 at 02:51 PM (#4225585)
Home run (by Pete LaCock)
Ground out (end of inning)


Not with a bang, but with a dribbler....
   19. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 03, 2012 at 03:16 PM (#4225597)
I saw most of the National League Hall of Famers from the 1965-75 era, having gone to numerous Cubs and Phillies games in those years; but I missed Koufax, Gibson, and Marichal, and I never saw Hank Aaron in person, oddly enough.


My very first game featured appearances by both Mays and Aaron - and neither was in the starting lineup. That couldn't have happened very often.

I went to just enough NL games in the 60's and 70's to see pretty much all the superstars in person other than Clemente and Carlton, but my worst experience in my entire fandom was driving from Champaign-Urbana to Wrigley Field on about three hours sleep in order to see Willie Mays play in his last game, which would have been in one of two games of a doubleheader that ended the Mets' 1973 season.

Problem was, not only did Mays sit on the bench all afternoon, but I also went to a makeup doubleheader the next day in order to settle the division race. Another mistake. Mays sat out the division-clinching first game and the then-meaningless nightcap was canceled. And to top it off, Mays played again in the postseason, so even if he'd played in Chicago it wouldn't have really been his final appearance.

And in retrospect, I blew it on the other end, too, since my parents moved me from the Upper West Side of Manhattan to Washington about three months before Mays' ML debut and about two months before Mantle's. I had to settle for being there for the only game in which they both hit home runs.
   20. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: September 03, 2012 at 03:25 PM (#4225603)
Gustav Mahler -> Otto Klemperer ->
Werner Klemperer -> Richard Dawson -> Peter Marshall -> Pete LaCock ->
Manny Trillo -> Rick Mahler

   21. BDC Posted: September 03, 2012 at 03:39 PM (#4225611)
Andy, that's … traumatic, is the only way to put it. I did see Mays play once, for the Mets, and I didn't appreciate it enough at the time.

I have since had the experience of not seeing Reggie Jackson or Mike Piazza play late in their careers, on their last road trips into New York. (Never saw either of them play in person.) On both occasions I'd thought it would be cool to see them get into the game, but it wasn't like it was the whole focus of my trip to the park.
   22. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 03, 2012 at 04:27 PM (#4225634)
I really shouldn't complain about missing Mays' last game, though. There were four HRs in that 1956 All-Star game I went to, and they were hit by Mays, Williams, Mantle and Musial. How strong was that?

Of course I was waiting in line underneath the bleachers buying a hot dog when Mays connected, and I had to wait 13 years to actually see him hit a home run in person, but OTOH the pitchers in that game were Marichal and Holtzman, so it wasn't a bad consolation prize.
   23. Howie Menckel Posted: September 03, 2012 at 04:52 PM (#4225654)

If Reggie could get a candy bar named after him (I had one in my lunch bag every day, even though I wasn't a Yankees fan), Pete could have had a lollipop line had he been a big star.

The LaCock Sucker - who wouldn't buy one?

   24. Mefisto Posted: September 03, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4225655)
Geez, Andy, I don't know why you waited so long. I saw Mays homer in the first game I ever went to. :)
   25. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 03, 2012 at 05:21 PM (#4225673)
Mefisto, with that sort of timing you should be playing the lottery. I couldn't even get that game (or the Dodgers' loss) on the radio in my college dorm in North Carolina.

Most painful game I ever missed by an accident of birth: The Mantle 565' home run game at Griffith Stadium. It was Safety Patrol Day, but I was a year too young to be a Patrol Boy. When I finally qualified the next year, the highlight was Roy Sievers losing a fly ball in the Sun against the second division Tigers.

Best landmark game I ever went to: Opening Day in Washington in 1956, when Mantle hit not one, but two home runs over the centerfield wall in Griffith Stadium, which at that point doubled the entire output of home runs hit over that wall in the 45 year history of the ballpark. To top in off, I was sitting on the secondary lower bleacher wall behind the newly installed Beer Garden section, and both home runs practically passed directly over my head. Ted Williams added a fifth HR over that wall on Opening Day in 1960, off of the same Nats' pitcher (Camilo Pascual), but by that time I was on my high school baseball team and had to be at practice.
   26. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: September 03, 2012 at 05:40 PM (#4225692)
I've heard I went to several games when I was a baby, but at some point my parents decided feeding me was a better use of their money. The first game I remember was this one. Four Hall of Famers played and both managers will be in the Hall. It was Ripken's 65th consecutive game, although I doubt anybody called it that then.
   27. BDC Posted: September 03, 2012 at 05:56 PM (#4225701)
with that sort of timing you should be playing the lottery

The first game my English niece ever saw was one where Juan Gonzalez hit three home runs. I said, this really doesn't happen every night. She's seen one other game in her life. Gonzalez hit two home runs in that one.

My landmark game so far was the clincher of the 2010 World Series, but as one might imagine, that wasn't very satisfying for me. It did turn out to be Bengie Molina's last MLB game, which I'm certain will be a treasured memory.

Oddly enough, the first game I saw (and remember, 5/8/65) also featured four Hall of Famers: Morgan, Banks, Santo, and Williams. The guy I remember best from the game was Rusty Staub.
   28. asinwreck Posted: September 03, 2012 at 05:59 PM (#4225703)
Poor Kevin Hickey (the winning pitcher in that game). Palmer was still good then, and that was the year Hoyt broke out. Good matchup.

That year was Hawk Harrelson's first with the White Sox. Had you told me then he'd still be with the team 30 years later, I would have thought you were having a stroke.
   29. asinwreck Posted: September 03, 2012 at 06:13 PM (#4225716)
Not my first game, but the mention of Benji Molina's finale reminded me that I was at Thurman Munson's last game. (Which was also the end of Don Kessinger's career before Tony LaRussa managed his first major-league game.)

It was pretty brutal. I remember being relieved when the Sox scored in the 9th for their only highlight.
   30. AndrewJ Posted: September 03, 2012 at 06:39 PM (#4225728)
I saw five Hall of Famers in the first MLB game I ever attended.

Six if you count one of the managers.

Seven if you include one of the other team's coaches.

Eight if you also throw in the second base umpire.
   31. Mefisto Posted: September 03, 2012 at 06:52 PM (#4225737)
Mefisto, with that sort of timing you should be playing the lottery.


I guess that was my one shot, because I've never been able to even come close after that. Hell of a way to start, though.
   32. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 03, 2012 at 07:05 PM (#4225740)
i know the cubs played the pirates and gus suhr gave me an autographed ball at my uncle's bar some time after the game. it was july.

my uncle had a bar in chicago and my dad would take me to see him under the guise of visiting his brother which really meant they would go to games during the day and then get sh8tfaced that night while i did whatever came to mind. this would last a week give or take.

yes, different time.
   33. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: September 03, 2012 at 07:16 PM (#4225742)
   34. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: September 03, 2012 at 07:27 PM (#4225746)
One more list that Orel Hershiser ranks ahead of Jack Morris on.
   35. Howie Menckel Posted: September 03, 2012 at 08:30 PM (#4225782)
Harvey, Suhr was a Pirate from 1930-39.
Pirates were in Chicago July 11-12, 1938. could that be it?

Pirates won both games:
http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CHN/CHN193807110.shtml

http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CHN/CHN193807120.shtml

The first one had the Waners going 0 for 8, plus Arky Vaughan, Billy Herman, Tony Lazzeri, Stan Hack, Phil Cavarretta

the second one had the Waners go 5 for 8, and Rip "Eephus Pitch" Sewell finished up for the Pirates. Gabby Hartnett caught this one for the Cubbies.
   36. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 03, 2012 at 08:50 PM (#4225788)
howie

it was 1938. i know i was five.
   37. OCF Posted: September 03, 2012 at 08:57 PM (#4225794)
My first major league game: http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/PIT/PIT196008050.shtml

(And no, I never lived in Pennsylvania. I did have relatives there, and we were visiting them on vacation.)

I count five Hall of Famers there, and one of them (Clemente) got hauled off the field on a stretcher. The play happened in the right field corner, and I had no sight line to that - but the batter was out. The play is recorded in a rather matter-of-fact way. Top of the 7th, two out. "J. Davenport Flyball: RF." And for the top of the 8th: "Gino Cimoli replaces Roberto Clemente playing RF batting 5th." (Of course, Clemente had been hauled off on the stretcher back in the 7th.)

The other play of the game also involved outfield defense. Top of the 8th, game tied 0-0, 2 out, bases empty. "A Rodgers Double to CF; Rodgers out at 3B/CF-3B. That involved Bill Virdon picking the ball right off the wall impossibly far out in left center and making an impossible throw to third. Now, all these years before the right informational tools came along, I'd been telling myself that that batter was Willie Mays, but of course it wasn't. (If it had been Mays, he wouldn't have been out at 3rd.)
   38. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: September 03, 2012 at 09:14 PM (#4225803)
Teddy Ballgame took Calvin Coolidge Julius etc deep in the top of the ninth for the winning run. Only 2 HOFers--Williams and Doby, but a slew of HOVG's. Plus the managers' names define the 50's: Pinky Higgins and Bobby Bragan
   39. morineko Posted: September 03, 2012 at 09:32 PM (#4225812)
I saw two future Hall of Famers (George Brett and Kirby Puckett) in my first major league game. It's been all downhill since.

I've been at Brandon Duckworth's final (unless some MLB team goes completely bonkers--he is playing in Japan right now) major league game and Todd Wellemeyer's final professional game. Superstars no, marginal starting pitchers forever.
   40. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: September 03, 2012 at 09:45 PM (#4225821)
July 11-12, 1938 for Harv's first game, eh?

Huh. Howard Hughes had just set a new record by flying around the world in 91 hours. Brian Dennehy was a newborn. The late Peter Jennings was not yet born. The first Superman comic was a month old. Charlie Grimm would lose his job as Cubs manager about a week later. Lou Boudreau was a minor leaguer. Lou Gehrig's consecutive games streak was still going on. It had topped 2,000 earlier that year. He hit his 478th homer on July 12.
   41. vortex of dissipation Posted: September 03, 2012 at 10:02 PM (#4225827)
My first MLB game was a Seattle Pilots/Washington Senators game. The only Hall of Famer there was the Senators' manager...
   42. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 03, 2012 at 10:05 PM (#4225828)
First game was the 1961 Yankees at Fenway. Johnny Blanchard pinch hit a HR for the second game in a row, in an 11-9 Yankee win. Was just a few seats down the first base line from those protected by the screen, maybe 10-15 rows back. Great view.
   43. Howie Menckel Posted: September 03, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4225833)

Gus knocked in 2 runs in the second of the two games, I like the idea of him being in a good mood and giving the li'l future 'banger a ball that day...

   44. base ball chick Posted: September 03, 2012 at 11:10 PM (#4225869)
i don't have any memory at all of the first game i ever saw - don't know why. all i know for sure is that it had kevin bass in it because i fell immediately in love. mama says i was 5 at the time. i do believe that nolan ryan was pitching and i remember he walked a lot of guys and i remember my mother telling me that all he cared about was striking guys out which is why he would never be a great pitcher, just a great strikeout pitcher. so i guess i saw a hall of famer but i promise all yall that at the time didn't nobody think of nolan ryan as a hall of famer...

i remember SOMEbody hit a home run because i remember the bull snorting on the scoreboard. which was just Teh KEWL!!! then again, it just might could have been a differnt game.

but what i remember most of all is walking up all those ramps and at the end we walked into the stands and i saw all those tiers of brightly colored seats. and i looked down on the field and and as soon as i watched the guys play, i knew immediately what i wanted to do with my life - play baseball. unfortunately, i didn't have the hand/eye coordination required. or the height. or the bat and balls....

   45. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: September 03, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4225874)
About the only thing I remember about my first MLB game was that the Mets' starter seemed to fall flat on his face on almost every pitch. Probably only really happened a time or two, but we're impressionable when we're young.
   46. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: September 03, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4225876)
1st game I ever played had Yaz playing centerfield. It was 1982. Turns out Yaz became one of the oldest centerfielders in history that day. There was a four base error by an outfielder in that game, too - but it wasn't Yaz. Wasn't even a Red Sox. It was Ron LeFlore. Harold Baines hit a home run, and I think Dennis Lamp got the win.

My first game at Wrigley (years later) also had a HoFer playing out of position - it was the last time Roberto ALomar played shortstop.
   47. bjhanke Posted: September 04, 2012 at 07:30 AM (#4225983)
I've been a lucky Cardinal fan when it came to seeing the right games. I don't remember my first one (it was 1954 and I was 6), but it's a fair bet that I saw Stan Musial. I only saw his 3000th hit on TV, since it was an away game, but I did see Lou Brock steal his 105th and 118th, and get his 3000th hit (I think those were all at home, and I saw them in person, not on TV). I also got to see Mark McGwire's 70th homer. I saw Ozzie Smith hit his one and only career left-handed home run, which walked-off a win in an NLCS against the Dodgers. The oddest one was back-to-back double headers sometime in the early 1960s. Yes, the Cards played two DHs in two days, and I went to both of them, and Bill White got 14 hits among the 4 games. At the time, this was cited as the record for two consecutive double headers, although I'm not sure that's true, since I can't find any mention of that obscure a record anywhere. If it was a record, it probably still is, since I don't think teams play 4 games in 2 days any more, no matter how hard it's been raining on their schedules.

Watching Gibson in 1975 was sad. His leg was shot, from being broken in 1967 and from a knee that had taken all it could take. He had actually been experimenting with a knuckleball as early as 1970, to get the strain off that leg, but he couldn't master it. Watching him throw an aborted motion that led to ordinary fastballs and sliders was just painful. I think the reason that people remember LaCock's slam as being the last pitch Gibson gave up is that Gibson said, repeatedly, that, when LaCock his a grand slam off of him, he knew it was time to retire. However, he still did have an inning to finish. But he was certainly done, going 3-10 for the season. One odd note about that game - the Cardinal outfield that day was Lou Brock, Bake McBride, and Willie Davis. That may be the fastest outfield of all time. - Brock Hanke
   48. asinwreck Posted: September 04, 2012 at 07:43 AM (#4225987)
There was a four base error by an outfielder in that game, too - but it wasn't Yaz. Wasn't even a Red Sox. It was Ron LeFlore.


I was there, and you could tell LeFlore had no idea where the ball was well before it came down. Ron Kittle was never as incompetent with the glove.
   49. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 04, 2012 at 07:51 AM (#4225989)
First game was the 1961 Yankees at Fenway. Johnny Blanchard pinch hit a HR for the second game in a row, in an 11-9 Yankee win. Was just a few seats down the first base line from those protected by the screen, maybe 10-15 rows back. Great view.

I don't even have to look that game up to remember it. The next day I started a week's vacation in New York where I went to 9 games in 7 days. It began with a Mayor's Cup game against the Giants, continued with a doubleheader where Roger Maris hit four home runs, and ended with Hector Lopez stumbling out of the batter's box while hitting into a game-ending double play to finish off a sweep at the hand of the Orioles. And somewhere in there Blanchard hit two more home runs to give him four in four consectutive at bats (beginning with those two in Boston), and on his next trip to the plate he backed Floyd Robinson of the White Sox against the right field wall in an attempt to break the record for consecutive dingers. It was a glorious week.

--------------------------------------------

but what i remember most of all is walking up all those ramps and at the end we walked into the stands and i saw all those tiers of brightly colored seats.

No green grass, though. That's what you missed by being in Yewston.
   50. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: September 04, 2012 at 07:53 AM (#4225990)
Yes, the Cards played two DHs in two days, and I went to both of them, and Bill White got 14 hits among the 4 games. At the time, this was cited as the record for two consecutive double headers, although I'm not sure that's true, since I can't find any mention of that obscure a record anywhere. If it was a record, it probably still is, since I don't think teams play 4 games in 2 days any more, no matter how hard it's been raining on their schedules.


I googled Bill White 14 hits, and there are a couple of sites that mention he tied Ty Cobb for the ML record.
   51. Ron J2 Posted: September 04, 2012 at 08:42 AM (#4226002)
#6 I remember Gibson's reaction on being dropped from the rotation. He insisted that he was throwing as well as ever and the bad results were mostly bad luck. (IOW Voros didn't invent DIPS. Gibson did)
   52. bjhanke Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:32 AM (#4226071)
Rudy - Thanks a lot! I tried a search for it, but came up empty. I've heard that you're best off going to Google.com and doing searches there, rather than from your browser's search engine. May be true after all. But mostly, I'm glad it really happened. I wasn't very old when I went to those 4 games, and had started wondering whether this was yet another old man's failed memory. I do remember Bill having a reputation as a serious streak hitter. Of course, if you're Ty Cobb, you don't have to go on a streak to get 14 hits in 4 games. - Brock
   53. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:43 AM (#4226081)
If it was a record, it probably still is, since I don't think teams play 4 games in 2 days any more, no matter how hard it's been raining on their schedules.

I seem to remember a team sometime in the past decade having to play 3 consecutive double headers. But I can't remember who.
   54. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:44 AM (#4226084)
Was it the Astros after one of those hurricanes?
   55. JE (Jason Epstein) Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:46 AM (#4226086)
Speaking of doubleheaders, today marks the annivesary of the start of a 18-game, 11-day stretch for the '28 Boston Braves, featuring nine doubleheaders and two travel days.

EDIT: Not surprisingly, the Braves went 4-14 and finished the season with 103 losses.
   56. Ron J2 Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:47 AM (#4226087)
I went to a few Expo games in 1969. No clear memory of which games but I know I saw the Braves and the Cubs (my favorite NL teams).

The first game I have a clear memory of going to featured a young Vida Blue dominating the Yankees to improve to 11-2 (with a 1.36 ERA -- it had been 1.31 coming in)
   57. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: September 04, 2012 at 10:54 AM (#4226090)
Was it the Astros after one of those hurricanes?

That's what I was thinking, but I'm not sure. A quick Google search says that in 1992 the Dodgers were going to play 3 straight double headers because of cancellations during the riots. Obviously not what I was thinking of, but still...
   58. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: September 04, 2012 at 11:21 AM (#4226119)
Speaking of doubleheaders, today marks the annivesary of the start of a 18-game, 11-day stretch for the '28 Boston Braves, featuring nine doubleheaders and two travel days.

EDIT: Not surprisingly, the Braves went 4-14 and finished the season with 103 losses.


And unsurprisingly, given the primitive state of tarpaulins in those days, none of those nine doubleheaders were listed on the original 1928 schedule. Teams would routinely be scheduled for only three doubleheaders in any given season** and yet often wind up playing as many as two dozen or more because of quickly called rainouts.

**Decoration Day, July 4th and Labor Day
   59. cardsfanboy Posted: September 04, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4226138)
I've heard I went to several games when I was a baby, but at some point my parents decided feeding me was a better use of their money. The first game I remember was this one. Four Hall of Famers played and both managers will be in the Hall. It was Ripken's 65th consecutive game, although I doubt anybody called it that then.


Same here, my dad supposedly was taking me to games to see Gibson's 3000th strikeout when I was 3-4 years old, but I didn't find out about that until well after my dad passed away to see if I was at Gibson's 3000th I do have the tickets stubs to most of those games stored somewhere, need to check on that sometime.
   60. Booey Posted: September 04, 2012 at 05:36 PM (#4226561)
I've been to a whopping 3 MLB games in person, and none before 2010. In my first, I saw two guys who'll make the HOF for sure (Jeter, Ichiro), another who would have if it weren't for that pesky roid confession (A-Rod), and a few more who have somewhere between a pretty good to an outside chance of making it (CC, Tex, Cano, Posada).

   61. PreservedFish Posted: September 04, 2012 at 05:46 PM (#4226577)
I just took my daughter to her first game. She's 6 months old. Mine was probably around the same age.
   62. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: September 04, 2012 at 06:22 PM (#4226602)
First MLB game was an Astros-Expos doubleheader at the 'Dome:
http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/HOU/HOU198007191.shtml
http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/HOU/HOU198007192.shtml

Three Hall of Famers - Dawson, Carter, and Joe Morgan - but the main thing I remember is being awed by the space, and the scoreboard, and the food (it wasn't good food, but I ate a LOT of it).
   63. Perry Posted: September 04, 2012 at 06:29 PM (#4226607)
First game was a Reds-Pirates game in Cincy in 1965 -- featured Pete Rose (who autographed my scorecard before the game), Frank Robinson, Tony Perez, Willie Stargell, Roberto Clemente, and Bill Mazeroski, so 5 HOFers plus Rose. And a nifty pitching matchup of Joe Nuxhall vs. Vern Law. Tommy Harper led off the bottom of the 1st with a homer, but that was all the Reds got as the Pirates won 3-1 in something like 2:15, which was a little quick even in the 60s but not as extraordinary as it would be now. In fact I think most night games started at 8 pm then, which would be unthinkable now.
   64. Rob_Wood Posted: September 04, 2012 at 08:17 PM (#4226651)
I am not 100% positive, but I think my first ever game was August 19, 1962 San Francisco Giants at Milwaukee Braves. My older brothers were big Hank Aaron fans and I was a big Willie Mays fan. Aaron and McCovey each hit two home runs out of a total of seven for the game. Mays went hitless yet scored two runs. Someone in my group got a foul ball from McCovey. Other hall of famers in the game were Eddie Mathews and Orlando Cepeda, so a total of five hall of famers played. Of course, other hall of famers were there: Warren Spahn, Juan Marichal, and Gaylord Perry. Joe Torre and Bob Uecker were on the Braves bench but did not get in the game.
   65. Mefisto Posted: September 04, 2012 at 09:03 PM (#4226677)
I did a double take when I saw your post, Rob. I saw the Giants play MIL on August 20, 1963. I first read yours to say 1963 and thought we'd been there on back to back days. Then I realized yours was a year earlier.
   66. Rob_Wood Posted: September 04, 2012 at 09:11 PM (#4226682)
Mefisto, was the 1963 game your very first game?
   67. Mefisto Posted: September 04, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4226702)
No. My first game was a month after yours -- see comment 24 (heh) in this thread.
   68. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: September 04, 2012 at 09:52 PM (#4226707)
The game I had previously lodged in my brain as my first was this one. However, I'd remembered it as occurring in '96 or '97, rather than '99, so I think my first was actually this one, which was quite a bit less exciting, although it did have a likely future HOFer (Frank Thomas) hitting a grand slam.
   69. PADyno Posted: September 05, 2012 at 05:17 PM (#4227553)
Grew up near Chicago; saw my first games in each ballpark a month apart in 1984.

My Little League team won a free trip for some fundraising thing, so I got to a Sox game first. Blyleven vs Seaver, with a Fisk pinch-hitting cameo later in the game (thanks, Retrosheet). A total of 10.2 innings, 19 hits, and 10 runs allowed by the starters, so even my very young self could obviously tell I was looking at a matchup of hall-of-famers. I remember basically the final score of this game; much more memorable was the kid yarfing hot dog chunks during the bus ride home.

However, my family leans strongly Cubward, so me having gone to Comiskey but not Wrigley could not be allowed to stand, and thus was I bundled off to see a Cubs game - still one of the few games I've seen in person which they won. Cubs vs Expos, so I got Sandberg/Dawson/Carter, along with Tim Raines, and, apparently, Rick Reuschel in relief. Keith Moreland hit a grand slam, and the Cubs rode those 4 runs to a 4-3 win.

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