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Monday, January 06, 2014

John D’Acquisto on Jerry Coleman

Regardless of what transpired during the 1980 season, when things didn’t work out, Kroc reassigned Jerry back to the booth. Didn’t matter that the team underperformed, Ray Kroc loved Jerry Coleman so much and was aware of the fan base’s affection for the man, he kept him in the family. That to me, above all else, speaks to the respect and admiration we all felt for Jerry Coleman. A great American. A great husband.

A great Padre.

djordan Posted: January 06, 2014 at 01:05 PM | 27 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: john d'acquisto, mlb

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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:45 PM (#4631671)
I haven't seen it since I was a kid, but I absolutely loved "The Kid From Left Field."
   2. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: January 06, 2014 at 05:50 PM (#4631678)
John D’Acquisto is just terrific.
   3. Shibal Posted: January 06, 2014 at 08:36 PM (#4631854)
I wish we'd get these type of articles when people are alive.

Nice article in any case.
   4. Moeball Posted: January 06, 2014 at 10:09 PM (#4631902)
As a long time Padres fan I am deeply saddened by this news. Colonel Coleman was every bit as much a part of the team as any of the players over the years and he will be sorely missed.

He was a better announcer than he was a manager, I suppose, but he was a pretty decent player BITD with the Yankees.

He was an even better person.

   5. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 06, 2014 at 10:34 PM (#4631919)
Marty Noble reminisces about Jerry Coleman. RTFA.
   6. asinwreck Posted: January 06, 2014 at 10:44 PM (#4631935)
This is lovely.
   7. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: January 06, 2014 at 10:48 PM (#4631941)
"Winfield goes back to the wall, he hits his head on the wall and it rolls off! It’s rolling all the way back to second base. This is a terrible thing for the Padres!" -- Jerry Coleman, Master of the Malaprop
   8. Moeball Posted: January 07, 2014 at 03:01 AM (#4632052)
"Winfield goes back to the wall, he hits his head on the wall and it rolls off! It’s rolling all the way back to second base. This is a terrible thing for the Padres!" -- Jerry Coleman, Master of the Malaprop


While that is probably Jerry's most famous mis-statement, he's had some other doozies that left us laughing over the years, such as the following (circa 1998 I think):

"Greg Myers has done ok for the Padres this year even though he's only played spasmodically." (Uh, that should have been sporadically)

When the Padres were playing a night game, during lulls in the broadcast Ted Leitner would often ask Jerry "So What'd You Do Today?" Sometimes the answers were pretty funny. One time they were on a road trip in Pittsburgh and Jerry went on about some story about how he went for a walk during the day and Pittsburgh was a nice enough city but then Jerry wanted a frozen yogurt but couldn't find an appropriate place to get such a thing like he could in San Diego. He elaborated further that he finally had to get one at a local McDonald's but it wasn't very good. Then Ted reminded Jerry that McDonald's was one of the Padres sponsors and Jerry immediately gushed about how it was the best frozen yogurt he'd ever had!

We're gonna miss you, Colonel Coleman!
   9. Morty Causa Posted: January 07, 2014 at 05:19 AM (#4632065)
Yankee teams after WWII were almost perennial winners after WWII and for twenty years thereafter, but they sure did it with some weak-hitting second baseman. Gordon returned from the war and immediately had a series of serious injuries that led to him being traded because management didn't think he'd recover. He had anyway been replaced with Snuffy Stirnweiss during the war, who must have looked like he was a star of the future, having great years in '44 and '45, and doing really well in MVP voting. Stirnweiss even led the league in BA and SLG in '45, but that was a mirage, strictly a construct of the inferior competition during the war, as he never even remotely approximated any of that after the war. That had to be a big disappointment.

Then there was Coleman and Billy Martin, culminating in the late '50s and '60s with Bobby Richardson. The only return to something like Gordon in his heyday was when McDougald played there, but McDougald was the itinerant placeholder moving around three positions, allowing Stengel to do all that platooning. Since I didn't have access to Coleman, I wonder if he ever spoke of Stengel. If I remember Halberstam's book correctly, and B-ref confirms this, Coleman got his chance with Stengel and the Yankees in that Summer of '49. As I remember, Halberstam praises Coleman a good deal, not that Halberstam's baseball savvy isn't suspect.
   10. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 07, 2014 at 10:20 AM (#4632108)
Managers that came straight from the broadcast booth: Jerry Coleman, Larry Dierker, Bob Brenly, who else?
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:07 AM (#4632132)
Marty Noble reminisces about Jerry Coleman. RTFA.

Wow, Coleman has 2 Distinguished Flying Crosses.

That has to make him the most decorated MLBer ever, right?
   12. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:25 AM (#4632145)
That has to make him the most decorated MLBer ever, right?


What about former Blue Jays manager Tim Johnson?
   13. Perry Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4632151)
Managers that came straight from the broadcast booth: Jerry Coleman, Larry Dierker, Bob Brenly, who else?


Between his stints managing the Braves and Cardinals, Joe Torre spent 6 years broadcasting.
   14. Good cripple hitter Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:40 AM (#4632153)
Managers that came straight from the broadcast booth: Jerry Coleman, Larry Dierker, Bob Brenly, who else?


Buck Martinez. I thought that Hawk Harrelson qualified, but the Sox made him the GM.
   15. Danko Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:48 AM (#4632158)
Lou Boudreau became a Cubs broadcaster, went and managed the Cubs for a year, then went straight back into the broadcast booth to stay. The Cubs of that era would do that to a guy.
   16. if nature called, ladodger34 would listen Posted: January 07, 2014 at 11:56 AM (#4632162)
Managers that came straight from the broadcast booth: Jerry Coleman, Larry Dierker, Bob Brenly, who else?
Between his stints managing the Braves and Cardinals, Joe Torre spent 6 years broadcasting.


I didn't watch the Angels a whole bunch when I was a kid, but since it was the 80s and you took any baseball you could get on TV, I did watch them. Joe Torre was a really good announcer.
   17. dlf Posted: January 07, 2014 at 12:03 PM (#4632166)
#11 - I don't know how to compare different medals for valor, but Ralph Houk received a Bronze star with cluster, Silver Star, and was promoted from Private eventually to Major during WWII. Maj. Houk

Here is a pretty good source of information on all MLB players who served in WWII: Link
   18. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 07, 2014 at 12:20 PM (#4632180)
#11 - I don't know how to compare different medals for valor, but Ralph Houk received a Bronze star with cluster, Silver Star, and was promoted from Private eventually to Major during WWII. Maj. Houk

This site has an order of precedence. http://www.homeofheroes.com/medals/1_precedence.html

It seems that the DFC is higher than a bronze star, but lower than a silver star. I thought the DFC was the Air Force equivalent to the Distinguished Service Cross (2nd only to Medal of Honor) but apparently that's the "Air Force Cross".

I have no idea how to weight 2 DFCs vs. one silver and one bronze star. Safe enough to say they were both real heroes.
   19. Morty Causa Posted: January 07, 2014 at 12:28 PM (#4632191)
I'm not much on Houk, but his response here (as quoted by the NYTs in its obit) can't be beat:

As he got ready to manage in a World Series game for the first time, against the Cincinnati Reds in 1961, Houk was asked whether he was nervous. “Why, is somebody going to be shooting at me?” he replied.
   20. dlf Posted: January 07, 2014 at 12:59 PM (#4632242)
I have no idea how to weight 2 DFCs vs. one silver and one bronze star.


Isn't a cluster on the Bronze Star an indicia that he received it twice?

Safe enough to say they were both real heroes.


Agreed.
   21. Moeball Posted: January 07, 2014 at 01:05 PM (#4632250)
Since I didn't have access to Coleman, I wonder if he ever spoke of Stengel. If I remember Halberstam's book correctly, and B-ref confirms this, Coleman got his chance with Stengel and the Yankees in that Summer of '49. As I remember, Halberstam praises Coleman a good deal, not that Halberstam's baseball savvy isn't suspect.


As it turns out I was extremely lucky one day a few years ago (ok, maybe it was a decade ago?)

The Hall of Champions in Balboa Park here in San Diego sponsored a luncheon at which the two guests of honor were Jerry Coleman and Duke Snider.

Mostly they reminisced about those old World Series clashes between the Dodgers and the Yankees back in the late forties and early fifties. But Jerry did mention Casey in a couple of ways:

1)Even though Jerry wasn't much as a hitter, and acknowledged as much - he said he was told a big reason he got the starting job at second base was because he was good at turning two and that was always very important to Stengel.

2)For all of the silly things Casey was quoted as saying - and Jerry did confirm that it kept a clubhouse loose to always be laughing with all of the strange things Casey and Yogi seemed to say - one of the shrewdest things Casey said was this: "The Yankees don't pay me to win every game - just 4 out of 7!" Casey was very well aware that the expectations of him from the front office were to hang up championship banners and anything less than that wasn't considered good enough.
   22. just plain joe Posted: January 07, 2014 at 01:29 PM (#4632275)
Isn't a cluster on the Bronze Star an indicia that he received it twice?


Yes, cluster(s) on medals indicate multiple awards of that medal.
   23. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 07, 2014 at 04:33 PM (#4632543)
Jake Jones was awarded the Silver Star, two Distinguished Flying Crosses and four Air Medals.
   24. Morty Causa Posted: January 07, 2014 at 04:46 PM (#4632563)
21:

Thanks. Good anecdotes.

   25. Morty Causa Posted: January 07, 2014 at 04:52 PM (#4632571)
23:

Also, thanks to you, too. I'm a Red Sox fan, have been all my life, and I don't think I ever knew that. In fact, I don't have any memory of ever knowing about Jake Jones, on the field or off.
   26. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 19, 2014 at 07:05 PM (#4642087)
Article on Jerry Coleman's Memorial Service at Petco Park:
"If you loved baseball and your country, you loved Jerry Coleman," said Torre, who works for Major League Baseball and will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this summer. "What a life, what a man. God bless him. Torre said he was always struck by Coleman's humility and how he "exemplified the heroism in his life that turned this gentleman into a source of awe among the people of our game for more than 60 years. Whenever our greatest generation and our game intersect, you find Jerry Coleman. He's the kind of man whose spirit is forever in our national past-time."
. . .
During Torre's tenure managing the Yankees, Coleman attended several old-timers' games. Torre said it was apparent the respect Coleman had from his peers. "The Yankees of old were his team. Jerry Coleman was the kind of man who made me proud to wear the Yankees' pinstripes," Torre said.
. . .
Daughter Chelsea Coleman ended her eulogy with, "Semper Fi and beat L.A.!"

More at link.
   27. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: January 19, 2014 at 07:16 PM (#4642095)
Thanks, Clapper.

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