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Friday, April 19, 2019

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-19-2019

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, April 19, 1919:

Not only did the South treat the Pirates harshly in the matter [of weather], but it chilled the bank rolls of two Pirate athletes. Earl Hamilton and Erskine Mayer both reported losses [yesterday]...Mayer lost $60 and a lot of personal papers. Hamilton lost a few dollars less, but several notes and all told the loot amounted to a considerable amount.
...
Investigation revealed that the money had not been left loose in their room but that the rooms had been entered during the night and cash and other valuables stolen. Neither one of them lost any jewelry, the thief taking only the wallets.

Stealing from Pirates is a good way to end up walking the plank. Speaking of which, it really bums me out that Eddie Plank never played for Pittsburgh.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 19, 2019 at 10:44 AM | 17 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, history

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   1. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 19, 2019 at 10:45 AM (#5833484)
A nice Birthday Team today. No weaknesses, two Juniors, and a handful of All-Stars.

I've spent a ton of time in my life staring at old baseball stats, so I've heard of a bunch of obscure players that are unfamiliar to a lot of people. But I have never in my life heard of John Wyatt, outside of seeing him once a year on Birthday Teams. He's definitely a leading candidate to appear on a 25-man roster of best ballplayers with whom I'm completely unfamiliar.

C: Brent Mayne (3.0 WAR)
1B: Joe Mauer (55.0 WAR)
2B: Alberto Callaspo (9.1 WAR)
3B: Whitey Kurowski (24.0 WAR)
SS: Spike Owen (12.5 WAR)
LF: Jose Cruz Jr. (19.5 WAR)
CF: Jackie Bradley Jr. (12.7 WAR)
RF: Rick Miller (15.5 WAR)

SP: Bucky Walters (53.4 WAR)
SP: Frank Viola (46.9 WAR)
SP: Zach Duke (11.9 WAR)
SP: Scott Kamieniecki (9.0 WAR)
SP: Joe Beimel (7.1 WAR)
RP: John Wyatt (10.0 WAR)

Manager: Harry Craft
General Manager: Dean Taylor
Fun name: Chick Shorten, Bugs Bennett
Occasional Primate: Mike Colbern
The Big Sweat: Dennys Reyes
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:07 AM (#5833489)
SP: Bucky Walters (53.4 WAR)

Walters had a heck of a peak there from '39-'42. Got to think that if he had gotten an earlier star, or feasted a bit more on the WW2 depleted league (a la Hal Newhouser), he'd be in the HoF.
   3. Itchy Row Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:16 AM (#5833493)
I'd never heard of Wyatt either, but he picked up the win (by blowing a lead) for the Red Sox in Game 6 of the 1967 World Series, putting them within a game of ending the Curse of the Bambino before the curse got annoying.
   4. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:17 AM (#5833494)
Walters was a converted infielder, which explains his late pitching start.
   5. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:20 AM (#5833495)
Walters was a converted infielder, which explains his late pitching start.

Looking at his batting lines, they should have converted him earlier.
   6. Davo Has Marianne Mindset Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:36 AM (#5833503)
Here’s John Wyatt’s biography, from SABR

Highlights: Frequently accused of doctoring the baseball (from Joe Pepitone: “Wyatt has so much Vaseline on him that if he slid into second base he would keep right on going until he hit the outfield fence.”), holder of one interesting record (“Wyatt holds the all-time single-season record for most home runs given up by a relief pitcher. For the Kansas City A's in 1964, he gave up 23 homers while making no starts.”), and some fun stories from his pre-MLB career in the Negro Leagues and the Mexican League.
   7. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 19, 2019 at 12:31 PM (#5833518)
Interesting bio, Davo. What a great site.

John Wyatt led the majors with 81 appearances in 1964 and threw 128 innings. Dick Radatz was second with 79 appearances and threw 157 innings. Now that's incredible. He only gave up 13 homers.

Another guy on the 1964 A's (Orlando Peña) gave up 40 home runs, which also led the majors. And in only 219 innings pitched. 32 pitchers threw more innings than that. Don Drysdale threw 321.

Orlando Peña went on to take the title of oldest player in the majors in 1974-1975 after Don McMahon finally retired. He kept pitching until age 45 in AAA and then the short-lived "Inter-American League" which was an official AAA league but consisted of all unaffiliated teams. Never heard of the Inter-American League before!
   8. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2019 at 12:38 PM (#5833521)
Looking at his batting lines, they should have converted him earlier.


In 1939 when he won the MVP, he batted .325 with a 110 OPS+. 1.6 batting WAR.
   9. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 19, 2019 at 01:13 PM (#5833530)

In 1939 when he won the MVP, he batted .325 with a 110 OPS+. 1.6 batting WAR.


Yeah, but in his years as a position player, he had a 72 OPS+. Career 69 OPS+.

As a pitcher he was a great hitter. As a position player, he stunk.
   10. TDF, trained monkey Posted: April 19, 2019 at 04:19 PM (#5833589)
In 1939 when he won the MVP, he batted .325 with a 110 OPS+. 1.6 batting WAR.
In 131 PA. And he didn't win because of it (or at least shouldn't have); his 8.2 bWAR from pitching - in a season he lead the league in W, ERA, GS, CG,IP, and K (and ERA+, WHIP, and H/9, but that wouldn't have mattered in '39) was enough by itself.
Yeah, but in his years as a position player, he had a 72 OPS+.
As a position player, his OPS was .649. In the early-mid '30s (the time he accumulated most of those PA) only 6-7 players in MLB per year qualified for the batting title with an OPS that low.
   11. Rennie's Tenet Posted: April 19, 2019 at 06:40 PM (#5833614)
Pena finished his MLB career with consecutive annual ERAs of 3.07, 2.95, 2.21, and 2.13. So you can see why he had to go.
   12. Perry Posted: April 19, 2019 at 06:47 PM (#5833616)
I remember Wyatt, but only because I was a kid in the 60s who bought a lot of baseball cards.
   13. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2019 at 07:02 PM (#5833617)
Yeah, but in his years as a position player, he had a 72 OPS+. Career 69 OPS+.

As a pitcher he was a great hitter. As a position player, he stunk.


it was just a throwaway comment. I didn't mean to imply anything by it. he was a really good hitter for a pitcher, as you might expect from a converted position player. Bob Lemon is another. career OPS+ of 82 and over 10 batting WAR. From 1947-1951 he amassed a full seasons worth of PA and hit 23 HR, drove in 84, and had a 117 OPS+.
   14. Hysterical & Useless Posted: April 19, 2019 at 07:03 PM (#5833618)
Charlie Finley had traded for Rocky Colavito and Jim Gentile before the '64 season, and moved the fences in. He wanted to match the 297' right field in Yankee Stadium, calling it his "pennant porch," but the league said no and he had to settle for 325' and call it the "half-pennant porch."

Colavito hit 34 homers, Gentile 28. The A's finished last.
   15. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2019 at 07:08 PM (#5833619)
Charlie Finley had traded for Rocky Colavito and Jim Gentile before the '64 season, and moved the fences in. He wanted to match the 297' right field in Yankee Stadium, calling it his "pennant porch," but the league said no and he had to settle for 325' and call it the "half-pennant porch."


Bill James in his 1986 Abstract wrote a long piece on the History of being a Kansas City baseball fan, and mentioned the half pennant porch. Apparently, Finley had a line painted in the grass indicating where the fence would be had it been allowed, and he instructed the PA guy to announce "That would have been a HR in Yankee stadium" every time a ball was caught between the line and the actual fence. The practice came to an abrupt end when the Twins hit 4 consecutive HR, and the fifth batter hit one to deep RF and the announcer said "That would have been a HR..."
   16. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 19, 2019 at 07:16 PM (#5833620)
And, another great story proved false. Bill, I'm so disappointed. here's the game

The Twins led off the 11th with 4 straight HR, then a strikeout, foul popup, and a groundout.
   17. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 19, 2019 at 11:58 PM (#5833675)
I suspect that the "That would have been a HR..." announcement followed Rocky Colavito's flyout to right field in the bottom of the 11th.

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