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RIP for non-HoFers 2023

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  • RIP for non-HoFers 2023

    The first notable death of the year is longtime Texas Longhorns coach Cliff Gustafson on January 2 at age 91. I had never heard of him before as I don't follow college ball, but he clearly has a worthy history.

    Coach Gus, as he was affectionately known, died of congestive heart failure. He was 91. He left UT as the NCAA's all-time winningest baseball coach.
    Put it in the books.

  • #2
    Padres' career home run leader, Nate Colbert, dead at 76.
    "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
    "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
    "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
    "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe

    Comment


    • #3
      Colbert spent six years with the Padres, from 1969-1974. It's crazy that he is still their all-time HR leader.
      My top 10 players:

      1. Babe Ruth
      2. Barry Bonds
      3. Ty Cobb
      4. Ted Williams
      5. Willie Mays
      6. Alex Rodriguez
      7. Hank Aaron
      8. Honus Wagner
      9. Lou Gehrig
      10. Mickey Mantle

      Comment


      • #4
        RIP Nate Colbert

        While on a trip to visit relatives in New England on 08/01 of 1972, Red Sox announcers provided updates on each successive home run hit by Nate Colbert. Beginning with his third homer, I soaked in the broadcast for updates on my first favorite ballplayer. He would end the night with 5 jacks and 13 RBI in the Padre doubleheader against the Braves. A month later, Brett, a school chum who was wise and funny well beyond his years, blurted an hilarious interpretation of the Sporting News headline which described that doubleheader. The headline read "Just night's work for Nate: 5 HRs and 13 RBIs". Brett mocked the headline with the statement ".. 5 horse radishes and 13 rabbits-bitten-into". He blurted this in response to Colbert's girth, I suppose.

        Colbert could never reach his potential in Jack Murphy Stadium, as it was named at the time. The fences were distant, and stood 17 feet up. This did not stop him from twice reaching 38 homers for the season in the park. He had no supporting cast from one year to the next, as shown by his ridiculous 111 RBI that year on a team which scored only 488 runs for the season. A fellow SABR-ite later researched the matter. He found Colbert's share of 1972 Padre production historically high: 22.7% of their runs that year were driven in by one guy.

        It was no secret to the National League. Tom Seaver was later quoted in the Sporting News. He admitted some hitters fared far better against him than they should, and mentioned the right-handed Colbert 'owned' the righthander. I never verified the stats to back this up, but the quote was there in the Sporting News.

        My first favorite ballplayer dedicated his senior years to serving disadvantaged youth through his ministry.

        RIP Nate Colbert

        Comment


        • #5
          RIP Cliff Gustafson

          Upon his retirement in 1996, Gustafson retired as the alltime winningest college baseball coach. Although his wins total has been surpassed since, his stamp is all over U of Texas baseball. National Champions in 1975 and 1983, and numerous former players of his later played in the majors. Some of those include Keith Moreland, Burt Hooton, Shane Reynolds, Greg Swindell, and most notably, Roger Clemens. Former pitchers fared quite well for him.

          The link above quotes a college career W/L percentage of .792, but to find the exact W/L record, wikipedia is all I could find. The site lists his percentage at .795, and 1466-377-2 overall. That record spans 1968-1996, and effectively leaves no one before him who had accomplished as much in college ball.

          RIP Cliff Gustafson

          Comment


          • #6
            Great link, thanks Brad, I think of my dad and his card collecting days, Colbert was always a highlight, particularly the 74 Washington National League one.
            Jacquelyn Eva Marchand (1983-2017)
            http://www.tezakfuneralhome.com/noti...uelyn-Marchand

            Comment


            • #7
              Bill Campbell, Former Red Sox All-Star, Dies at 74 (msn.com)​

              Comment


              • #8
                RIP Bill Campbell

                Bill Campbell signed a multi-year deal with the Red Sox in the offseason leading up to 1977. This was in the era of the 2 and 3 inning save, when stars would see heavy use. Campbell had a big first year in Boston with 31 saves, 13 wins, a career low 2.96 ERA, and a sparkling 112 hits allowed in his 140 IP.

                Over the 4 years of '74 to '77, with the Twins and Red Sox, Campbell averaged 64 appearances and 137 IP per year. After such heavy use, his arm gave out during the '78 season.

                As a Cardinal fan, I recall him doing well in more limited relief in '85. Research shows only 1 earned run allowed in 6 appearances and 6 1/3 IP in that year's postseason.

                RIP Bill Campbell

                Comment


                • #9
                  RIP Carl Duser

                  Put it in the books.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    RIP Lee Tinsley

                    For an outfielder who earned his value as a defensive specialist, two hitting streaks in double digits in one year is unusual.

                    In 1995, Lee Tinsley began the season with the Red Sox and a 14 game hitting streak, and then added a 15-gamer in June. This was his best year overall, hitting .284 with 18 steals in his 100 games. On defense, he saved 11 runs by BBRef's Rtot total that year for the Sawx. His glovework that year was no fluke, for he saved 24 runs as an outfielder over his career. Trivia buffs might recall his trade over the following offseason. In a multiplayer trade with the Phillies, Tinsley was the major figure going to the Phils in the trade which brought Heathcliff Slocumb to the Red Sox.

                    RIP Lee Tinsley

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The original Frank Thomas died yesterday. He was 93. There are lots of obituaries out there, but I don't know how to attach them, so here are a few bits of information.

                      Thomas, a Pittsburgh native, was a power hitter who came up with the Pirates in the early 50s. He played third base and outfield, and later in his career first base. In 16 seasons Thomas hit .266/.320/.454, with 286 home runs. The right handed Thomas was severely penalized by Forbes Field. He also suffered a number of hand injuries during his career, which handicapped his hitting. Had he played his entire career with a more neutral home park, and avoided injuries, he may well have hit 400 home runs, a rare accomplishment in that era.

                      Before the 1959 season Thomas, already a 3 time All Star, was traded to Cincinnati for Harvey Haddix, Smokey Burgess, and Don Hoak, a trade that was widely credited for bringing the 1960 pennant to the Pirates. Thomas was expected to be a big home run hitter for the Reds but had major hand problems which diminished his power. He later played for the Cubs and Mets. Thomas held the single season homer mark for the Mets for more than a decade. In 1965, while with the Phillies, he was involved in an altercation with Dick Allen that led to him being traded.

                      Thomas was a good player whose career might have been more illustrious had certain circumstances been different.
                      Last edited by BigRon; 01-17-2023, 09:14 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        RIP Ted Savage

                        Ted Savage discovered his place in the game after a journeyman career. He spent 25 years in the Cardinals Community Relations department, working with innercity kids in their RBI program. For those who might need a reminder, this acronym stands for Reviving Baseball in the Innercity, a program with roots in Kansas City and other major league cities. His most recognized contribution is the Ted Savage RBI Golf Classic.

                        His best individual season was in 1970, with the Brewers. That was his 8th of 9 seasons, overall. From BBRef, he must have learned patience at the plate. His walks improved dramatically, leading to his slash line of .279/.402/.482. He drew a career best 57 walks in part time play as an OFer, and greatly reduced his rate of striking out. He had 12 HRs and 50 RBI in only 276 ABs that year.

                        A link to his golf tournament is below.

                        https://www.mlb.com/cardinals/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rsscommunity/rbi-golf-tournament

                        A link for a GoFundMe page for contributions to his innercities programs can be found here:​

                        https://gf.me/v/c/f9fr/ted-?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rsssavage

                        All of the above was found in the article below:​

                        Funds Being Raised for RBI program of Cardinals Care in Memory of Ted Savage | STL Sports Page | timesnewspapers.com

                        RIP Ted Savage

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          R.I.P. Sal Bando, 78, of cancer.
                          "It is a simple matter to erect a Hall of Fame, but difficult to select the tenants." -- Ken Smith
                          "I am led to suspect that some of the electorate is very dumb." -- Henry P. Edwards
                          "You have a Hall of Fame to put people in, not keep people out." -- Brian Kenny
                          "There's no such thing as a perfect ballot." -- Jay Jaffe

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            RIP Sal Bando

                            Per Reggie, Sal Bando was "The Godfather, the capo di capo".

                            This from one HoFer among other HoF teammates, and among a lineup loaded with annual Allstar Game players, on a team which three-repeated winning the WS.

                            Yet, Bando was the Oakland A's captain. His consistent glovework and clutch bat must have been how he earned it.

                            IMO, the 1971 AL MVP race is revealing. Vida Blue won that, as well as that year's Cy Young. Sal Bando had his best showing for MVP in '71, finishing second. Overall, his 61.5 WAR becomes his best career stat. Other stats for him just don't tell the tale.

                            BTW, in the 2001 edition of Bill James' Historical Baseball Abstract, he had Sal Bando as #11 among 3Bman. This is just ahead of Ken Boyer at 12, and Graig Nettles at 13.

                            RIP Sal Bando
                            Last edited by That_guy; 01-21-2023, 09:01 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              RIP Bill Davis, "The Jolly Green Giant!". Dies at 80:
                              RIP to Bill Davis, a Hall of Fame baseball player at the University of Minnesota who also played in the major leagues in the 1960s. He died on January 13 in Edina, Minn., at the age of 80. Davis pl…
                              Jacquelyn Eva Marchand (1983-2017)
                              http://www.tezakfuneralhome.com/noti...uelyn-Marchand

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