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"If it would have happened in New York or Boston..."

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  • "If it would have happened in New York or Boston..."

    As a fan of the Detroit Tigers, I'm often annoyed at the inordinate attention paid by the media to the great "moments" in New York and Boston baseball history, as opposed to the "moments" in other teams' lore.

    We all know that New York is the "capital of baseball" (and, not coincidentally, the capital of the media). And the Red Sox have always been the darling of the Ivy League literary set.

    And, don't get me wrong -- I'm happy for it. New York has given us four great major league teams, each with rich histories and characters. And the Red Sox are my second-favorite team. Nobody is denying that New York and Boston have contributed more than their fair share to baseball lore.

    But, really, don't you think there has been way too much attention paid to things like Joe DiMaggio kicking the dirt in the '47 Series because an outfielder made a good catch on him; or Yaz's clutch hitting during the 1967 pennant race? Certainly, these are both great pieces of baseball history, and they deserve to be recognized. But there are even more spectacular or interesting historical events involving other teams that are relatively ignored.

    Off the top of my head, I can think of a few moments in Detroit Tiger history that would have been played up huge if they had happened in New York or Boston:

    -- In the first game of the 1940 World Series, Bobo Newsom defeated the Reds, 7-2. That night, after he spent the evening celebrating the win with his family, Bobo's father died suddenly of a heart attack.

    Bobo grimly dedicated his next start to his father's memory. In Game Three, he pitched a three-hit shutout masterpiece. After the game, he sat in the clubhouse surrounded by reporters and photographers, tears streaming down his face.

    This story hardly ever gets told, yet it's a sad and wonderful tale. I'll bet if Bobo had pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers or the Yankees, this great moment in baseball history would be etched in the minds of fans everywhere.

    Another great moment in Tiger history that has been relatively ignored is the breathtaking 1987 pennant race. The Tigers and Blue Jays, neck-and-neck in the AL East, played seven games to close out the season. Every game was a classic, each of them decided by a single run. The Tigers finally beat the Jays at home, 1-0 on the final game of the season.

    But the 1987 race somehow got left on Ken Burns' cutting room floor, and it always seems to escape the attention of editors putting together baseball history books.

    But, by God, ol' DiMagg musta been REALLY ticked to have kicked the dirt like that -- Joltin' Joe hardly ever showed any emotion, you know. And Yaz? Oh, man...you shoulda seen him in '67! Da man was haht like a fya-crackah!

    What are some of the great moments in your favorite team's history that have wilted in the shadow of the Empire State Building and Harvard University?
    Last edited by Victory Faust; 03-04-2006, 04:09 AM.

  • Victory Faust
    replied
    Originally posted by jrh31584
    The Doyle Alexander trade is remembered in Atlanta, but more for who the Braves got in return. Not many people realize how well Alexander pitched for Detroit that year.

    Detroit fans certainly remember, and it's a constant debate whether it was worth it to trade away a Hall of Fame pitcher to get into the playoffs.

    Leave a comment:


  • jrh31584
    replied
    and as to 87- one of the greatest clutch pitching performances ever- Doyle Alexander comes from Atlanta, and in only 11 starts for the Tigers goes 9-0 with a 278 ERA+ and 3 shutouts down the stretch. Even though he only started 11 AL games, only Jeff Reardon among pitchers finishes higher than Alexander in the MVP voting, and as to the Cy Young, well, go look at the voting results and innings pitched and tell me how many starting pitchers have ever got a first place vote with less than 100 IP.

    These things would be remembered better in larger media cities.
    The Doyle Alexander trade is remembered in Atlanta, but more for who the Braves got in return. Not many people realize how well Alexander pitched for Detroit that year.

    Leave a comment:


  • DoubleX
    replied
    Originally posted by STLCards2
    What makes me so upset is that so many people see that bloody sock and think of Schilling as being a model of toughness and durability. I have mentioned many times that Schilling has only started 30 games six times in his entire career. In 18 years! Schilling has pitched fewer than 2,950 Inning in his career, for a total of 164 per season. Schilling is no warrior or workhorse.
    I think that's why some people think it was a fakery - that Schilling was trying to create this stoic image for himself. But I totally agree with you. After '04, people everywhere were pronouncing Schilling as a Hall of Famer, and it's like they totally forgot his career before that point (or the fact that he got destroyed in his first outing in the '04 ALCS, after which the camera showed him in the dugout seemingly crying). For a supposedly great and dominant pitcher, he has missed a lot of time in his career. He's 39, been in the bigs for 18 years, and still hasn't cracked 200 wins - you'd think a great and dominant and certainly a Hall of Fame pitcher, would have done that in 18 years. There's no question Schilling is a terrific pitcher when he's been healthy, but that's been the exception in his career.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bothrops Atrox
    replied
    Originally posted by DoubleX
    I don't believe that's true. Curt Schilling is a media whore, and had he been pitching in Game 6 of the championship series for any team, I'm sure he would have brought attention to his bloody sock so he could portray himself as the hero. Schilling is a big name, and he was long before he came to Boston. As the ace of any playoff team, with a personality that loves to cater to the media, he would be getting a lot of media attention irrespective of what jersey he is wearing in the series. Baseball is a game that loves having heroes, Schilling knows this, the tv execs know this, and I think on any team in that ALCS situation, Schilling's bloody sock would have been played up as a heroic moment.
    What makes me so upset is that so many people see that bloody sock and think of Schilling as being a model of toughness and durability. I have mentioned many times that Schilling has only started 30 games six times in his entire career. In 18 years! Schilling has pitched fewer than 2,950 Inning in his career, for a total of 164 per season. Schilling is no warrior or workhorse.

    Leave a comment:


  • DoubleX
    replied
    Originally posted by Ubiquitous
    Besides Mariano I can't really think of any player from the last run that is going to be remembered for his actions in the decades to come.

    Yankee World Series wins haven't really been all that memorable after 1996. Two sweeps and a 5 game series.

    Will anybody (besides Mariano) stand the test of time? Will they be remembered like Jack Morris, Kirk Gibson, Carlton Fisk, Joe Carter, Bill Mazeroski, and Brooks Robinson? I don't think so, again when it comes to the biggest series in the business it matters very little the jersey one is wearing.
    The 2001 WS would have had it's share of Yankees-hyped moments had the Yankees won. Particularly the game-winning home runs in the Bronx.

    Leave a comment:


  • DoubleX
    replied
    Originally posted by Victory Faust
    Better stories? Such as a single catch by a journeyman outfielder (Al Gionfriddo) in a series his team lost in seven games? Nah, you're right...there's no NY bias.

    You are also right in that I did err on which game it was. However, despite the implication, my error has absolutely no bearing on my argument.

    Whether Bobo's masterpiece happened in Game 5 or Game 16, are you honestly trying to make the argument that a single catch by a journeyman player on a losing team in the '47 Series is a better "moment" than a journeyman pitcher dedicating a game to his father, who died during the Seres, then pitching a shutout?

    If you are, it's not a very strong argument.

    My point is: We hear and see SO MUCH about the Gionfriddo catch. That was always one the clips shown in every baseball history video I ever saw, and it was often mentioned in the books, too. But we hear NOTHING about Bobo's game.
    I've lived in New York for most my life (with 5 years in Boston), and have heard very, very, very, very, little mention of Al Gionfriddo's catch. Perhaps it's just a Detroit thing, for some weird reason?

    Leave a comment:


  • DoubleX
    replied
    Originally posted by kckid2599
    Your seriously not claming his sock was painted red, are you?
    There is some speculation about that. GQ rant an article a couple of months ago that listed the 10 most hated athletes as rated by their peers. Schilling came in the top 5, and the article made mention that a number of his peers suspect that the bloody sock was a hoax (or at least an embellishment). There's actually a thread about this in the Red Sox forum.

    Leave a comment:


  • Victory Faust
    replied
    Originally posted by Buzzaldrin
    The big boy in 1940 was not Newsom, although shame on you for calling him a common journeyman- it takes a DAMN good pitcher to lose 200 games (and even in the short term, Newsom was 21-5 that year).

    Thank you. You're right -- Bobo was 10 times the ballplayer Gionfriddo was, so if someone wants to imply that moments should be immortalized based on the ability of the players involved, Bobo would win that matchup hands-down.

    Bobo was a colorful character, although if you look at how he bounced from team to team, it's clear he must have been getting on someone's nerves!


    Originally posted by Buzzaldrin
    Floyd Giebell was the man. Needing a win over Cleveland to clinch the pennant on the last day of the season, for God knows what reason, Del Baker passes over Newsom, Bridges, and Rowe, and puts in rookie Giebell, who shuts out Bob Feller and the Indians 2-0 to win the title. Giebell was not eligible for the series and never won another major league game. King for a day.

    It wasn't the last game of the season, it was the opening game of a series at Cleveland. The Tigers needed one more game to clinch the pennant, and Baker figured whoever he threw out there was going to lose to Feller anyway, so he threw Giebell out as a sacrificial lamb.

    And Giebell, who would never win another ML game, pitched a shutout to beat Feller, who only gave up three hits himself.

    The circumstances surrounding that season-ending series are interesting, and, in keeping with the theme of this thread, would have been played up huge if they'd happened in you-know-where. Here's a fascinating account of the Indians' weird 1940 season I found on the web:


    Birdie Tebbets was a Detroit Tiger who had a crate of tomatoes dropped on his head from the upper deck of Cleveland Municipal Stadium in 1940 by a Cleveland fan named Armen Guerra. The crate knocked him unconscious, and he has very fortunate he was not killed. How did the set of circumstances unfold? Pay attention, as there will be a quiz later.

    In 1940, the Cleveland Indians were dubbed the Crybaby Indians by the rest of baseball. They had some bad apples on the team, Ben Chapman, Jeff Heath, and a knockdown pitcher named Johnny Allen who was extremely mean to autograph-seeking children. However, the reason they were given the Crybaby tag was a group of players in June went to the team president, Alva Bradley to have manager Ossie Vitt fired. Vitt was the type of guy who was known to say things like,” How am I supposed to win with him?” when Bob Feller had a bad day.

    Well, word leaked out around the league, and opposing fans let the Indians players have it. At the time, the soda “pop” bottle was a dangerous thing at ballparks as surly fans had realized the pop bottle was an accurate projectile. Some hooligan thought it would be witty to throw a baby bottle at an Indian, and the trend caught on across the league, fans began throwing baby bottles at the Indians. As the season wore on, the Indians players began to become unnerved. They blew a five and a half game lead down the stretch.

    On September 19th, the Indians pulled into to Detroit tied with the Tigers. When the Indians were leaving the train, a horde of Tigers fans began bombarding them with eggs, tomatoes, and verbal insults. The police had to sneak the Indians through the baggage room and through an alley to safety. Many citizens of Detroit ensured the Indians did not sleep well while they were in town by carousing outside the Indian’s hotel, many with musical instruments. The Indians’ dugout was decorated with diapers while Tigers fans pushed baby carriages across the dugout roof throughout the game.

    Detroit took two out of three from the Indians, and Cleveland fans waited with grim determination until September 27th, when the Tigers came to town. The 27th was Ladies’ Day, and the left field seats contained 15,000 women and their families, all loaded for bear. Before the game, the Tigers were pounded with fresh produce. Tiger outfielder Hank Greenberg was drilled with a tomato as he chased down a fly ball. The umpire, Bill Summers, hopped on the public address system and threatened to forfeit the game. This had an immediate effect on the Cleveland faithful as all hell broke loose with a fruit barrage.

    The Cleveland PD began moving through the stands to arrest the people throwing fruit. at this point in the afternoon, Armen Guerra decided it was time to use his cunning as to avoid arrest. Clad in a brightly striped sweater, he dropped his evidence, a tomato crate, over the deck. It landed squarely on Tebbetts’ head, and umpire George Pipgras was certain he was dead.

    The police quickly apprehended Guerra, and took him to the Detroit clubhouse. Tebbets, now conscious, beat up Guerra while the cops looked the other way. Guerra, who earlier had dropped the crate on Tebbets, had the gall to charge file criminal assault charges. Tebbets was acquitted, and the Tigers won the pennant. Oddly enough, Tebbets finished his career in Cleveland and later became a manager of the Indians.

    Sigh, and people want to return to the *Golden Days*.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ubiquitous
    replied
    Originally posted by Victory Faust
    Wow, no, I never did hear of this guy, although I'm going to look him up. I wonder what he was in San Quentin for?
    I think it had something to do with being inside his mother's womb.

    Leave a comment:


  • Victory Faust
    replied
    Originally posted by csh19792001
    Who knows anything about Duster Mails? Speaker's find (brought up from the PCL) and a veteran of San Quentin. This guy who nobody's ever heard of basically won the 1920 pennant for the Indians, going 7-0 with 6 CG's and 2 shutouts in August and September, as the Indians proceeded to edge the White Sox by 2 games, with the mighty Yankess only a game behind.

    Wow, no, I never did hear of this guy, although I'm going to look him up. I wonder what he was in San Quentin for?

    There's some karmic justice in the fact that an ex-con beat out the crooked White Sox for the pennant!

    Leave a comment:


  • csh19792001
    replied
    Originally posted by Victory Faust
    I think you guys are missing the point. I'm not saying great moments involving other teams never get air play.

    I was hoping fans from other teams would share some of the obscure moments in their teams' histories...the stuff we don't see or hear about, but which are far better moments than an outfielder making a nice catch on Joe DiMaggio.
    I think that was the impetus behind my post earlier.

    Leave a comment:


  • Victory Faust
    replied
    Originally posted by efin98
    Same for Luis Gonzalez. Same for Joe Carter. Those guys didn't play for New York or Boston yet those guys are immortalized for their moments.
    I think you guys are missing the point. I'm not saying great moments involving other teams never get air play. As pointed out, the Gibson, Carter and Gonzalez "moments" are etched in our memories, as are Bill Mazeroski's homer and Jack Morris' Gave Seven masterpiece.

    What I'm saying is that lesser moments involving NY or Boston often get precedence over greater things in baseball history that hardly ever get mentioned because they happened in Pittsburgh, or Cincinnati.

    The point of the thread, though, wasn't to just whine, although I certainly wanted to bi*tch about it a little! :grouchy

    I was hoping fans from other teams would share some of the obscure moments in their teams' histories...the stuff we don't see or hear about, but which are far better moments than an outfielder making a nice catch on Joe DiMaggio.
    Last edited by Victory Faust; 03-05-2006, 01:58 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ubiquitous
    replied
    Besides Mariano I can't really think of any player from the last run that is going to be remembered for his actions in the decades to come.

    Yankee World Series wins haven't really been all that memorable after 1996. Two sweeps and a 5 game series.

    Will anybody (besides Mariano) stand the test of time? Will they be remembered like Jack Morris, Kirk Gibson, Carlton Fisk, Joe Carter, Bill Mazeroski, and Brooks Robinson? I don't think so, again when it comes to the biggest series in the business it matters very little the jersey one is wearing.

    Leave a comment:


  • csh19792001
    replied
    Originally posted by Buzzaldrin

    Floyd Giebell was the man. Needing a win over Cleveland to clinch the pennant on the last day of the season, for God knows what reason, Del Baker passes over Newsom, Bridges, and Rowe, and puts in rookie Giebell, who shuts out Bob Feller and the Indians 2-0 to win the title. Giebell was not eligible for the series and never won another major league game. King for a day.

    These things would be remembered better in larger media cities.
    Totally agreed. And also from the "unacknowledged heroics" department.....

    Who knows anything about Duster Mails? Speaker's find (brought up from the PCL) and a veteran of San Quentin. This guy who nobody's ever heard of basically won the 1920 pennant for the Indians, going 7-0 with 6 CG's and 2 shutouts in August and September, as the Indians proceeded to edge the White Sox by 2 games, with the mighty Yankess only a game behind.

    Then in the World Series, Mails shut down Brooklyn for 6 innings in relief of Caldwell's rocky start. He then proceeded to throw a three hit, 1-0 masterpiece in game 6.

    His ERA was 0.00 in 16 World Series innings, and he had an ERA+ of 205 during his starts in August and September of 1920.

    Had he been a Yankee or played in NY, people would know the guy just for his heroics that one year. As it is, you would be hard pressed to find even more than a handfull of die hards who even know his name.

    Leave a comment:

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