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cruzer1

RIP Al Kaline

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2 hours ago, Tenacious D said:

Because I'm bored and uncertain about a few of these guys:

Front Row (L to R): Bobby Murcer, Cookie Rojas, Bobby Grich, Royals coach (?), Earl Weaver, Dick Williams, Angels coach or player, Brooks Robinson, #6, Angels player (?), Carlton Fisk

Middle Row (L to R): Chubby Bobby Bonds, George Hendrick (?), Jeff Burroughs, Bert Campaneris, John Hiller, Reggie Jackson, Darrell Porter, Thurman Munson, Jim Harrah, Carl Yastremski, Don Money, John Mayberry (?)

Back Row (L to R): Rangers player (?), Luis Tiant, Joe Rudi, Catfish Hunter, Wilbur Wood (?), Rod Carew, Rollie Fingers, Mike Cuellar (?), Gaylord Perry, Royals Player 1 (?), Royals Player 2 (?)

 

I am so much better at identifying players from the 70s than I am now even though I see them on tv much more now.  It might be the baseball cards.  

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1 hour ago, tiger337 said:

By far.  I'd rather watch the Orioles take batting practice.  

I've not watch an all-star event in any sport for at least 25 years. Better things to do. It'll never be Fidrych, Staub and LeFlore-like magic ever again

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52 minutes ago, leflore said:

I've not watch an all-star event in any sport for at least 25 years. Better things to do. It'll never be Fidrych, Staub and LeFlore-like magic ever again

The idea of the All-Star game was much better than the actual event.  I always anticipated it, including following the Gillette fan voting and loved the player introductions.  The game itself sucked.  Didn't help that the NL cleaned our clocks during the '70's.

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1 hour ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

Things were better when I was younger

Not for me

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2 hours ago, Mr. Bigglesworth said:

Things were better when I was younger

yes, because I was younger.  

 

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58 minutes ago, Biff Mayhem said:

Everybody but @smr-nj was.

Brat. 

(And yet... truth) 

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10 hours ago, smr-nj said:

Brat. 

(And yet... truth) 

Didn't you get Babe Ruth's autograph on your 30th birthday? I'll bet he didn't swear at you like Al did to @The Ronz

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Avila stated that Kaline had cut his last two spring training visits shorter than the previous years. According to Avila, Kaline had told him he wasn’t feeling well this spring and was going to head back home to get it checked out. 

Avila did say that Kaline’s death had nothing to do with the Coronavirus according to Kaline’s wife. 

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On 4/8/2020 at 7:34 AM, Tenacious D said:

I was only 2 when this game happened, so only know from the history books.  

Some interesting observations from the game:

  • Had no idea that Roger Maris was on that Cardinal's team.  It was his last game, which the announcers (Curt Gowdy and Harry Caray) mentioned.  They also noted that this would be Eddie Matthews last game, as well.
  • Tony Kubek played the role of Johnny Kane, had a quick interview with "Mrs. Roger Maris" in the stands.  Similarly with "Mrs. Bob Gibson" and "Mrs. Red Schoendhiest," who also sang the National Anthem before the game.  Apparently, women in the 60's didn't have a first name.
  • I really enjoyed the simplicity of the graphics.  
  • Bob Gibson was nasty, though the Tigers probably benefited from having seen him two other times in the series, in order to scratch out some runs late in that game.
  • Mickey Lolich, who was traded before I became a fan, was fun to watch pitch--really looked effortless and unflappable.
  • Much has been said about Mickey Stanley moving to SS for the World Series, but he really looked good there.  Clearly he was athletic, and probably played it in high school and/or college.  A bold move that paid off, to make room for Kaline and Northrup in the OF, and both had a big series.

I watched the first couple of innings of Game 7 yesterday, will watch the rest over the weekend.  Some observations of mine:

-  Doug Harvey was the LF umpire. This was early in his career but I guess he had already earned a WS spot. He umped from 1962 all the way to 1992. Elected to the HOF in 2010, died in 2018

- I too enjoyed the simplicity of the graphics. And the over-the-catcher's shoulder camera angle,  no walk up music, no quick pans to the fans or dugout between every pitch

- 25 pitch 1st inning for Lolich on 2 days rest but of course no talk of pitch counts

- Harry Caray barely said a word in the 1st inning.  Only spoke when spoken to.

- At one point in the 1st inning Gowdy said that this game is being broadcast in living color on NBC. Wow, I'd love to see that, but I assume all copies are lost to time. I've seen the color World Series highlights but not of an actual 1968 game broadcast

-  Given what those of us watching today know was to come several innings later, this was an ironic gem from Gowdy on a flyout by Javier as the 2nd batter of the game: "fly ball to center field, Jim Northrup nearly tripped, hauls it in. We saw him catch his spikes, now he'll look over there where he caught his spikes. That would have been disastrous".

 

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I've watched game 7 a few times, including the day Al passed. I have homer  viewing and listening lenses but I swear in the middle innings at 0-0 the Cards got a lead off hit and Caray made an enthusiastic comment that the Cards might score. Faint, but a bit biased, at least through my lenses, which were purchased at Grant's dept store in 1971. Makes sense, with Caray being a bud guy.

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Watched an overall nice special on Al kaline, hosted by Keating. First he said Al was the youngest batting champion since Ty Cobb. Later he said Al had a lifetime BA of .287. I realize not every fan is a nerd like me, but how does Keating make those mistakes?

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2 hours ago, leflore said:

Watched an overall nice special on Al kaline, hosted by Keating. First he said Al was the youngest batting champion since Ty Cobb. Later he said Al had a lifetime BA of .287. I realize not every fan is a nerd like me, but how does Keating make those mistakes?

I wanted to see how close Kaline was to a career .300 batting average so I looked at some numbers.

- He had a .300 career average at the end of the 1972 season

- He had a .299 career average at the of the 1973 season

- He would have needed 23 more hits in his 558 at-bats in 1974 to finish with a .300 career average (.29952). A 1974 season average of .302 instead of his actual .262

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I didn't get a paper today but Kaline's family published a "regular" obituary for him.

Just a normal guy.

 

EVaF-e1XgAAuDTs.jpg

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On 4/12/2020 at 6:58 PM, Oblong said:

I didn't get a paper today but Kaline's family published a "regular" obituary for him.

Just a normal guy.

 

EVaF-e1XgAAuDTs.jpg

The final paragraph is pretty top notch considering the current state of things.

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On 4/6/2020 at 3:34 PM, cruzer1 said:

https://www.freep.com/story/sports/mlb/tigers/2020/04/06/al-kaline-dies-detroit-tigers/505371001/?csp=chromepush

Al Kaline, who in a long and unique Detroit Tigers lifetime grew from youthful batting champion to Hall of Famer to distinguished elder statesman, died Monday afternoon at his home in Bloomfield Hills. He was 85.

A cause of death was not immediately available. John Morad, a close friend of the family, confirmed the news to the Free Press after speaking with Kaline's youngest son, Mike. 

In 22 seasons with the Tigers, most of them as a marvelous right fielder, Kaline played in more games and hit more homers than anyone else in club history, and he compiled a batting résumée second only to Ty Cobb’s. But while Cobb was widely reviled for his bitterness and meanness, Kaline was widely and eminently respected for his on-field elegance and off-field graciousness. Thus, Kaline has a strong claim as the most distinguished Tiger of them all.

Al Kaline hit a home run in the first Tiger game I attended.  

I had the good fortune to meet him at the airport back in the 90s.  I was flying out west somewhere on business -- can't remember where, as I traveled quite a bit back then -- and he was heading to New York for his Tigers broadcasting gig.  And I just happened to run into him.  We talked baseball for a while -- he was very pleasant and gracious -- and then headed for our respective flights.  I have met many of the 68 Tigers over the years and spent a fair amount of time with some of them,  but that was my only encounter with Kaline, and I'm grateful that it happened.

My favorite piece of Tiger memorabilia is a good-sized framed autographed photo of Kaline in mid-swing, which for many years stood behind the counter at Sportsland USA by Tiger Stadium.  When the store was having its going-out-of-business sale after the ballpark closed, the owner sold it to me for 20 dollars.  

My sons and I played baseball a few times on the Tiger Stadium field when pickup games were being played there on the weekends.  One of my kids is a big Al Kaline fan despite being born more than 20 years after Kaline retired, so of course he insisted on playing right field.  Big thrill for him and me alike.

Al Kaline, ave atque vale, and thank you for the memories.  

 

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One of the things that struck me when I watched Game Seven recently -- which I'd never thought about before -- was that by leaving both pitchers in for complete games, the managers had them batting for the whole game.  That was really weird (and stupid) regarding Gibson, because  he batted even after the Tigers scored and went up 3-0 in the seventh inning.  

Gibson was a decent-hitting pitcher -- .206 career batting average with 24 regular season home runs (plus two in nine postseason games, including one in the 68 Series), and a .170 BA  in 1968 -- but not nearly good enough to be left in to hit with his team down three runs in the late innings of Game Seven of the World Series 

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I agree but it was very different then. Gibson had pitched 28 complete regular season games that year and 7 straight complete game wins in the WS. Managers saw the games through different lenses back then.

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23 minutes ago, leflore said:

I agree but it was very different then. Gibson had pitched 28 complete regular season games that year and 7 straight complete game wins in the WS. Managers saw the games through different lenses back then.

Yes, they did.  The Cardinals pinch-hit late for the light-hitting shortstop Dal Maxvill, but let their pitcher bat despite being down three runs.  And they were carrying just ten pitchers on their World Series roster, so they still had six other potential pinch-hitters who could have gone to the plate instead of Gibson.  

In my first trip to Tiger Stadium, for a July 12, 1970 doubleheader with the Orioles, Earl Weaver used Jim Palmer as a pinch-runner.  You're sure not going to see anyone do that with an ace/Cy-Young-caliber pitcher now.

Bill James noted that after Sandy Koufax finished a season with an elbow problem, in the following Spring Training the Dodgers left him in a game for something like 150 pitches to "test him out."  And he was out of baseball at 30.  Plus, of course, Denny McLain's arm problems were "treated" with repeated shots of cortisone and pain killers and putting him right back on the mound -- including, as I recall, the night before he threw Game Six.     

 

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