Thursday, October 24, 2013

World Series Game 1 Tweets

For my ten regular readers, three things:
1. Thank you
2. Sorry
3. I have a tendency to watch a game (and I use the term "watch" VERY loosely) and tweet out facts and thoughts that might even be:
     a. interesting
     b. true
I'll flesh out some of those tweets with supporting evidence, as well as give shout-outs to those who responded.

In the bottom of the 1st David Ortiz grounded into what appeared to be a routine double play that Cardinal shortstop (for now) Pete Kozma booted. This brought Mike Napoli to the plate, who responded by hitting a bases-clearing double. Literally seconds before this hit this tweet came across:

Sorry Shep, ya gotta settle for three runs instead of four--don't be greedy. This means that Napoli has 25 RBI in 43 postseason games, pretty impressive but far from a record:
Rk Player #Matching PA AB H 2B 3B HR RBI ▾ BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1 Bernie Williams 121 Ind. Games 545 465 128 29 0 22 80 71 85 .275 .371 .480 .850
2 Manny Ramirez 111 Ind. Games 493 410 117 19 0 29 78 72 91 .285 .394 .544 .937
3 David Justice 112 Ind. Games 471 398 89 17 2 14 63 64 79 .224 .335 .382 .717
4 Derek Jeter 158 Ind. Games 734 650 200 32 5 20 61 66 135 .308 .374 .465 .838
5 David Ortiz 77 Ind. Games 336 282 78 19 2 16 57 49 70 .277 .384 .528 .912
6 Albert Pujols 74 Ind. Games 321 267 88 18 1 18 52 48 39 .330 .439 .607 1.046
7 Reggie Jackson 77 Ind. Games 318 281 78 14 1 18 48 33 70 .278 .358 .527 .885
8 Chipper Jones 93 Ind. Games 417 338 97 18 0 13 47 72 61 .287 .409 .456 .864
9 Jorge Posada 125 Ind. Games 492 416 103 23 1 11 42 70 109 .248 .358 .387 .745
10 Jim Edmonds 64 Ind. Games 263 230 63 16 0 13 42 30 72 .274 .361 .513 .874
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 10/24/2013.

Obviously this list is populated with players from the expanded playoff era (with a nod to Reggie Jackson who didn't play in the Wild Card Era) but considering the number of games involved, Napoli just might be a modern-day Mr. October.

Since I am married, it was with great reluctance that I switched over to "Modern Family" at 8:00 pm. It was pretty good with guest turns by Nathan Lane and Fred Willard in recurring roles, but I suspect you don't really care about that. During this Pete Kozma made his second error, prompting this tweet:
Ben taught me something new about Baseball-Reference in that there are now fielding game logs, which if I had been smart enough to follow the link in his tweet I would have learned earlier. Indeed, Mr. Heisler is correct--Kozma has never had a two-error game before and certainly picked the wrong time to do so. The reference to Mike Andrews is to the 1973 World Series in this unfortunate inning:
Inn Score Out RoB Pit(cnt) R/O @Bat Batter Pitcher wWPA wWE Play Description
t12 6-6 0 --- NYM B. Harrelson R. Fingers 17% 67% Double (CF-RF)
t12 6-6 0 -2- NYM T. McGraw R. Fingers 14% 82% Single/Bunt; Harrelson to 3B
t12 6-6 0 1-3 O NYM W. Garrett R. Fingers -13% 69% Strikeout
t12 6-6 1 1-3 O NYM F. Millan R. Fingers -19% 50% Popfly: 1B
t12 6-6 2 1-3 R NYM W. Mays R. Fingers 34% 84% Single to CF; Harrelson Scores; McGraw to 2B
t12 7-6 2 12- NYM C. Jones R. Fingers 2% 86% Single to LF; McGraw to 3B; Mays to 2B
Paul Lindblad replaces Rollie Fingers pitching and batting 9th
t12 7-6 2 123 RR NYM J. Milner P. Lindblad 11% 97% Reached on E4 (Ground Ball); McGraw Scores/unER/No RBI; Mays Scores/unER/No RBI; Jones to 3B; Milner to 2B
t12 9-6 2 -23 R NYM J. Grote P. Lindblad 2% 99% Reached on E4 (throw to 1B) (Ground Ball); Jones Scores/unER/No RBI; Milner to 3B; Grote to 1B
t12 10-6 2 1-3 O NYM D. Hahn P. Lindblad -0% 98% Groundout: 3B-1B
4 runs, 4 hits, 2 errors, 2 LOB. Mets 10, Athletics 6.
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/24/2013.

Andrews was the unfortunate committer of the back-to-back E4s, and A's owner Charlie Finley attempted to release him immediately after the game. He wasn't allowed to do so by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn, and you can read (not much) more about this here.

As the Adam Wainwright debacle continued, David Ortiz came to the plate with the bases loaded, courtesy not only of Kozma's error but of the inexplicable Stephen Drew popup that Wainwright watched fall at his feet. That led to Ortiz coming thisclose to a grand slam, but was robbed by Carlos Beltran on a very good catch. Beltran had to leave the game and as I write this it's unclear what his prognosis is for the rest of the series, but I certainly hope he can return--no one ever wants to see a great player leave due to injury. As a bonus, here's how Beltran ranks all-time among center fielders--Hall of Fame material? You be the judge. He's most certainly knocking on the door.

By this point the game was essentially over so I was down to commenting on Tim McCarver statements. I began when he stated that "Allen Craig gets a lot of hits up the middle." I'm sure he does, but according to his spray chart at Brooks, he appears to get a lot of hits to left and right as well. For good measure he threw in a "Best I've ever seen" on something I can't even remember right now (Yadier Molina?), to the eternal consternation of Ken Harrelson and that Bob Gibson started games in the 1967 during which the Boston fans wore white T-shirts while sitting in center field. Who were the opposing pitchers in those games? "Boston pitchers," of course (actually Jose Santiago in Game 1 and Jim Lonborg in Game 7). As I responded to these events, this tweet came across:
I didn't notice it at first until I saw that somehow I had added 44 new followers in the space of about 15 seconds. Only one thing causes that to happen, and sure enough, there was a re-tweet by Chicago 670 The Score's afternoon co-host Dan Bernstein. Thanks Dan for the 98 new followers that eventually came about due to one casual re-tweet on your part, and thanks Pat for the continued support--now we need to get Boers and Bernstein to do a Who Needs Two stop in the Quad Cities--there's a great place only 7 blocks from my house.

One last note on McCarver (I think). I learned that no one had better "finger pressure" than Greg Maddux. I think I got that right because I was momentarily stunned when I heard this. Greg Maddux is one of the best pitcher of the past 50 or so years, and THIS is how he's discussed?

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny, probably still upset over that strange play in the 1st, decided to make America suffer by using every three pitchers in the 7th. He was changing them so fast my tweets couldn't keep up:
1. Randy Choate opened the inning. The idea of a LOOGY (Lefty One-Out GuY) is overblown--they exist, but not anywhere near the proportion in which people think. Except for Choate--in 2013, he WAS a LOOGY in close to 50% (27 of 64) of his appearances.
2. Seth Maness was then brought in, prompting the Joe Buck comment that "he's a ground ball machine." Well shoot, he IS, 5th in the majors in 2013.
3. This brought in Kevin Siegrist, who gave up a home run to David Ortiz in his first pitch. This got me curious as to how many pitchers had given up home runs on their first pitch--I found 7 that had done it in the first inning, but was too lazy to research it after that. Best I can tell, Derek Jeter hit a lead-off first-pitch home run off Bobby Jones in Game 4 the 2000 World Series, the only time it's happened that way in the World Series. I'm sure there were relievers, but I'll leave that for someone else to research.

At some point in the game I commented on Xander Bogaerts and his jersey number 72:
Pretty awesome, right? Yeah, I'll be here all week, be sure to tip your waitress. Unfortunately, it's not quite true:
Always nice to give props to two of my more faithful followers, and thanks to both for setting me straight. I saw my mistake as I looked up Fisk's page and saw the 72 was for the White Sox and immediately remembered the whole story. Oops. Stick with me, I only have three more items.

In the 4th David Freese hit a weak ball to Jon Lester, who threw to home to force Jon Jay and David Ross threw out Freese at 1st. Some other guy beat me to the last time this had happened in World Series play, but I thew out the entire list. I cut it off a bit, so it's more complete here:

After Ortiz hit that home run off Siegrist, Joe Buck made the comment that David Ortiz was the best DH of all time, prompting this tweet from someone who just might know:
Edgar Martinez is going to cause great Hall of Fame balloting consternation for years to come and it will be up to some Veterans' Committee in 2050 to induct him, but I had forgotten just how good of a DH he was, and how much better in WAR he is over Ortiz--close to 25 points, which is huge.

David Freese came very close to being thrown out at 1st in the bottom of the 9th by Shane Victorino, which would have been a very fitting end for both Freese (who hit the aforementioned P-C-1B double play) and the Cardinals. Alas, he beat it out by a step, but since I had the database open, I checked--ONCE in postseason history (I think) has a hitter been thrown out at 1st by a right fielder that was NOT a double play or base running mistake. I'm sure you all remember this play:
Inn Score Out RoB Pit(cnt) R/O @Bat Batter Pitcher wWPA wWE Play Description
Bottom of the 3rd, Tigers Batting, Tied 0-0, Cubs' Orval Overall facing 8-9-1
b3 0-0 0 --- O DET C. O'Leary O. Overall 2% 47% Groundout: SS-1B
b3 0-0 1 --- O DET B. Donovan O. Overall 2% 49% Groundout: RF-1B
b3 0-0 2 --- O DET D. Jones O. Overall 1% 50% Bunt Groundout: P-1B
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB. Cubs 0, Tigers 0.
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/24/2013.
B. Donovan is Tiger pitcher Bill Donovan and O. Overall is Cubs pitcher Orval Overall, and the play occurred on October 11th...1907. Freese was thisclose to having a truly special game--being the first person in 40 years to starts a 1-2-3 double play AND being thrown out at first by a right fielder for the first time in over 100 years.

I hope you enjoyed this, and if you follow me on Twitter, I'm just spouting off random stuff looking for reactions, and occasionally will throw in a nugget for your time. I lose around 10 followers per Bears game for reasons I'm not sure about (I must have more baseball-purist followers than I know) but it's still fun (for me, at least) to throw out the information. In the end, that's all I'm trying to do--add some context or expanded information.