Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Bob Moose honored at 6/21/11 Pirates 40th anniversary of 1971 World Series at PNC Park
There are a couple You Tube videos depicting this fine celebration and tribute. Specific to Bob Moose, a 1975 official still photo of Moose is shown on the big screen as the crowd roars (one of the bootleg cameramen notes that he died in a car accident). No family member (his daughter April Moose Lasta, his mother Molly Cardoni Moose, or his widow Alberta Duriscoe Moose Fox [married to Bob's best friend Tom Fox]) was present.
There are a couple You Tube videos depicting this fine celebration and tribute. Specific to Bob Moose, a 1975 official still photo of Moose is shown on the big screen as the crowd roars (one of the bootleg cameramen notes that he died in a car accident). No family member (his daughter April Moose Lasta, his mother Molly Cardoni Moose, or his widow Alberta Duriscoe Moose Fox [married to Bob's best friend Tom Fox]) was present.
Bob Moose is mentioned in Dock Ellis excellent book "In The Country of Baseball" (1976; updated 1989): pages 14, 160, 187, 201, 214, and 267. Moose is also mentioned on several pages of Steve Blass' new book "A Pirate For Life" (2012)
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Pittsburgh Pirates: 7 Greatest Power Pitchers in Franchise History By Andrew Mease(Featured Columnist) on January 31, 2012 946 reads Two weeks ago I looked at the top 5-tool stars in Pirates history and this week I will look into the top power pitchers in Pittsburgh Pirates history. I will start out by laying down my criteria for selecting these players. The pitcher in question must either be a current Pirate or have pitched a minimum of 350 or 1,000 innings for them. The 350 number is for primary relievers and 1,000 for starters. They also must have a strikeout per nine innings (K/9) ratio of at least five (5) for their career. 7. John Candelaria With a career 124-87 record as a Pirate, "The Candy Man" had a successful time in the Steel City. His 1,159 career strikeouts ranks him fourth in Pirates history. Candelaria pitched for the Pirates from 1975 through 1985 and then again in his final season in 1993. During his Pirates career he compiled a 2.74 ERA and sported a 5.6 K/9 ratio and a very good 2.66 K/BB (strikeout to walk) ratio. The lefty Candelaria ranked just once in the Top 10 of the National League in strikeouts—sixth in 1983 with 157. Career Highlight: On August 9, 1976 Candelaria pitched a no-hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Three Rivers Stadium. 6. Doug Drabek As a Pirate from 1987 to 1992, Drabek went 92-62 with a 3.02 ERA and also contributed 820 strikeouts. Following the '92 season, Drabek left the Pirates for the Houston Astros for the next four years and ended his career with one year stays in both Baltimore and with the White Sox. Drabek, a right handed pitcher, posted solid ratios of 5.4 K/9 and 2.43 K/BB while with the Pirates and placed in the Top Five once in strikeouts in 1992 with a career high of 177. Rick Stewart/Getty Images Career Highlight: Drabek became the Pirates second Cy Young award winning in 1990, joining Vern Law who won the award in 1960. That year Drabek went 22-6 with a 2.76 ERA with 131 strikeouts. 5. Bob Moose Moose was a lifetime Pirate as he pitched from 1967 through 1976 wearing the same No. 38 Bucco jersey. Moose compiled 827 strikeouts in his career (125 average a season) to a 76-71 career record and 3.50 career ERA. During his Pirate career he split time as a starter and a reliever but still put together ratios of 5.7 K/9 and 2.14 K/BB. Career Highlight: Moose threw a no-hitter on September 20, 1969 in Shea Stadium against the New York Mets. He also holds the Pirates' record of strikeouts in a game by a right-handed pitcher with 14 against the Phillies in 1969. 4. Elroy Face Elroy Face donned the Pirates jersey from 1953 through 1968 and compiled 188 saves during his Pirate career. The right-handed Face went 100-93 with a 3.46 ERA over his 15 seasons with the Pirates, even throwing six complete games during his short stint as a starter to start his career. Face struck out 842 batters to the ratios of 5.8 K/9 and 2.43 K/BB. Who is the best Power Pitcher in Pirates history? Joel Hanrahan 20.6%Rod Scurry 1.9%Elroy Face 6.5%Doug Drabek 16.8%Bob Veale 33.6%John Candelaria 11.2%Bob Moose 3.7%Other (Please reply with nomination in comment) 5.6%Total votes: 107 Career Highlight: Face attained the MLB record of 18 wins as a relief pitcher in 1959 with another record of 17 consecutive wins by a relief pitcher. He also holds the record for single-season win percentage, set in that same 1959 season with an 18-1 record (.947). Face is also a three-time save champ with 193 saves ranking him 44th all-time. 3. Rod Scurry Pitching with the Pirates from 1980-1985, Scurry, a left-handed reliever, put up a 17-28 career record with a 3.15 ERA. He struck out 345 batters during 377.1 relief innings with the Pirates. Good for a 8.2 K/9 ratio. However, he did give up a lot of walks too, which is the norm with power pitchers as he only had a 1.54 K/BB ratio. Career Highlight: Pirates single-season record of 95 strikeouts as a lefty reliever. 2. Joel Hanrahan Since receiving the 6'4", 245-pound Hanrahan from the Washington Nationals in a trade on June 30th, 2009 that sent Nyjer Morgan and Sean Burnett and also brought over Lastings Milledge, Hanrahan has recently been the best reliever for the Pirates. Hanrahan, a 30 year-old right-hander, has a 5-6 record, 2.55 ERA, and 46 saves in about 170 career innings with the Pirates. In 2010, Hanrahan posted an impressive 12.9 K/9 ratio as he struck out 100 batters in just under 70 innings. For his career he has a 9.8 K/9 ratio and an also impressive 2.37 K/BB ratio. Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images Career Highlight: The 2011 season was his best season as he made the National League All-Star team, posted a 1.83 ERA and produced 40 saves, becoming only the third Pirate to do that and the first since 2004. Notable Players That Didn't Make the List and Pirates Power Team Records The 1969 Pirates set the club record with 1,124 strikeouts as a team that season, and in 1984 they had six pitchers eclipse the 100 strikeout plateau. Bob Friend: Team career mark of 1,682 strikeouts over his Pirates career. K/9 inning ratios on the low side for the list. Jose DeLeon: Missed the mark with only 479.1 inning pitched as a Pirate starter, but holds the record of 14 strikeouts by a right-hander, which he set in 1985 against the Mets. Ratio of 8.1 K/9 and 431 strikeouts in his Pirate career. Kris Benson: Pirates single-season record holder of 184 strikeouts in a season for a right-handed pitcher in 2000. Missed the 1,000 inning cut-off with only 782 innings as a Pirate. 553 career Pirate K's and a K/9 ratio of 6.4. Rich "Goose "Gossage: Pitched one season (1977) with the Pirates and set the Pirate record for most strikeouts in a season by a right-handed reliever with 151. His 10.2 K/9 ratio that year was the best in his career. Mike Williams: Missed the cutoff with the Pirates at 321.2 innings, had a 8.7 K/9 ratio and totaled 140 saves and 312 K's. He was one of three Pirates pitchers with 40 saves in a season (Hanrahan and Jose Mesa). And finally...the top power pitcher in Pirates history... 1. Bob Veale Veale ranks second in Pirates history with 1,652 strikeouts, only behind Bob Friend's 1,682 K's. The left-handed Veale pitched just 11 seasons with the Pirates compared to Friend's 15. Veale posted a 116-91 career record and has a 3.06 ERA. He also holds the current Pirate career record of 7.96 K/9 inning rate (minimum of 700 innings pitched). Veale split time in his career as a starter and reliever, and averaged 150 strikeouts a season during his time in Pittsburgh, but as a full-time starter that number climbed to a staggering 214 a season. From 1964 through 1966 he placed in the National League top three of strikeouts, including leading the league with 250 in 1964 and a career-high 276 in 1965. He also walked a lot of batters and regularly placed in the Top Five in walks per season. Career Highlight: Set the Pirates record of 16 strikeouts in a game set in 1965 against the Phillies. The lefty also struck out 16 against the Reds in 1964. Pirates single season record of 276 strikeouts during the 1965 season
Memories of Moose By Bob Cupp, FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW Friday, April 27, 2007 Whenever he was asked what he wanted to do when he grew up, little Bobby Moose always responded, "I'm going to play baseball for the Pittsburgh Pirates." After all, he started playing ball for the White Valley Pirates in the Franklin Township Little League in 1955 when he was 7 years old. In 1967, at the age of 19, he fulfilled the dream he shared with countless Western Pennsylvania Little Leaguers: He became a Pittsburgh Pirate. His mother, Molly Moose, fondly recalls: "Bobby's first uniform was so big on him I had to cut a section out of the pants legs so they wouldn't drag on the ground. Before every game, his grandmother made him polenta, an Italian corn meal mush dish, to help him play better. When Bobby was growing up, we attended all his games. We never went on vacation because Bobby would be playing ball. Needless to say, we've been to a lot of baseball games." White Valley is located east of Export along old William Penn Highway. In those days, White Valley dominated the Franklin Township Little League. The team lost only one game in four years of league competition. Bobby Moose played Little League ball for six years, developing into the most feared and respected pitcher in the district. When Moose pitched, opposing teams considered it a successful outing if they avoided a shutout. Moose's outstanding pitching performances continued through Pony League, Export Legion and Franklin Area (now Franklin Regional) High School baseball. Ed Washburn, one of Moose's Franklin teammates, recalls: "It seemed like Moose pitched every game, but his arm never got tired." After throwing three high school no-hitters and suffering only two losses in four years, Bob Moose graduated from high school, much to Franklin's WPIAL opponents' delight. After all this time, the Little Leaguers, Pony Leaguers, Legion and high school players who batted against him have clear memories of a common experience -- striking out against Bob Moose. One Delmont Little League competitor recalls reaching base safely twice against Moose -- once hit by a pitch and once again after a two-foot "blast" in front of home plate that the catcher bobbled for an error. Unfortunately for his Delmont Lions team, he didn't advance beyond first base. Also playing varsity football and basketball, Moose was one of the finest athletes who ever attended Franklin. During football games, he was always on the field, playing halfback, safety, punter and kicker. He also returned kickoffs and punts. As a senior in a 1964 game against Richland, he scored four touchdowns, running for 157 yards on 15 carries -- more than 10 yards a carry. Known for his drop-kicking ability, he also kicked two extra points in that game. In 1965, Bob Moose was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates. His father, Robert R. Moose Sr., vividly remembers the event. "Bob graduated from high school on Wednesday and left that Saturday for Salem, Va., to play ball," his father explained. Spending his rookie year in the Appalachian League, he was named to the rookie all-star team. On Aug. 3, 1965, Moose made his first exhibition appearance at Forbes Field. He was called up to the parent club to pitch in the annual HYPO (Help Young Players Organize) game in support of sandlot baseball. Only two months after his high school graduation, he started the game and pitched three shutout innings against the Cleveland Indians. He spent 1966 at the Pirates' minor league Class A affiliates, Gastonia and Raleigh, advancing to Columbus in the International League and Macon in the Southern League for the 1967 season. After an overall minor league pitching record of 29-10, Moose made his major league debut against the Houston Astros, pitching five strong innings on Sept. 19, 1967, three weeks shy of his 20th birthday. His next start resulted in a complete game for his first win. He was in the big leagues to stay. The young Pirates hurler threw three shutouts and won the Jack Hernon Memorial Award for his selection as the 1968 Pirate Rookie of the Year. In 1969, he won 14 and lost three, posting the highest winning percentage (.824) in the league with a 2.91 ERA. The only thing that slowed him down that year was a two-week Marine Corps Reserves summer camp obligation. After only two full seasons, the White Valley native established himself as one of the top pitchers in the National League. Moose was involved in two of the most memorable games in Pirates history. On Sept. 20, 1969, he threw a no-hitter, beating the eventual world champion Mets 4-0 at New York. It was the first no-hitter by a Pirates pitcher since 1959 when Harvey Haddix threw 12 perfect innings at Milwaukee, only to lose in the 13th inning. Moose struck out six, including all three batters he faced in the eighth inning. Roberto Clemente saved the no-hitter with a leaping, one-handed grab of Wayne Garrett's line drive to the right field wall in the sixth inning. Pinch-hitter Rod Gaspar opened the ninth with a walk, but the Mets couldn't hit the ball out of the infield and the final three outs were recorded in order. The Pirates poured out of the dugout, mobbing Moose on the mound in celebration of his rare accomplishment. The second memorable game didn't have a good ending. Moose is generally remembered as the Pirates pitcher who threw the wild pitch that permitted the Cincinnati Reds to score the winning run in the 1972 National League Championship game. However, it must be noted that Dave Giusti gave up the home run to Johnny Bench that tied the game. Moose was brought in to pitch out of a jam with two runners on base and no outs. He recorded two easy outs before throwing the pitch that got away, allowing George Foster to score from third. Had it not been for that pitch, he would likely have been remembered as a hero. "Bob Moose" is also the answer to a tough baseball trivia question. In the history of Forbes Field, a no-hitter was never recorded there. Who was the pitcher who came closest? In June 1968, Pirates rookie, Bob Moose, went 7 2/3 innings before surrendering a hit to the Houston Astros. Only 5 feet, 11 inches tall and weighing 185 pounds, Moose possessed a fine breaking pitch, a live fast ball, a slider, a changeup and excellent control. He credited Vernon Law with conditioning him to know the hitters better instead of just trying to throw it by them. Law taught him to finesse the batters, making them hit his pitch instead of their pitch. With 11 wins and seven losses during the 1971 season, Moose helped the Pirates win the World Series. He pitched five solid innings in the sixth game against future Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer, and also made two relief appearances. Adversity was no stranger to Bob Moose. In 1974, he suffered a potentially career-ending injury and underwent surgery to remove a blood clot from his right shoulder. It was necessary to remove a rib to free up a compressed vein that was causing the problem, and he missed the last four months of the season. Showing the heart and determination that were always his trademarks, he recovered to pitch again the following year. However, he missed more action with a severely injured right thumb. After being sent to the minors for rehabilitation, he returned to the Pirates just in time to play an important role in their September 1975 pennant drive. Leading the 1976 Pirates in saves with 10, he appeared ready to fill Dave Giusti's role as stopper when tragedy struck. Moose was killed in an automobile accident in Martin's Ferry, Ohio, on Oct. 9, 1976. Ironically, it was his 29th birthday. He left behind a loving wife, Alberta Durisco Moose, who was also his high school sweetheart, and young daughter, April. Moose's lifetime major league record was 76-71 with a 3.50 ERA and 35 complete games. He had 11 or more wins in five straight seasons (1969-73) and threw more than 200 innings twice. But statistics simply don't tell the whole story. Moose was admired and respected by teammates, coaches, opponents and fans. Pirates Manager Danny Murtaugh described Moose as a "warm, vibrant human being who was always in the midst of the pregame and postgame activities." A commemorative plaque is displayed in the lobby of the Franklin Regional High School gym honoring Bob Moose's extraordinary accomplishments. The school recently nominated the 1965 graduate for induction into the new WPIAL Hall of Fame. Each WPIAL member school was allowed only one nomination. The inaugural class will be announced at a news conference in May. Regardless of the outcome, Moose will always be remembered as a great competitor who played with pride, confidence and style
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Bob Moose's #38, worn by the pitcher from 1967-1976, was unofficially "retired" (no doubt, out of respect) from 1977-1980, which includes, of course, the 1979 championship season. Pitching great Luis Tiant was the first Bucco to wear #38 since Bob Moose for his lone season as a Pirate in 1981, 5 years after Bob's tragic death. Here, then, is a listing of all the Pirates who have worn #38 since 1960: 1960 Pitcher Diomedes Olivo 1961-x 1962 Pitcher Diomedes Olivo 1963-x 1964 Pitcher Tom Butters 1965-x 1966-x 1967-1976 Pitcher Bob Moose 1977-1980-x 1981 Pitcher Luis Tiant 1982-1983 Pitcher Manny Sarmiento 1984-1985-x 1986 Infielder Rafael Belliard 1987 Pitcher Vicente Palacios 1988-x 1989-1992 Pitcher Bob Patterson 1993-1994-x 1995 Pitcher Jim Gott 1996-1999 Pitcher Chris Peters 2000-x 2001 Pitcher Don Wengert 2002-x 2003 Outfielder Adam Hyzdu 2004-2008 Outfielder Jason Bay 2009 Pitcher Craig Hansen 2010 Pitcher Chris Leroux 2011 Outfielder Xavier Paul 2012-x
CASEY KASEM’S AMERICAN TOP 40 - 10/9/76 40: THIS ONE'S FPOR YOU - BARRY MANILOW 39: DO YOU FEEL LIKE WE DO - PETER FRAMPTON 38: YOU ARE MY STARSHIP - NORMAN CONNORS 37: JUST TO BE CLOSE TO YOU - COMMODORES 36: LIKE A SAD SONG - JOHN DENVER 35: RUBBER-BAND MAN - THE SPINNERS 34: DID YOU BOOGIE WITH YOUR BABY - FLASH CADILLAC AND THE CONTINENTAL KIDS 33: DON'T GO BREAKING MY HEART - ELTON JOHN & KIKI DEE 32: MUSKRAT LOVE - THE CAPTAIN AND TENILLE 31: THE BEST DISCO IN TOWN - THE RICHIE FAMILY 30: GET THE FUNK OUT OF MY FACE - THE BROTHERS JOHNSON 29: IT'S OK - THE BEACH BOYS 28: NADIA'S THEME - PERRY BODKIN, JR 27: YOU ARE THE WOMAN - FIREFALL 26: ONE LOVE IN MY LIFETIME - DIANA ROSS 25: SUMMER - WAR 24: FERNANDO - ABBA 23: LOVE SO RIGHT - THE BEE GEES 22: WITH YOUR LOVE - JEFFERSON STARSHIP 21: THE WRECK OF THE EDMOND FITZGERALD - GORDON LIGHTFOOT 20: BETH - KISS 19: DON'T FEAR THE REAPER - BLUE OYSTER CULT 18: WHAM BAM - SILVER 17: I ONLY WANT TO BE WITH YOU - BAY CITY ROLLERS 16: MAGIC MAN - HEART 15: SAY YOU LOVE ME - FLEETWOOD MAC 14: THAT'LL BE THE DAY - LINDA RONSTADT 13: ROCKIN' ME - STEVE MILLER BAND 12: GET AWAY - EARTH, WIND & FIRE 11: A LITTLE BIT MORE - DR. HOOK 10: SHE'S GONE - DARYL HALL & JOHN OATES 9: SHAKE YOUR BOOTY - KC & THE SUNSHINE BAND 8: I'D REALLY LOVE TO SEE YOU TONIGHT - ENGLAND DAN & JOHN FORD COLEY 7: STILL THE ONE - ORLEANS 6: DEVIL WOMAN - CLIFF RICHARD 5: IF YOU LEAVE ME NOW - CHICAGO 4: DISCO DUCK - RICK DEES 3: LOWDOWN - BOZ SCAGGS 2: PLAY THAT FUNKY MUSIC - WILD CHERRY 1: A 5TH OF BEETHOVEN - THE WALTER MURPHY BAND ----------- The Grateful Dead played a famous show at A Day On The Green at the Oakland Coliseum ----------- Mark ChristmanFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaJump to: navigation, search Mark Christman Third baseman/Shortstop Born: (1913-10-21)October 21, 1913 Maplewood, Missouri Died: October 9, 1976(1976-10-09) (aged 62) St. Louis, Missouri Batted: Right Threw: Right MLB debut April 20, 1938 for the Detroit Tigers Last MLB appearance September 23, 1949 for the Washington Senators Career statistics Batting average .253 Home runs 19 Runs batted in 348 Teams Detroit Tigers (1938–1939) St. Louis Browns (1939; 1943–1946) Washington Senators (1947–1949) Career highlights and awards Member of 1944 Browns, the only St. Louis team to win an American League championship Played in 1944 World Series, and batted .091 in 22 at bats Marquette Joseph Christman (October 21, 1913 – October 9, 1976) was an American professional baseball player. He had a nine-year career in Major League Baseball, primarily as a third baseman and shortstop, for the Detroit Tigers (1938–39), St. Louis Browns (1939 and 1943–46) and Washington Senators (1947–49). As his team's starting third baseman, he helped the Browns win the 1944 American League pennant — the only championship the St. Louis American Leaguers won in the team's 52 years of existence. In 9 seasons he played in 911 Games and had 3,081 At Bats, 294 Runs, 781 Hits, 113 Doubles, 23 Triples, 19 Home Runs, 348 RBI, 17 Stolen Bases, 219 Walks, .253 Batting Average, .306 On-base percentage, .324 Slugging Percentage, 997 Total Bases and 37 Sacrifice Hits. He died in St. Louis, Missouri, at the age of 62. -------------- A VERY BAD 24 HOURS IN OHIO: “Turkey” Jones will always be public enemy #1 in Pittsburgh. For those of you who are too young to remember Turkey Jones and the play that made him infamous, let me take you back down memory lane. It was October 10, 1976, and the Steelers were playing their arch-rival, the Cleveland Browns. Terry Bradshaw was injured by the Browns' Joe Jones in the October 10 loss in Cleveland and didn't return until early December. Pittsburgh Steelers 16 at Cleveland Browns 18Sunday, October 10, 1976Stadium: Cleveland Municipal Stadium, Start Time: 1:00, Surface: grass, Weather: 48 degrees, relative humidity 65%, wind 13 mph 1 2 3 4 Final Pittsburgh Steelers (1-4-0) 7 3 0 6 16 Cleveland Browns (2-3-0) 3 3 9 3 18
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1081303/index.htm 6/17/68: PITTSBURGH (2-5) turned to Steve Blass, who pitched his first complete game of the year, and rookie Bob Moose for its only victories. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1081437/index.htm 7/29/68: Low-hit efforts by Bob Veale and Bob Moose plus Matty Alou's .333 week helped PITTSBURGH (5-3) break a 10-game losing streak http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1081533/index.htm 8/28/68: Except for those who operate from a rectangular slab of white rubber in mid-diamond, it has been—as everybody knows by now—a sparse season for baseball. And any farsighted hopes of filling the batting void must go farther than the current rookie crop. None of the first-year men excites memories of a young Mantle or Mays and, in fact, 19 of the 32 who have seen extended action are pitchers. The best of the lot is the Mets' Jerry Koosman, a 25-year-old from Appleton, Minn. with a 16-7 record, 1.87 earned run average and six shutouts—one short of the National League rookie record. Then there are the Yankees' Stan Bahnsen (2.13 ERA), the Angels' Tom Murphy (2.17), Pittsburgh's Bob Moose (2.41) and Cleveland Reliever Vicente Romo (1.58). So much for those who emulate their elders. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1082500/index.htm 6/9/69: Pittsburgh (3-3) hit .341 and pulled off the season's first triple play, but still lost three times because its starters were hit hard. So-called aces Steve Blass, Bob Veale and Bob Moose allowed 22 hits and 13 runs in 12? innings pitched as the Pirates lost 10-4, 7-6 and 9-6. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1082661/index.htm 7/28/69: How about swapping Bob Christian for Jose Pagan and Ted Savage? God forgive! Try swapping the Astros' Hal King for the Reds' Mel Queen. Eddie Fisher for Chico Salmon might be more on the level for the sportsman as would be Ron Hunt for Bob Moose. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1082869/index.htm 9/29/69: No sooner had New York (5-3) established superiority over the East by pulling five games in front than the Mets began looking as inferior as ever. They lost three straight to Pittsburgh (5-5), one on a no-hitter by Bob Moose. The 21-year-old righthander, who brought his record to 12-3, had earlier struck out 14 Phillies. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1082890/index.htm 10/6/69: While Pittsburgh (4-2) ran off a four-game win streak behind unusually strong pitching from Luke Walker, Dock Ellis, Steve Blass and Bob Moose, and Philadelphia (1-5) slumped 36� games out of first, the hottest action in both Pennsylvania cities involved managers. The Pirates tired Larry Shepard, who was nearing the end of his second season. No replacement was named, but the most frequently mentioned candidate was fiery Don Hoak. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1083492/index.htm 4/13/70: A favorite dark horse is Pittsburgh, which finished third ahead of the Cards last year. The Pirate hitters continue to be excellent—they outhit even powerful Cincinnati, .2767 to .2765—and there is depth, too: the pinch hitters batted .317. On May 29 the Pirates leave ancient Forbes Field for new Three Rivers Stadium, and that should give Willie Stargell a chance to have a decent home-run year; Forbes Field is a difficult place for a left-handed hitter like Stargell. That Roberto Clemente is hepped up about this year's club is another very good sign. Roberto has won four batting championships and three of them came under Danny Murtaugh, who returns as manager. Clemente missed his fifth title last year by only three points (.345 to Pete Rose's .348), and the Pirates also have Matty Alou (.331), Rich Hebner, the rookie third baseman (.301), and Stargell (.307). However, the bullpen is questionable and, unhappily, so are the starting pitchers. The big men—Bob Veale, Bob Moose and Steve Blass—combined for only 43 wins, not enough for a club with designs on a pennant. Still, the Pirates improved late in the season, and a lot of people like them. Now it is a question of how much the Pirates, a confused team of late, really like themselves. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1083673/index.htm 6/1/70: As if all this were not enough, the sad events of last week were almost unbearable. On Monday the Phillies had the winning run scored against them while they were at bat. This bizarre turn of fortune got started in the bottom of the seventh inning at Pittsburgh. The score was tied 1-1 with Manny Sanguillen of the Pirates on second base and one out. Bill Mazeroski singled Sanguillen to third and then Bunning threw a 1-2 pitch to Bob Moose that sailed past Catcher Del Bates. Plate Umpire Satch Davidson called the pitch a ball and when Bates retrieved the ball he threw it to third to catch Mazeroski, who was trying to advance two bases. Bunning then claimed that Moose had swung at the pitch for the third strike. Umpire Augie Donatelli ruled that he had and that he was out. Davidson ruled that Sanguillen's run did not count since the inning had ended in a double play. Following a huge argument the Phillies came to bat and had one out in the inning when the umpires reversed themselves and put the run up on the board. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1083726/index.htm 6/15/70: PITTSBURGH moved into second place with shutout pitching by Bob Moose http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1083931/index.htm 8/10/70: Steve Blass is one of the two regular Pirate starters who have been sidelined with arm trouble. (Bob Moose, with something known as a dislocated nerve, is the other one.) http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1083940/index.htm 8/17/70: Pittsburgh opened a 3�-game lead over NEW YORK with an unusual display of the Mets' own strength—tight pitching. Five consecutive Pirate starters pitched complete games, and four of them were surprises, indeed. Bob Veale, who had lost seven of his previous eight decisions, began the string and was followed by Luke Walker, usually a relief pitcher, who threw a shutout. Another reliever, Bruce Dal Canton, pitched his second complete game in the major leagues. Then Bob Moose, who recently missed a month with a sore elbow, capped his recovery with a four-hitter over the Mets. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1085072/index.htm 7/12/71: Sirs: I have been waiting for the Pittsburgh Pirates to call up Pitcher Bruce Kison ever since Pat Jordan's article (An Old Hand with a Prospect, June 14), but did not think it would be this soon. Kison's 10-1 record and 2.86 ERA at Charleston certainly put him in an excellent position to temporarily replace Bob Moose, the Pittsburgh starter who went on two-week military duty. JOHN HELLMOLD Lodi, N.J. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1085989/index.htm 4/10/72: Nobody can judge what kind of humor Bill Virdon possesses until the Pirates go through their first losing streak, which may be never. If there is a problem, it could be the pitching. The biggest Pirate winner was Dock Ellis, the famed bed-measurer, with a record of 19-9. But Ellis finished the season with a sore elbow and a shaky record of 5-6 following the All-Star break. Blass was 15-8, Bob Moose 11-7, Luke Walker 10-8 and Nelson Briles 8-4, not bad but not overpowering. The relievers are better. Young Bruce Kison won plaudits for his relief performance in the Series, but still ranks behind Dave Giusti. Over the last two years Giusti has saved 56 games and won 14 others and that totals 70. He also worked four games in the playoffs against San Francisco in addition to three against the Orioles. His ERA for those was 0.00. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1086141/index.htm 5/29/72: Pittsburgh also awed the competition with a steely combination of power and pitching. The Pirates outscored opponents 34 runs to four, winning five straight games—the last three shutouts by Steve Blass, Bob Moose and Dock Ellis- Bruce Kison. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1086255/index.htm 7/3/72: The Pirates have not produced a 20-game winner since Vernon Law in 1960, and they may not produce one this year, either. A deep staff means a pitcher has fewer chances to win his 20. "I believe that this pitching staff is the best we have had in the 19 years I have been with the club," says General Manager Joe Brown. "It has a depth and versatility not present in other years. Yes, we do have seven men who can start [ Blass, Ellis, Nelson Briles, Bob Moose, Luke Walker, Johnson and Bruce Kison] and some of them can also be used in relief. This gives Manager Bill Virdon even more maneuverability." http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1087563/index.htm 7/16/73: The ballplayers might consider that figure a trifle exaggerated. But there is at least one other pitcher who is frequently mentioned in, shall we say, the same breath with Perry—Bill Singer, another fugitive National Leaguer who is, thus far, as big a winner with the California Angels as Perry was with Cleveland last year. Singer, at 29 five years younger than Perry, has endured such a woeful siege of injury and illness in recent years that even his most vehement accusers might forgive him an occasional transgression. After winning 20 games for the Dodgers in 1969, he fell ill with infectious hepatitis in April of 1970. Then, after a 52-day absence, he returned in July to pitch a no-hitter against the Phillies. Less than a month later the index finger on his pitching hand was broken by a ball thrown by the Pirates' Bob Moose. That winter half of the joint on the injured finger was removed. Though the surgery was successful, Singer continued to favor the hand. His normally fluid pitching motion became jerky and he lost his fastball. He slipped to a 10-17 record in 1971 and to 6-16 last year. He considered quitting the game and was finally traded by the Dodgers as more or less extra cargo in the multiple-player transaction involving Frank Robinson for Andy Messersmith. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1088749/index.htm 7/8/74: Of the younger players, Ellis, Bob Moose and Bruce Kison have suffered injuries that have prevented them from fulfilling their potential. Moose is out for the season with a circulatory problem in his pitching arm, and Kison has only lately recovered from arm trouble so serious that a year ago he could not raise his arm above his head. Ellis claims his arm is in excellent shape, but his record is 3-6 and his ERA 4.28. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1090069/index.htm 7/21/75: Pitcher Bob Moose was put on the disabled list after slamming a door on his thumb. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1090279/index.htm 9/22/75: Rejuvenated pitchers gave Pittsburgh (4-3) and Philadelphia (4-2) cause for hope, but wasted hits defeated St. Louis (2-5) and New York (2-6). Bob Moose, who missed much of last season after the removal of a blood clot from his pitching shoulder and who recently had been recalled from the minors, earned his first victory for Pittsburgh in 17 months. He accomplished this with 7? innings of scoreless relief as the Pirates overcame the Expos 6-3. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1091093/index.htm 5/17/76: Bob Moose Larry Demery and Dave Giusti preserved three wins for Pittsburgh (5-1). The Pirates also got strong starting pitching as Bruce Kison beat the Giants 6-1 and John Candelaria topped the Braves 3-1. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1091146/index.htm 5/31/76: Since coming to the majors in 1973, Pittsburgh's Dave Parker has hit .366 against St. Louis. So when Parker was sidelined with a knee injury, the Cardinals felt relieved. Not for long. Filling in for Parker, Bill Robinson hit a two-run homer as the Pirates (4-3) defeated the Cardinals 2-1, and a three-run shot as the Bucs beat them 4-1. Bob Moose ran his string of scoreless relief innings to 22? while earning two saves and a win. When the regular umpires refused to cross a picket line of striking vendors at Three Rivers Stadium, a crew of local sandlot officials handled two games between the Pirates and Cubs without incident. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1091224/index.htm 6/21/76: Another hurler who hit was reliever Bob Moose of Pittsburgh (3-4). Moose socked the first homer of his nine-year career in a 6-2 defeat of Atlanta and also notched another win and his eighth save. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1068731/6/index.htm August 28, 1989 K How does Nolan Ryan do it? Let us count the ways. On the eve of Ryan's 5,000th strikeout, Rangers p.r. man Larry Kelly put together this list of everyone Ryan had fanned in his 22-year career. Through Sunday, he had 4,994 K's against 1,061 players 2 times: Bob Moose
Saturday, June 9, 2012
Although I am well known for my interest in JFK, the Secret Service, and presidential history, in general, I also have a huge interest in "The Wild Wild West" tv series, the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the Pittsburgh Pirates. To that end, Bob Moose played a central role in my interest as a kid and, later, as a man, as I continue to be a Pirates fan (especially since 2011, as my interest in the NEW Pirates waned dramatically from 1993-2010). Here are the reasons why (in no particular order): -In 1974, at the age of 8, his card was my FIRST baseball card, as I sheepishly bought a few packs and had them hidden on top of my curtain rod (!) before showing them to my dad. He approved, we watched a Pirates game together on tv and later attended my first Pirates game that same year (I only remember a few things: it was against the Cubs, we lost, Stargell and Parker hit back to back home runs, and the PA announcer saying the name "Dave Giusti" LOL); -Bob Moose's big hair and interesting last name (!). At one time in 1970, we had a Moose, Veale, and Lamb on the team! We also had many Bob's: Moose, Robertson, Miller, Johnson, Veale, and coach Bob Skinner; -Moose was a member of the 1971 World Series Champion Pirates (he pitched in 3 of the 7 games, including a start in Game 6 [I know someone who has a bootleg dvd of it....ahem]: Bob pitched well in a no-decision (I believe Bob Miller took the loss). This allowed Steve Blass to be the hero of Game 7; -Moose was Bruce Kison's best man, as Kison left on a helicopter (provided with the help of Bob Prince) with Moose right after game 7 on 10/17/71---you can also catch a glimpse of Moose on the field during the throng of players celebrating the win AND when they enter the clubhouse; -His tragic death on 10/9/76, while I was in 5th grade (Clemente was the first player to die from that 1971 World Series team). I seem to have a memory of Willie Stargell doing a tv spot with April Moose for the April Moose fund, but I might be mistaken (it may have been for muscular dystrophy and involved some other youngster). There WAS an April Moose fund set up by Al Oliver and friends for April's college fund, as well as an annual Bob Moose memorial golf outing; -Moose pitched a no-hitter in 1969 against the Amazing Mets, the World Series champs; -Moose came THE closest to pitching a no-hitter at Forbes Field; -Moose was from the local area: Export, PA, attending Frankling Regional High School. In fact, his dad, Robert Ralph Moose, Sr. (Moose was Junior), who passed away in 2009, was a long-time Port Authority bus driver. By the way, Moose is survived by his Mom, his daughter, and his sister; -Moose pitched his entirer career with the Pirates, a long one: 1967-1976...and one wonders if he would have been on that 1979 World Series Championship team, as many of his teammates were on that team. At the very least, my bet is he would have been in the majors, pitching for another team (as Bob Smizik wrote me once); -Moose was very well liked by his teammmates, black, Latin, and white alike. In fact, his best friends on the team were Al Oliver (black), Jim Rooker, and Willie Stargell (black); -a plaque dedicated to Moose's memory hung in the clubhouse of Three Rivers Stadium from late 1976-early 2001. One wonders if it made the trek to PNC Park. There is also a plaque dedicated to Moose at his high school alma mater, as well as a scholarship in his name; -His wild pitch that lost the 1972 playoffs, affording the Reds the opportunity to head to the World Series instead (they lost to the A's--hahaha). Moose wasn't the real goat: many people (Smizik included) believe it was actually Dave Giusti, who gave up the tying home run to Johnny Bench. Like Nixon's re-election and just moving into our new Bethel Park, PA, home, this was one of the halcyon moments---for me---from 1972; -Moose's tragic death, on his 29th birthday, on 10/9/76 (born 10/9/47). I have always been fascinated with underdogs, heroes who die young, and the like. :)
Pittsburgh Post Gazette 12/16/76; [go to Google, News, custom range: 1976-1977]; "Memorial Fund For Bob Moose Established by Pirates, Friends" by Stuart Brown [later a WPXI television reporter]; Photo of Al Oliver with April Moose and Alberta (Durisco) Moose (Fox); Reuss, Kison, Giusti, Tekulve, Candelaria, & Rooker attend press conference [Rooker and Oliver were Moose's best frienda on the team, although he liked everyone and was, in turn, well liked by everyone; Willie Stargell also appears to have been close to Moose]; Interesting: the article notes that Bob Moose's best friend was Tom Fox; Franklin Regional High School Scholarship in Bob Moose's name; College Fund for April; (later, there was an annual Bob Moose Memorial Golf Outing)
In addition to Peter Rose (see other blog) and Don Zimmer (see photo on this blog), Hall of Famer Willie Stargell said: "He had the guts of a burglar the way he used to challenge the hitters" (1977 Pirates yearbook). Stargell was to speak at Moose's funeral but was too grief-stricken to attend.
Thursday, June 7, 2012
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1085979/index.htm End of Innocence Pat Jordan April 10, 1972 Bruce Kison seemed a wide-eyed rookie, agog at playing in a World Series, until he uncorked his fastball and brought the Orioles to their knees April 10, 1972 End Of Innocence Bruce Kison seemed a wide-eyed rookie, agog at playing in a World Series, until he uncorked his fastball and brought the Orioles to their knees Pat Jordan PRINT EMAIL MOST POPULAR SHARE Bruce Kison, the Pirates' 6'4" baby-faced pitcher, is hunched over the steering wheel of his Volkswagen, his knees jacked up around his ears, his eyes glassy and wide, his pink face pressed close to the windshield and splashed with the green lights and shadows shooting past. The car is traveling through the bowels of Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill Tunnel at over 80 miles per hour in pursuit of a police escort that Kison has lost but whose sirens are echoing off the walls around him. "I've never speeded before," he says, sliding Santana's recording of Black Magic Woman into the stereo tape deck. The music is barely audible over the strung-out whine of the car's engine and the echoing sirens. Kison begins to sing, "She's a black magic woman and she's tryin' to make a devil out of me." His car runs up on the tail of a blue Galaxie. Without missing a note or stabbing the brakes, Kison jerks to the left. There is the shriek and smell of burning rubber, and the Volkswagen, tottering on two wheels, shoots into the left lane, cutting off a Cadillac whose driver nails a palm to his horn. Without looking back, Kison sticks his left hand out the window and extends the middle finger from a clenched fist. He raises the volume of the stereo to full blast. The Cadillac horn blows angrily. Kison sings louder. The sirens grow closer. The walls of the tunnel quake, rumble, seem about to fissure, and the noise so terrifies drivers up ahead that they swerve into the right lane and stop in order to avoid this possessed little Volkswagen hurtling by like a misshapen, misguided missile whose pilot, gone mad, is now—at precisely 8:03 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 17, 1971—33 minutes late for his wedding. A few hours before, Kison had stood in the visiting team's locker room at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium, a towel around his waist, contemplating the chaos around him. The room was packed almost to a standstill with writers, photographers, baseball executives, well-wishers and players celebrating the Pirates' World Series victory. Television cameras were planted in the center of the room, their cables slung overhead like black clotheslines. On a brilliantly lighted platform Roberto Clemente, Steve Blass and Manager Danny Murtaugh were being interviewed by a sleek and nervous-looking Sandy Koufax. Behind them, players jostled for position to be the next interviewed. Photographers, with cameras held high overhead, paused where there were clusters of writers and aimed lenses down at the sweaty, grinning faces of the men being questioned. The reporters moved from player to player in a pack. They pressed their subjects against lockers and recorded in notebooks such comments as: "You can't take anything away from the Orioles. They're a hell of a team"; "Yes, I certainly do think the best team won"; "This is the greatest bunch of guys I've ever been with. The greatest, know what I mean?" The Pirate players not being interviewed or photographed, particularly those whose contributions to the win were negligible, seemed to celebrate the most exuberantly. They slapped open palms, hugged and tousled one another's hair and, when the champagne arrived, they doused anyone within range. Standing by his stall, Kison said to a friend, "I told you to wear old clothes in case we won. You'd better put your coat in my locker. It sure seems an awful waste. I'd rather drink it." While the celebration swelled, Kison dressed and slipped out of the locker room. A police escort led him through a cheering crowd, across Oriole Boulevard, behind a brick high school to an open field where a helicopter waited to take him and his best man, Bob Moose, to Friendship Airport. There, a needle-nose Lear Jet, provided by Jack B. Piatt, a friend of Pirate Broadcaster Bob Prince and the president of Mill-craft Industries, stood ready to fly Kison, Moose and his wife Alberta, who was eight months pregnant, to Pittsburgh for Kison's evening wedding to Anna Marie Orlando. It was 6:30 p.m. by the time Moose reached the helicopter, weaving unsteadily. His gray baseball uniform was drenched with champagne and his Pirate cap sat on his head at a Howdy Doody angle. The blades clattered as the helicopter rose slowly. It hovered above the ground and then began moving forward, blowing the tall grasses flat against the ground until they looked almost white in the late afternoon sun. The helicopter rose noisily over telephone wires, trees and houses, until it was above scooped-out Memorial Stadium. It circled the stadium once, twice, each time climbing higher, before finally spinning free of the stadium's orbit. The Plexiglas windows vibrated as gusts of wind buffeted the craft. With an agonizing but relentless slowness the helicopter moved toward the red-orange sunset. The flight to Pittsburgh lasted 22 minutes. As soon as the jet was airborne, Jack Piatt, an immaculately dressed man with graying hair, opened the bar and poured drinks. He offered a toast to Kison's wedding. Then he asked what was happening back in the Pirate locker room. "Nothing much," said Kison. For the remainder of the flight Piatt extolled the virtues of his Lear Jet. "It only costs $800,000," he said, pouring second drinks for himself, Kison, Mrs. Moose and her husband, who was falling asleep against her shoulder. "It can climb at 6,000 feet a minute and it cruises at 525 miles an hour. There's no sense of flight in one of these babies." Outside, the plane hung silent and, it seemed, motionless over a field of clouds. The sky was a pale, diminishing blue. Shafts of sunlight hit the left wing and exploded into silver slivers that so blinded the passengers they were forced to draw the curtains and darken the cabin. When the plane began circling Pittsburgh airport, Piatt brushed back his cuff and checked his watch—7:12 p.m. "God bless Millcraft!" he declared. Kison seemed unsure of the proper response. He thanked Piatt for the trip. "You ought to get one of these, Bruce," the executive said, gesturing toward the Lear. "It's the only way to go." There was not a trace of facetiousness in Piatt's remark. Bruce Kison had arrived—in baseball if not yet at his wedding. In the summer of 1970 Kison was struggling along with a sore arm and a 4-4 record in Waterbury, Conn, in the AA Eastern League when he happened to be picked by SPORTS ILLUSTRATED as the subject of an article (June 14,1971 )on minor league life. From the day of his first interview to the end of the 1970 season he did not lose another game for Waterbury. Last year, after being sidelined most of the spring with an infected tendon in his pitching hand, Kison won 10 of 12 starts with the Charlestown Charleys of the AAA International League. He was called up to Pittsburgh just before the All-Star break. At the time, the Pirates were four games ahead in their divisional race but suddenly their pitching talent (which never was very thick) had been thinned when Bob Moose left for military duty. Kison won his first two starts for the Bucs, the second a two-hit shutout. He was 3-2 after a month of starts, before running into a streak of bad luck during which he pitched creditably enough but managed only losses or no decisions. Kison finished the regular season with a 6-5 record, a 3.41 ERA. It was said the very tall, 178-pound sidearmer needed to develop greater stamina and another pitch before he would become a winner in the majors. Because of his end-of-the-season tailspin, Kison expected to see little action during the National League playoffs against the Giants. He watched from the bullpen as Pittsburgh won two of the first three games. But when Steve Blass failed to last in the fourth game, Kison was called in. It was the third inning, the score was tied at 5 apiece and it seemed obvious that Danny Murtaugh wanted to save his veteran reliever, Dave Giusti, for the crucial later innings. Kison was to be a stopgap performer, who, hopefully, could manage three outs before someone would pinch-hit for him in the next inning. But Kison handily dispatched the Giants, and Murtaugh, sensing a new character was being written into his scenario, did not replace him when he came to bat in the fourth. Nor did Murtaugh seem overly upset when the skinny rookie wiped out a Buc threat in that inning by hitting a routine ground ball. Kison began fleshing out his part with one scoreless inning after another. When he finally left the game in the seventh in favor of Giusti, Kison had created for himself a leading role in the game. Throwing mostly rising and screwballing fast-balls and a small but quick slider, he had limited the Giants to two hits and no runs in 4? innings, and he was to receive credit for the Bucs' pennant-clinching victory. Kison's performance had been an unexpectedly adept, professional effort, yet the rookie pitcher seemed not the least impressed either by the circumstances in which he now found himself (besieged by writers) or the batters he had just faced. It was assumed that Kison's coolness on the mound and in postgame interviews was really nothing but a naively constructed facade. This notion sprang in part from Kison's manner (he is quiet to the point of taciturnity) but mostly from his deceptive appearance. At 21, he looks 15. He has a gawky adolescent's body, all arms and legs and little torso. His face is long and fine-boned and dusted with a peachlike fuzz. It is dominated by eyes so wide and blue as to appear unblinking, stunned, with the three-dimensional quality of those animals like gazelles that are only one twitch from flight. Yet Kison is neither timid nor stunned. Nor does he possess an unfathoming innocence akin to Billy Budd's. He is simply a direct, if slightly unfinished, young man, whose parts are well formed if too few. His directness owes only a small debt to innocence and more to an instinct so blunt as to be, at times, brutal. He does or says nothing that is superfluous and, in fact, seems as straight and simple and obvious as the age in which he lives is circuitous and convoluted and devious. His performance in the playoffs was viewed as the aberration of a novice, owing more to luck and propitious circumstances than to any talent he might possess. So when the World Series began, few people expected Kison to play a prominent part in its resolution. He remained the fledgling rookie on whom a team could hardly rely in the Great American Classic. (Oddly enough, Kison was only eight months younger than Vida Blue, a pitcher of whom people expected a great deal more than he delivered in a similar situation.) Heroics in the World Series were to be the private reserve of veterans like Dock Ellis and were certainly not the domain of a youth who, some said, divested himself of his beard each morning with the aid of only a hot towel. Kison himself did not expect to be used much in the Series. He was even apologetic for the good fortune that had brought him into an event that some of his teammates, like Bob Veale, had worked for a decade to reach. And Veale, who had fallen out of favor with the Pirate management for not having fulfilled his potential, would probably see as little action as Kison. Bruce enjoyed his anonymity as the Series began in Baltimore. It allowed him to eat his meals in peace and sit unnoticed in the chaotic, baggage-strewn lobby of the Bucs' hotel, watching the spectacle of his first World Series with a detachment that was being denied his more famous teammates. Manny Sanguillen, for instance, could not step from an elevator without being besieged by autograph seekers who were drawn to him as much by his perpetual grin as by his blindingly white panama suit with its lapels approaching the wingspan of a 747. On the other hand, Dock Ellis, a heavy-lidded, petulant-faced man who seemed always bored or angry or maybe just in need of sleep, was too foreboding a presence to be approached for autographs. He always was striding across the lobby with a high-waisted, stomach-thrusting strut to answer a page's "Call for Mr. Dock Ellis!"; or else he was surrounded by sportswriters to whom he was expounding on the qualities of his hotel accommodations, as if he were not just Pittsburgh's starting pitcher in the first game but also a dark-skinned Temple Fielding in wedge-heeled boots. Kison was left largely to himself. He sprawled across his bed and watched television or telephoned his fianc�e in Pittsburgh. The heavily favored Orioles took the first game handily. They knocked Ellis out of the game in the third inning. In the second game Baltimore was ahead 3-0 when Murtaugh relieved starter Bob Johnson in the fourth. The new pitcher was Bruce Kison. Kison threw nine pitches. Eight of them were balls; he walked one run in and was promptly replaced by Moose. The Orioles won that contest 11-3. In the locker room after the game, Kison was asked by sportswriters if he had been jittery in his first World Series appearance, and if that hadn't accounted for his wildness. "No," he said, "I just wasn't used to the mound. That might have thrown my control off. But I wasn't nervous." The following day newspapers around the country explained that Kison's wildness was caused by his nervousness at pitching in his first World Series; it was to be expected of a rookie, the writers noted. The third Series game was played in Pittsburgh's Three Rivers Stadium, one of those perfectly proportioned ovals similar to ancient coliseums but so oppressively modern as to be without odor (except of fresh gypsum); without blemish (no worn patches on the billiard-table surface, no obstructing pillars, no garish advertisements on the outfield fences); and without character (private, glass-enclosed booths are available but are so removed from the action that the occupants can be seen watching the game on portable TV sets). The stadium has rows of brightly painted seats that incline almost straight back, rising away from the playing field like the seats in a movie theater. This puts the spectators beyond the first few rows at a great distance from the field. At such a distance on a muggy afternoon the athletes become blurs of gray and white, gliding in slow motion over a perfect, pale-green cloth, pursuing a baseball that can be heard but not seen, seeming to perform an eerie ballet akin to that of the tennis players in the movie Blow-Up. In that third game the Orioles managed to get only three hits off Steve Blass and the Bucs had a win at last. Blass, a 29-year-old veteran of modest successes, is regarded by sportswriters as the Bucs' resident wit and intellectual (he is excellent "copy"). He is also a pitcher of only adequate talent but great desire, and he throws the ball with such a flurry of arms and legs that he resembles a young boy trying to impress his elders and willing to fall on his face, if necessary, to do it. Still the Pirate victory was looked upon by many as simply a delaying action, a postponement of the inevitable Oriole triumph. The fourth game was to be the first night game ever played in a World Series. During batting practice Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn was led to a spot near home plate by some photographers. He was given the monstrous metal World Series trophy to hold and told to stand in that spot until pictures could be taken with the rival managers. When Earl Weaver and Danny Murtaugh appeared on either side of Kuhn, one of the photographers yelled, "O.K., smile, Commissioner," which he did, obligingly. While the commissioner grunted under the immense weight of the trophy and tried to smile at the same time, Murtaugh and Weaver chatted across him and the trophy, as if the trophy, one empty vessel, was suspended solely by another. When the photographers finished, they unceremoniously left the commissioner. Weaver trotted back to his dugout and Murtaugh, his hands stuffed in his back pockets, walked deliberately back to his. The commissioner, still smiling, stood by himself with his prize for a long moment before finally saying, "Dammit, somebody help me with this thing or I'll be standing here all night." Things seemed to be going awry in Pittsburgh and for Pittsburgh. Starting the game did not help at all. The Orioles scored three runs in the top of the first before Pirate Pitcher Luke Walker was taken out of the game. When his replacement, Bruce Kison, arrived from the bullpen there was an audible groan from the fans. It was as if the appearance of the pink-cheeked rookie signaled Murtaugh's resignation to a Baltimore triumph, and the fact that Kison retired the side with one pitch did little to dissipate the feeling of despair. However, when the Bucs scored two runs in the bottom of the first, the hometown crowd, expecting a speedy substitute for Kison, was encouraged. If Bruce could just manage three outs, Murtaugh could send in a pinch hitter for him in the bottom of the second. Kison, working quickly with his sweeping right-to-left, sidearmed delivery, retired the first two batters. Then Paul Blair hit a pop fly that bounced on the Tartan Turf in front of Roberto Clemente and sprang over his head for a double. Kison, unfazed, got the next batter out on an infield fly. Murtaugh did not pinch-hit for Kison in the second; nor in the fourth (by which time the score stood 3 all); nor in the sixth. During those innings, before the largest audience ever to watch a baseball game (62.3 million TV viewers and 51,378 in the stadium), Kison pitched flawless baseball. In his flawless performance one must include, not exclude, the three batters he hit with pitches, setting a World Series record. Those Orioles were simply being served notice that despite Kison's virginal appearance he was not one to treat idly. Kison had hit a high porportion of batsmen in his three-year professional career. He hit seven batters in one minor league game, which he won. His difficulty stems from a fastball that breaks sharply in on a right-handed batter at the last second. This break is often misjudged and can result in bruised ribs. Also, because his curveball is such a brief affair and anxious batters tend to lean far over the plate hoping to paste it to the right-field wall, Kison must protect himself by firing an occasional pitch inside. This combination of a batter leaning one way and a fastball breaking the other accounts for the knockdowns. There is a feeling among Kison's friends that he is not particularly upset when he hits a batter, that he feels it helps compensate for his limited repertoire (two basic pitches) and his boyish appearance. Yet, in the fourth game of the Series, he claimed his youthful wildness was responsible for the three hit batters—Dave Johnson, Andy Etchebarren and Frank Robinson. Strangely enough, he did not walk a single batter during that span. Kison won the game that night by allowing the Orioles only Blair's bloop double and no runs in 6 1/3 innings. Giusti finished the game and preserved Kisort's 4-3 victory. Four days later, after the Bucs won the world championship in the seventh game, Earl Weaver would say that the fourth was the turning point of the Series, and that Kison had been the pivotal figure. Weaver explained that with a three-run lead in the first inning and a rookie pitcher at their disposal, the Orioles never should have lost. A victory would have given them a 3-1 edge. The moment Kison entered the locker room after the fourth game, the press surrounded and immobilized him. Flash-bulbs exploded in his face. People shouted orders and questions at him. A TV cameraman, his equipment slung over his shoulder like a bazooka, yelled at Kison to look his way, and when Bruce did his face was flooded with a light. A television commentator stuck a microphone under Kison's nose and began asking questions. Sportswriters grumbled and fidgeted as they waited their turn and, when the cameraman extinguished his lights, they let loose with a dozen questions simultaneously. For an instant a look flickered in Kison's eyes suggesting he was about to flee, and just as quickly it was gone, replaced by a gaze devoid of all expression. Kison folded his arms across his narrow chest and, towering above the writers, began to answer their queues. "Were you as nervous today as you were in the second game?" "I don't know," said Kison. "I had trouble getting the ball over the plate in the second game so they said I was nervous. If I'd have gotten it over they would have said I was calm. So I guess you can say I was nervous in the second game, but I was calm today." "What's your telephone number?" "I don't know." "You don't know your own telephone number?" "I never have had to call myself." "Do you mean to tell us you weren't nervous in that second game?" Everybody brings in nerves, nerves, nerves," said Kison. "I don't think about being nervous. I just tried to do better this game than in the last, that's all." "If the Series goes seven games," said another writer, "do you think you'll make your wedding?" "When I set the date I had been told by some of my teammates that the Series would be over by the second week of October. I should have checked myself. But if I'm in Baltimore Sunday then that's where I'm supposed to be. I'm here to help win I he Series first and get married afterward." "Bruce," said one writer, "now that you're famous, do people recognize you when you walk the streets?" "I don't walk the streets." "Is your fianc�e good looking?" "She's O.K." "I mean is she a really good-looking girl?" "What do you think? Boy, that was a stupid one." "What do you think of major league sportswriters?" "They're all right. They haven't stuck a knife in me yet." While Kison was talking, two reporters directly under his nose began arguing over who had rights to the next question. The argument grew louder and louder until Kison broke off in mid-sentence and rolled his eyes heavenward. Kison was asked if his childhood dreams had come true. "Yes, and then some." For a third time a writer asked him about his wedding. "Why is everyone making such a big deal about the wedding?" Kison said. "If I can't make it back to Pittsburgh Sunday we'll have to change it, that's all." "How often do you shave?" "Every day," replied Kison. "Do you need to?" "I wouldn't shave if I didn't." Suddenly there was a commotion by the telephone. One of the Pirate trainers motioned for Kison to answer the phone. While Bruce talked the writers edged closer. Someone said, "He's talking to President Nixon." Kison hung up and returned. "Who were you talking to, Bruce?" "That was my father and mother and some friends of the family, and, oh, yes, my dog." "What'd they say?" "Nothing much. My mother and father and the friends congratulated me. The dog didn't say anything. He can't talk." On the outer edge of the group a writer was saying, "It's hard to tell if he's a bright kid or not. I thought he'd say his fianc�e was sensational, a knockout, something I could use. But he doesn't say what you'd expect. I don't know. Maybe he just isn't too bright." "How do you show pressure inside?" asked a writer. "I don't know," said Kison. "You tell me." "Don't you feel anything inside?" "I guess." Another writer told Kison that Frank Robinson was furious at being hit. The writer asked Kison to comment on Robby's anger. "I think you're just trying to cause friction there," said Kison. "I don't want to answer that question." Off to one side a few people were watching the young pitcher being grilled. "Ballplayers build up a tolerance to some questions and automatic responses to others," remarked one longtime observer of these scenes. "Kison hasn't cultivated this yet, but he will, and maybe that's a shame. Right now he refuses to answer dumb questions in a clever way but is willing to answer good questions in a fresh new way. Soon he'll answer them all with safe clich�s." "Bruce will have to learn how to handle writers," Steve Blass said. "Sometimes he makes judgments too soon, not considering all the possibilities. I've tried to tell him he can't be too quick in evaluating people, especially writers. But Bruce is flexible. He'll learn as he gets older. He'll become more aware, which is a shame. It's a loss of innocence. He won't be this Bruce Kison anymore; he'll be a new Bruce Kison, because people demand more from us than we're capable of giving." It was midnight when Kison finally emerged from a shower into an all-but-deserted locker room. Dripping, he moved to his stall and began drying himself. He is incredibly long and bony. His ribs showed. "Jeez, I hated all that attention," he said. "I must have acted like a fool in front of those writers. Did I? Jeez, I hope not. Aw, I know I did. A real fool." He threw his towel into the center of the room and muttered as he dressed. Bob Veale, the only other player in the room, came over to Kison and said, with mock solemnity, holding an imaginary microphone in front of Bruce, "Tell me, Kison? How's it feel to set a World Series record by hitting eight batters in three innings?" Kison smiled and said nothing. "And to be such a big hit with all those sportswriters, too?" Veale added. "My goodness, Kison, tell me, how's it feel?" When Veale was gone Kison said of him, "He told me to go into the locker room between innings so my arm wouldn't stiffen up. He's always helping me like that. I feel sorry for him. I wonder why I'm so lucky. I see him sitting alone at his locker, not saying anything, and I wonder what he's thinking. He has to watch me get all this attention in my first year and he's been here 10." On the morning after his big win, Kison arrived at Three Rivers Stadium at nine o'clock for a television interview with Sandy Koufax. He was smoking a cigar, which made one feel one ought to tell his father on him. Kison and Koufax stood halfway down the third-base line and chatted while television cameramen set up equipment in the visitors' dugout. The sun hung over the center-field bleachers, cutting through the morning mist. It will directly behind Kison, making him seem a dark silhouette. Koufax, at 35, looked tense and strained as a greyhound. He wore a navy blazer with an NBC crest on the breast pocket, a red shirt and a patterned tie, double-knit slacks and alligator loafers. As he talked with Kison, he constantly tugged at his shirt collar, stretched his neck, smoothed his already smooth hair and glanced toward the cameramen. Kison stood spread-legged and motionless. His hands were stuffed into his back pockets. His shirt hung outside of his pants and he wore cowboy boots. When the cameraman signaled Koufax to begin he raised the microphone to his lips, assumed a smile and began asking Kison questions. Kison replied in a monotonous voice. His hands remained in his pockets and his eyes drifted over Koufax' head to the deserted stadium. The first three lakes were unsuccessful and with each Koufax became increasingly annoyed. Finally, when Koufax blew a fourth take the cameraman signaled for him to continue. Koufax yanked the microphone away from his mouth and said. "No, we won't! Bruce doesn't want to live with that, do you, Bruce? And I am not going to make a fool of myself in front of millions of viewers." The fifth take began with Kison saying, "I was very displeased with my performance in Baltimore in the second game...." On the morning of the seventh and final Series game in Baltimore, Kison sat at a table in a coffee shop and waited impatiently for his scrambled eggs. In the deciding contest, Kison realized he might be the first reliever if Steve Blass faltered, and that, with the uncertainty of reaching his own wedding that night in Pittsburgh, made him unusually irritable. Kison's irritation had also grown from what he considered to be undue attention heaped on him ever since his fourth-game win. He did not like his instant notoriety, he said. To pass the time while he waited for breakfast, Kison tried to reevaluate, objectively, his pitching of the past year, so as to be able to negotiate his 1972 contract with the front office. He decided that his 10 victories in AAA, his six during the regular season with Pittsburgh and his playoff and Series victories qualified him as an 18-game winner. Furthermore, the playoff and Series triumphs would be worth a lot of money to the Pirates and, if they won that afternoon, a great deal more. He deserved a small portion of this cash, he said, and he wondered just how much he should ask for. (Ironically, when the Bucs divided up their World Series and playoff booty, they failed to give Bruce Kison a full share.) "It's funny," said Kison, "but I don't care that much about money. Here I am talking so much about it and if I had to, I'd play for nothing back home in Pasco, Washington. I wouldn't play every day for nothing, bin still I'd play. Money doesn't mean that much to me yet. I'm not a clotheshound like some guys on the club. To me, clothes are necessities, like food. I don't love to eat. I eat until I'm content, that's all. But it seems the more you taste big-league life the more you want—or think you want. You get caught up in things that never meant much to you before. You become something different. I'm not the same person I was a year ago, six months ago or even a few weeks ago. "When I was a kid I admired the milkman. I wanted to be just like him someday. Then you grow up and your sights change. Your goals get larger than they were, and Pasco is no longer enough for you. I still love to go back and hunt, but I don't think I could go back and drink beer on Saturday nights for the rest of my life. Once I said I could never stay in baseball unless I was in the major leagues, that if I didn't make it, I'd return to college and get my degree. College is getting farther and farther away. I can see myself as an organization man in the minors now. I wouldn't like it much, but still I can see myself doing it. It doesn't take long in baseball before you become like everyone else. I mean, when you first come to the majors, you hear guys talking about things, like girls and stuff, and you think, that isn't me. I'll never be like that. But pretty soon you realize you'll evolve into what everybody else is. I don't think I'll mind that. It doesn't look so bad now. And when it happens all I'll think about is protecting myself up here. I know that right now there's some kid in the weeds, some kid riding a bus someplace, and he's checking my ERA in The Sporting News just like I did when I was in Waterbury." Kison looked around for his waitress. "Jeez, where is she? I only ordered eggs." He sighed disgustedly and then continued, "I guess I've learned a lot. I've learned that baseball is for the owners and sportswriters and fans, and not the players. We just perform. For instance, the other night a guy came to my hotel room and asked if he could come in and talk. He said he was a Pirate fan, that he followed me closely and thought I was great. So what could I say? Anyway, he kept talking and talking about how great I was and how no one will believe it when he tells them he was in Bruce Kison's room, and all the while he's looking at me with these big eyes like I'm some kind of hero or something. Finally, I said to him, 'It isn't that big a deal, you know.' He said, 'It is to me.' Then he left. "People idolize us too much. They give us importance we don't deserve. I am the first pitcher ever to win a night World Series game, but I don't feel important. I still think of myself as a kid. Baseball is still a sport to me. But it's a business. I'm just a piece of property. I know that. But that doesn't mean I want people to make a living off me. Take my wedding, for instance. I don't want people to make a living off my wedding. That's a helluva way to start out." The waitress appeared with his eggs. She placed the platter in front of Kison and he looked at them for a second. He picked up his fork, picked at the eggs and then said, "I wanted them well done. These aren't well done." The waitress took the plate back to the kitchen. "They'll probably just throw them on another plate and bring them out again," said Kison. Then he laughed a little. "That's funny. I'd never have done that a year ago. But there are a lot of things I used to do I'd never do now. When everybody's looking at you, you can't always express what you feel. I think that's the most important thing I have learned up here. I mean, you don't tell everything you know anymore."
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
1972 NLCS: Moose, but no Squirrels Robert Tufts MLB Examiner Both of the 2011 League Championship Series have been relatively entertaining so far. In the NLCS, the Milwaukee Brewers and the St. Louis Cardinals are down to a best of three to advance to the World Series. In the ALCS, the Detroit Tigers fought off elimination in Game Five and head back to Texas with at least a slim hope of coming back from a three games to one deficit to move on to the Fall Classic. Newsday’s Ken Davidoff took a look at past ALCS and NLCS to come up with some memorable names and moments by asking the question "Who is most identified by his place in LCS history?" His list of the top five: Steve Bartman, Aaron Boone, Donnie Moore, Eric Gregg and Carlos Beltran. I can immediately hear the clamors by some Yankees and Mets baseball fans for Jeffrey Maier, Chris Chambliss and Mike Scott. However, my choice is Bob Moose of the 1972 Pittsburgh Pirates. In the decisive Game Five of the 1972 NLCS versus the Cincinnati Reds, Moose threw a wild pitch that brought in the series winning run in a 4-3 Reds victory. According to baseball reference.com’s fantastic site, in the bottom of the ninth, Pirate reliever Dave Giusti gave up a leadoff home run to Johnny Bench that tied the game at 3-3. Tony Perez and Dennis Menke followed Bench’s home run with singles. George Foster came in as a pinch runner for Perez. Moose replaced Giusti with runners on first and second and gave up a flyball to right by Cesar Geronimo that moved Foster to third base. Moose induced Darrel Chaney to pop out to shortstop and was only one batter away from getting the game to go into extra innings, but he threw a wild pitch to McRae (who was pinch hitting for Clay Carroll) and the ballgame and series were over. The Reds would go on to lose the 1972 World Series to the A’s in seven games – only Game Six was not decided by one run. Meanwhile, the 1972 American League Championship series was also a five game affair. The Detroit Tigers won the American League East by ½ game over the Boston Red Sox. Yes, that’s correct – ½ game. Why? Well, the first ever strike by the nascent Major League Baseball Players Association happened at the start of the season, and teams played an uneven amount of games. The Tigers finished 86-70, while the Red Sox finished 85-70 and went home early. What did the players win in that strike? Additional pension contributions by the owners due to higher television contracts and the right to salary arbitration. Little did they know that arbitration would be the death knell to the reserve clause thanks to the Messersmith-McNally case in 1975. And many diehard fans may remember that in Game Two of the ALCS, A’s shortstop Bert Campaneris was hit in the leg by Tigers pitcher Lerrin LeGrow. Campaneris’s response? He hurled the bat at LeGrow, precipitating a “hold me back” bench clearing shoving match prominently featuring Tigers manager Billy Martin. Campaneris was suspended for the rest of the ALCS but returned to play in the World Series. And there are two sad postscripts to the walk off wild pitch story. This game was the last game ever played by the legendary Pirate rightfielder Roberto Clemente. Clemente died in the off season in a plane crash while assisting an airlift of supplies to Nicaragua, which had been devasted by an earthquake on December 23rd. And Moose, like Donnie Moore, tragically left this world far too soon – but not by his own hand as in the case of Moore. Moose died at age 29 on his birthday in a car accident two weeks after the 1976 season. He was driving to Bill Mazeroski’s golf course in Martins Ferry, Ohio for a party at the time of the head-on crash. Robert Tufts, MLB Examiner Bob Tufts is a former major league pitcher with the San Francisco Giants and the Kansas City Royals. He holds a degree in Economics from Princeton University and an MBA from Columbia University. One Sweet Moose A Pennsylvania native, Bob Moose grew up with the dream of one day pitching for the Pittsburgh Pirates. For Moose it was a dream come true, as he eventually found success both as a starter and reliever for the Pirates, the only team he played for in a 10-year major league career. Moose was sandlot legend, a strikeout specialist from little League through high school, when he was signed by the Pirates in 1965. He made his major league debut at the end of the 1967 season, pitching a complete game for his first big league win that season. In 1968, as a starter and reliever for the Pirates, Moose went 8-12 with a 2.74 ERA and 3 shutouts. His best season came in 1969, when he went 14-3 with a 2.91 ERA. His .834 winning percentage was the highest in the major leagues that year. He also pitched a no-hitter against the New York Mets. Moose won 11 games for the Pirates in each of the next 2 seasons, and appeared in 3 games in the 1971 World Series with no decisions. In 1972, as a member of the Pirates' starting rotation, Moose won 13 games with a 2.91 ERA, pitching a career-high 226 innings. He won 12 games in 1973. In 1974 Moose experienced arm problems for the first time in his career. The cause turned out to be a blood clot that required season-ending surgery and considerable rehabilitation to rebuild his arm strength. Moose appeared in only 23 games in 1975, going 2-2 with a 3.72 ERA. He came back in 1976 as the Pirates' closer, appearing in 53 games with 10 saves, and now 29, he appeared ready to take on the closer's role full-time going into the 1977 season. But Moose never had the opportunity. He was killed in an auto accident on the way to participating in a charity golf tournament. Moose finished his career with a 76-71 record and a 3.50 ERA. • Bob Moose was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1965. He pitched in the minors from 1965-1967. Bob started two games late in 1967 and was 1-0 with a 3.68 ERA. • Moose started the 1968 season as a reliever and joined the Pittsburgh starting rotation in early June. Bob pitched in 38 games (22 starts) and was 8-12 with three saves and a 2.74 ERA. In 1969 Bob led the NL with a .824 winning percentage. He was 14-3 with four saves and a 2.91 ERA in 44 games (19 starts). Moose pitched a no-hitter against the New York Mets on September 20, 1969. • Moose was a full-time starter in 1970 and was 11-10 with a 3.99 ERA in 27 starts. Bob started and lost game 3 of the 1970 NLCS (he allowed three runs in 7.2 innings). • Bob returned to a swingman role in 1971. He pitched in 44 games (19 starts) and was 11-7 with one save and a 4.11 ERA. Moose pitched two scoreless innings in the 1971 NLCS and had a 6.52 ERA in 3 games (1 start) in the 1971 World Series. • Moose was back in the rotation in 1972 and was 13-10 with a 2.91 ERA in 30 starts. He started game 2 of the NLCS but didn't get out of the first inning as the Reds scored four runs. In the deciding game 5 Moose entered the game in the ninth inning with the score tied. George Foster made his way to third base and with two out scored on Moose's wild pitch. • In 1973 Bob was 12-13 with a 3.53 ERA in 29 starts. Moose missed most of the 1974 season with an injury. Moose had surgery for a blood clot problem and had to have a rib removed in order to free the vein causing the problem. He started six games (1-5, 7.57 ERA) and then didn't pitch after May 23. • Bob came back in 1975 but had a rough start, a thumb injury, and spent some time in the minors in August. Moose ended up 2-2 with a 3.78 ERA in 23 games (5 starts) for the Pirates. His ERA was 5.88 before he went to the minors. • Moose was mostly a reliever in 1976. He was 3-9 with 10 saves and a 3.68 ERA in 53 games (2 starts). • Bob's career (and life) was cut short by an automobile accident. He was killed on October 9, 1976 (his 29th birthday) while on his way to Bill Mazeroski's golf course near Martin's Ferry, Ohio. • Memories of Moose - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review - April 27, 2007 • Liked to face: Mike Jorgensen (.043 in 23 AB); Bill Robinson/Julian Javier (.056 in 18 AB) • Hated to face: Willie McCovey (.545 with 7 HR in 33 AB); Bob Boone (.526 in 19 AB); Garry Maddox (.472 in 36 AB) Bob Moose: #38 Years as a Buc:1967-1976; Pitcher Total ML seasons: 10 seasons, all with the Pirates Career Highlights: Moose is on a short list of Pirate pitchers who have tossed a no-hitter. On September 20, 1969, Bob Moose no-hit the Mets at New York and won the game 4-0. He also started Game 6 of the 1971 World Series and turned in a solid 5 innings of work. Moose also appeared in relief during Games 1 (4 innings) and Game 2. His starting assignment was critical as two of the Pirate pitchers had been ineffective against the Orioles. The assignment was made more difficult because he had to oppose Hall of Fame-bound Oriole oitcher Jim Palmer. Overall, in his ML career, Moose was a 76-71 pitcher with a 3.50 ERA. He had 11 or more wins in 5 straight seasons ('69-'73), and threw over 200 innings twice. Best Year: 1969: in addition to his no-hitter, Moose was 14-3 with a 2.91 ERA. Fan Remembrances: Moose and I are from the same hometown, although Bob starred on the high school baseball team about 13 years before I played on that team. I met him as a kid and had a picture autographed, but I've lost track of where it went. Moose was killed in an auto accident after the 1976 season on his 29th birthday. Moose may be remembered as the pitcher who threw the wild pitch that allowed the Reds to score the winning run in the 1972 playoffs. This is a little unfair to Moose - Dave Giusti allowed the Johnny Bench home run that tied the game in the 9th inning; Moose came on in a jam and recorded 2 outs before uncorking one that allowed the Reds runner at third to scamper home. Bob Moose was well liked by all his team mates. A plaque was dedicated to him after his death which still hangs in the Pirate clubhouse at TRS. THIRTY YEARS AGO... THE FIRST ALL-BLACK LINEUP By Bruce Markusen The events of September 1, 1971 have never received much media attention, paling in comparison to the coverage of Jackie Robinson’s historic entrance into the major leagues. Yet, the happenings in Pittsburgh on that date constitute one of the most significant milestones in the racial history of major league baseball. That afternoon, while sitting in his office at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh Pirates’ manager Danny Murtaugh prepared to oppose the Philadelphia Phillies and left-handed pitcher Woodie Fryman. Murtaugh filled out the following names on his lineup card: Rennie Stennett, 2B Gene Clines, CF Roberto Clemente, RF Willie Stargell, LF Manny Sanguillen, C Dave Cash, 3B Al Oliver, 1B Jackie Hernandez, SS Dock Ellis, P At first glance, Murtaugh’s lineup seemed to represent nothing particularly out of the ordinary. In fact, the lineup appeared typical of ones that he would use against left-handed starters like Fryman, with the exception of the lefty-swinging Al Oliver at first base in place of the right-handed batting Bob Robertson. Upon further review, however, observers in the press box noticed that the lineup consisted exclusively of African-American and dark-skinned Latin American players. Baseball experts surmised that for the first time in the history of baseball, and 24 years after Jackie Robinson had broken the color barrier, a major league team was employing an all-black lineup. Gene Clines, one of the players in the lineup that evening, initially believed that the Pirates had used an all-black lineup several years earlier. Willie Stargell, one of the senior members of the 1971 Pirates, corrected Clines’ speculation. “No, this is the first time,” said Stargell, the Hall of Fame outfielder-first baseman who died earlier this year. “Back in 1967, in Philadelphia, [former Pirate manager] Harry Walker started eight of us, but the pitcher, Denny Ribant, was white.” Although Murtaugh’s decision to write out an all-black lineup drew relatively little attention from the fans and media, it was immediately noticed by some Pirate players in the clubhouse prior to the game. “We saw the lineup on the [clubhouse] wall...Oh yeah, we were aware,” recalls pitcher Steve Blass, the eventual winner in Game Seven of the 1971 World Series. In 1971, the Pirates represented baseball’s most heavily integrated team, with black and Latino players accounting for nearly fifty percent of the club’s roster. The Pirates also featured one of baseball’s most harmonious teams, with friendships and gatherings often crossing racial lines. White players often socialized with black and Latino players, either at bars and restaurants after games, or at barbecues and parties organized by one of the team’s leaders, Willie Stargell. Considering the unity of the team, the players’ reaction to the all-black lineup was not surprising. “We had a loose group, [so] we were all laughing and hollering about it and teasing each other,” says Blass. “I thought that was a great reaction.” Third baseman Richie Hebner, who sat out the game with an injury, says the players’ pre-game reaction to the lineup typified the kind of good-natured racial humor that was prevalent with the Pirates. Hebner says such humor was doled out purely for fun, and not intended to be taken seriously. “Some of the guys joked around the clubhouse, saying, ‘Hey, you white guys, you can take a rest tonight’... Back then, Ellis and Stargell would get on us [white players] and we’d get on them. You could do that,” Hebner recalls. Other players, like Al Oliver, didn’t realize that the Pirates were actually using an all-black lineup until the middle of the game. “I had no clue,” Oliver says, “Because as a rule we had at least five or six [black and Latino players] out there anyway. So, two or three more was no big thing. I didn’t know until about the third or fourth inning. Dave Cash mentioned to me, he says, ‘Hey, Scoop, we got all brothers out here.’” Oliver pauses for a moment and laughs. “You know, I thought about it, and I said, ‘We sure do!’ ” The fact that Oliver even started the game was strange for several reasons. Why was Oliver, primarily a center fielder in 1971, playing at first base instead of usual starter Bob Robertson? Even more strangely, why was Oliver starting against a left-hander, when Murtaugh had benched him against most southpaws that summer? “That’s a good question,” Oliver replies with a laugh. “That’s a good question, because to this day when people ask me who was the toughest pitcher I ever faced, it was Woodie Fryman.” One article indicated that Robertson sat out the game with a minor injury, but didn’t specify what the injury was. According to Oliver, Murtaugh may have been looking to light a fire under a slumping Robertson, who had gone 2-for-14 in his previous four games. “Bob Robertson normally would have played that day, but Dave Cash had told me within the last [few] years, and I never knew this, that Murtaugh was kind of disappointed in Bob for whatever reason. I don’t know what the exact reason was, but he was disappointed in Bob, so he sat him down. He played me that night at first base.” Popular and patriarchal, Murtaugh had become a comforting, father-like figure for almost all of the Pirate players, regardless of skin color or nationality. In the past, he had not hesitated in giving significant amounts of playing time to black and Latino players, and now seemed to be showing pioneering courage in making out the first all-black lineup when he was under no pressure to do so. So why did Murtaugh write out the lineup the way he did on September 1, 1971? Given the decision to start Oliver over Robertson, was it possible that Murtaugh was looking for a way to put an all-black lineup on the field? Oliver doesn’t think so. “In my estimation, I think Danny was just putting the best team on the field, and he probably didn’t notice [the all-black lineup] until later. I didn’t know until the third or fourth inning.” Steve Blass says Murtaugh was concerned with winning games—not with making social statements. “No, this was not a statement, nor a device,” Blass says. “The thing I remember about it, when he was interviewed afterwards, Murtaugh said, ‘I put the nine best athletes out there. The best nine I put out there tonight happened to be black. No big deal. Next question.’ ” Blass says Murtaugh handled the matter with the proper attitude and perspective. “He was aware of the repercussions that might come out of it,” says Blass. “But he didn’t have a problem with it.” So, for the first time since the demise of the Negro Leagues in the early 1960s, a professional major league-caliber baseball team fielded a starting nine consisting exclusively of blacks. The results? The Phillies scored two runs against Dock Ellis in the first, but the Bucs countered with six hits and five runs in the bottom half of the inning. The Phillies added four more runs in the second, knocking out Ellis, who was replaced by long reliever Bob Moose. Down 6-5, the Pirates rallied for three runs in the second. Gene Clines singled and Roberto Clemente walked. After Clines stole third, Willie Stargell produced one run with a sac fly, and Manny Sanguillen added two more on a home run. Bob Veale, also a black player, relieved Bob Moose in the third inning, and struck out the one batter he faced. Ironically, Luke Walker, a white pitcher from Texas, relieved in the fourth and emerged as the Pirate pitching star of the day. Walker held the Phillies to one run over six innings and picked up the win in a 10-7 victory for the Bucs. On offense, Clines, Clemente, Stargell, Sanguillen, Oliver, and Rennie Stennett each collected two base hits, and Clines and Cash each stole a base. The all-black lineup had produced a win in its very first major league go-round. Unfortunately, only 11,278 fans were on hand at Three Rivers Stadium to witness this intriguing piece of baseball history. At the time, most of the Pirates’ players and fans didn’t grasp the historical relevance of the first all-black lineup, but they have grown to appreciate its importance. “[In 1971], I didn’t even think anything about it,” Oliver says. “Nothing about it at all.” Once his playing career ended in 1985, Oliver took a step back and emerged with a different perspective about the night of September 1, 1971. “But now, of course, it means something. Once you’re out of the game, you look back and [you realize] you could be a part of baseball history. To me, that’s something that I feel good about, being part of baseball history.” Bob Robertson never did make an appearance in the game, but like Oliver, has a similar perspective on its importance. “I think it’s a great thing that really happened there,” Robby says. “That was the type of ballclub that we had. It didn’t make a difference if you were black, yellow, green, purple, whatever. We enjoyed each other’s company. We got along fine. We had a lot of respect for one another. I thought that was a great evening, to see that.” According to some baseball historians, the all-black lineup of September 1,1971, remains significant because it exhibited how progressive the Pirate organization was in drafting and signing blacks and Latinos at all positions. In the past, major league teams had shown a willingness to sign many black infielders and outfielders, but had tended to avoid developing minority pitchers and catchers. Oliver agrees that the all-black lineup demonstrated the Pirates’ belief that blacks and Latinos could play the “thinking man’s” game behind the plate or on the mound. “I signed with the Pirates in 1964,” Oliver recalls. “In 1965, it was really my first spring training in Daytona Beach. The Pirates had signed, if you look at the catcher’s position, they had many [black] catchers. If you looked at the pitchers, there were many black pitchers that they had signed or drafted... I think what it came down to was that the Pirates were not afraid to draft black and Latin players because they were interested in one thing, in my opinion,” Oliver says, “And that was winning.” Although the first all-black lineup has received some media attention over the years, it has generally been overlooked, a sentiment that frustrates Oliver. “Oh, by far it’s been underrated,” Oliver maintains. “I haven’t heard much talk about it. I’ll be honest with you. Only two writers have talked to me [about it], and you are one of them... No one talks about it for some reason. I don’t know why.” Perhaps more people will start talking about it now. The Boxscore (September 1, 1971) Philadelphia ab r h rbi Stone, rf 4 2 1 2 Bowa, ss 2 2 0 0 McCarver, c 4 1 1 0 Johnson, 1b 4 1 1 2 Montanez, cf 3 0 0 1 Gamble, lf 4 0 1 1 Harmon, 2b 4 0 1 0 Vukovich, 3b 3 1 0 0 Fryman, p 0 0 0 0 Brandon, p 2 0 1 0 Selma, p 1 0 1 0 Lis, ph 1 0 0 0 Champion, p 0 0 0 0 Totals 32 7 7 6 Pittsburgh ab r h rbi Stennett, 2b 5 1 2 1 Clines, cf 5 2 2 0 Clemente, rf 4 2 2 2 Stargell, lf 3 1 2 2 Sanguillen, c 4 2 2 2 Cash, 3b 3 1 1 1 Oliver, 1b 4 0 2 1 Hernandez, ss 2 1 0 1 Ellis, p 1 0 0 0 Moose, p 0 0 0 0 Veale, p 0 0 0 0 Walker, p 2 0 0 0 Totals 33 10 13 10 Phil… 2 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 0—7 Pitt…. 5 3 1 0 0 1 0 0 x—10 Philadelphia IP H R ER BB SO Fryman .1 6 5 5 0 0 Brandon, L 2.1 4 4 4 1 1 Selma 4.1 3 1 1 2 3 Champion 1 0 0 0 0 1 Pittsburgh IP H R ER BB SO Ellis 1.1 2 4 2 4 2 Moose 1.1 3 2 2 0 1 Veale .1 0 0 0 0 1 Walker, W 6 2 1 1 3 1 E—McCarver, Hernandez. DP—Pittsburgh 3. LOB—Philadelphia 6, Pittsburgh 5. 2B—Stargell, Oliver, Clines. HR—Stone (2), Johnson (29), Sanguillen (6). SB—Clines, Cash. SH—Veale. SF—Montanez, Hernandez, Stargell. WP—Selma. PB—Sanguillen. U—Crawford, Landes, Steiner, Davidson. Time—2:44 Attendance—11,278. ... written by Duke 84, November 05, 2010 - 06:09 PM I always liked Bob Moose. Nice guy, cool name. Like Jack Ham. But that day in 1972 was not a day I liked Bob Moose. Though you forgive the ones you like. At one time the Pirates had Moose, Veale and Lamb on their pitching staff. -- Bob Smizik +1
Monday, June 4, 2012
Schwei: Santana And Mets Make History June 2, 2012 Johan Santana, New York Mets, No Hitter WFAN Blogs By John Schweibacher New York, NY (WFAN) - Johan Santana became the first pitcher in Mets history to throw a no-hitter. Ending the club’s epic drought in the team’s 51st season and its 8,020th game. After the game, Santana himself said to his Mets’ teammates “Tonight, we made history.” Here are some of the historical footnotes about the history the left-hander and his club made. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, in the 137-year history of Major League Baseball, the Mets’ 8,020 game wait was the longest from the start of any franchise without a no-hitter. Santana, who missed all of last season following shoulder surgery, is only the second pitcher in major league history to throw a no-hitter in his 10th season or later, after having missed all of the previous season. The other was Dwight Gooden, who threw a no-hitter in 1996 for the Yankees, who had signed him after he had been suspended for the entire 1995 season. Elias also notes that he is also the third non-rookie in the past 50 seasons to throw a no-hitter after not pitching in the majors the previous season. The other two were Gooden and Jim Palmer for the 1969 Baltimore Orioles. Santana, at 33 years, 81 days, is the oldest major-leaguer to toss a no-no since Randy Johnson threw a perfect game at age 40 back in 2004. Santana’s no-hitter came at the expense of the Cardinals, and according to Elias it was the earliest in a season either by calendar date or by number of games played that a defending World Series champion has been the victim of a no-hit, no-run game. The last defending World Series champion to be no-hit was Tony La Russa’s Oakland team in 1990, by the Rangers’ Nolan Ryan. Elias also tells us that Santana became the first major-leaguer to throw a no-hitter after having thrown a shutout in his previous start since Dave Righetti no-hit the Red Sox for the Yankees on July 4th, 1983, after he had shut out the Orioles five days earlier. Santana’s no-hitter was caught by Josh Thole, who was appearing in his first game after missing the Mets’ last 22 games while recovering from a concussion. According to Elias, only one other player in modern major-league history caught a no-hitter after coming off such a prolonged absence: 37 years earlier to the day, on June 1st, 1975, the Angels’ Ellie Rodriguez caught Nolan Ryan’s fourth no-hitter in his first game off the disabled list after he had missed the team’s previous 25 games. Only two previous no-hitters were thrown on June 1st: Ryan’s against the Orioles in 1975, and one by Bill Dietrich of the White Sox in 1937. Santana’s no-hitter was also the first by a New York National League pitcher since the Brooklyn Dodgers’ Sal Maglie did so against the Phillies at Ebbets Field on September 25th, 1956, less than two weeks before Maglie and Brooklyn were on the losing end of Don Larsen’s perfect game in the World Series. The last New York Giants pitcher to throw a no-hitter was Carl Hubbell against Pittsburgh at the Polo Grounds on May 8th, 1929. The no-hitter was the first in the history of Citi Field. Only two were thrown at Shea Stadium: Jim Bunning’s perfect game in 1964 and Bob Moose’s no-hitter in 1969. Santana, who had never thrown a one-hitter or two-hitter, had previously thrown five three-hitters. Santana is the fourth pitcher with multiple Cy Young Awards at the time of his first career no-hitter. The other three are Bob Gibson (1971), Tom Seaver (1978), and Bret Saberhagen (1991). It was also Santana’s second consecutive shutout, making him the first Met to record back-to-back shutouts since David Cone in 1992. The Mets went 8,019 games without a no-hitter, the most by any team before it recorded its first. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the club with the second-most was the Mets opponent on Friday, the Cardinals, who played 4,826 games before their first no-hitter. The Padres are now the only current team without a no-hitter. They have now played 6,895 games without one. Here is a list of the fewest no-hitters by current MLB franchises: San Diego Padres 0 Milwaukee Brewers 1 – (Juan Nieves 4/15/87) Toronto Blue Jays 1 – (Dave Stieb 9/2/90) Colorado Rockies 1 – (Ubaldo Jimenez 4/17/10) Tampa Bay Rays 1 – (Matt Garza 7/26/10) New York Mets 1 – (Johan Santana 6/1/12) Bill, Toms River, New Jersey • Bunning no hit them in '64 and Bob Moose no hit them for the Pirates Sept 20, 1969, the year they won it all. There have been a couple of others, but Moose's is the one I'll always remember. I was at Shea that day. I stopped at the old World's Fair grounds across the tracks from the stadium to take a look around, then headed back to catch the subway. Bob Moose was on the train! He had just finished his interview on Kiner's Korner. I didn't get his autograph or even say hello or congratulations, but it was way cool!