Admit it. You wanna believe. You don't want to want to believe; the chances are still too remote. But you can't help yourself And this team isn't making it any easier. So here's a tip from a guy who's (probably) watched a lot more baseball than you during his lifetime: Don't worry about whether you believe or not. Just enjoy a team that's strung a few together, and let the magic, if it comes, take care of itself.
I'm not gonna lie to you; MLB's video selection has at times disappointed me since I started this thing. But not today. If you've ever watched a Rays game, you've certainly seen this one from 2008.
It's the wall-walk that really sets this one apart, don't you think?
We're gonna kill two birds with one stone here and look at our before-they-were-ex-Rays and a true defensive gem at the same time. Now, when pre-Ray Lou Pinellas and his '06 Mariners square off against a team in St. Pete wearing green, logic would dictate that the M's would be the team making the great play, right?
In your face, logic!
EDIT: It's been pointed out to me that Lou was actually managing the DRays in '06, and the Pinella lookalike in the M's dugout is Mike Hargrove. As always, the error will stand as a totem to my stupidity.
The most frustrating part about doing these clips is finding videos of older (as in pre-2008) videos. But we hit the mother lode today! First, here's Milt Pappas from 1972, losing a perfect game with two outs in the ninth, barking at the umpire, then settling in to finish off the no-hitter.
1) Forget whether that was a strike or not, that looked like a swing to me; 2) Milt Pappas looks like a homeless guy who stumbled into the game. Sorta like a David Well prototype; 3) Bruce Froemming: "The sun is 93 million miles away, and I can see that." 'Nuff said.
Our last stop is in Toronto, with Dave Stieb, one of the most dominant pitchers of the '80s. Stieb was not new to no-hit bids. In '85, he carried a no-no into the ninth, only to give up back-to-back homers and get the hook without recording a ninth inning out. Then in back-to-back starts in 1988, his no-hit bids were broken up with two outs and two strikes in the ninth. And again, in 1989, he lost a no-hitter (and a perfect game this time) with two outs in the ninth.
But on September 2, 1990, it was finally Dave Stieb's day.
Never give up! Never surrender!
Here's some other September 2nds:
1955: Ernie Banks hits his 40th homer of the season, setting a record for home runs by a shortstop. He finishes the year with 44, then breaks his own record in 48 in '58.
1960: Ted Williams homers off Washington pitcher Don Lee. As a rookie in 1939, Williams had homered off Thornton Lee, Don's father.
1962: Stan "The Man" Musial moves past Tris Speaker and into second place on the all-time hit list with number 3,516.
1972: Trailing the Astros 8-0 entering the 8th inning, the Mets score seven runs in the frame, then add four more in the ninth, completing an 11-8 comeback win.
1975: Johnny LeMaster becomes the first player to hit an inside the park homer in his first major league at bat.
1998: Cal Ripken hits his 400th career home run, taking Rolando Arrojo of the DRays deep.
But enough ancient history. How 'bout dat Link Dump?
- Jason Hanselman over at the Process Report has a piece on Longo's value that includes a spaghetti model that will break your heart.
- Here's a nifty collection of minor-league drug suspensions from Baseball America. It's been an unusually (ugh) good year for the Rays on that front, but the most interesting one to me was former-Ray Wilking Rodriguez.
- The Yankees are both old and productive, which is sort of interesting and against the trend.
- This was a really slow day for links, so, uh, read about who the Rays are sending to the AFL.