Tuesday, July 9, 2013

July 9 - The Ephus, Swatting Sausages and Stuff..,

War ball, the ol' ephus, Roberto, Pops, sausage swatting, Jay Bay, Jack Wilson, Hanny...

  • 1942 - The Bucs drew 29,488 fans to Forbes Field on Army-Navy Relief Fund Night, raising over $36,000 in donations with an extra $10,000+ from the gate and rewarded the patriotic crowd with a 9-0 win over the Phils. It was 1-0 after seven innings, but Philadelphia starter Frank Melton was lifted for a pinch hitter and Pittsburgh rattled the Philly pen for eight runs in two frames. Rip Sewell tossed a five-hitter for the win. 
  • 1946 - Bucco Rip Sewell's most famous blooper pitch came in the All Star game against Ted Williams. Sewell warned Williams before the game he was going to throw him the ol'ephus. With the AL ahead 8–0, Williams came to bat, and Sewell nodded to let him know the blooper was coming. Williams fouled it off. Sewell nodded again, and threw another blooper and then another. With the count 1–2, Williams smacked the next one for a home run, the only homer ever hit off Sewell's trick pitch. As The Kid rounded the bases, Sewell followed him, saying, "the only reason you hit it was because I told you it was coming." Williams laughed back, the fans loved it, and Sewell received a standing ovation when he walked off the mound. (from Donald Honig’s 1975 book Baseball When the Grass Was Real) The kicker was that The Splendid Splinter took a running start toward the pitch before he blasted it, and was out of the batter’s box when he made contact. 
  • 1959 - Starting his first game since injuring his shoulder on May 19th, Roberto Clemente's 10th inning leadoff single helped Elroy Face to his 18th consecutive win after he blew a save chance with two outs in the ninth. A bunt by Roman Mejias moved Clemente to second and a single up the middle by pinch-hitter Harry Bright completed the Bucs 4-3 win over the Cubs at Forbes Field. 
  • 1967 - Willie Stargell hit a walk off homer against the Reds’ Jim Maloney that carried over the RF roof at Forbes Field in a 2-1 win. Dennis Ribant tossed a complete game six hitter to earn the W. 
  • 2003 - Inexplicably during a 2-1 Pirate loss, 1B Randall Simon swatted a racing sausage with his bat from the dugout at Miller Park in Milwaukee as it was waltzing around the stadium, causing a collision that left the mascots looking like a heaping plate of schnitzel. He would be suspended by the league for three games and traded away a few weeks later. 
  • 2004 - Jason Bay went 4-for-5 with two homers, a double, four RBI and four runs scored as the Pirates blanked the Expos 11-0 in San Juan’s Estadio Hiram Bithorn, the Expos’ part-time home until their move to Washington. Sean Burnett scattered 10 hits for a complete game shutout. 
  • 2005 - Sparked by Jack Wilson’s grand slam, the Bucs broke open a tight game against the NY Mets with a seven run seventh inning, banging around Heath Bell and Danny Graves, to take an 11-4 win at PNC Park in front of a Saturday night crowd of 36,708. Dave Williams got the win. 
  • 2009 - Joel Hanrahan won his first game of the year while sitting in a hotel room in Philadelphia. He was credited with a W when Washington won a game suspended on May 5th by defeating the Astros, 11-10. Hanrahan, since traded to Pittsburgh, was the pitcher of record when the game was postponed. The winning Nat run was scored by Nyjer Morgan, who was one of the Pirates sent to Washington in the Hanny deal.


Anonymous said...

Ron - Thanks for your continued excellent writing - haven't had time to chime in the past few weeks.

Series losses against the Phils and Cubs and starting off down 1 to the A's - No reason to get alarmed. Although this team does need to make a few tweaks - Seeing Inge starting at 2B on Sunday is not going to get us to the post season.

Had the opportunity to see the Bucs this past weekend in Chicago - Marte's homer with two outs and two strikes in the 9th was awesome. Too bad we could not seal the deal.


Ron Ieraci said...

Thanks, Cincy - you're right, the bench needs some work and a RH stick would be nice too.

I question the Pirate approach at the plate; I just see too much pulling and not enough of using the field. Hurdle's mentioned that he'd like the hitters to wait til pitches get deeper, so I don't think it's a Jay Bell fault as much as just a thing the hitters are going thru this year.