Wednesday, February 3, 2016

2/3: RIP Tommy; Billy & Willie Honors; Lincoln Joins Team, Angel Leaves

  • 1901 - Pirate utilityman Tom O’Brien, who was born in Verona, died from “consumption” (pneumonia) at the age of 27, complicated by drinking sea water, which he had been told would cure him. His untimely death left a void in the Buc lineup, filled capably by rookie Kitty Bransfield.
  • 1975 - The Special Veterans Committee selected 2B Billy Herman (Cubs, Dodgers, Braves and Pirates) for the Hall of Fame. He spent his final season in 1947 as a Bucco player/manager, getting into 15 games and hitting .213. Herman was inducted on August 18th.
Billy Herman & a couple of young Buccos 1947 (photo via The Pittsburgh Press)
  • 1980 - Willie Stargell was given the Dapper Dan Sportsman of the Year honor for 1979. Cap’n Willie was the World Series MVP and NL’s co-MVP (with the Cards’ Keith Hernandez) in ‘79. It was his second DD award - he shared the 1971 honor with Danny Murtaugh and Roberto Clemente.
  • 1982 - Minor league C Angel Rodriguez‚ 20, who played for the Pirates' Alexandria club (Carolina League), was suspended from organized baseball for one year for telling opposing Latino batters what pitches were coming, in Spanish. Rodriguez had been suspended by the Pirates during an August 19th game against Lynchburg, and baseball added its punishment after investigators had obtained written statements from eight umpires and several managers. He returned in 1984, but never got past the AAA level.
  • 2001 - RHP Mike Lincoln joined the Pirates from the Twins after being released by Minnesota in the off season. The Bucs converted the starter to a bullpen role, and in three years with them (20001-03), he went 7-9-5 with a 3.50 ERA, closing briefly in 2003. He had a bruised shoulder in his last season, working just 36-⅓ IP, and was non-tendered after the campaign. Lincoln went to the Cards, but had TJ surgery during the 2004 season. It took four more years for him to come back, but he did work three campaigns for the Reds from 2008-10 before retiring.
Mike Lincoln 2002 Topps Total

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