Wednesday, June 8, 2016

6/8: Rook's Walk, Jimmy & Burleigh's Streaks, Cutch's First 4-Hit Day, Walk Offs, HBD Caveman

  • 1899 - 3B Jimmy Williams extended his hitting streak to 26 games in an 11-5 loss to Baltimore. It would end the following contest against Louisville’s Deacon Phillippe, who would join Pittsburgh the next season. Williams went on to hit .354 that campaign.
  • 1903 - Sam Leever shut down the Phillies 2-0 at Exposition Park to bring the Pirate shutout streak to six games. The Phils lost the battle the next day, too, 7-3, but snapped the scoreless run.
Sam Leever (photo via Goshen Historical Society)
  • 1929 - Burleigh Grimes won his tenth straight decision by a 9-2 count against Brooklyn at Forbes Field. Just to kill time, he also picked up a couple of saves during the streak, which began with his first start of the year on April 16th. Grimes scattered nine hits and even had a pair of RBI. George Grantham led the attack with a homer and three runs driven home.
  • 1944 - At Forbes Field‚ the Cubs plated three runs on a very wild pitch by Art "Cookie" Cuccurullo (there was 75’ between the plate and the railing) to prime an eight-run second inning and eventual 10-6 Chicago win.
  • 1957 - RHP Don “The Caveman” Robinson was born in Ashland, Kentucky. He spent 10 of his 15 years in the show with Pittsburgh, first as a reliever and then as a starter, going 65-69-43 with a 3.85 ERA. A three-time Silver Slugger awardee, his batting line was .265/6/45 as a Buc. As for the Caveman moniker, no one is really sure; he wasn't particularly hirsute for the era. He already had it as a 21 year old rookie; we’re guessing his 6’4”, 230 pound build had something to do with it.
Don Robinson 1986 Topps
  • 1965 - The Pirates won in one of the oddest ways, a walkoff balk, at Forbes Field. Down by a run in the bottom of the ninth, Roberto Clemente tied the game with a two-out single off Houston’s Jim Owens after the Astros had gained the lead with a four run top half. In the bottom of the 11th, Bill Virdon singled, eventually moved to third and scored the winner on Hal Woodeshick’s two out balk for a 7-6 victory. Willie Stargell went 3-for-4 with a homer.
  • 1979 - Trailing 2-0 in the bottom of the eighth against San Francisco at TRS, Willie Stargell hit a pinch-hit, two-run homer to knot the score for the Pirates. The next batter, Dave Parker, followed with a solo shot, giving the Pirates a 3-2 lead over John Curtis. Grant Jackson finished to pick up his seventh save while Enrique Romo got the win after a solid start by Don Robinson.
  • 1989 - The Pirates sent up 16 batters and scored 10 runs in the top of the first inning against the Phils at Veteran’s Stadium, and TV announcer Jim Rooker said over the air “If we lose this game, I’ll walk home.” Well, Philly won 15-11, and Rooker made good on his promise after the season, taking a 300+ mile charity hike from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh.
  • 2002 - The Pirates walked off the Brewers, 9-8 in 11 innings, in front of 38, 244 fans at PNC Park. Trailing 8-4 after six innings, the Bucs scored three runs in the seventh on a Brian Giles bomb and tied it in the ninth on a sacrifice fly by Aramis Ramirez that scored Rob Mackowiak. Jack Wilson, who went 4-for-6 in the game, doubled to lead off the 11th inning and scored the game-winning run on a one-out single by Craig Wilson. Brian Boehringer, the Bucs fifth hurler, got the victory.
Craig Wilson 2002 Fleer Platinum
  • 2009 - Andrew McCutchen had his first MLB four hit day at Turner Field against the Atlanta Braves in a 7-6 loss. He tripled twice, the first Pirate to bang a pair of three baggers in a game since Tike Redmond in 2003.
  • 2010 - The Pirates were the first victims of the Nationals Stephen Strasburg, as he struck out 14, a Nat record, in winning his first MLB outing 5-2 at Nationals Park. He struck out every batter in the Pirates' lineup at least once and fanned the last seven batters he faced (another team record). Washington sent the cap he wore that night to the Hall of Fame.
  • 2011 - The Pirates rallied twice in extra innings to defeat the Arizona D-Backs 3-2 at PNC Park. Ex-Bucco Zach Duke started for the Snakes, and though he was touched up for nine hits, he only surrendered a run. Arizona pulled ahead 2-1 in the tenth, but Neil Walker singled home Cutch in the Pirate half to tie it. Daniel McCutchen tossed the 11th and 12th innings, and worked out of first-and-third situations in both frames; the jam in the 11th was with no outs, but he got a K and DP. In the bottom of the 12th, Cutch worked the count full before launching a drive up the left field line off Zach Kroenke to walk off with the win. Cutch was clutch all day, going 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBI.

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