baseball obituaries 2020

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dang, i just saw this. here's jaffe's piece:

But guess what? Nobody gives a toot!😂 (Karl Malone), Friday, 3 January 2020 15:51 (two years ago) link

ed sprague sr, 74

pretty bad pitcher, apart from a solid 1974 campaign with milwaukee

was the orioles scout who signed mike mussina

mookieproof, Friday, 10 January 2020 17:04 (two years ago) link

Jr. hit a very memorable WS home run.

clemenza, Friday, 10 January 2020 18:26 (two years ago) link

Royals owner/Walmart boss David Glass

(yeah, meh)

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 22 January 2020 15:20 (two years ago) link

Just spoke with Mets star Jeff McNeil, who played for John Altobelli, one of the victims of the Calabasas helicopter crash, who managed Brewster in the Cape Cod League in 2012.

Said McNeil: "He's one of the main reasons I’m still playing professional baseball.”

— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 26, 2020

mookieproof, Monday, 27 January 2020 01:11 (one year ago) link

roger kahn, author of 'the boys of summer', 92

mookieproof, Friday, 7 February 2020 17:12 (one year ago) link

RIP Rog, even tho ten was probably a little young for me to read the book

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Saturday, 8 February 2020 04:45 (one year ago) link

I really need to read "The Boys of Summer" again after 30 years.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Monday, 10 February 2020 09:12 (one year ago) link

japanese legend katsuya nomura, 84

catcher who played 26 seasons, hitting .277/.357/.508 with 657 homers (second to oh). also managed for 24 years

mookieproof, Wednesday, 12 February 2020 03:18 (one year ago) link

tony fernandez, 57

mookieproof, Sunday, 16 February 2020 07:35 (one year ago) link

He was so good his first couple of seasons; looked like he was going to be right up there with Ripken and Yount before long. (Probably less impressive analytically, but that was barely around then.) He never stayed at that level, but he had a long, solid career, and his return to the Jays for the '93 WS team was great. So young.

clemenza, Sunday, 16 February 2020 13:04 (one year ago) link

Forgot he was the fourth player in the Carter/Alomar for McGriff/Fernandez trade in 1990. Has there been a bigger-name trade since? I know Alomar hadn't flourished yet, but James had already identified him as a future superstar--I still remember his Alomar entry in The Baseball Book a year or two earlier, where he wrote "GET ROBERTO ALOMAR" whether you were a fantasy player or card collector or whatever. So you had Alomar, one of the 10 best hitters in the game in McGriff, the wildly-overrated-in-retrospect but big-name and big-RBI-guy Carter, and Fernandez, who was still thought of as a possible/probable Hall of Famer. Don't recall a bigger one since, or at least not between two teams--there've been some multi-team transactions along those lines.

clemenza, Sunday, 16 February 2020 16:52 (one year ago) link

Yeah three guys who at their peaks were HOF type talents (one already in, one who will be, and a third in Fernandez who despite maybe never reaching his potential finished with an impressive career WAR due to those early seasons and late career renaissance) and a fourth who was not great but a solid bat in his best years.

omar little, Sunday, 16 February 2020 18:21 (one year ago) link

So young, I didn't know he was sick. I always think of him as the 22 year old phenom and potential best SS in the game from the '85 division winners. Many people probably remember him as the guy whose error might have given away the '97 WS. Each of his stints with the Jays was memorable in some way. He's one of my favourite players ever and I'm really sorry to hear of his passing.

And yes, that 1990 trade was perhaps the last of its kind. It wasn't about big market vs small market teams, or trying to get value for players before they test free agency, or tanking/rebuilding to prepare for the future. It was a straight up challenge trade of four star players. There may never be another one like it again.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Sunday, 16 February 2020 18:46 (one year ago) link

And there was a perfect symmetry to the trade in that the Jays got the best and the least of the four, and the Padres got the middle two guys--things could have gone either way, and if Alomar hadn't developed (which in turn got the Jays over the hump, which brought in Winfield and Molitor, all of which made Carter look better than he was), it could have been a terrible trade for Toronto.

clemenza, Sunday, 16 February 2020 18:54 (one year ago) link

Olerud being able to replace McGriff was a big part of that deal too. iirc he went straight from collage ball to the majors. that aspect was definitely a risk aswell.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Sunday, 16 February 2020 21:21 (one year ago) link

orrin freeman, who had been a scout/farm director/special assistant to the gm for the marlins since their inception in 1991

mookieproof, Friday, 21 February 2020 21:56 (one year ago) link

yankees' kelly rodman, one of very few female scouts in the game

not sure of the cause, but she was only ~40

mookieproof, Wednesday, 4 March 2020 19:29 (one year ago) link

three weeks pass...

Jimmy Wynn was posted in the ILX thread, but he should get one here too.

I was a full-fledged Reds fan by '74, so I remember the phenomenal start the Dodgers had that year.

end of April: 17-6
end of May: 36-14
end of June: 52-24

Still, the Reds almost caught them, only finishing 4.0 out (they were within a game-and-a-half on Sept. 14). I thought Wynn had the same kind of start, but not quite: phenomenal May, surrounded by three good but not spectacular months (and a slow August/September). Really good year overall, though (it was a pitcher's year, I think), and he was 5th in MVP voting, finishing well ahead of winner Garvey and runner-up Brock in WAR (and basically tied with Bench, who finished 4th). Weird: spending the bulk of his career in the Astrodome and Chez Ravine, I just assumed he got killed by his home parks, but for his career he was .256/.376/.443 at home, .245/.355/.429 on the road. One of the great nicknames ever, and one of those guys who was a walking machine before anybody cared.

clemenza, Friday, 27 March 2020 14:04 (one year ago) link

RIP Toy Cannon

brooklyn suicide cult (Dr Morbius), Friday, 27 March 2020 22:32 (one year ago) link

We mourn the death of Ed Farmer who passed away Wednesday night.

Farmer worked as a radio broadcaster for the Chicago White Sox for nearly 30 years, played 11 seasons in the major leagues, including three with his hometown White Sox, and was a strong advocate for organ donation.

— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) April 2, 2020

mookieproof, Thursday, 2 April 2020 14:27 (one year ago) link

That's a big one. As I just posted on Facebook, though, of all the famous HOF'ers who played most of their careers in the '60s, I have less of a sense of Kaline than any of them.

clemenza, Monday, 6 April 2020 20:58 (one year ago) link

I remember seeing him on TV at the end of his career.

per Ben Lindbergh on EW, Kaline had the most career HR (399) w/out ever hitting 30 in a year.

brooklyn suicide cult (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 7 April 2020 14:19 (one year ago) link

There is a lot of love coming out in the articles about Al Kaline, that guy seems to have been well liked by seemingly everyone. I knew him from baseball cards as a kid, but that he was supposed to be the real deal as a player good all the way around.

earlnash, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 16:40 (one year ago) link

the most career HR (399) w/out ever hitting 30 in a year

I'd say that pinpoints his relative anonymity outside of Detroit better than anything.

clemenza, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 17:45 (one year ago) link

(By which I mean next to Mays, Aaron, Clemente, Yaz, etc.)

clemenza, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 17:46 (one year ago) link

Yaz is a pretty good comparison in a lot of ways -- Kaline didn't have nearly the same peak, but both spent most of their career operating not at that superstar peak but at a slightly lower tier of stardom in terms of production. Similar to Cal Ripken and Brett, I guess -- a couple other members of the 20+ seasons with one team club. Kaline also didn't have the same level of fame as any of those guys, probably just a matter of him not having a single season with truly eye-popping counting stats.

disappointing that he never played catcher even for just an inning, would have been cool for Al Kaline to be part of a battery.

omar little, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 18:30 (one year ago) link


mookieproof, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 18:33 (one year ago) link

No dad jokes on the obit thread?

I was going to say he was one of the few players of his caliber where it could be argued his best season was his first full one, but his age 20 season (didn’t turn 21 til December of that year) was actually his second full one.

omar little, Wednesday, 8 April 2020 00:53 (one year ago) link

no, it was solid

tbf, he made 18 all-star games, so *someone* recognized he was good

mookieproof, Wednesday, 8 April 2020 01:45 (one year ago) link

I quoted the battery line on Facebook!

clemenza, Wednesday, 8 April 2020 02:22 (one year ago) link

Kaline was definitely highly thought of by other players. All-Star voting wasn't handed over to fans until 1970; I assume all those AS appearances were voted on by players?

clemenza, Wednesday, 8 April 2020 02:26 (one year ago) link

Brooks Robinson said he was the best he played against

brooklyn suicide cult (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 8 April 2020 11:18 (one year ago) link

gen believed he forsook some power for average and walks

brooklyn suicide cult (Dr Morbius), Wednesday, 8 April 2020 11:18 (one year ago) link

Al Kaline’s family put a “regular” obit in the Sunday @freep. By blending in, it’s an example of how one-of-a-kind he really was.

— Matt Friedman (@mattfrieds) April 12, 2020

Andy K, Sunday, 12 April 2020 16:06 (one year ago) link

Glenn Beckert:

One of those random stats that will stick in my mind forever: he hit .340 one year, when Rod Carew was the only second baseman who did that. (Okay, I checked--.342.)

clemenza, Monday, 13 April 2020 00:49 (one year ago) link

hank steinbrenner, 63, non-covid-related

mookieproof, Tuesday, 14 April 2020 14:59 (one year ago) link

Within a few months of Tony Fernandez, Dámaso García.

clemenza, Wednesday, 15 April 2020 18:30 (one year ago) link

RIP I remember being super bummed as a 9 or 10-yr old when he was included in that Chambliss trade

And being down on Rick Cerone

Yanni Xenakis (Hadrian VIII), Wednesday, 15 April 2020 21:40 (one year ago) link

Steve Dalkowski, a wild left-hander who was said to have been dubbed "the fastest pitcher in baseball history" by Ted Williams, died this week in New Britain, Connecticut. He was 80.

Dalkowski, who once struck out 24 batters in a minor league game -- and walked 18 -- never made it to the big leagues.

Writer-director Ron Shelton, who spent five years in the Orioles farm system, heard about Dalkowski's exploits and based the character Nuke Laloosh in 'Bull Durham' on the pitcher.

mookieproof, Friday, 24 April 2020 18:31 (one year ago) link

The A's are mourning the loss of former Athletic minor leaguer Miguel Marte, who passed away earlier this week due to complications from COVID-19. Marte played in the A's system from 2008-2012. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.

— Oakland A's (@Athletics) May 1, 2020

mookieproof, Friday, 1 May 2020 19:41 (one year ago) link

journeyman Matt Keough, AL All-Star as a rookie in 1978 & was selected AL Comeback Player of the Year in 1980, both for the A's.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Sunday, 3 May 2020 23:39 (one year ago) link

Tonight my dad and hero Bob Watson has passed away after a long fight with kidney disease.. #Astros #Yankees #RedSox #Braves #Athletics #USABAseball #MLB #1stBlackGM

— K Dubb (@TheReal_KDubb) May 15, 2020

Andy K, Friday, 15 May 2020 12:45 (one year ago) link

Understand that I realize why, but Watson was the very definition of what James called "the RBI guy with mystique," something you can't have in the era of analytics.

clemenza, Friday, 15 May 2020 15:10 (one year ago) link

Every living president...almost.

clemenza, Saturday, 23 January 2021 22:54 (one year ago) link

i haven't heard a word from trump since he fucked off, and i want to keep that going as long as possible

Karl Malone, Saturday, 23 January 2021 23:10 (one year ago) link


mookieproof, Saturday, 23 January 2021 23:12 (one year ago) link

For sure. I have to admit, I love how the five of them will be making the other one look bad without even trying.

clemenza, Saturday, 23 January 2021 23:14 (one year ago) link

utility man ron johnson, 64

played 22 games over three seasons with the royals and expos in the early '80s, then won 1752 games over 24 seasons as a minor league manager. he was the red sox's bench coach in 2010-2011

mookieproof, Tuesday, 26 January 2021 19:37 (one year ago) link

damn, wrong Ron Johnson. RIP utility man ron johnson

Karl Malone, Tuesday, 26 January 2021 19:40 (one year ago) link

he was the red sox's bench coach in 2010-2011

first base coach according to Youkilis' tribute.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Tuesday, 26 January 2021 19:41 (one year ago) link

covid, btw

mookieproof, Tuesday, 26 January 2021 19:46 (one year ago) link

grant jackson, 78. winner of game seven of the 1979 world series

mookieproof, Tuesday, 2 February 2021 15:42 (eleven months ago) link

I remember him as part of the great Orioles '71 staff. (Don't hate me: '79 was my first year at university--don't think I watched an inning of the '79 Series!)

clemenza, Tuesday, 2 February 2021 18:23 (eleven months ago) link

ESPN remembers SportsCenter reporter Pedro Gomez, who passed away unexpectedly today at the age of 58.

— ESPN PR (@ESPNPR) February 8, 2021

Andy K, Monday, 8 February 2021 03:27 (eleven months ago) link

ugh that sucks, always liked him ever since he was on the barry bonds beat

tiwa-nty one savage (voodoo chili), Monday, 8 February 2021 03:32 (eleven months ago) link

three weeks pass...

joe altobelli, 88

mookieproof, Wednesday, 3 March 2021 18:21 (ten months ago) link

two months pass...

Ray Miller, former Orioles manager and longtime pitching coach, dies

— Baltimore Sun Sports (@BaltSunSports) May 5, 2021

mookieproof, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 18:42 (eight months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Mookie must have missed this: Rennie Stennett.

First thing I thought of was "lost his job to Willie Randolph," but he actually drew MVP votes in a couple of seasons.

clemenza, Friday, 21 May 2021 12:27 (eight months ago) link

Did I ever have that backwards...Randolph was only with the Pirates for one season. Stennett was why they traded him away, part of the Dock for Doc trade.

clemenza, Friday, 21 May 2021 12:30 (eight months ago) link

Fading 45-year-old memories...I think I have it straight now. Without checking again, the Pirates had Dave Cash at second base, he goes to the Phillies, then they're left with two promising young guys, and they picked the wrong one (albeit a good player).

clemenza, Friday, 21 May 2021 15:37 (eight months ago) link

i did miss that about rennie stennett, thanks

Sad report: Cy Young winner and pitching iconoclast Mike Marshall of the Dodgers has passed away at 78, according to @Think_BlueLA.

— Jon Weisman (@jonweisman) June 1, 2021

mookieproof, Tuesday, 1 June 2021 18:32 (seven months ago) link

What a character--one of the many reasons to read Ball Four. (Probably no one in the book garnered as much respect from Bouton.) I remember his Cy Young season very well, or at least the commotion over whether or not he'd pitch in 100 games. (Same year as the commotion over Lou Brock and the SB record; we loved to count things then, and we especially loved the number 100.) By WAR, Niekro should have won the Cy going away; compared to some of the other relief CYs given out, though, he wasn't the worst pick ever. His best years were his last two with the Expos.

clemenza, Tuesday, 1 June 2021 19:14 (seven months ago) link

Actually, his best year came later with the Twins.

clemenza, Tuesday, 1 June 2021 19:15 (seven months ago) link

jim ‘mudcat’ grant, 85

mookieproof, Saturday, 12 June 2021 20:14 (seven months ago) link

one month passes...

According to a MLB source former #Astros star JR Richard passed away last night in a Houston hospital at the age of 71. JR played for the Astros from 1971-1980. Led the National League in strikeouts in 1978 & 1979. Led the NL in ERA in 1979 and made the All-Star Team in 1980.

— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) August 5, 2021

mookieproof, Thursday, 5 August 2021 17:28 (five months ago) link

Sad story.

clemenza, Friday, 6 August 2021 20:26 (five months ago) link

covid-related, I see.

Read between the lines Zach (Karl Malone), Friday, 6 August 2021 20:35 (five months ago) link

Bill Freehan, 1968 World Series champion and 11-time all-star

One of my coaches played with him and a bunch of friends/ex-teammates/adversaries played for him (all at Michigan). Seemed beloved without exception.

Andy K, Friday, 20 August 2021 00:24 (five months ago) link

Bill James responding to a question about him today: "He was pretty obviously the best catcher of the 1960s, he is a reasonable Hall of Fame candidate, and that team should have won several more pennants, at least." My dad and I drove in to see a couple of Tigers' games in the mid-'70s, so there's a chance I saw him play.

clemenza, Saturday, 21 August 2021 00:58 (five months ago) link

one month passes...

Just saw the news that Ray Fosse passed away..I’m so sorry & give my deepest condolences to Carol and the family..Ray was always incredibly kind to me..he was a good supportive friend..he loved his family deeply..his impact on Bay Area baseball will be forever..RIP my friend

— Marty Lurie (@baseballmarty) October 14, 2021

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Thursday, 14 October 2021 00:50 (three months ago) link

Immortal for one play.*PzLL51AcRkDaAECOvjqGzg.jpeg

clemenza, Thursday, 14 October 2021 01:52 (three months ago) link

that is a remarkable baseball photo

mookieproof, Thursday, 14 October 2021 03:09 (three months ago) link

Lot of recent deaths of players I knew as a young kid with baseball cards of the 70s.

Leo Durocher as 3rd base coach in that shot.

earlnash, Thursday, 14 October 2021 11:13 (three months ago) link

Dude played with Babe Ruth, member of the Gas House Gang and was manager in the Bobby Thompson game...that is a pretty Zelig moment him being in that picture.

Kinda wild...

earlnash, Thursday, 14 October 2021 11:16 (three months ago) link

oh wow, didn't realize that was durocher as the 3B coach! that does elevate the pic, damn

typo hell #12: a hundreds of millions of people (Karl Malone), Thursday, 14 October 2021 14:22 (three months ago) link

two weeks pass...

rip jerry remy

mookieproof, Sunday, 31 October 2021 16:22 (two months ago) link

pretty sad about this

mookieproof, Sunday, 31 October 2021 16:38 (two months ago) link

Being more of a NL baseball fan as a kid, seeing the Red Sox or their local broadcasts was never really an option except on an occasional Saturday game or perhaps when they played the White Sox on WGN.

Jerry Remy does have a bit of a point to me as a childhood baseball fan though as his card was the last one I needed to find to complete my first full set of Topps cards in the 1980 set. I searched high and low and no one had this card forever. I don't think I ever found it until after the 81' strike. This was a set that I mostly put together the old fashioned way pack by pack as there wasn't until a year or so later we started to have a local flea market that would have people selling cards. But even then, this 'common' was impossible to find. It was like finding 'excalibur' when I finally found one.

RIP Mr. Remy.

earlnash, Monday, 1 November 2021 00:11 (two months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Too young.

The MLBPAA is deeply saddened to hear about the passing of 12-year MLB veteran, Julio Lugo. Our thoughts and prayers are with Julio's loved ones.

— MLBPAA (@MLBPAA) November 15, 2021

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Monday, 15 November 2021 19:26 (two months ago) link


mookieproof, Monday, 15 November 2021 19:28 (two months ago) link

Ed Lucas, Blind Baseball Chronicler, Is Dead at 82

Sightless since 12, he became a baseball columnist and a radio reporter. He had a unique ability to know where a ball was hit by the sound of the crack of the bat.

mookieproof, Tuesday, 16 November 2021 23:21 (two months ago) link

Heartbroken about the passing of one of the kindest, funniest men to have worn a Cleveland uniform. Doug Jones spent 7 of his 16 big-league seasons in Cleveland, ranking 3rd all-time in saves and a 3X All-Star. Deepest sympathy to his family and all his teammates.

— Bob DiBiasio (@BDbaseball6) November 22, 2021

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Monday, 22 November 2021 21:42 (two months ago) link

bill virdon, 90. 1955 NL ROY, pirate CF for ten years, and later a two-time manager of the year

mookieproof, Tuesday, 23 November 2021 20:45 (two months ago) link

RIP Fleece

Andy K, Wednesday, 24 November 2021 00:18 (two months ago) link

Something I'd forgotten and was just reminded of: Virdon hit the bad-hop grounder in the 7th game of the '60 World Series (Mazeroski's HR) that may or may not have curtailed Tony Kubek's career.

clemenza, Monday, 29 November 2021 15:17 (one month ago) link

The White Sox send our thoughts and condolences to the family and friends of LaMarr Hoyt, who passed away on Monday in Columbia, S.C. following a lengthy illness. The 1983 A.L. Cy Young Award winner was 66.

— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) December 1, 2021

mookieproof, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 20:01 (one month ago) link

Such a vintage old-school Cy Young pick. Won because he won 24 games; Stieb won 17, was much, much better, didn't get a single vote. (One stat where Hoyt was ahead of the curve was his K/BB ratio, almost 5.00 because of his great control.) Remember him as engagingly gruff, or unkempt, or something along those lines.

clemenza, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 20:15 (one month ago) link

The "Winning Ugly" Sox, I think.

clemenza, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 20:16 (one month ago) link

One of five Padres starters on the 85 NL all-star team. RIP!

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Wednesday, 1 December 2021 20:31 (one month ago) link

great real baseball name

mookieproof, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 21:22 (one month ago) link

two weeks pass...

Going back to LaMarr Hoyt for a second, had no idea that he was part of the trade in '77 (along with Oscar Gamble, a minor-leaguer, and money) that brought Bucky Dent to New York.

clemenza, Friday, 31 December 2021 06:08 (three weeks ago) link

Betty White with Steve Bilko #RIPBettyWhite

— Baseball In Pics (@baseballinpix) December 31, 2021

mookieproof, Saturday, 1 January 2022 00:16 (three weeks ago) link

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