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 (two years ago) link

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

mookieproof, Friday, 7 February 2020 17:12 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

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

NoTimeBeforeTime, Monday, 10 February 2020 09:12 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

tony fernandez, 57

mookieproof, Sunday, 16 February 2020 07:35 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

RIP Toy Cannon

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

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

clemenza, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 17:46 (two years 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 (two years ago) link


mookieproof, Tuesday, 7 April 2020 18:33 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

I quoted the battery line on Facebook!

clemenza, Wednesday, 8 April 2020 02:22 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

Brooks Robinson said he was the best he played against

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

gen believed he forsook some power for average and walks

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

hank steinbrenner, 63, non-covid-related

mookieproof, Tuesday, 14 April 2020 14:59 (two years ago) link

Within a few months of Tony Fernandez, Dámaso García.

clemenza, Wednesday, 15 April 2020 18:30 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years 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 (two years ago) link

Sad story.

clemenza, Friday, 6 August 2021 20:26 (one year ago) link

covid-related, I see.

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

Immortal for one play.*PzLL51AcRkDaAECOvjqGzg.jpeg

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

that is a remarkable baseball photo

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

two weeks pass...

rip jerry remy

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

pretty sad about this

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


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

RIP Fleece

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

The "Winning Ugly" Sox, I think.

clemenza, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 20:16 (eight months 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 (eight months ago) link

great real baseball name

mookieproof, Wednesday, 1 December 2021 21:22 (eight months 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 (seven months ago) link

Betty White with Steve Bilko #RIPBettyWhite

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

mookieproof, Saturday, 1 January 2022 00:16 (seven months ago) link

three weeks pass...

We mourn the loss of Gene Clines, who spent parts of three decades in the Cubs organization as a player, first base coach and hitting coach. He was a World Series champion with the Pirates in 1971.

Sending love to his family and friends. 💙

— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) January 27, 2022

mookieproof, Thursday, 27 January 2022 18:18 (six months ago) link

We are saddened to learn about the recent passing of former Cardinals outfielder and World Series Champion, David Green.

Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this difficult time.

— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) February 1, 2022

Karl Malone, Tuesday, 1 February 2022 15:26 (six months ago) link

I remember him, he was pretty good--don't know why he had such a short career. Looked up his Wikipedia entry, and he got his first MLB hit off Luis Tiant. His death was COVID-related.

clemenza, Tuesday, 1 February 2022 15:54 (six months ago) link

“Gerald Williams passed away this morning after a battle with cancer. To my teammate and one of my best friends in the world, rest in peace, my brother. My thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Liliana, and their whole family.” —Derek Jeter

— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) February 8, 2022

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Tuesday, 8 February 2022 18:22 (six months ago) link

Horrible news: Jeremy Giambi passed away today at his parents’ home in Southern California, according to his agent, Joel Wolfe. Jason and the family request that their privacy be respected during this difficult time.

— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 9, 2022

Andy K, Thursday, 10 February 2022 00:08 (six months ago) link

Woah. Dude was only 47!

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Thursday, 10 February 2022 00:15 (six months ago) link

I just stopped on Moneyball for a few minutes the other day, the scene where got lectured in the clubhouse and then traded right after.

clemenza, Thursday, 10 February 2022 01:03 (six months ago) link

i just read about Jeremy Giambi and way too young to die, RIP. he should have slid at home.

Thermo Thinwall new Spoon tomorrow, are you excited?

Bee OK, Friday, 11 February 2022 01:28 (six months ago) link

I wish I could say I was - but it’s been a rough couple years.
But if it’s good, I’ll be quite pleasantly surprised. If it sucks, just another thing for the pile.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Friday, 11 February 2022 05:06 (six months ago) link

it's pretty good

mookieproof, Friday, 11 February 2022 05:11 (six months ago) link

So why I brought it up, he did the images for the Spoon poll and I haven't seen him around ILM

Bee OK, Friday, 11 February 2022 05:50 (six months ago) link

Sorry about your situation and I'm also hoping that 2022 is a better year

Baseball coming back sure would be a great help

Bee OK, Friday, 11 February 2022 05:58 (six months ago) link

ILM turned into a pretty negative place for me. stopped posting there for a while.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Friday, 11 February 2022 19:52 (six months ago) link

which reminds me – i should start a certain thread!

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Friday, 11 February 2022 20:28 (six months ago) link

one month passes...

Odalis Perez, 44. Fell from a ladder.

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Friday, 11 March 2022 03:16 (five months ago) link

three weeks pass...
one month passes...

roger angell (101!)

j.q higgins, Friday, 20 May 2022 20:56 (two months ago) link


johnny crunch, Saturday, 21 May 2022 13:48 (two months ago) link

i want to read his 1975 piece on steve blass (which i just read about, in an obituary). i didn't realize Blass got the yips, and i'd love to see what Angell had to say about that.


Bruce Stingbean (Karl Malone), Saturday, 21 May 2022 14:52 (two months ago) link

steve blass disease!

two months pass...

Dwight Smith, very young:

Still remember Jerome Walton and Smith 1-2 in ROY voting.

clemenza, Saturday, 23 July 2022 03:47 (three weeks ago) link

Look at Jerome Walton '94-98: limited playing time, but maybe another why-did-he-retire guy.

clemenza, Saturday, 23 July 2022 03:50 (three weeks ago) link

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