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Thread: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

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    Member LINEDRIVER's Avatar
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    Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    MAY 1, 1974...Even before the game starts, Pittsburgh Pirates' pitcher Dock Ellis declares to anybody listening, "I'm going to hit those -------------". Apparently, Ellis is not a fan of the Big Red Machine.

    Top of the first with Cincinnati batting in Pittsburgh's Three Rivers Stadium. Reds' leadoff man Pete Rose takes one in the ribs, Joe Morgan gets hit in a kidney, and Dan Driessen gets drilled in the back. Bases loaded, no outs. Who would dare hit the beloved Big Doggie, Tony Perez? Look out, TONY! Ellis tries, but Perez ducks and takes first base after four balls. A run in, no outs, bases loaded. Johnny Bench takes his turn as the duck in the shooting gallery. Ellis tries to hit Bench, but Bench moves out of the way against two pitches. With the count at two balls-no strikes, Bucs' manager Danny Murtaugh has seen enough and pulls Ellis from the game.

    Ellis later recalled the experience vs. Bench, "I threw at his jaw and he moved. I threw at his head and he moved." Perhaps Ellis forgot what former Dodgers’ pitcher Don Drysdale used to say,..."You hit one of mine, I hit two of yours".

    --also--

    MAY 1, 1920...After playing the previous six years with the Boston Red Sox, Babe Ruth hits his first HR as a New York Yankee. The ball clears the right field roof of the Polo Grounds in New York. (Construction of Yankee Stadium has yet to be completed) Final score, New York 6, Boston 0.

    MAY 1, 1965...Mets' player-coach Yogi Berra makes his National League playing debut as a pinch-hitter in Cincinnati's Crosley Field. The nearly 40-year-old Berra faces Reds' pitcher Sammy Ellis and grounds out to first baseman Gordy Coleman.

    Berra, the Yankees' manager in 1964, came to the Mets as a coach after being fired for not winning the seventh game of the 1964 World Series against the Cardinals. The Mets activated the three-time American League MVP winner to playing status on April 27th.

    MAY 1, 1969...Houston's Don Wilson gets all fired up and throws a no-hitter against Cincinnati, just one night after the Astros were dealt a no-hitter with 13 strikeouts by Reds' pitcher Jim Maloney.

    Maloney threw his 3rd career no-hitter last evening; Wilson retaliates and throws his 2nd career no-hitter tonight. Wilson was clobbered for 6 runs in 5 innings in his last start against Cincinnati nine days ago. The Reds went on to win that game 14-0.

    In last night's game, Wilson became an unhappy camper when he thought the Reds were running up the score in the 10-0 win over the Astros. Vowing for revenge and wanting peace of mind, Wilson came out firing and finished the game with six walks and fifteen strikeouts en route to the 4-0 Astros' victory.

    Back-to-back no-hitters were thrown at San Francisco's Candlestick Park on September 17 & 18, 1968. The Giants' Gaylord Perry beat Bob Gibson of the Cardinals, 1-0. Gibson also pitched brilliantly, fanning 10, and allowing just four hits. Giants' second baseman Ron Hunt hit a first-inning HR for the game's only run! The next day, the Cardinals Ray Washburn threw his own no-hitter to beat Bobby Bolin of the Giants, 2-0. Washburn worked hard for his reward, throwing 138 pitches and issuing 6 walks. Mike Shannon and Curt Flood drove in a run apiece for the Cardinals.

    MAY 1, 1970...Reds manager Sparky Anderson pulls a trick out of his hat when he calls for reliever Don Gullett to come into the game from the bullpen. Anderson wants the lefty Gullett to face the left-handed hitting Willie Stargell, one of the most feared hitters in baseball. Wanting to keep Wayne Granger in the game so he can face the next right-handed hitter, Anderson sends Granger to to play left field! (Don't ya think Granger is standing out there thinking,....please, please don't hit it to me) Gullett whiffs Stargell, the game is over, the Reds win 6-4.

    *
    Last edited by LINEDRIVER; 05-01-2006 at 11:05 PM.

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    GR8NESS WMR's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Question: Did the Reds retaliate either that game or later on for all of the Reds that were plunked?

    Did Umps not run pitchers for throwing at players back then? Seems beyond obvious... can't imagine he'd get past the 2nd today.
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    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Hitting everyone?

    Sounds like game throwing to me.
    Go Gators!

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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    I like the pitcher in the outfield bit. i know Jerry used Hudson as a pinch runner some times last year. I don't know if that was a creative way to put him in the lineup or just to save bench players,,,

    I also wanna know about retaliation for that pitt SOB.
    Tom Shearn... who knew?

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    Member LINEDRIVER's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    In his prime, Dock Ellis had a million dollar arm and a ten-cent brain. He was not well liked by many baseball fans. He wore hair curlers under his baseball cap. He could often be found running his mouth or in somebody's doghouse for one infraction or another. He admitted years later that he sometimes pitched under the influence of drugs. According to his autobiography, Dock Ellis in the Country of Baseball, he threw a no-hitter vs the Padres in 1970 while under the influence of a hallucinogen and he threw at the Reds in an effort to wake up his lethargic teammates.

    After posting this thread, I began to wonder if Don Gullett might of been the Reds' pitcher in that game. Mr. Nice Guy Gullett was not known to back hitters off the plate. That same theory carried over into his pitching coach days with the Reds.

    I went back and checked that particular boxscore to find that NO Pittsburgh hitters were hit by a pitch. Oh yeah, Don Gullett was the starting pitcher.

    I also checked boxscores for the remaining 11 Reds/Pirates games in the '74 season to see if a retaliation issue occured later in that season. Not much of an issue. Pitcher Jim Rooker hit Reds' SS Davey Concepcion on July 12. Jack Billingham hit Pirates' pitcher Bruce Kison in a game on July 14.

    Sparky may have picked up the pitcher to leftfield trick from his pitching coach Larry Shepard. Shepard pulled off the pitcher to LF strategy (a couple of times that I know of) while managing the Pirates in the late 60's. I saw a game at Crosley Field where Pirates' pitcher Steve Blass went to play LF while another pitcher came out of the pen to face a batter or two.

    Here is another Steve Blass to LF situation that I pulled from the archives of my mind.

    AUGUST 31, 1968 … Pirates’ starting pitcher Steve Blass gets the first out of the game against Braves’ centerfielder Felipe Alou before moving to LF to replace Carl Taylor. Pittsburgh manager Larry Shepard calls on longtime reliever Elroy Face to enter the game. Face retires Felix Millan and ties Walter Johnson's major-league record of 802 pitching appearances with one team. Face leaves the game, Manny Mota moves from RF to LF, Roberto Clemente enters the game and goes to RF, Blass goes back to the pitching mound, and the Pirates go on to win 8–0. Late in the game, the Pirates announce the sale of Elroy Face to the Detroit Tigers. Bucs’ back-up catcher Chris Cannizzaro, appearing in his seventh big league season, takes advantage of a rare start and goes 3-for-3 to raise his batting average from .133 to .212 on the season. The strong-armed but usually weak-hitting Cannizzaro comes up with a single, a double, and a triple in the same game for the first and only time in his career. Blass will not get credit for another shutout though he still leads the NL with seven shutouts.

    *
    Last edited by LINEDRIVER; 05-02-2006 at 02:02 PM.

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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Man, I remember the curler under that cap. I'd forgotten all about that character until I read this! Great stuff.

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    Member cumberlandreds's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    I can remember listening to that game and just laughing about how wild Ellis was. I would say Sparky probably told his pitchers not to retaliate because he knew how crazy Ellis was. Wouldn't doubt a bit if Ellis wasn't high on some drug for that game.
    IIRC Chuck Tanner did the outfield switch with Kent Tekulve a few times.
    Thanks as usual Linedriver.
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    This one's for you Edd Heath's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Jim Maloney even has a few games in the OF to his credit.

    Mel Queen & Hal Jeffcoat probably did it as well.

    In the days of specialized ballplayers, that part of the game, while not "professional", more "little league"-like - is fun.

    Who could forget Paul O'Neill tossing a couple of innings?
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    If I had rep to give I'd give it to you for checking through those box scores. Thanks for doing that!

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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Ellis later recalled the experience vs. Bench, "I threw at his jaw and he moved. I threw at his head and he moved."
    Johnny Bench's head is a helluva target to miss (and that's not a knock on his ego, it's talking about that huge noggin of his!).

    Perhaps Ellis forgot what former Dodgers’ pitcher Don Drysdale used to say,..."You hit one of mine, I hit two of yours".
    Of course it was Drysdale who, when ordered to intentionally walk a batter, drilled him on the first pitch, commenting, "why take four pitches to do what you can do in one?".

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    I'm guessing the Reds didn't retaliate because they knew this wasn't something ordered by the manager. Who in their right mind would try to hit everybody? They probably figured Ellis did it on his own and he was taken out so there was no real reason to retaliate.
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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by Heath
    Jim Maloney even has a few games in the OF to his credit.

    Mel Queen & Hal Jeffcoat probably did it as well.

    In the days of specialized ballplayers, that part of the game, while not "professional", more "little league"-like - is fun.

    Who could forget Paul O'Neill tossing a couple of innings?
    I see Maloney played one game in LF in 1961, but now I'm wondering, who was the last Reds pitcher to put some time in out in the outfield?

    And does anybody remember the Cardinals/Braves game that went extra innings and Whitey Herzog called in his final pitcher, double switched an outfielder with the other pitcher already in the game and bounced them back and forth on the mound and moved them from right to left according to the batter's swinging? Second baseman Jose Oquendo finished the game and almost got the win, but ended up with the loss. (Note the boxscore doesn't show DeLeon pitching at all, so he just came in as an outfielder and bounced back and forth).

    You can check the Boxscore out on Retrosheet.org for 5/14/1988 - crazy game.

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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Jim Maloney even has a few games in the OF to his credit.
    50 K for his hitting, 50 K for his pitching is what he used to say.

    who was the last Reds pitcher to put some time in out in the outfield?
    I'm pretty sure it was Maloney or Osteen, both in 1961. Hutchinson the ex pitcher was prone to doing things that would cause this board to crash with posts of anger, PH 4 straight guys, switching positions etc...

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    This one's for you Edd Heath's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou
    I'm pretty sure it was Maloney or Osteen, both in 1961. Hutchinson the ex pitcher was prone to doing things that would cause this board to crash with posts of anger, PH 4 straight guys, switching positions etc...
    we'd be also complaining about Steve Boros, Marty Keough, & why Chico Ruiz is playing so much. Also, John Tstouris would have been raked after the 10-0 loss to the Phillies in '64 and calling Maloney a "whiner".

    Could you imagine THAT game thread.....
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    Member LINEDRIVER's Avatar
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    Re: Pirates' Pitcher Tries To Break Big Red Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R
    I'm guessing the Reds didn't retaliate because they knew this wasn't something ordered by the manager. Who in their right mind would try to hit everybody? They probably figured Ellis did it on his own and he was taken out so there was no real reason to retaliate.
    The Pirates were 6-12 and in last place in the NL East when Ellis decided to try to wake up his lethargic teammates. Though the Pirates were struggling, the Bucs were still known as 'The Pittsburgh Lumber Company'. Sparky wasn't dumb enough to try to wake up the bats of the Stargell, Zisk, Oliver, Sanguillen, Hebner, Stennett, Robertson, etc. Those boys could flatout pound the ball when they were 'on'.

    The Bucs eventually got it together and won the '74 NL East.
    Last edited by LINEDRIVER; 05-02-2006 at 01:35 PM.


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