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Showing posts from August 13, 2006

Some weekend entertainment

The Umpire Strikes Back

Bruce Froemming is scheduled to umpire his 5,000th game on Wednesday night in Boston and this is a rather significant milestone, one only achieved once previously, by Hall of Famer Bill Klem.

I have done some reading on the subject and while there are those who praise Froemmings longevity, there are also plenty who are critical of his work, approach, and manner (he was once suspended for 10 days in for calling a female umpire administrator a "stupid Jew bitch") and their annoyance seems justified. Nonetheless, we prefer documenting to judging, so we'll incorporate the achievement into our walk-off tale for today.

Froemming's first major-league umpiring assignment came in New York, where he handled the first four games of their 1971 schedule, rotating from third base to second, to first, to home.

After splitting their first 2 games with the Montreal Expos, the Mets hosted the defending NL champion, injury-plagued Cincinnati Reds. On April 10 (with Froemming working first…

Bragging Rights

So I'm reading the newspaper in the local pizza place on Monday and there's a story about former Met Darren Bragg and his post-retirement adventures playing in an adult baseball league in Connecticut.

That which most interested us wasn't referenced until near the very end in the print version, when it mentioned that Bragg, who primarily pitched (he only batted once in the league's regular season) hit a walk-off home run to win a league playoff game within the last few days.

Bragg wasn't a Met long enough to have had many important moments. His stint in 2001 lasted three weeks and 18 games, enough to tally five RBI before being claimed off waivers by the Yankees. His was a journeymans career of 11 seasons and 916 games with nine different teams, not particularly memorable to us, with one exception.

Bragg had one walk-off home run in his major-league career (he told newspapers at the time that it was the only one he'd ever had in his life). It came on July 7, 1999 …

Didja ever notice the potential Knightmare?

Continuing our everlasting series on the events of October 25, 1986...

Michael Tucker got hurt as a young player creating his own walk-off scenario but perhaps a far more dangerous proposition for a player is celebrating the actual walk-off moment itself. Though the post walk-off scenario is certainly fun and entertaining, caution must be exercised to prevent accident and injury.

Consider the Mets mini-pummeling of Jose Valentin a few weeks ago, which was actually mild in comparison to what the Dodgers did to Cookie Lavagetto after his walk-off hit broke up a no-hitter and won a World Series game back in 1947.

"They are beatin' him to pieces," said Red Barber on the radio broadcast. "It's taken a police escort to get Lavagetto away from the Dodgers."

Or consider the story of current Norfolk Tide Tagg Bozied. In July of 2004, while playing for the Padres Triple-A squad, Bozied hit a walk-off grand slam. When the team converged on Bozied, as he jumped on home pla…