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 Just a Moment for the Games That Live Forever

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youshiyinianla



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Datum upisa : 16.12.2010

PočaljiNaslov: Just a Moment for the Games That Live Forever   Sub Okt 29, 2011 3:53 am

Ballplayers are not historians. They readily admit that in the clubhouse when their visceral instincts tell them they have just participated in a classic game.

¶ “Being in that game, I can’t look at it from the outside,” said Jason Motte, the Cardinals’ closer, who was hammered for a two-run homer by Josh Hamilton in the 10th inning Thursday night.

¶ Motte could smile about it after the Cardinals escaped with a 10-9 cheap jerseys victory that sent the World Series to its first seventh game since 2002.

¶ Other people have to supply the details. The players know only that amazing things have happened in October over the years, particularly in sixth and seventh games, when the World Series, when baseball history, could go either way.

¶ “I just don’t watch things like that,” admitted Motte, a reformed catcher who has always been too busy playing his own games to catalog history, the way fans do.

¶ There have been 36 previous seventh games. Almost by definition, each one of them had to be a classic, just because of the finality of it. The home team has won 19 of them, a percentage of 52.8, but the home team has won the last eight seventh games, dating to 1982, cheap soccer jerseys just across the street from this third Busch Stadium. That site is now an urban grassy patch, undeveloped, but with memories of a 6-3 Cardinals victory over Milwaukee.

¶ Great and weird moments are implanted in memory from the endless loop of television — Carlton Fisk, patrician-looking New Englander, hopping down the baseline, waving his arms to make his shot stay fair, which it did, to win Game 6 of the 1975 Series. (How lean players were in 1975.)

¶ Another sixth game that lives forever took place on a Saturday night in 1986 — Mookie Wilson’s grounder squiggling past Bill Buckner’s ankles. That was amazing. The Red Sox were standing on the top step with two outs in the 10th, ready to celebrate, but with each hit or mishap they inched back down into the dugout.

¶ Everybody still feels for Buckner; nobody custom made jerseys wants to be in that position. But earlier Thursday evening, David Freese felt a taste of that, when he drifted under a high pop-up and had it bounce out of his glove, hitting him in the head as it fell for an error.

¶ “You know, I felt like I was part of a circus out there, bouncing balls off the top of my hat a little bit,” Freese said.

¶ He would turn that embarrassment into a game-tying triple in the ninth and a game-ending homer in the 11th. But redemption is not promised.

¶ In 1975 and 1986, the teams that won the classic sixth games had to try doing it all over again in Game 7, with mixed results. The Red Sox lost to Cincinnati in the final game of 1975; the Mets beat the Red Sox in 1986 in a seventh game that felt almost anticlimactic mlb jerseys cheap after the Mookie moment and a subsequent rainout on Sunday.

¶ But seventh games can be classic, too. Want to talk about a 10-9 game with something for everybody? That was the exact score of Game 7 of the 1960 World Series. Another classic, which had its share of pratfalls and physical danger.

¶ Shortstop Tony Kubek was hit in the throat by a bad-hop grounder and wound up in the hospital for observation. Mickey Mantle found himself isolated off first base when Yogi Berra lashed a hard grounder to Rocky Nelson, who quickly stepped on first. Mantle Rolato’s only play was an Olympian dive, somehow getting around Nelson in perhaps the most sheer athletic move of Mantle’s marvelous career.

¶ However, his dive did not save the Series because the Pirates’ Bill Mazeroski cleared the wall in Forbes Field, circling the bases, just as Freese romped late Thursday night. Mazeroski had an escort of fans; security is better these days.

¶ Fact is, there have been a lot of great games.

¶ The 1946 Series is my favorite because it’s the first I can remember, but also because of Williams and Musial, and Enos Slaughter’s mad dash home. An impressive number of fans have been e-mailing about the 1991 Series between the Twins and the Braves with Kirby Puckett’s homer in the sixth game and Jack Morris’s pitching in the seventh.

¶ And how could I forget 1955, or as we Brooklyn fans called it, Next Year?

¶ The lordly Yankees have won 27 World Series but are exactly 5-6 in seventh games, from 1926 through 2001. But don’t remind the venerable Don Newcombe, who was whacked for two-run homers by the equally venerable Yogi Berra in the first and third innings cheap nfl jerseys of Game 7 in 1956. The Yanks won that one, 9-0. Was it a classic? Yogi thinks so.

¶ The most recent seventh game came in 2002. Don’t think Bud Selig and Major League Baseball don’t know how long that has been. The Angels scored early and held on, 4-1, for the first World Series title for that underachieving franchise, exactly what Texas was hoping to accomplish here, on the road.

¶ Heading into the game Friday night, the Cardinals had played seventh games in 10 World Series and had won seven. The first championship came in 1926, when 39-year-old (and, some say, hung over) Grover Cleveland Alexander trudged out of the bullpen in Yankee Stadium, with two outs in the seventh inning, with a 3-2 lead.

¶ That was a seventh game for you. In the ninth inning, Old Pete walked a batter with two outs. Man named Ruth. Who promptly tried to steal second base (with Bob Meusel, who hit .315 that season, at the plate) and was thrown out.

¶ Not one of the Babe’s better moments, but it was a seventh game, and a classic one at that — Old Pete and the Babe.
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