Hey look my blog isn't dead! Okay it's pretty close to being dead but decided to throw together a Draftback baseball entry before this upcoming week's MLB Draft.
1. Phillies - Pat Burrell, Third Baseman, Miami
Heavily scrutinized, but very productive player throughout his career outside a dreadful 2003 season.
2. Athletics - Mark Mulder, Pitcher, Michigan State
Rotator cuff problems have pretty much ruined a once promising career.
3. Cubs - Corey Patterson, Outfielder, Harrison High School (Harrison, GA)
Toolsy player who has never figured out the strikezone.
4. Royals - Jeff Austin, Pitcher, Stanford
Usually doesn't take three picks to get to the first bust in a baseball draft. 65 1/3 career innings in the Majors.
5. Cardinals - J.D. Drew, Outfielder, Florida State
Of course the year before Drew (and agent Scott Boras) infamously refused to sign with the Phillies after being the #2 pick overall. Incredibly talented player but injuries have hampered him for most of his career.
6. Twins - Ryan Mills, Pitcher, Arizona State
Didn't reach Triple-A until 2003 and was out of baseball after 2004.
7. Reds - Austin Kearns, Outfielder, Lafayette High School (Lexington, KY)
Has shown flashes of potentially being a great hitter in the past but injuries and a lack of consistency have held him back.
8. Blue Jays - Felipe Lopez, Shortstop, Lake Brantley High School (Altamonte Springs, FL)
Had one great year offensively in 2005 but not much else and is poor defensively.
9. Padres - Sean Burroughs, Third Baseman, Wilson High School (Long Beach, CA)
Never developed any power and now appears to be out of organized baseball.
10. Rangers - Carlos Pena, First Baseman, Northeastern
Very odd career, broke out with a monster season last year but remains to be seen if it was a fluke or not.
11. Expos - Josh McKinley, Shortstop, Malvern Prep School (PA)
Never got past Double-A, hit .254/.340/.375 in seven minor league seasons.
12. Red Sox - Adam Everett, Shortstop, South Carolina
Great defense, terrible offense.
13. Brewers - J.M. Gold, Pitcher, Toms River North High School (Toms River North, NJ)
Topped out at high Single-A ball.
14. Tigers - Jeff Weaver, Pitcher, Fresno State
Easy to forget he was pretty impressive early on his career but now hanging by a thread with the Brewers Triple-A squad.
15. Pirates - Clint Johnston, Pitcher, Vanderbilt
Gave up pitching after 2001, but becoming a first baseman only got him to Double-A.
16. White Sox - Kip Wells, Pitcher, Baylor
Sorta like Weaver in that he showed some promise early on his career but has stringed together some truly awful seasons.
17. Astros - Brad Lidge, Pitcher, Notre Dame
The demise of his career post-Pujols has been greatly exaggerated.
18. Angels - Seth Etherton, Pitcher, USC
6.30 ERA in 115 1/3 innings in the Majors.
19. Giants - Tony Torcato, Third Baseman, Woodland High School (Woodland, CA)
Only had 53 MLB plate appearances.
20. Indians - C.C. Sabathia, Pitcher, Vallejo High School (Vallejo, CA)
Cy Young winner last season who barring injury will cash in big this offseason, even with a potential down year.
21. Mets - Jason Tyner, Outfielder, Texas A&M
Has some how fooled teams into giving him 1400+ plate appearances in the Majors. Has hit four homeruns in nearly in 5000 plate appearances in professional baseball and he's a corner oufielder!
22. Mariners - Matt Thornton, Pitcher, Grand Valley State
Next Randy Johnson he was not but has become a decent reliever.
23. Dodgers - Bubba Crosby, Outfielder, Rice
Great name but not so good player.
24. Yankees - Andy Brown, Outfielder, Richmond High School (Richmond, IN)
.219 career hitter in eight minor league seasons.
25. Giants - Nate Bump, Pitcher, Penn State
Had a bumpy career. *rim shot*
26. Orioles - Rick Elder, Outfielder, Sprayberry High School (Marietta, GA)
Never got past high Single-A and lasted only five seasons in the minors.
27. Marlins - Chip Ambres, Outfielder, West Brook High School (Beaumont, TX)
Pretty much a career minor leaguer.
28. Rockies - Matt Roney, Pitcher, Edmond North High School (Edmond North, OK)
An extended stint with the 119-loss Tigers in 2003 has been about it for him.
29. Giants - Arturo McDowell, Outfielder, Forest Hill High School (West Palm Beach, FL)
Another swing and a miss for Brian Sabean.
30. Royals - Matt Burch, Pitcher, Virginia Commonwealth
Double-A was as good as it got for him.
Other Picks of Note
33. Expos - Brad Wilkerson
35. White Sox - Aaron Rowand
43. Yankees - Mark Prior (did not sign)
50. Reds - Adam Dunn
57. Tigers - Brandon Inge
83. Rangers - Barry Zito (did not sign)
162. Devil Rays - Aubrey Huff
176. Brewers - Bill Hall
210. Rockies - Matt Holliday
225. Athletics - Eric Byrnes
258. Cardinals - Jack Wilson
265. Red Sox - Mark Teixeira (did not sign)
272. Astros - Morgan Ensberg
390. Rockies - Juan Pierre
411. Blue Jays - Jay Gibbons
499. Twins - J.J. Putz (did not sign)
500. Reds - B.J. Ryan
550. Marlins - Adam LaRoche (did not sign)
609. Orioles - Cliff Lee (did not sign)
1139. White Sox - Mark Buehrle
Okay this is the last of this to keep my sanity but I decided I might as well finish on a nice round number at 100. I'll be honest there are a few of my picks who I've never heard of the player as some selections have never produced a Pro Bowl player. So I went with guys who started a lot figuring they couldn't have sucked, plus getting a long term starter is very good value at this point in the draft. I had no idea the Dolphins drafted Joe Theismann.
61. Philadelphia – Brian Dawkins, S, Clemson 1996
Honorable Mention: Mickey Shuler (1978), Albert Lewis (1983), Shaun Rogers (2001)
62. Dallas – Tony Hill, WR, Stanford 1977
Honorable Mention: Eric Williams (1984), Robert Brooks (1992), Antwaan Randle El (2002)
63. N.Y. Jets – Mo Lewis, LB, Georgia 1991
Honorable Mention: Terry Metcalf (1973), Jerry Ball (1987), Marv Cook (1989)
64. San Diego – Dan Fouts, QB, Oregon 1973
Honorable Mention: Dave Duerson (1983), Kyle Clifton (1984), Olin Kreutz (1998)
65. Dallas – Dexter Coakley, LB, Appalachian State 1997
Honorable Mention: Carlton Williamson (1981), Jerry Fontenot (1989), Ray Buchanan (1993)
66. Tampa Bay – Ronde Barber, CB, Virginia 1997
Honorable Mention: Charlie Waters (1970), William Henderson (1995), Nick Hardwick (2004)
67. Cincinnati – Ken Anderson, QB, Augustana (IL) 1971
Honorable Mention: Robert Pratt (1974), Mike Cofer (1983), Joel Steed (1992)
68. Chicago – Lance Briggs, LB, Arizona 2003
Honorable Mention: Jim Carter (1970), Jack Del Rio (1985), Tom Tupa (1988)
69. Washington – Russ Grim, G, Pittsburgh 1981
Honorable Mention: Lance Mehl (1980), Glenn Parker (1990), Jason Witten (2003)
70. Dallas – Erik Williams, T, Central State (OH) 1991
Honorable Mention: Lawrence McCutcheon (1972), Jimmie Giles (1977), LeRoy Irvin (1980)
71. New Orleans – Hoby Brenner, TE, USC 1981
Honorable Mention: Bob Newton (1971), Donnie Abraham (1996), Duce Staley (1997)
72. Philadelphia – Jeremiah Trotter, LB, Stephen F Austin 1998
Honorable Mention: Mike McCoy (1976), Lance Smith (1985), Henry Thomas (1987)
73. Miami – Jason Taylor, DE, Akron 1997
Honorable Mention: Steve McMichael (1980), Guy McIntyre (1984), Joey Porter (1999)
74. New England – Curtis Martin, RB, Pittsburgh 1995
Honorable Mention: James Hasty (1988), Will Shields (1993), Steve Smith (2001)
75. Oakland – Mark Van Eeghen, FB, Colgate 1974
Honorable Mention: Pete Metzelaars (1982), Denard Walker (1997), Steve Foley (1998)
76. Seattle – Ahman Green, RB, Nebraska 1998
Honorable Mention: Doug Cosbie (1979), Fredd Young (1984), John Taylor (1986)
77. Philadelphia – Fred Barnett, WR, Arkansas State 1990
Honorable Mention: Linden King (1977), Bubba McDowell (1986), Corey Harris (1992)
78. Miami – Leon Gray, T, Jackson State 1973
Honorable Mention: Nat Moore (1974), David Fulcher (1986), Laveranues Coles (2000)
79. Denver – Lyle Alzado, DE, Yankton 1971
Honorable Mention: Gregg Bingham (1973), Henry Marshall (1976), William Andrews (1979)
80. San Francisco – Bill Romanowski, LB, Boston College 1988
Honorable Mention: Paul Lankford (1982), Derek Smith (1997), Darrell Jackson (2000)
81. Miami – Curtis Johnson, CB, Toledo 1970
Honorable Mention: Bernard Jackson (1972), Earl Dotson (1993), Chris Cooley (2004)
82. San Francisco – Joe Montana, QB, Notre Dame 1979
Honorable Mention: John Stallworth (1974), Rodney Holman (1982), John Lynch (1993)
83. Denver – Ed McCaffrey, WR, Stanford 1991
Honorable Mention: Steve Brown (1983), Jay Schroeder (1984), Greg Spires (1998)
84. Washington – Charles Mann, DE, Nevada 1983
Honorable Mention: Rob Carpenter (1977), Tim Harris (1986), Dwight Smith (2001)
85. Dallas – Tony Tolbert, DE, UTEP 1989
Honorable Mention: Randy Dixon (1987), William White (1988), Greg Wesley (2000)
86. L.A. Rams – Jackie Slater, T, Jackson State 1976
Honorable Mention: Morten Andersen (1982), Andre Reed (1985), Tedy Bruschi (1996)
87. New England – Tim Goad, DT, North Carolina 1988
Honorable Mention: Ron Hall (1987), Moe Gardner (1991), Mike McKenzie (1999)
88. Denver – Tom Jackson, LB, Louisville 1973
Honorable Mention: Ricardo McDonald (1992), Jason Gildon (1994), Morlon Greenwood (2001)
89. San Francisco – Terrell Owens, WR, Tennessee-Chattanooga 1996
Honorable Mention: Roy Green (1979), Chris Warren (1990), Lorenzo Neal (1993)
90. Dallas – Pat Donovan, T, Stanford 1975
Honorable Mention: Tootie Robbins (1982), Yancey Thigpen (1991), Antonio Freeman (1995)
91. Philadelphia – Brian Westbrook, RB, Villanova 2002
Honorable Mention: Jeff Christy (1992), Mike Vrabel (1997), Brian Griese (1998)
92. Pittsburgh - Hines Ward, WR, Georgia 1998
Honorable Mention: Dennis Harrison (1978), Derrick Rodgers (1997), Casey Rabach (2001)
93. Green Bay - Ken Ellis, CB, Saginaw Valley State 1970
Honorable Mention: Joe Phillips (1986), Tyrone Williams (1996), Steve McKinney (1998)
94. Pittsburgh - Thomas Everett, S, Baylor 1987
Honorable Mention: Matt Herkenhoff (1974), Bob Horn (1976), Dave Widell (1988)
95. Denver - Rick Upchurch, WR/KR, Minnesota 1975
Honorable Mention: Todd Bell (1981), Michael Pittman (1998), Jonas Jennings (2001)
96. San Francisco - Charles Haley, DE, James Madison 1986
Honorable Mention: Bruce McNorton (1982), Maurice Hurst (1989), Ron Stone (1993)
97. New Orleans - Joel Hilgenberg, C, Iowa 1984
Honorable Mention: Vince Newsome (1983), Chris Calloway (1990), Todd Perry (1993)
98. Oakland - Cliff Branch, WR, Colorado 1972
Honorable Mention: Rich Gannon (1987), Donnie Edwards (1996), Derrick Mason (1997)
99. Miami - Joe Theismann, QB, Notre Dame 1971
Honorable Mention: Joe Federspiel (1972), Keith Hamilton (1992), Phillip Daniels (1996)
100. N.Y. Giants - Mark Bavaro, TE, Notre Dame 1985
Honorable Mention: Dave Dalby (1972), Michael Bankston (1992), Rudi Johnson (2001)
I'm going to keep doing this until I start grasping at straws to find decent players to fill out every pick, which I had to do with at least one of the following picks. As I get further down the list the honorable mention picks become increasingly difficult. Again this is just since the merger and what the player did over the course of their career, not what they necessarily did for the team that drafted them which is plainly obvious with pick #33.
31. L.A. Rams – Nolan Cromwell, S, Kansas 1977
Honorable Mention: Roman Phifer (1991), Carl Pickens (1992), Al Wilson (1999)
32. L.A. Rams – Henry Ellard, WR, Fresno State 1983
Honorable Mention: Fred Smerlas (1979), Ray Donaldson (1980), Drew Brees (2001)
33. Atlanta – Brett Favre, QB, Southern Miss 1991
Honorable Mention: Fred Dean (1975), Wesley Walker (1977), Isaac Bruce (1994)
34. Pittsburgh – Jack Ham, LB, Penn State 1971
Honorable Mention: Steve Nelson (1974), Tim McDonald (1987), Carnell Lake (1989)
35. Tampa Bay – Mike Alstott, FB, Purdue 1996
Honorable Mention: Keith Fahnhorst (1974), Christian Okoye (1987), Alge Crumpler (2001)
36. N.Y. Giants – Tiki Barber, RB, Virginia 1997
Honorable Mention: Kevin Mawae (1994), Lawyer Milloy (1996), Chad Johnson (2001)
37. Philadelphia – Randall Cunnigham, QB, UNLV 1985
Honorable Mention: Cris Collinsworth (1981), Leonard Marshall (1983), Darren Woodson (1992)
38. Chicago – Mike Singletary, LB, Baylor 1981
Honorable Mention: Doug English (1975), Boomer Esiason (1984), Flozell Adams (1998)
39. Buffalo – Darryl Talley, LB, West Virginia 1983
Honorable Mention: Keena Turner (1980), Daryl Johnston (1989), Keith Sims (1990)
40. N.Y. Giants – Michael Strahan, DE, Texas Southern 1993
Honorable Mention: Bob Baumhower (1978), Al Baker (1979), Thurman Thomas (1988)
41. New England – Andre Tippett, LB, Iowa 1982
Honorable Mention: Mark Gastineau (1979), Dave Waymer (1980), Ken Norton (1988)
42. San Francisco – Randy Cross, G, UCLA 1976
Honorable Mention: Rulon Jones (1980), Charlie Garner (1994), Jake Plummer (1997)
43. St. Louis Cardinals – Dan Dierdorf, T, Michigan 1971
Honorable Mention: Matt Millen (1980), Mushin Muhammad (1996), Corey Dillon (1997)
44. Pittsburgh – Dermontti Dawson, C, Kentucky 1988
Honorable Mention: Chad Brown (1993), Sam Madison (1997), Kris Jenkins (2001)
45. Oakland – Dave Casper, TE, Notre Dame 1974
Honorable Mention: Joe Morris (1982), Ricky Watters (1991), Lofa Tatupu (2005)
46. Pittsburgh – Jack Lambert, LB, Kent State 1974
Honorable Mention: David Hill (1976), Larry Allen (1994), Samari Rolle (1998)
47. Cleveland – Jerry Sherk, DT, Oklahoma State 1970
Honorable Mention: Tony Collins (1981), Michael Barrow (1993), Frank Sanders (1995)
48. Oakland – Howie Long, DE, Villanova 1981
Honorable Mention: Lydell Mitchell (1972), Dwight Stephenson (1980), LeRoy Butler (1990)
49. San Francisco – Roger Craig, RB, Nebraska 1983
Honorable Mention: Delvin Williams (1974), Pete Johnson (1977), Brian Blades (1988)
50. Cleveland – Michael Dean Perry, DT, Clemson 1988
Honorable Mention: Tom Newberry (1986), Eddie Robinson (1992), Marcus McNeill (2006)
51. New Orleans – Rickey Jackson, LB, Pittsburgh 1981
Honorable Mention: Matt Blair (1974), Sean Jones (1984), Pepper Johnson (1986)
52. Miami – John Offerdahl, LB, Western Michigan 1986
Honorable Mention: Joe Devlin (1976), Bob Golic (1979), Mark Duper (1982)
53. Pittsburgh – Mel Blount, CB, Saginaw Valley State 1970
Honorable Mention: Harvey Martin (1973), Danny White (1974), Eric Davis (1990)
54. Minnesota – Sammy White, WR, Grambling State 1976
Honorable Mention: Jim LeClair (1972), Darrin Smith (1993), Anquan Boldin (2003)
55. Miami – Tim Foley, DB, Purdue 1970
Honorable Mention: John Mendenhell (1972), Randy Logan (1973), Corey Fuller (1995)
56. Dallas – Todd Christensen, TE, BYU 1978
Honorable Mention: Wesley Walls (1989), Jason Hanson (1992), Osi Umenyiora (2003)
57. Dallas – Mark Stepnoski, C, Pittsburgh 1989
Honorable Mention: Joe Ferguson (1973), Mark Carrier (1987), Devin Hester (2006)
58. San Francisco – Jeremy Newberry, C, California 1998
Honorable Mention: Gary Spani (1978), Ricky Proehl (1990), Travis Henry (2001)
59. Phoenix – Aeneas Williams, CB, Saginaw Valley State 1991
Honorable Mention: Jeff Hostetler (1984), Kirk Lowdermilk (1985), Marcus Washington (2000)
60. New Orleans – Pat Swilling, LB, Georgia Tech 1986
Honorable Mention: Quinn Early (1988), Kordell Stewart (1995), Darren Shaper (1997)
If you haven't checked out Pro-Football-Reference.com lately you should as it isn't the completely useless site it used to be. This is a site that until recently didn't even have QB Ratings but now it has all kinds of neat features such as a searchable draft database. With the help of this I decided to do a quicky project for the blog by putting together an All-Time NFL Draft.
Now this isn't some all-time fantasy draft I'm doing but rather I'm selecting who in my opinion were the best players ever at each selection of the draft (i.e. Who is the best #1 pick of all-time?). To keep my sanity I'm only doing this since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger and I stopped at 30 picks although I might do another entry for more picks. Along with who I picked as the best player at each selection I also listed three "honorable mention" picks at each selection just to give you an idea of how many good players (or very average players for that matter with some of them) were taken at each selection. I originally thought of doing it based on who were truly the best draft picks for the team that originally drafted each player but that was going to be way too time consuming so I took the easy way out and just picked purely based on the player's career, regardless of where they had their most success.
1. Baltimore Colts (traded to Denver) - John Elway, QB, Stanford 1983
Honorable Mention: Eric Campbell (1978), Bruce Smith (1985), Peyton Manning (1998)
2. N.Y. Giants – Lawrence Taylor, LB, North Carolina 1981
Honorable Mention: Tony Dorsett (1977), Eric Dickerson (1983), Marshall Faulk (1994)
3. Detroit – Barry Sanders, RB, Oklahoma State 1989
Honorable Mention: Anthony Munoz (1980), Cortez Kennedy (1990), Chris Samuels (2000)
4. Chicago – Walter Payton, RB, Jackson State 1975
Honorable Mention: John Hannah (1973), Dan Hampton (1979), Jonathan Ogden (1996)
5. Atlanta – Deion Sanders, CB, Florida State 1989
Honorable Mention: Mike Haynes (1976), Junior Seau (1990), LaDanian Tomlinson (2001)
6. L.A. Raiders – Tim Brown, WR, Notre Dame 1988
Honorable Mention: James Lofton (1978), Walter Jones (1997), Torry Holt (1999)
7. Washington – Champ Bailey, CB, Georgia 1999
Honorable Mention: Phil Simms (1979), Sterling Sharpe (1988), Troy Vincent (1992)
8. San Francisco – Ronnie Lott, DB, USC 1981
Honorable Mention: Mike Munchak (1982), Willie Roaf (1993), Roy Williams (2002)
9. Houston Oilers – Bruce Matthews, G, USC 1983
Honorable Mention: Terry McDaniel (1988), Richmond Webb (1990), Brian Urlacher (2000)
10. Pittsburgh – Rod Woodson, DB, Purdue 1987
Honorable Mention: Marcus Allen (1982), Jerome Bettis (1993), Willie Anderson (1996)
11. Dallas – Michael Irvin, WR, Miami 1988
Honorable Mention: Dennis Harrah (1975), Wilber Marshall (1984), Dwight Freeney (2002)
12. Tampa Bay – Warren Sapp, DT, Miami 1995
Honorable Mention: Clay Matthews (1978), Jim Lachey (1985), Warrick Dunn (1997)
13. Kansas City – Tony Gonzalez, TE, California 1997
Honorable Mention: Franco Harris (1972), Mike Kenn (1978), Kellen Winslow (1979)
14. Buffalo – Jim Kelly, QB, Miami 1983
Honorable Mention: Randy Gradishar (1974), John Jefferson (1978), Ruben Brown (1995)
15. Denver – Dennis Smith, S, USC 1981
Honorable Mention: Isaac Curtis (1973), John L Williams (1986), Anthony Miller (1988)
16. San Francisco – Jerry Rice, WR, Mississippi Valley State 1985
Honorable Mention: Raymond Clayborn (1977), Luis Sharpe (1982), Troy Polamalu (2003)
17. Dallas – Emmitt Smith, RB, Florida 1990
Honorable Mention: Louis Wright (1975), Damien Woody (1999), Steve Hutchinson (2001)
18. Washington – Art Monk, WR, Syracuse 1980
Honorable Mention: Willie Gault (1983), Alfred Williams (1991), Eddie Kennison (1996)
19. Indianapolis – Marvin Harrison, WR, Syracuse 1996
Honorable Mention: Joey Browner (1983), Randall McDaniel (1988), Casey Hampton (2001)
20. L.A. Rams – Jack Youngblood, DE, Florida 1971
Honorable Mention: Mike Quick (1982), Will Wolford (1986), Steve Atwater (1989)
21. Minnesota – Randy Moss, WR, Marshall 1998
Honorable Mention: Lynn Swan (1974), John Alt (1984), Jerry Gray (1985)
22. Indianapolis – Andre Rison, WR, Michigan State 1988
Honorable Mention: Jack Reynolds (1970), Hanford Dixon (1981), Harris Barton (1987)
23. Cleveland – Ozzie Newsome, TE, Alabama 1978
Honorable Mention: Ray Guy (1973), Bruce Armstrong (1987), Ty Law (1995)
24. Baltimore Ravens – Ed Reed, S, Miami 2002
Honorable Mention: Raymond Chester (1970), James Brooks (1981), Eric Moulds (1996)
25. San Francisco – Ted Washington, DT, Louisville 1991
Honorable Mention: Stanley Morgan (1977), Bobby Butler (1981), Chris Hovan (2000)
26. Baltimore Ravens – Ray Lewis, LB, Miami 1996
Honorable Mention: Joe DeLamielleure (1973), Kent Hill (1979), Alan Faneca (1998)
27. Miami – Dan Marino, QB, Pittsburgh 1983
Honorable Mention: Reggie McKenzie (1972), Neal Anderson (1986), Larry Johnson (2003)
28. Tampa Bay – Derrick Brooks, LB, Florida State 1995
Honorable Mention: Guy Morris (1973), Darrell Green (1983), Trevor Pryce (1997)
29. Dallas (traded to L.A. Raiders) – Steve Wisniewski, G, Penn State 1989
Honorable Mention: Tommy Casanova (1972), Joe Cribbs (1980), Chris Spielman (1988)
30. Philadelphia – Eric Allen, CB, Arizona State 1988
Honorable Mention: Greg Pruitt (1973), Louie Kelcher (1975), Patrick Kerney (1999)
I "reviewed" the draft from 20 years ago so might as well do the one from 10 years ago. Like the 1993 draft, this draft featured quarterbacks being selected #1 and #2 overall. Also like that draft the #1 pick (Drew Bledsoe) turned out to be much better than the #2 pick (Rick Mirer) but in 1998 it was by a much larger scale as we would have a future Hall of Famer at #1 and all-time bust at #2.
1. Indianapolis - Peyton Manning, QB, Tennessee
My WEST COAST BIAS~ convinced myself that the next guy would be the better quarterback.
2. San Diego - Ryan Leaf, QB, Washington State
25 Career Games, 48.4% Comp Pct, 50.0 QB Rating, 14 TD, 36 Int, and a handful of public temper tantrums.
3. Arizona - Andre Wadsworth, DE, Florida State
Knee injuries killed his career barely after it got started.
4. Oakland - Charles Woodson, CB, Michigan
Outstanding early in his career but nagging injuries slowed him down quite a bit.
5. Chicago - Curtis Enis, RB, Penn State
Held out, showed up out of shape, and then blew out his knee. Pretty much useless.
6. St. Louis - Grant Wistrom, DE, Nebraska
Eight year starter but a tad overrated.
7. New Orleans - Kyle Turley, T, San Diego State
My guess is he'll end up killing someone during the usual, post-NFL lineman depression stage of his life.
8. Dallas - Greg Ellis, DE, North Carolina
Has had a career resurrection the last couple of years.
9. Jacksonville - Fred Tayor, RB, Florida
Passed the 10,000 yard rushing mark this past season.
10. Baltimore - Duane Starks, CB, Miami
Really good his first few years in the league, although probably helped by a great Ravens defense around him, and then flamed out pretty quickly once he left Baltimore.
11. Philadelphia - Tra Thomas, T, Florida State
Ten year starter and selected to three Pro Bowls.
12. Atlanta - Keith Brooking, LB, Georgia Tech
Overrated but still has had a pretty good career.
13. Cincinnati - Takeo Spikes, LB, Auburn
Was one of the best linebackers in the league for a few years.
14. Carolina - Jason Peter, DE, Nebraska
Check out his Real Sports segment to find out what happened to him.
15. Seattle - Anthony Simmons, LB, Clemson
Decent for a few years.
16. Tennessee - Kevin Dyson, WR, Utah
Place in NFL history is cemented due to the Music City Miracle and the final play of Super Bowl XXXV but really nothing special as a player.
17. Cincinnati - Brian Simmons, LB, North Carolina
Eight year starter.
18. New England - Robert Edwards, RB, Georgia
Infamously blew out his knee in an NFL flag football game on the beach during Pro Bowl week after his rookie year.
19. Green Bay - Vonnie Holliday, DE, North Carolina
Another decent UNC defensive player.
20. Detroit - Terry Fair, CB, Tennessee
Seven interceptions in four years.
21. Minnesota - Randy Moss, WR, Marshall
His off the field problems dropped him this far. Still pissed he broke Jerry Rice's single season, receiving touchdown record this past year which I thought was near unbreakable.
22. New England - Tebucky Jones, S, Syracuse
23. Oakland - Mo Collins, G, Florida
Five year starter but was pretty terrible.
24. N.Y. Giants - Shaun Williams, S, UCLA
Just a warm body.
25. Jacksonville - Donovin Darius, S, Syracuse
Throws a nice lariat.
26. Pittsburgh - Alan Faneca, G, LSU
Seven time Pro Bowl selection.
27. Kansas City - Victor Riley, T, Auburn
Was a decent run blocker, terrible pass blocker.
28. San Francisco - R.W. McQuarters, CB, Oklahoma State
Great name, pretty good punt returner, awful cornerback.
29. Miami - John Avery, RB, Mississippi
XFL's all-time leading rusher.
30. Denver - Marcus Nash, WR, Tennessee
Four receptions in 11 career games.
Other Notable Picks
33. Arizona - Corey Chavous, CB, Vanderbilt
35. Chicago - Tony Parrish, S, Washington
38. Dallas - Flozell Adams, T, Michigan State
39. Buffalo - Sam Cowart, LB, Florida State
44. Miami - Patrick Surtain, CB, Southern Miss
46. Tennessee - Samari Rolle, CB, Florida State
48. Washington - Stephen Alexander, TE, Oklahoma
58. San Francisco - Jeremy Newberry, C, California
64. Chicago - Olin Kreutz, C, Washington
65. St. Louis - Leonard Little, DE, Tennessee
72. Philadelphia - Jeremiah Trotter, LB, Stephen F Austin
76. Seattle - Ahman Green, RB, Nebraska
78. Cincinnati - Mike Goff, G, Iowa
91. Denver - Brian Griese, QB, Michigan
92. Pittsburgh - Hines Ward, WR, Georgia
93. Indianapolis - Steve McKinney, C, Texas A&M
111. N.Y. Jets - Jason Fabini, T, Cincinnati
119. San Francisco - Lance Schulters, S, Hofstra
139. Tennessee - Benji Olson, G, Washington
173. Minnesota - Matt Birk, C, Harvard
180. San Francisco - Fred Beasley, FB, Auburn
187. Green Bay - Matt Hasselbeck, QB, Boston College
199. Atlanta - Ephraim Salaam, T, San Diego State
226. Arizona - Pat Tillman, S, Arizona State
NFL Draft is only three weeks away and this year it might actually go by at a relatively brisk pace with the shortened draft times. Since it is that time of year it's time for me to pick out a past NFL Draft and run down the first round from that year with little to no insight. I picked 1988 because it was 20 years ago, simple enough? 1988 featured several great wide receivers but little depth overall after the first two rounds. It's also the draft where there wasn't a single quarterback taken in the first two rounds and the first one taken in the 3rd round was Tom Tupa who would later become a punter.
1. Atlanta - Aundray Bruce, LB, Auburn
Lasted 11 years but only two of them were spent as a starter so that would definitely would equal to a bust for a #1 pick overall.
2. Kansas City - Neil Smith, DE, Nebraska
Good pick. Six Pro Bowls and over 100 career sacks.
3. Detroit - Bennie Blades, S, Miami
Halfway decent defensive back but not quite the career you'd hope for a pick this high. His brother Brian was taken in the 2nd round of this draft.
4. Tampa Bay - Paul Gruber, T, Wisconsin
12 year starter but kind of surprising he never went to a Pro Bowl as I seem to remember him being regarded as one of the better left tackles in the league during his prime. Maybe he just has a good rating Tecmo Super Bowl and that's why I thought he was good.
5. Cincinnati - Rickey Dixon, S, Oklahoma
Lasted five years, doing nothing of note.
6. L.A. Raiders - Tim Brown, WR, Notre Dame
Slam dunk future Hall of Famer.
7. Green Bay - Sterling Sharpe, WR, South Carolina
Was on his way to a Hall of Fame career it seemed before a neck injury cut it short in 1994.
8. N.Y. Jets - Dave Cadigan, G, USC
I honestly never heard of him but apparently he was a five year starter.
9. L.A. Raiders - Terry McDaniel, CB, Tennessee
Five time Pro Bowl selection.
10. N.Y. Giants - Eric Moore, G, Indiana
Another guard for a New York team that I have no memories of.
11. Dallas - Michael Irvin, WR, Miami
I don't think there is a football player I despised more than him.
12. Phoenix - Ken Harvey, LB, California
Selected to four Pro Bowls but he went to Cal and therefore he sucks.
13. Philadelphia - Keith Jackson, TE, Oklahoma
Very good receiving tight end who went to five Pro Bowls.
14. L.A. Rams - Gaston Green, RB, UCLA
Short career. Rushed for over 1000 yards in 1991.
15. San Diego - Anthony Miller, WR, Tennessee
Obviously overshadowed by the three receivers taken ahead of him but had a very good career as well.
16. Miami - Eric Kumerow, DE, Ohio State
Pretty impressive that we got 15 picks in before getting to a complete bust.
17. New England - John Stephens, RB, Northwest State
Made the Pro Bowl as a rookie but did little else after that.
18. Pittsburgh - Aaron Jones, DE, Eastern Kentucky
Played eight years but did anyone notice?
19. Minnesota - Randall McDaniel, G, Arizona State
12 Pro Bowl selections and should be a future Hall of Famer.
20. L.A. Rams - Aaron Cox, WR, Arizona State
Well the great run of wide receivers in this draft had to end eventually.
21. Cleveland - Clifford Charlton, LB, Florida
22. Houston - Lorenzo White, RB, Michigan State
Had one great year in 1992 but didn't see a whole lot of carries in his career playing in the run and shoot.
23. Chicago - Brad Muster, RB, Stanford
Decent fullback who, like most running backs, had a short career.
24. New Orleans - Craig Heyward, RB, Pittsburgh
Very popular, fat fullback who died at age 39 due to brain cancer.
25. L.A. Raiders - Scott Davis, DT, Illinois
Not quite as good as the Raiders first two picks.
26. Denver - Ted Gregory, DT, Syracuse
Was cut during training camp. Seriously how does a team fuck up so bad on it's first pick that the guy can't even make it out of camp?
27. Chicago - Wendell Davis, WR, LSU
Pretty good receiver who's best known for having his career ended when he tore both ACLs while running a pass route on the god awful Veterans Stadium turf in 1993.
Other Notable Picks
29. Detroit - Chris Speilman, LB, Ohio State
30. Philadelphia - Eric Allen, CB, Arizona State
31. Cincinnati - Ickey Woods, RB, UNLV
36. N.Y. Giants - Jumbo Elliott, T, Michigan
39. San Francisco - Pierce Holt, DE, Angelo State
40. Buffalo - Thurman Thomas, RB, Oklahoma State
41. Dallas - Ken Norton, LB, UCLA
43. New England - Vincent Brown, LB, Mississippi Valley State
44. Pittsburgh - Dermontti Dawson, C, Kentucky
46. L.A. Rams - Flipper Anderson, WR, UCLA
49. Seattle - Brian Blades, WR, Miami
50. Cleveland - Michael Dean Perry, DT, Clemson
63. N.Y. Jets - Erik McMillan, S, Missouri
68. Phoenix - Tom Tupa, QB, Ohio State
74. N.Y. Jets - James Hasty, CB, Washington State
76. Indianapolis - Chris Chandler, QB, Washington
80. San Francisco - Bill Romanowski, LB, Boston College
125. Houston - Chris Dishman, CB, Purdue
159. Washington - Stan Humphries, QB, Louisiana-Monroe
239. Miami - Jeff Cross, DE, Missouri
252. Pittsburgh - John Jackson, T, Eastern Kentucky
Can you believe that it will be 10 years since the McGwire/Sosa homerun chase and 10 years since the Yankees tore through the American League on their way to an 114 win season? I really have nothing to add to that and I am just posting one of my random lists, this time around every team's Opening Day/Night starter from the '98 season. I went to every A's Opening Night game from 1995-2002 and in '98 it was actually a fairly momentous occasion as they were playing the Red Sox in Pedro Martinez's first ever start for them. Pedro dominated as expected but glancing at the boxscore I forgot it was also Dennis Eckersley's first appearance in Oakland since 1995 as he played his final year with the Sox. On to the list...
Angels: Chuck Finley
Astros: Shane Reynolds
Athletics: Tom Candiotti
Blue Jays: Roger Clemens
Braves: Greg Maddux
Brewers: Cal Eldred
Cardinals: Todd Stottlemyre
Cubs: Kevin Tapani
Devil Rays: Wilson Alvarez
Diamondbacks: Andy Benes
Dodgers: Ramon Martinez
Expos: Carlos Perez
Giants: Shawn Estes
Indians: Charles Nagy
Mariners: Randy Johnson
Marlins: Livan Hernandez
Mets: Bobby Jones
Orioles: Mike Mussina
Padres: Kevin Brown
Phillies: Curt Schilling
Pirates: Francisco Cordova
Rangers: John Burkett
Reds: Mike Remlinger
Red Sox: Pedro Martinez
Rockies: Daryl Kile
Royals: Tim Belcher
Tigers: Justin Thompson
Twins: Bob Tewksbury
White Sox: Jamie Navarro
Yankees: Andy Pettitte
My favorite baseball team, and favorite team in all sports, the Oakland Athletics are going to suck this year. For the first time since the the late 90's I'm going into a baseball season with no hope or optimism. So since my favorite team is going to suck, I hope all your favorite teams suck this year too. Time for a little free floating hostility as I run down the other 29 teams in MLB and why they suck.
(Disclaimer: Don't take any of this seriously)
Angels: John Lackey's arm is about fall off and they'll find out that they wasted another $90 million on another overrated centerfielder. If Lackey does end up having surgery at some point hopefully they'll do something for his face too. God damn is that an ugly mother fucker.
Astros: Hey maybe they can bring back Roger Clemens again! That'll solve everything!
Blue Jays: They still play baseball in Canada?
Braves: No one gave a shit about them in Atlanta when they were good and no one gives a shit about them now that they suck. Move them to Alaska. For that matter move every professional sports franchise out of Atlanta.
Brewers: Anything that makes Bud Selig happy is a bad thing and the Brewers ever getting back to the playoffs will make him happy, so with that in mind I continue to hope for several more years of mediocre Brewers baseball. Signing Jason Kendall will of course help that cause for this year.
Cardinals: Seriously, fucking retire already LaRussa. Once you lucked out with the 2006 World Championship you should have done the George Constanza "Alright that's it for me! Goodnight everybody!"
Cubs: 100 years, no championships and now they are selling Wrigley Field's naming rights. Just kill yourself Cubs fans because it's gonna 100 more years of the same shit.
Diamondbacks: Would somebody kill Eric Byrnes already?
Dodgers: They're gonna trade Matt Kemp for Joe Crede, you just know it. Jeff Kent can't teach these kids how to win ya know!
Giants: HAHAHAHAHA...yes keep convincing yourself Giants fans and front office that you didn't need Barry. God I can't wait for the Summer when they are 30 games out of first place and averaging less than 10k fans a game. It's gonna be great! Seriously if they ever fire Brian Sabean I'm going to cry.
Indians: Seriously eat a fucking dick Cleveland for blowing it against the Red Sox in the ALCS to help that annoying fucking fan base celebrate another championship.
Mariners: Trading for Erik Bedard isn't going to cover up that this team vastly overachieved last year and Bill Bavasi is still the GM which will always lead to failure.
Marlins: Would somebody kill Jeffrey Loria already?
Mets: This team looks like it wants to go out of it's way to out perform the A's in the injury department this year. I personally approve of the failure of all New York teams so hopefully they'll crash and burn.
Nationals: Dmitri Young and Elijah Dukes on the same team...excellent.
Orioles: Batting 4th, Kevin Millar.
Padres: Padres' "fans" gave Barry Bonds a standing ovation when he tied Hank Aaron's record. At the end of the season Tony Gwynn Jr. hits a game winning triple against the Padres that forces them into a one game playoff against the Rockies which the Padres lose in crushing fashion. It's called karma, bitch.
Phillies: Would have been better off trading Kyle Kendrick to Japan for real and thrown Adam Eaton in the deal. Gonna be another cocktease year for Phillies' fans but like they give a shit anyways as they'll be too busy chanting "E-A-G-L-E-S" at the games.
Pirates: Not even worth it.
Rangers: Why does this franchise not get shit on more for being a complete joke? 47 years in existence and not a single playoff series win. They'll have no problem blowing by the 50 year mark and beyond.
Rays: Ooo they have so much young talent! They might be really good in 2010! Who gives a shit? Still going to be 90% Yankees and Red Sox fans at their games.
Reds: The fact that there are Reds fans who actually want to get rid of Adam Dunn tells me they deserve a manager like Dusty Baker.
Red Sox: Hey remember when we all thought it'd be great if the Red Sox won a championship so we could stop hearing all the whining from their fan base about "The Curse"? We never knew how good we had it. Every SAWX fan I see this year, I'm kicking square in the fucking nuts.
Rockies: Like the Indians, fuck you for losing to the Red Sox.
Royals: This team is more painful to watch than George Brett popping his hemorrhoids.
Tigers: Kenny Rogers is an asshole and Todd Jones is a closet fag.
Twins: 1. Trade Johan Santana, 2. ???, 3. Profit
White Sox: Is this team gonna suuuuuuuuuuck? YES!
Yankees: Derek Jeter is a selfish prick who is going to drag this franchise down very soon by his refusal to leave shortstop. This guy is the Lonnie Smith of shortstops. But whatever, Yankee fans deserve any losing season they get and hopefully they'll happen soon.
The importance of the Ratings Percentage Index has been greatly devalued in the last two years by the tournament committee. Before 2006 not a single Top 30 school in the RPI had been left out the tournament but in the last two years three schools in the Top 30 have been sent to the NIT (Missouri State and Hofstra in 2006, Air Force in 2007). Nevertheless the RPI is still used to consider who gets into the tournament and I was curious to see which schools for each year since the creation of the RPI in 1994 were the lowest rated RPI team to get an at large bid and how they faired in the tournament. Or maybe I just needed an excuse for an entry and am not really interested in this at all. You make the call!
George Washington (#61 in RPI, 10 seed)
-def. 7 seed UAB 51-46
-lost to 2 seed Connecticut 75-63
Minnesota (#66 in RPI, 8 seed)
-lost to 9 seed Saint Louis 64-61
California (#52 in RPI, 12 seed)
-lost to 5 seed Iowa 74-64
Georgetwon (#57 in RPI, 10 seed)
-lost to 7 seed UNC Charlotte 79-67
Western Michigan (#58 in RPI, 11 seed)
-def. 6 seed Clemson 75-72
-lost to 3 seed Stanford 83-65
New Mexico (#74 in RPI, 9 seed)
-def. 8 seed Missouri 61-59
-lost to 1 seed Connecticut 78-56
Pepperdine (#52 in RPI, 11 seed)
-def. 6 seed Indiana 77-57
-lost to 3 seed Oklahoma State 75-67
Oklahoma State (#49 in RPI, 11 seed)
-lost to 6 seed USC 69-54
Wyoming (#63 in RPI, 11 seed)
-def. 6 seed Gonzaga 73-66
-lost to 3 seed Arizona 68-60
N.C. State (#53 in RPI, 9 seed)
-lost to 9 seed California 76-74
Air Force (#70 in RPI, 11 seed)
-lost to 6 seed North Carolina 63-52
N.C. State (#63 in RPI, 10 seed)
-def. 7 seed Charlotte 75-63
-def. 2 seed Connecticut 65-62
-lost to 6 seed Wisconsin 65-56
Seton Hall (#58 in RPI, 10 seed)
-lost to 7 seed Wichita State 86-66
Stanford (#63 in RPI, 11 seed)
-lost to 6 seed Louisville 78-58
Nothing like saying you're out of ideas by reposting an old blog entry but that's what I'm resorting to. Actually I probably would have come up with something over the weekend but I was near death (or at least felt like it) with the flu so putting together semi-coherent thoughts wasn't an option.
The weekend after next will be what I believe to be the best time of the sports year and that is the first two rounds of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. This week however is one of the worst time's of the sports year with Conference Championship Week. Conference tournaments primarily accomplish two things, 1) Render the conference regular seasons meaningless and 2) Weaken the overall field of the national tournament. They are a pox on humanity and should be eliminated.
So I now present to you a Bored "classic" entry from 2/27/06, Conference Tournaments are the Tool of the Devil!
I’ve wanted to do another one these for a while now and to tie it in with the 1986 TSM Baseball Simulation League (only two spots left, sign up today!) so figured I should pick a team from 1986 which is about as much thought as I put into picking the ’86 Texas Rangers for this entry, although they had a very interesting, young outfield.
The Rangers were coming of a 99 loss season in 1985 and were fielding one of the younger teams in the league entering the ’86 season. They would spend a good portion of the first half of the season in first place in the A.L. West but lost the lead for good in early July to the eventual division champion Angels. The stayed within striking distance through most of August but the Angels were able to coast to the division crown in September.
C: Don Slaught (.264/.308/.449, 14.5 VORP, 11.6 Win Shares) – Good hitting catcher but was rarely used full-time due to his poor defense. Rangers acquired him a four team deal before the ’85 season and he would be traded three more times in his career. Traded to the Yankees after the ’87 season he then signed with the Pirates in 1990 where he would have his longest tenure and best years. Signed with the Reds in 1996 but was dealt to the Angels before ever playing a game in Cincinnati, then traded in waiver deadline deal later that year to the White Sox. Signed with San Diego in 1997 but was released in May which marked the end of his career.
1B: Pete O’Brien (.290/.385/.468, 40.4 VORP, 23.9 Win Shares) – This was a career year for O’Brien during a solid four year stretch from ’83 to ’87. Rangers would trade him in a package deal to the Cleveland for Julio Franco following the ’88 season. Signed a four year deal with the Mariners after 1989 which ended up being a complete disaster for Seattle.
2B: Toby Harrah (.218/.332/.367, 3.1 VORP, 6.6 Win Shares) – Last season of a 17 year career spent primarily as a third baseman and shortstop. Had an excellent plate patience (had a career high .432 OBP at age 36 a year earlier) and hit for decent power but was very poor defensively.
3B: Steve Buechele (.243/.302/.410, 2.4 VORP, 12.2 Win Shares) – Ever have one of those players that you irrationally hated when you were younger and can’t remember why? Buechele was one of those guys for me. Pretty good defense but never much with the bat. Traded to Pittsburgh in a waiver deal in 1991 who then would trade him midseason the following year to the Cubs. Released by them in 1995, he then returned for I suppose a nostalgia return to the Texas that lasted 19 days.
SS: Scott Fletcher (.300/.360/.400, 35.5 VORP, 19.9 Win Shares) – Another career year here, I already talked about him in the 1992 Milwaukee Brewers entry.
OF: Ruben Sierra (.264/.302/.476, 9.4 VORP, 11.2 Win Shares) – Gary Ward was the primary left fielder this season for the Rangers and had a few more plate appearances but I couldn’t pass up talking about “The Village Idiot.” Never became the next Roberto Clemente as some had pegged him, he showed a lot of promise early in his career with a couple of outstanding years in 1989 and 1991 but peaked in his mid-20’s. Traded in a blockbuster deadline deal to the A’s in 1992 for a rat piece of shit. I was thrilled at the time but after the ’92 season Sierra decided to bulk up and become more of a power hitter which did not pay off. Had very much worn out his welcome by 1995 and was traded to the Yankees for fellow disgruntled outfielder Danny Tartabull. Traded again almost exactly a year later to the Tigers for Cecil Fielder who would toss him off to the Reds following season. For the next ten years he bounced to the Blue Jays, White Sox, Mets (minors only), Indians, back to the Rangers, Mariners, Rangers yet again, Yankees again, and finally the Twins in 2006. Did sign a minor league deal with the Mets last season but nothing came of it.
CF: Oddibe McDowell (.266/.341/.427, 23.1 VORP, 19.8 Win Shares) – Quite possibly the greatest first name in the history of first names, this was as good as would get for Oddibe as his career flamed pretty quick. Was part of the deal for Julio Franco following the ’88 season, wouldn’t last very long in Cleveland as they dealt him to the Braves midseason in ’89. Put up some solid numbers in half a season with Atlanta but came back down to earth again the following year. Didn’t appear in the Majors between 1991 and 1993 before making a return to the Rangers in 1994 as a back up.
RF: Pete Incaviglia (.250/.320/.463, 16.4 VORP, 16.1 Win Shares) – There was a lot of buzz about Incaviglia going into the season as he made the Rangers without playing a single game in the minors after putting up record numbers at Oklahoma State. Certainly had a lot of power but his inability to make consistent contact kept his homerun totals down as the 30 he hit this season as rookie would end up being a career high. Was released by the Rangers before the 1991 season, would spend the next two years in Detroit and Houston. In 1993 he signed with the Phillies where he made a pretty good contribution as a platoon player on their pennant winning team. Spent one more season there before playing a year Japan and then returning to Philly in 1996. They would trade him a waiver deadline deal to Baltimore later that year, would bounce around to three more teams and was out of the Majors after 1998.
DH: Larry Parrish (.276/.347/.509, 32.6 VORP, 16.7 Win Shares) – Already discussed him in the 1980 Montreal Expos entry, this was one of his best seasons.
Charlie Hough (114 ERA+, 33.2 VORP, 14.2 Win Shares) – It’s amazing when you look back at Hough’s career that he wasn’t a regular starting pitcher until age 34. The knuckeballer was 38 at this point (looked 50) and was in the middle of the best stretch of his career. Signed as a free agent with the White Sox after 1990, spent two years there and then was part of the expansion Marlins for the final two years of his career.
Ed Correa (102 ERA+, 27.8 VORP, 10.3 Win Shares) – Correa was only 20 years old and this was his only full season in the Majors. Had 189 strikeouts but also 126 walks so I’ll just guess he threw hard but had no clue where it was going most of the time. Played just one more year in the Majors.
Bobby Witt (79 ERA+, -2.2 VORP, 3.4 Win Shares) – This was Witt’s rookie year and he clearly wasn’t ready. In his first two seasons he threw 300 1/3 innings and walked 283 batters. Yikes. Only had one good year in 1990 and would be part of the before mentioned Sierra/Shit trade in 1992 to Oakland. Signed with the Marlins in 1995 but would be traded back to Texas later that season. Dealt to the Cardinals in 1998, he became a nomad the rest of his career but did pick up a World Series ring in his final year in 2001 with Diamondbacks.
Jose Guzman (95 ERA+, 10.2 VORP, 6.1 Win Shares) – Yet another young pitcher, I always thought he was Juan Guzman’s brother but I was wrong. After a decent year in 1988 shoulder problems would cost him full two seasons but did comeback to have two more solid years in Texas. He parlayed that into a lucrative four year deal with the Cubs which was good for him and bad for the Cubs as his arm problems returned in 1994 and didn’t pitch a single inning for them the last two years of the deal.
Closer: Greg Harris (152 ERA+, 30.4 VORP, 14.3 Win Shares) – This was the only year that Harris was really a closer per say as most of his career was a long reliever/swingman. Had several stops in his career with his longest being in Boston from 1989 to 1994. His claim to fame is that in this game (next to last appearance of his career) as a member of the Expos he became the only pitcher in the 20th century to throw from both sides of the mound.
Finally getting around to start watching the World Series sets I bought last year and starting with the bonus disk on the 1977 set which features Game 5 of the ALCS where the Yankees for the second straight year beat the Royals in the 9th inning of the deciding game.
1977 American League Championship Series Game 5 - Yankees 5, Royals 3 (boxscore and play account)
-The series was televised nationally by NBC but on this disk they have the Yankees local broadcast of the game and there no graphics with the original footage. Frank Messer, Phil Rizzuto, and Bill White are the announcers. The first pitch of the game is missing so it takes me a few minutes to figure out all of this.
-Yankees and Royals had a pretty fierce rivalry going at this time and we get a brawl in the bottom of the 1st. George Brett would hit an RBI triple and as he came up from his slide into 3rd he shoved Graig Nettles off the bag. Nettles takes exception to this and kicks Brett and then the brouhaha starts. Both benches clear but neither player is ejected.
-Amazingly enough Billy Martin actually benched Reggie Jackson for this game in favor of a washed up Paul Blair as Blair had better numbers against Royals starter Paul Splittorff. Rizzuto at one point in the game claims that Jackson took the benching in great stride. Yeah, right.
-The Yankee announcers constantly fawn over Thurman Munson's clutchiness and reminding everyone he is the Yankee Captain. If you closed your eyes you'd think you were hearing current announcers talk about Derek Jeter. For Jeter's sake I hope he doesn't take up flying...
-Ron Guidry pitched on only two days rest and it showed as he was knocked out in the 3rd. Mike Torrez was brilliant in relief as the Royals failed to score another run the rest of the game.
-With out in the top of the 4th the disk jumps to the bottom of the 4th with one out so I'm guessing the footage went bad that point. Nothing important is missed.
-Reggie finally makes his appearance in the game with pinch hit bloop single to knock in a run in the top of the 8th to pull the Yankees within one. Later in the inning Frank White makes a great diving play to prevent Chris Chambliss from tying the game up and forces Reggie at 2nd. Reggie argues that he was safe even though he was out by a good five feet and I can only think he for some reason didn't think the force play was possible. He also injures shortstop Freddie Patek on the play after sliding in although I couldn't tell how he got hurt.
-Few pitches in the bottom of the 8th are missing from the disk after Torrez was replaced by Sparky Lyle but again nothing major is missed.
-Whitey Herzog elected to go with his ace Dennis Leonard in the 9th to finish the game rather than a reliever. Leonard had just pitched a complete game win in Game 3 two days earlier and was not sharp as he allows both hitters he faced to reach base before Herzog hooks him. The damage was done as the Yankees would plate three runs in the 9th to send the Royals to another heartbreaking ALCS loss.
-During Roy White's at bat in the 9th for a few seconds there is audio from some movie looped over on the disk. The voice sounded like Brian Cox but no idea what movie it was. Really bizarre.
-Nothing too special here as like the other sets it's mostly just interviews from old players and most of the clips are about Reggie. Best clip is they have the postgame interviews from the clinching Game 6 in the Series as Reggie makes sure to get a plug for Puma in during his interview.
1. Inside the Moments: Reggie Jackson’s 3 HR Game
2. Yankees World Series Locker Room Celebration and Interviews
3. 1977 World Series Trophy Presentation
4. Reggie Jackson on his 3 HR Game
5. Piniella on Reggie’s 3 HR Performance
6. Steinbrenner talks about Reggie’s 3 HR Game
7. Steinbrenner on the day he signed Reggie
8. Dusty Baker on the Yankees/Dodgers Rivalry
9. Burt Hooton on giving up Reggie’s first HR in Game 6
10. Mickey Rivers on Reggie’s World Series performance
11. Guidry on the Yankees being called the “Bronx Zoo”
12. Guidry on the Steinbrenner/Martin/Jackson triangle of controversy
13. Guidry on his first postseason in 1977
14. Chris Chambliss tells of his most memorable World Series moment
15. Roy White on Billy Martin benching Reggie in ’77 ALCS Game 5
16. Piniella on Martin benching Reggie in the ACLS
17. Paul Blair on starting over Reggie in ALCS Game 5
18. The Billy Martin/Reggie Jackson confrontation in Boston (original footage spliced with interviews)
19. Brian Doyle on the Billy/Reggie confrontation
20. Randolph on the confrontation in Fenway Park
21. Piniella talks about the Billy/Reggie confrontation
22. Guidry gives a detailed account of the confrontation
23. Randolph on the term “Bronx Zoo” given to the ’77 Yanks
Since I'm on a bit of a 1986 trip right now I figured I'd take a look back at what was going on this week in 1986 in the world of sports with the help of PaperofRecord.com using their Sporting News archive which I did once before with 1994.
February 17, 1986
Cover Story: Baseball's Worst Ballpark. Gale-force winds gust through Candlestick Park by day and frigid temperatures set in by night. One Giants official calls it the weather "the worst in baseball in June, July, and August." Fans don't like it any better than players. They're staying away in droves. That's why in baseball is in jeopardy in San Francisco.
-Now just a hunch coming off a 100 loss season wasn't helping attendance either but Candlestick Park really was the worst place to watch a baseball game and the Giants came close to moving to St. Petersburg in 1993, and damn that would have been great (for me). The best part of the article was an insert about a Canadian firm was coming up with a "revolutionary idea" of doming already built stadiums with an air-filled balloon type structure. Now that would have been quite the eyesore.
Down and Up at Michigan
-In the college basketball section there were two articles regarding Michigan State's Scott Skiles and Michigan's Roy Tarpley. One of the articles talks about a player having off the court troubles with a marijuana possession and dui conviction. If you guessed that player was Tarpley, you'd be wrong. Apparently Tarpley's off the court problems weren't public knowledge at this point as he would later be banned from the NBA for multiple drug violations.
-There's a little notes section about the old Continental Basketball Association where it notes Albany head coach Phil Jackson has been suspended for two games for "physically confronting" a referee. Wonder what happened to that guy?
-In the NBA notes section the Lakers had beaten the Rockets 14 straight games in Houston. The Rockets would stun the defending champs in the Western Conference Finals in five games later that year.
-Brief article about rising 20 year old, rising star Mario Lemieux although it more focuses on Wayne Gretzky and whether Lemieux would reach the level of Gretzky. There's a little blurb about how if the Penguins hadn't drafted Lemieux the franchise would have left Pittsburgh.
-In the NHL notes section there's a proposed change to the All-Star Game format that would match-up the NHL All-Stars against a touring Soviet national team in a two game series. Other ideas are the Stanley Cup champs vs. All-Stars or Americans vs. Canadians.
-A proposed new stadium deal in New York for the Jets that would be built by Donald Trump had fallen through.
-Brief commentary about the fallout after the Super Bowl about the drug problems of several members of the New England Patriots. In some team meeting after the Super Bowl the Patriots agreed to drug testing which didn't sit well with union head Gene Upshaw (yes that idiot was already running things back then) and he had this fantastic quote:
-Cincinnati Reds had offered Rollie Fingers an non-roster invite to Spring Training on the condition that he shave his mustache. He would end up refusing.
-Phillies pitcher Dave Stewart was very close to signing a deal with the Yomiuri Giants but it fell through. Phillies would release him three months later.
-There's a few mentions in various parts of the MLB team notes sections talking about team sponsored drug testing but of course the main concern back then was cocaine not steroids.
Since 1995 I have played the computer version of Strat-O-Matic Baseball which might as well be Dungeons & Dragons for baseball geeks. I always order the updated version of the game online but they still send me the mail order form along with some little newsletter. I usually just glance at it and throw it away but something caught my eye this time. SportingNews.com in recent years has run some sort of fantasy baseball version of Strat-O-Matic but I've never been interested in it as it costs $25 a team. Well apparently very soon they will be running a free game that will be based on the 1986 MLB season where you can make up your own team of players from 1986. They are doing in conjunction with their 1986 Take Two promotion where "celebrities" are replaying that season. From what I know of with the Sporting News version of the game the leagues are 12 teams each, you draft 25 man rosters with a salary cap, and play a 162 game season. You don't actually "play" each other as the games are simulated but you can make trades and make line up adjustments during the season.
So I pose the question to my three blog readers...would anyone be interested in doing this? The website say it's a limited offer so I have no idea if I'll even be able to create a league but it sounds like an interesting alternative to typical fantasy baseball and best of all it's free. If I get a feeling that there will be enough interest on the board I'll probably create a thread for it in the Sports folder when they starting take sign ups, which will be February 27th.
Today is monumental day...it's My Two Year Blogoversary!
My first entry talked about the first ever live sporting event I ever went to, an A's/Red Sox game. Now that I finally have received the 1985 Chicago Bears boxset I can now do write up for the oldest sports memory I have, watching Super Bowl XX. This is the only reason I could ever have to re-watch this snuff film of a football game.
Here's the list of the 12 games that are in the set.
Week 1 vs. Tampa Bay
Week 3 at Minnesota
Week 4 vs. Washington
Week 5 at Tampa Bay
Week 6 at San Francisco
Week 7 vs. Green Bay
Week 11 at Dallas
Week 13 at Miami
Week 16 at Detroit
Divisional Playoff vs. N.Y. Giants
NFC Championship vs. L.A. Rams
Super Bowl XX vs. New England
January 26, 1986 - Super Bowl XX: Chicago Bears (17-1) vs. New England Patriots (13-5)
-Woo hoo, the player introductions are on the disk! Seriously fuck the 2001 "Oh We're a Team!" New England Patriots for ending this tradition. Back in the day they always introduced the NFC offense which seemed inappropriate in this game as the Bears defense really should have been introduced. Judging by the reaction of crowd during the introductions it seemed like their were more Patriots fans at the game.
-Coin toss features the previous 17 Super Bowl MVP winners and even Joe Montana showed up this time. Majority of them didn’t seem thrilled to be there. Joe Namath got the biggest reaction and I wonder if a 21 year old Suzy Kolber was watching the game.
-Dick Enberg and Merlin Olsen are the announcers with Bob Griese making some cameos.
QB: Jim McMahon
RB: Walter Payton, Matt Suhey
WR: Dennis McKinnon, Willie Gault
TE: Emery Moorehead
C: Jay Hilgenberg
G: John Thayer, Mark Bortz
T: Keith Van Horne, Jim Covert
DE: Garin Veris, Julius Adams
NT: Lester Williams
OLB: Andre Tippett, Don Blackmon
ILB: Steve Nelson, Larry McGrew
CB: Ronnie Lippett, Raymond Clayborn
S: Roland James, Fred Marion
QB: Tony Eason
RB: Craig James, Tony Collins
WR: Stanley Morgan, Stephen Starring
TE: Lin Dawson
C: Pete Brock
G: John Hannah, Ron Wooten
T: Brian Holloway, Steve Moore
DE: Richard Dent, Dan Hampton
DT: Steve McMichael, William Perry
OLB: Wilber Marshall, Otis Wilson
MLB: Mike Singletary
CB: Leslie Frazier, Mike Richardson
S: Gary Fencik, Dave Duerson
-Walter Payton fumbles on second play of the game and the Patriots recover on the Bears 20. This would be the high point of the game for the Pats. The misery begins for the Pats as tight end Lin Dawson blows out his knee on their first play from scrimmage. Three straight incompletions would lead to a Tony Franklin field goal for the first points off the Bears in the playoffs.
-After Don Blackmon drops a possible pick six on the Bears first play of their next possession, McMahon nails Gault for a 43 yard bomb. Their drive stalls near the Patriots 10 after Ronnie Lippett lands a heels over head hit on a McMahon scramble and Kevin Butler ties it up 3-3. What a competitive game we have!
-Both teams exchange punts and then the game tilts the Bears way for, well, the rest of the game. Steve “Former Four Horseman” McMichael sacks and forces Tony Eason to fumble, recovered by Dan Hamtpon on the Pats 13. On the next play McMahon completes a drag screen pass to Emery Moorhead and on the play Merlin Olsen insists there was clip by Dennis McKinnon on Blackmon. They show two replays showing Blackmon being hit in the front of his legs which would make it a legal block but Olsen says “Look, right in the back of the legs! You can’t tell me that’s not a clip!” It wasn’t Merlin. Dick Enberg pauses like he wants to disagree but just ignores him and moves on. Olsen continues to rant on about the play a couple of plays later. Sounded like someone had money on the Pats.
-William Perry makes his first appearance on offense on 2nd and Goal with a halfback option pass but The Fridge can’t get rid of it and is dropped for a loss. Another Butler field goal makes it 6-3 Bears. New England is hanging tough!
-Richard Dent forces a Craig James fumble on the Patriots next play from scrimmage and the Bears again get the ball inside the Pats 15. Two plays later Matt Suhey takes it in to make it 13-3.
-Patriots total yards: -19
-After another Patriots punt the Bears easily move through a quickly tiring Patriots defense, mainly behind Matt Suhey. McMahon takes it himself from two and a half yards (video quality suddenly went bad during the play) to make it 20-3 and the rout is on.
-Ron Rivera made a tackle on the next kick off and I only mention it because he was at my D.A.R.E. “graduation” in the 5th grade as our “celebrity speaker.”
-After another Patriots three and out, Eason gets the hook for Steve Grogan. Eason finished the day 0 for 6 and was sacked three times. Grogan completes a couple of passes on his first possession and the Pats get their first, first down of the game with less than four minutes left in the first half but it doesn’t lead to anything.
-Bears make a late march that features a 28 yard completion Ken Margerum to set up another Butler field goal to make it 23-3. Maybe doing an entry on this game was a bad idea as I’ve completely lost interest at this point as I’m sure I did at 7 years old.
-Patriots total yards: -19. Grogan allows them to break even for the quarter.
-As they recap the first half before the second half kick off Olsen is still bitching about the correct non-clip call on what wasn’t even a crucial play, not that there was any crucial play in a game like this.
-Even when things go right for the Patriots it doesn’t pay off. Punter Rich Camarillo gets off an ugly kick that takes a fortunate bounce on the Superdome turf and rolls all the way down to the Bears 4 yard line. But on the Bears first play of the half McMahon hits Gault on another bomb for a 60 yard gain. This would eventually lead to another McMahon touchdown keeper to make it 30-3.
-And the slaughter continues as on the Patriots next drive Grogan throws behind his intended receiver Derrick Ramsey, the ball glances off Ramsey's hands and right to Reggie Phillips who takes it for a 28 yard interception return touchdown and a 37-3 lead.
-22 years later and I’m starting to feel sorry for the Patriots in this game. Next “drive” Grogan completes a pass to Dedrick Jones near midfield but he is immediately hit by Gary Fenick, fumbles and Wilber Marshall recovers it. It didn’t look like a fumble to me as Jones only appeared to have one foot down before being hit but I can’t remember if the rules for possession were different back then. Instant Replay wasn’t implemented until the following season.
-A “Walter” chant starts as everyone wants to see him a score a touchdown in this game but alas that would not happen. After a terrible call on a “completion” to Dennis Gentry where he didn’t even get one foot in bounds, this drive would feature The Fridge’s famous touchdown. I seem to remember reading that later Mike Ditka regretted not having Payton take it in for the score at this point in the game. 44-3.
-God dammit there’s still another hour left on the disk, even without commercials.
-Bears did start to call off the dogs a bit towards the end of the 3rd as the Pats finally get a sustained drive but it takes a 4th and Goal touchdown pass to Irving Fryar (who was playing with a laceration on his finger that he got during a fight with his wife a couple of weeks earlier) to get in the endzone, 44-10 Bears. I smell a comeback!
-The scoring ends when Henry Waechter sacks Grogan in the endzone for a safety. Bears 46, Patriots 10.
-It’s mentioned towards the end of the game that Buddy Ryan has been offered the Philadelphia Eagles head coaching position.
-Richard Dent wins the MVP but I have to say he didn’t really standout to me over any other player on the Bears defense during this game but maybe I wasn’t paying close enough attention.
-The postgame trophy presentation and interviews are on the disk but the video quality isn’t particularly good.
-Lord knows why I ever watched another football game again.
I've made it no secret I'm a junkie for original televised footage of classic sporting events. Back in the day when ESPN Classic actually showed classic games I would love watching classic games from the 70's and 80's. I was thrilled when two years ago MLB started releasing complete World Series boxsets of the 1975, 1979, and 1986 World Series which I promptly bought all three and did write ups of all three sets on the blog. Last year two more World Series sets were released, 1977 and 1987 but I have yet to start watching either. Considering how bad the A's will be this season I might finally crack those sets open when looking for alternative things to watch during the baseball season. Both the NBA and NHL have followed suit although I'm not as interested in those sets as I am for baseball and football, but I would pick up the 1987 NBA Finals set if they ever release it as I have fond memories of it as a bandwagon Laker fan when I was younger. There has even been a set of "classic" Notre Dame games released which I did a write up the Cathlolics vs. Convicts game but haven't gotten around to viewing any of other the games.
The NFL had been a long time holdout when it comes to airing any classic games, even on their own channel, but last year around the Super Bowl they finally started re-airing original Super Bowl broadcasts which continued this year. Also this past Fall they released a handful of DVD sets and individual DVDs with "classic" games. Their choices so far have been a bit odd. They released three sets of every playoff game from the 1999 Rams, 2000 Ravens, and 2002 Bucs seasons. The '99 Rams set would be kinda interesting as that year's Super Bowl had probably the best finish ever in a Super Bowl but I really have no interest in anything from the last ten years and there's nothing "classic" on either '00 Ravens or '02 Bucs set. They also released the 1980 NFC Championship game between the Eagles and Cowboys. Now that'd be a must have for an Eagles fan but the game was not particularly competitive and why release that game instead of the 1981 NFC Championship featuring "The Catch"? In addition there is a three game set of "classic" Cleveland Browns games (yes I know, what classic Browns games?) but the three games they picked left a lot to be desired. One of the games is a regular season blowout from 1989 against the Steelers and another is a playoff clinching win against the Falcons from 2002. If they swapped out either of those games for their double overtime win in the '86 playoffs against the Jets I would have bought it.
Now there were two others that I did decide to pick up, the 1992 AFC Wild Card Game featuring the Bills record comeback against the Oilers and they released an 11 game set of the 1985 Chicago Bears season. I actually haven't received the Bears set yet as I got in on backorder from DeepDiscountDVD.com when it was on sale for only $44 a month ago but should be receiving it any day now. Now there are not any real "classics" on that Bears set but the '85 Bears always held a special place in my childhood because the Bears were the first "it" team for me that you just had to watch and as I've mentioned before my earliest sports memory is watching Super Bowl XX. On the set there is their MNF loss to the Dolphins that ended their undefeated season, which is actually kind of surprising as these sets are of course marketed to the fans of the teams but having that game on the set made it an automatic purchase for me as I don't know if I ever watched the original live game.
So here's my complete list of of sports DVDs, that have original games on them:
1975 World Series
1977 World Series
1979 World Series
1986 World Series
1987 World Series
Notre Dame Collector's Edition (7 Games)
1992 AFC Wild Card Bills vs. Oilers
1985 Chicago Bears (11 Games)
In April MLB will be releasing the 2001 World Series boxset but again I'm not particularly interested in anything from the last decade, especially something that was televised by FOX, so I'm not sure if I'm going to pick that one up even if it was a true classic. Before then in early March there will be another World Series boxset released and, well....there's no fucking way I'm going to buy it.
It's time for the Tecmo Super Bowl, uh Super Bowl, extravaganza! Here's recap of the playoffs.
San Francisco 49ers
Regular Season Results (13-3)
1: L – Giants 21-24 OT
2: W – Chargers 34-14
3: L – Vikings 24-27 OT
4: W – Rams 35-21
5: L – Raiders 14-21
7: W – Falcons 31-14
8: W – Lions 28-3
9: W – Eagles 27-9
10: W – Falcons 24-17
11: W – Saints 35-24
12: W – Cardinals 21-10
13: W – Rams 35-34
14: W – Saints 21-20
15: W – Seahawks 31-21
16: W – Chiefs 28-17
17: W – Bears 21-10
QB: Joe Montana - 150/222, 3810 Yards, 41 TD, 12 Int
RB: Roger Craig - 68 Att, 540 Yards, 2 TD
RB: Tom Rathman - 114 Att, 726 Yards, 16 TD
WR: John Taylor – 22 Rec, 510 Yards, 8 TD
WR: Jerry Rice - 75 Rec, 1955 Yards, 21 TD
TE: Brent Jones – 15 Rec, 365 Yards, 2 TD
C: Jess Sapolu
LG: Guy McIntyre
RG: Harris Barton
LT: Bubba Parris
RT: Steve Wallace
QB: Steve Young
RB: Dexter Carter, Harry Sydney
WR: Mike Wilson, Mike Sherrard
TE: Jamie Williams
K: Mike Cofer – 58/59 XP, 6/10 FG
P: Barry Helton – 11 Punts, 43.1 Avg
RE: Kevin Fagan – 15 Sacks
NT: Michael Carter – 2 Sacks
LE: Pierce Holt – 7 Sacks
ROLB: Bill Romanowski – 1 Sack
RILB: Keith Delong
LILB: Matt Millen – 1 Sack
LOLB: Charles Haley – 13 Sacks
RCB: Don Griffin – 2 Int
LCB: Darryl Pollard
FS: Ronnie Lott – 6 Int
SS: Dave Waymer – 8 Int
Regular Season Results (10-6)
1: L – Raiders 21-30
2: W – Bengals 23-21
3: W – Chiefs 21-17
4: L – Patriots 17-35
6: W – Broncos 10-7
7: W – Jets 30-24 OT
8: W – Dolphins 35-14
9: W – Bengals 44-24
10: L – Redskins 24-27 OT
11: W – Cowboys 21-10
12: L – Browns 21-24
13: L – Steelers 20-28
14: W – Eagles 31-28 OT
15: W- Steelers 21-9
16: L – Browns 21-30
17: W – Giants 30-24 OT
QB: Warren Moon – 153/226, 3959 Yards, 38 TD, 20 Int
RB: Lorenzo White – 86 Att, 620 Yards, 6 TD
WR: Ernest Givins – 45 Rec, 1191 Yards, 13 TD
WR: Haywood Jeffries – 32 Rec, 838 Yards, 7 TD
WR: Drew Hill – 31 Rec, 701 Yars, 9 TD
WR: Curtis Duncan – 43 Rec, 1176 Yards, 9 TD
C: Jay Pennison
LG: Mike Munchak
RG: Bruce Matthews
LT: Don Maggs
RT: Dean Steinkuhler
QB: Cody Carlson
RB: Allen Pinkett, Victor Jones, Doug Lloyd
WR: Tony Jones, Gerald McNeil
K: Tony Zendejas – 48/50 XP, 10/13 FG
P: Greg Montgomery – 6 Punts, 47.3 Avg
RE: Sean Jones – 11 Sacks
NT: Doug Smith – 3 Sacks
LE: William Fuller – 11 Sacks
ROLB: Johnny Meads – 2 Sacks
RILB: Al Smith
LILB: John Grimsley – 2 Sacks
LOLB: Ray Childress – 12 Sacks
RCB: Richard Johnson – 4 Int
LCB: Chris Dishman – 3 Int
FS: Terry Kinard – 1 Int
SS: Bubba McDowell – 2 Int
Super Bowl XXVI: San Francisco 49ers vs. Houston Oilers
49ers won the coin toss but would turn it over immediately as Dexter Carter fumbled the opening kickoff as the Oilers recovered on the 49ers 30 yard line. They couldn't move the ball at all though and settled for a Tony Zendejas 45 yard field goal for a 3-0 lead. 49ers moved the ball into the Oilers territory on their first possession but Mike Cofer missed a 53 yard field goal. Warren Moon would hit Ernest Givins on a 46 yard catch and run on the next play which would eventually lead to another Zendejas field goal.
Houston 6, San Francisco 0
Mike Cofer missed another long field goal, this time 59 yards, and the Oilers looked to turn this into a rout early as they march down the field and Warren Moon takes it in himself from the 1 for a 13-0 lead. 49ers finally answered though with a quick drive that ended with a Tom Rathman 15 yard touchdown run. On the ensuing kick off Gerald McNeil is tackled in the endzone for a touchback...no wait it's Tecmo Rules so it's a safety! 49ers get the ball back and pull within a point on a Cofer field goal near the end of the half.
Houston 13, San Francisco 12
Best. Halftime Show. Ever.
Oilers offense scuffles in the quarter as they fail to pick up a first down. After a long run by Rathman, Jerry Rice begins to make his presence felt as he catches 19 yard touchdown pass from Joe Montana to give the 49ers their first lead of the game.
San Francisco 19, Houston 13
Oilers retake the lead on their next possession in part to a 29 yard Moon run and then Hill makes a leaping 39 yard touchdown grab. It's the 4th quarter though, and it's the Super Bowl, so you knew Montana would march the 49ers right back and it wasn't without drama. Oilers stuff Rathman on 3rd and Goal at the 1 but on the 4th and Goal Rathman scores the go ahead touchdown. Oilers still had enough time to comeback but they would lose 18 yards on three plays and then on 4th and 28 the great Tecmo computer logic shows up as they run the ball. It did catch the 49ers off guard as Lorenzo White rumbled for 13 yards but well short of the first down. As the 49ers tried to run out the clock Rathman fumbled on the Oilers 30 but it went out of bounds. The next play Rathman would take it the distance for his third touchdown of the game, wrapping up the Super Bowl MVP honors and a third Super Bowl title in four years for the 49ers. The 49ers ended the season on a 14 game winning streak.
AFC Championship: Houston Oilers vs. Los Angeles Raiders
HOU: White 4 Run
LA: Allen 7 Run
HOU: Dishman 12 Interception
LA: Jackson 46 Run
HOU: White 1 Run
LA: Horton 29 Pass from Schroeder
HOU: Hill 57 Pass from Moon
Chris Dishman had two huge interceptions as the Oilers advance to their first ever Super Bowl. With the game tied, on the last play of the first half and backed up on their own 9, the Raiders inexplicably chose to pass instead of running out the clock and Jay Schroeder threw a pick six to Dishman to give the Oilers the lead going into the half. Then on the Raiders final possession in the 4th quarter, Dishman picked off Schroeder again on a 3rd and Goal to go to seal the game.
NFC Championship: Minnesota Vikings vs. San Francisco 49ers
SF: Craig 17 Run (Kick blocked)
Scoreless 2nd Quarter
SF: Cofer 52 FG
Min: Reveiz 56 FG
Scoreless 4th Quarter
Pierce Holt had seven sacks in a defensive struggle as the 49ers win their third NFC Championship in four years. The Vikings had absolutely nothing going on offense amassing a pitiful 46 yards in total offense. This negated a superb effort by the Vikings defense that held the 49ers’ juggernaut of an offense to single digits.
AFC Divisional Playoff: Miami Dolphins vs. Los Angeles Raiders
LA: Allen 1 Run
Mia: Stoyanovich 20 FG
LA: Jaeger 58 FG
LA: Jackson 75 Run
Mia: Clayton 59 Pass from Marino
Mia: Stoyanovich 45 FG
Mia: Duper 28 Pass from Marino
LA: Horton 23 Pass from Beurlein
After squandering a couple of first half scoring opportunities the Dolphins appeared they would be on their way to another second half comeback playoff win but Steve Beurlein came off the bench for an injured Jay Schroeder to lead a 4th quarter touchdown drive for the win. The key sequence in the game came late in the first half when Mike Hardin intercepted a Dan Marino pass in the endzone and would be followed a few plays later by a 75 yard touchdown run by Bo Jackson to give the Raiders a 17-3 halftime lead.
NFC Divisional Playoff: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Minnesota Vikings
PHI: Sherman 14 Run
MIN: Fenney 1 Run
PHI: Ruzek 50 FG
MIN: Carter 21 Pass from Wilson
MIN: Fenney 28 Pass from Wilson
PHI: Barnett 38 Pass from Cunningham
MIN: Carter 56 Pass from Wilson
Wade Wilson threw three second half touchdowns, two to Anthony Carter, as the Vikings continue their surprisingly strong season with a trip the NFC Championship Game. After killing the Redskins with both his arm and legs in the Wild Card round, QB Eagles was unable to break any big runs in this one.
AFC Divisional Playoff: Houston Oilers vs. Buffalo Bills
Scoreless First Quarter
Hou: Givens 54 Pass from Moon
Hou: Hill 27 Pass from Moon
Buf: Mueller 1 Run
Hou: Givens 57 Pass from Moon
Buff: Reed 14 Pass from Kelly
Hou: Hill 31 Pass from Moon
Buf: Thomas 64 Pass from Kelly
The Houston Oilers go into Buffalo in a playoff game and don’t blow a big lead! Warren Moon was unstoppable with four touchdown passes as he leads the Oilers to their first AFC Championship Game appearance in 12 years. Thurman Thomas had over 200 yards in total offense in the losing effort.
NFC Divisional Playoff: Los Angeles Rams vs. San Francisco 49ers
LA: Ellard 47 Pass from Everett
SF: Craig 4 Run
LA: Warner 6 Run
SF: Rice 4 Pass from Montana
LA: Warner 4 Run
LA: Ellard 15 Pass from Everett
SF: Rice 55 Pass from Montana
SF: Craig 4 Run
LA: Gary 4 Run
SF: Rice 12 Pass from Montana
SF: Taylor 65 Pass from Montana
In a classic shootout, the 49ers outlast in their divisional rival Rams in overtime 41-35. This game featured some “great” Tecmo computer logic in overtime as after the Rams won the coin toss the 49ers decided to catch the Rams off guard I suppose by going for an onside kick. It backfired and the Rams returned it to the 49ers 35. Then rather than try to move the ball closer the Rams elected to attempt a 52 yard field to win it but Mike Lansford’s kick hit the left upright. Joe Montana would hit a wide open John Taylor on the next play for the winning touchdown.
Back in August when I was completely out of ideas for this blog I started simming a Tecmo Super Bowl season using an NES emulator I downloaded like five years ago and posted the results here. I got through the regular season but for the playoffs I'd decided I should sit and watch the computer play itself instead of just simming the games and I was Bored in a hurry. After two games I stopped and eventually forgot about the whole thing. But I'm currently out of ideas again so might as well finish thing, just in time for the real NFL Playoffs.
So you don't have to go digging for the old entries (and why would you?) here's the playoff picture:
Since I don't think I ever bothered to watch the computer play itself back in the day I don't remember if there is any sort of bug that causes every playoff game to be decided by exactly seven points but that is what happened in this round. Hopefully that won't continue.
AFC Wild Card: San Diego Chargers vs. Miami Dolphins
SD: Butts 42 Run
SD: Carney 23 FG
MIA: Clayton 62 Pass from Marino
MIA: Clayton 24 Pass from Marino
MIA: Stoyanovich 21 FG
Mark Clayton burned the Chargers’ secondary for 152 yards as after a sluggish first half the Dolphins dominate the second half to advance. Charges moved the ball inside the Dolphins’ 30 late in the 4th quarter but turned it over on downs.
NFC Wild Card: Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles
When I did this game back in August it looks like I forgot to take a screen shot of the boxscore.
Eagles 28, Redskins 21
WAS: Clark 59 Pass from Rypien
PHI: Williams 52 Pass from Cunningham
WAS: Clark 25 Pass from Rypien
PHI: Williams 44 Pass from Cunningham
WAS: Clark 14 Run
PHI: Cunningham 4 Run
PHI: Sherman 21 Run
An amazing performance by QB Eagles aka Randall Cunningham leads the Eagles into the next round. Cunningham threw for 220 yards and ran for 127 more as the Redskins defense did not force the Eagles to punt the entire game. The Redskins offense moved through the Eagle defense like butter in the first half scoring all three possessions but could not get a first down in the second half.
AFC Wild Card: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Houston Oilers
HOU: Fuller 37 Fumble Return
HOU: Jefferies 11 Pass from Moon
PIT: Hoge 7 Run
HOU: Duncan 19 Pass from Moon
PIT: Williams 3 Run
In the a battle of the #3 offense in the league and the #1 defense in the league, offense won out as the Oilers outlast the Steelers. Pittsburgh made it a game after digging a 14-0 hole and had the ball at the end of the game but in true Tecmo computer fashion they ran the ball and ran out the clock.
NFC Wild Card: Los Angeles Rams vs. New York Giants
LA: Warner 1 Run
NY: Megget 2 Run
LA: Lansford 29 FG
NY: Bahr 55 FG
LA: Gary 5 Run
LA: Anderson 13 Pass from Everett
NY: Ingram 36 Pass from Simms
The defending Super Bowl Champs season comes to a disastrous end as after choking away a first round bye down the stretch they then proceed to be upset by the Rams in the Wild Card round. Willie Anderson went wild on the Giants secondary as the Rams were able to the move the ball without much resistance most of the game. Giants scored a meaningless touchdown as time expired to make the final score closer than it really was.
Tim Raines - Leftfielder
Montreal Expos 1979-1990, 2001
Chicago White Sox 1991-1995
New York Yankees 1996-1998
Oakland Athletics 1999
Baltimore Orioles 2001
Florida Marlins 2002
1986 N.L. Silver Slugger - OF
1987 All-Star Game MVP
All-Star Selections: 7 (1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987)
1981: Stolen Bases
1982: Stolen Bases
1983: Runs, Stolen Bases
1984: Doubles, Stolen Bases
1986: Batting Average, OBP, Runs Created
April 18, 1994 - Chicago at Boston
Hit three homeruns against the Red Sox.
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Batting - 20 (105) (Average HOFer ≈ 27)
Gray Ink: Batting - 114 (176) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 46.8 (91) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 90.0 (175) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 5 (Lou Brock, Max Carey, Fred Clarke, Harry Hooper, Enos Slaughter)
Other Similar Batters: Kenny Lofton, Willie Davis, Jimmy Ryan, Jose Cruz, Julio Franco
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 390
Career WARP3: 123.9
My Stupid Opinion
Second greatest lead off hitter of all-time who should be a slam dunk, first ballot Hall of Famer this year but won't be. In The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, which was published in 2001 right near the end of Raines' career, James ranked Raines as the 8th best leftfielder of all-time behind Ted Williams, Stan Musial, Barry Bonds, Rickey Henderson, Carl Yastrzemski, Joe Jackson, and Al Simmons. You could make a legitimate argument that from 1985 to 1987 Raines was the MVP of the National League each season yet he failed to crack the Top 5 in the writer's vote in those years. Playing his prime years in Montreal and being overshadowed by Henderson certainly hurt the national media's perception of him. Maybe also hurt by that he probably hung around a few years longer than he should have but he'd hardly be the first HOF to do that. The very small sample of writer ballots that have become public are at least semi-encouraging as it appears he'll probably end up on between 30-40% of the ballots which isn't bad for someone the writers don't view as a first ballot HOF.
David Justice - Rightfielder
Atlanta Braves 1989-1996
Cleveland Indians 1997-2000
New York Yankees 2000-2001
Oakland Athletics 2002
1990 N.L. Rookie of the Year
1993 N.L. Silver Slugger - OF
1997 N.L. Silver Slugger - OF
2000 ALCS MVP
All-Star Selections: 3 (1993, 1994, 1997)
May 7, 1999 - Cleveland at Tampa Bay
Went 4 for 4 with two homeruns, four runs scored, and five RBI.
Hall of Fame Stats
Gray Ink: Batting - 43 (564) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 28.7 (309) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 43.5 (416) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 1 (Larry Doby)
Other Similar Batters: Tim Salmon, Ryan Klesko, Rudy York, Kent Hrbek, Greg Luzinski, Jeromy Burnitz, Darryl Strawberry, Roy Sievers, Mo Vaughn
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 233
Career WARP3: 73.6
My Stupid Opinion
Good hitter who could rarely stay healthy an entire season. He managed to play over 150 games in a season only once in his career, which also happened to be his best year in 1993. His career does prove that postseason experience doesn't mean shit when it actually comes to playing the postseason as he played in 112 postseason games but hit only .224/.335/.382. He did fuck Halle Berry but he's not close to being borderline candidate where such a feat can be considered.
Chuck Knoblauch - Second Baseman
Minnesota Twins 1991-1997
New York Yankees 1998-2001
Kansas City Royals 2002
1991 A.L. Rookie of the Year
1995 A.L. Silver Slugger - 2B
1997 A.L. Gold Glove - 2B
1997 A.L. Silver Slugger - 2B
All-Star Selections: 4 (1992, 1994, 1996, 1997)
July 30, 1999 - New York at Boston
Went 5 for 6 with a double, homerun, and 4 RBI against the Red Sox.
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Batting - 3 (503) (Average HOFer ≈ 27)
Gray Ink: Batting - 67 (360) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 33.8 (209) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 66.5 (275) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: 1 (Lou Boudreau)
Other Similar Batters: Eric Young, Jason Kendall, Edgar Renteria, Mark Grudzielanek, Larry Doyle, Alvin Dark, Dave Lopes, Pete Runnels, Delino DeShields
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 230
Career WARP3: 74.2
My Stupid Opinion
Very good player during the 90's but by age 32 he was already washed up. Had a very good knowledge of the strikezone as the majority of his years he had more walks than strikeouts. His Gold Glove in 1997 was largely undeserved as he was above average at his best and then became very poor a couple of years later when he developed a mental block when it came throwing to first base. Having that happen to you while you are playing for the Yankees just magnified the problem and his offensive numbers would begin their downward spiral the following year.
Brady Anderson - Outfielder
Boston Red Sox 1988
Baltimore Orioles 1988-2001
Cleveland Indians 2002
All-Star Selections: 3 (1992, 1996, 1997)
1996: Extra Base Hits
None of note
August 7, 1998 - Baltimore at Minnesota
Career high five hits which included two homeruns and two doubles.
Hall of Fame Stats
Gray Ink: Batting - 37 (643) (Average HOFer ≈ 144)
HOF Standards: Batting - 26.1 (376) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Batting - 38.0 (473) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Batters in HOF: None
Top 10 Similar Batters: Johnny Callison, Devon White, Rick Monday, Roy White, Lloyd Moseby, Chet Lemon, Claudell Washington, Jimmy Wynn, Ray Lankford, Amos Otis
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 214
Career WARP3: 77.3
My Stupid Opinion
A bit of a late bloomer as his breakout year didn't come until age 28 as to that point he looked like he might be a bust. Will always be remembered for being the least likely player ever to hit 50 homeruns. He's the only player in MLB history to hit 50 homeruns in one season without having a 30+ homerun season at any other point in his career (not counting Prince Fielder). Interesting enough his breakout year of '92 is ranked as being better than his '96 season by both Win Shares and WARP. I'm guessing it has to do with his 53 stolen bases that year and I think he was probably a much better defensive outfielder at that point. Also in 1996 everyone seemed to be hitting 50 homeruns so his year doesn't really standout. Not as good as what his similar batters show as Wynn and Otis in particular were much better players.
Chuck Finley - Starting Pitcher
California/Anaheim Angels 1986-1999
Cleveland Indians 2000-2002
St. Louis Cardinals 2002
All-Star Selections: 5 (1989, 1990, 1995, 1996, 2000)
1993: Complete Games
May 23, 1995 - New York at California
Matches his career high 15 strikeotus while two hitting the Yankees in Mariano Rivera's MLB debut.
Hall of Fame Stats
Black Ink: Pitching - 6 (363) (Average HOFer ≈ 40)
Gray Ink: Pitching - 156 (86) (Average HOFer ≈ 185)
HOF Standards: Pitching - 27.0 (170) (Average HOFer ≈ 50)
HOF Monitor: Pitching - 53.5 (230) (Likely HOFer > 100)
Similar Pitchers in HOF: None
Top 10 Similar Pitchers: Mark Langston, Mike Torrez, Vida Blue, Doyle Alexander, Mickey Lolich, Fernando Valenzuela, Curt Simmons, Billy Pierce, Orel Hershiser, Joe Bush
Year-by-Year Win Shares & Wins Above Replacement Level (WARP3)
Career Win Shares: 213
Career WARP3: 97.0
My Stupid Opinion
Although it might not be saying much, Finley is probably the second best first ballot player this year. Was an extremely durable pitcher as in his 15 years as a starter he pitched more than 180 innings in 13 of them. Probably was a tad underrated as the Angels were rarely contenders during his career. Ranks in the Top 30 all-time in strikeouts but also ranks in the Top 30 all-time in walks. In the end though he'll end probably be remembered best for getting his ass kicked by his then wife Tawny Kitaen.