Friday, May 21, 2021

HoraceClarke66: Was Corey’s No-Hitter a Mogridge or a Monte?

Corey Kluber’s no-no was officially the 12th no-hitter or perfect game by your New York Yankees. 

I say “officially” because MLB, in its infinite wisdom, has discounted 2 no-hitters. 


One, most of you will remember, came in the midst of the plague years, on July 1, 1990, when Andy Hawkins, on a horrendous Sunday afternoon in Chicago, pitched 8 hitless frames.



With one out in the 8th, though, White Sock Sammy Sosa (Remember him?) reached on an error by third baseman Mike Blowers (Remember him? I hope not.). Two walks later, with the bases loaded, Hawkins got Robin Ventura to hit a lazy flyball to left. Which leftfielder Jim Leyritz lost in the sun. And dropped. Ivan Calderon then hit a flyball to right-center. Which rightfielder Jesse Barfield dropped.


Hawkins got old friend Dan Pasqua to hit a pop-up that shortstop Alvaro Espinoza managed to actually catch. But when the Yanks went down quickly in the top of the ninth it was all over, depriving Hawkins of any chance to pitch a “real” no-hitter, and creating perhaps the ugliest line score in baseball history:




Back in 1910, a year which nobody here will remember, Tom L. Hughes—the second Yankees pitcher in the deadball era named Tom Hughes—threw 9 no-hit innings against the Indians. “Salida Tom,” as he was nicknamed, gave up a hit in the 10th, but kept the shutout into the 11th, when he surrendered five runs and the game.


Should these games have been no-hitters?

When it comes to Hawkins, an absolutely awful pitcher with the Yankees (and to this day the only pitcher to win a World Series game for the San Diego Padres), it’s hard to say you should get credit for a no-hitter when you don’t pitch the toughest inning in such a game, even if that’s not your fault.


As for Hughes—absolutely! That’s an idiotic ruling! You start and pitch nine, no-hit innings, that should be a no-hitter.


One more interesting stat (unless somehow you don’t find this interesting!):  When a Yankee pitches a no-hitter, it generally means good things.


Seven of the years in which they did—Sad Sam Jones in 1923, Monte Pearson (below, doing his famous "ventriloquist's dummy" act with Lou Gehrig) in 1938, Allie Reynolds in 1951 (twice!), Don Larsen in 1956, Doc Gooden in 1996, David Wells in 1998, and David Cone in 1999—ended with World Series wins. 


Indeed, it felt as if Gooden’s 1996 no-hitter really turned around the team’s prospects for the whole season, and that Wells’ set the tone for 1998.


Did they, really? And will Corey Kluber’s change the tone for the Yanks this year? 


Or will it be more like the no-hitters thrown by George Mogridge (winner of the good posture award) in 1917, Dave Righetti in 1983, and Jim Abbott in 1993, feel-good moments in otherwise undistinguished seasons? (I’m assuming that Mogridge’s felt good. It was 1917, a time when getting an orange for Christmas was a big deal, so how bad could it have been?)


A Mogridge or a Monte? Which will 2021 be? 


DickAllen said...

If I had my druthers, I'd like to opt for Monte Pearson.

Why, you may ask? This guy had quite a career. Brief, but fairly spectacular.

Look at Monte's post-season (or what we used to call the World Series) record:

He pitched four times in the WS and won all four games with an ERA of 1.01

Three of those games were complete games, and in the fourth he went 8 2/3.

A footnote to his legacy: all four WS he participate in (1936, 37, 38, 39) all won by The New York Yankees.

ALSO (from various sources):

Pearson holds the MLB record for lowest walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP) in the postseason. He is noted for pitching the first no-hitter at the original Yankee Stadium.

In 1936, the Yankees advanced to the World Series, where they defeated the New York Giants 4–2. In Game 4, Pearson—who insisted on being included in the rotation even after falling ill with pleurisy just before the Series—limited the Giants to just two runs while striking out seven in a complete game win. Offensively, he managed to get two hits, including a double.[23] The 5–2 victory ended Carl Hubbell's streak of 17 consecutive regular and postseason wins.

In 1939, facing the Cincinnati Reds, he held them hitless through 7+1⁄3 innings — eventually giving up just two singles—while striking out eight and walking one in a complete game, 4–0 victory. Pearson's sublime pitching performance is considered one of the greatest in World Series history; with a game score of 90, it is one of only eight Fall Classic starts to record a game score of 90 or above.

Oh, to be alive in the 30s! Or 40s! Or 50s!

So, yeah, I'll take the Pearson, thank you very much.

DickAllen said...

I can't stop:

"Where does that guy get all that stuff? I've seen some pretty good curveball pitchers, but that fellow can certainly make the ball duck over the corners."

— Gabby Hartnett, manager of the Chicago Cubs, after his team was defeated by Pearson in Game 3 of the 1938 World Series.

HoraceClarke66 said...

You are completely right, Dick Allen. What a great World Series performer! I would have loved to have seen those days, too—though of course having the color line in place would've been pretty awful.

But yeah, terrific pitcher, terrific name!

Mogridge had some bad luck. He got traded by the Yanks—for the great, Braggo Roth, I believe—just on the verge of them becoming great. But he did win a ring, and a Series game, with the Senators in 1924.

Kevin said...

What kind of skin care products do you think those players used back in the day?

Anonymous said...

Call me a techno-phile, but I believe Andy Hawkins's game was a no-hitter. The extra inning affair where there were hits in the extra frames? Not a no-hitter. If you don't allow any hits during a "complete" game, then it's a no-hitter. If you allow hits, even if it's in the 19th inning, then it's not a no-hitter.

The Hammer of God

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