So in 1966 most of the games were on Facebook, but there was only one computer powerful enough to receive it, an Al Gore homebrew deal, and he was really short of friends back then.
So if you wanted to know about the Braves’ 72nd and 73rd game, you had to toddle down to Atlanta Stadium for a doubleheader against the Dodgers, who pitched two guys named Don. The Braves swept, with Ken Johnson beating Sutton 5-4 and Tony Cloninger beating Drysdale, who was having his only really bad year in MLB, 4-3.
In the first game, Ken Johnson hit a homer off Sutton (Torre hit his 16th as well) and in the nightcap, Cloninger had a two-out two run single off Ron Perranoski. (His big game is next week.) But I want to talk a little about Chi-Chi Olivo who got his 6th save in the second game. Chi-Chi Olivo was a legend in Dominican baseball (he and his brother are still first and second alltime in wins in the Dominican league), but the Braves kept him in their farm system forever. While no one is quite certain how old he was, by 1966 he was 39 or so and had had only one season up to 1966 as a regular. 1966 was his best, and last, year in the majors and this game was his next-to-last major league save. He was sent down at the end of July and said to the press: “They say I come back. But I no come back.” (This is my retirement slogan, BTW.) But he was wrong. He was called up the last week of the season and got a win in the last game of 1966. https://sabr.org/bioproj/person/4acdcb7d
So the 2018 game was on Facebook Live. I assiduously avoid knowing anything about the finances of baseball. I don’t care what anyone is paid. I don’t care whether teams make or lose money. I have no interest in John Malone’s tax minimization strategies. It is my 35 years as a professional economist that allows me to treat baseball as a game, not a business. So I’m sure it makes sense to someone to put this game on FB, and I’m sure there’s some sort of monetary theory behind it. Leave me out of it. I managed to cast it to my screen – all I need to know.
My wife thought DeRosa was handsome when he played for the Braves (she also favors Swanson over Culberson, but I don’t have the heart to tell her she misidentifies them about half the time) but I remember him as the QB at Penn during a period in which the Quakers were killing my Bulldogs, so I hate him. I have no real problem with the loose-limbed commentary those guys do.
Then they played baseball. A two-run dinger from Kendrys Morales was balanced by solo shots from Suzuki and Bourjos (!). Remember that there once a time in which it was thought problematic that Bourjos was being blocked by some guy Trout.
But then the Jays got a couple more off Anibal and then Minter Grybo’d Carle for a run. Meanwhile JA Happ had settled down and came out to get the complete game. One out singles from FF and Neck at least brought the tying run to the plate and sent Happ to the showers. Suzuki hits a smash single scoring Freddie and now it’s interesting. Folk Hero Culberson struck out, tarnishing his status, leaving it up to Ender. Ender gets an infield hit to make it 5-4. But Camargo flies out on the first pitch to centerfield to end it.
There are worse things than series splits on the road. There are worse things than games on FB. There are worse announcers than DeRosa and Arencibia. There aren’t much worse things than the Orioles. Go get ‘em.
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