Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Retro Simmons Foolishness

This is from a 2002 mailbag, but Simmons recently referenced it on his twitter, so here we go:

Speaking of hitting streaks, we're nearing the 15th anniversary of my favorite hitting streak moment: Aug. 26, 1987, also known as ManningGate.

Which is almost as well known as, the as of yet to happen, ColgateGate.

Here's the scene: Milwaukee's Paul Molitor has a 39-game hit streak going, playing at home against the Indians. It's 0-0 in the 10th inning. Moiltor [sic, nice work ESPN editor guy] still doesn't have a hit.

0/4 with a SO and a GDP.

Two Brewers reach base -- first and second, one out, pinch-hitter Rick Manning at the plate, and Molitor on deck with one last chance to keep the streak alive.

Again, just to make it clear, Molitor has already had four chances to get a hit.

So what happens? Manning singles to win the game!

That's the craziest thing I've ever heard! I'm not sure I believe it.

Swear to God.

I dunno, that still sounds completely implausible.

/checks Baseball-Reference

Alright, you win this round, Simmons.

Manning singlehandedly ended Molitor's streak!

Yes, Manning, along with John Farrel (The Indians starting pitcher) and the rest of The Indians defense, singlehandedly ended Molitor's streak.

My buddy Gus and I are the only two people other than Molitor who remember this;

What were J-Bug and House doing that night!?

we always thought it was the all-time Jerk Move by which all Jerk Moves should be measured. I remember watching the highlights in my basement while we were playing MicroLeague Baseball together; we almost went into shock. Just astounding. I still can't believe it.

Here's a list of Jerk Moves that could've happened to Molitor that night:

- The Indians intentionally walking him every at bat.
- The scorer saying he reached on an error instead of a clear hit (which might have happened because Molitor did reach on an error, but I have no way of seeing footage of the play).
- Ricky Manning taking two steps towards the batter's box, then thinking better of it, returning to the dugout, and bludgeoning Paul Molitor to death with his bat.

All of those examples would be the Jerk Move to end all Jerk Moves (particularly the first one). What's not an all-time jerk move is a career .257/.317/.341 hitter hitting a pinch hit single to win a game for a team that was in 3rd place in its division in late August.

And just for the record, I'm not just asking for a "Baseball Tonight" feature about ManningGate, I'm demanding it.

Well good news/bad news, Bill, but ManningGate would take away precious time for discussion on the Yankees/Red Sox rivalry, so that feature's never going to happen on Baseball Tonight. Maybe you could produce a 30 for 30 called "The Two Mannings" which makes an extremely tenuous connection between Ricky Manning dicking over Paul Molitor and Eli Manning cheating the Patriots out of the 2007-2008 Superbowl by throwing the helmet catch to a wide-receiver who was a really mediocre NFL player.


Anonymous said...

How can anyone that holds such a delusional opinion be paid millions of dollars by ESPN? I presume Bill thinks Manning should have intentionally made an out or only looked to draw a walk just so Molitor could bat again, all the while jeopardizing his teams chances to win the game?

Also, anyone who adds the suffix "gate" onto anything to show some sort of scandal needs to be punched in cock.

Biggus Rickus said...

If only that break in had happened at a Hilton.

Chris W said...

The all-time jerk move: trying to win a game for your team and not letting a player get a 5th at bat for an accomplishment that wasn't even a record.

I wonder what Shithead Simmons thinks about Ken Keltner

your favourite sun said...

I really want to believe that Simmons was being deliberately oblique, or hyperbolic for the sake of being hyperbolic...but then I remind myself of who we're talking about. He's just not that fucking clever.

Chris W said...

Let's go inside da mind of a...Bill Simmons

Oh shit...Paul of da steakiest hitting battas in da LEAGUE. I put the incident on my BACK

Tonus said...

He just ruined all of my fond memories of Microleague Baseball.