January 27, 2010

1979 World Series Live Blog: Game 2 - Palmer vs. Blyleven

BALTIMORE, Md. / October 11, 1979

6:58 - Greetings from Baltimore. It's going to be another cold one tonight, it's 45 degrees now and dropping. Field conditions are still soggy like in Game 1, but the game's supposed to start once Jim Palmer finishes his warm up pitches.
7:01 - It will be nice to get home, not only to the home fans, but to my Atari and the entralling game Adventure. But for now we've got another one in Baltimore.
7:02 - Palmer's feuds with his manager Earl Weaver are legendary.
7:04 - Boy, Jim Palmer loves to warm up. He's saying in a pregame interview that he won't be affected by the lack of the high fastball strike with a National League umpire.
7:05 - And a reminder, with the Pirates already down 1-0 in games, there's a lot at stake for me personally as I've vowed to shave my head and write a depressing song about this year if the Pirates can't win it.

Top of the 1st
7:07 - We're finally going to get underway. John Lowenstein is in left again despite his injury.
7:09 - I only thought we would get underway. Howard Cosell has been saying one sentence for the past two minutes. There's Eddie Murray at first, a great hitter and fielder for a young guy.
7:10 - A side note to my readers, post comments if you're interested in taking a little trip this December to see The Who in Cincinnati. We're going to get there early and try to beat the crowds to front row seats.
7:11 - Omar Moreno is working the count here and hitting a few foul balls. He was one of the goats yesterday going 0-5 with a few key outs.
7:12 - And he grounds a 2-2 pitch up the middle for a hit. Palmer said in today's Pittsburgh Press that he would rather make Omar hit a fastball than walk him, because he'll automatically get to second. I bet he's stealing on the first pitch. Tim Foli up.
7:13 - Moreno's going on a 2-0 pitch, and Foli - a great hit and run man - pops out foul to first. And a big mental mistake by Moreno as he fails to get back to first. What a horrendous decision. Now there's nobody on for Dave Parker.
7:15 - Parker grounds to third and is barely thrown out by Doug DeCinces. 0-0 with the Orioles coming up.

Bottom of the 1st
7:18 - And we're back. Al Bumbry leading off for the O's against Bert Blyleven.
7:19 - As you know Blyleven is a control pitcher who has has the best curve in baseball.
7:20 - My wife called during the break to ask if we have 200 dollars to spend on some kind of a tape player that you can carry with you. Ha! I cannot imagine walking around on the street, listening to music on headphones like you're in a recording studio. What a joke.
7:22 - Al Bumbry grounds out finally. Mark Belanger up.
7:24 - Apparently Belanger is an amazing hitter against Blyleven, and Bert starts him 3-0. But he flies to the warning track in left. Didn't think he could hit it that far.
7:25 - By the way, Ed Ott is catching today. And WHOOAH current batter Kenny Singleton has quite a wife.
7:26 - Keith Jackson and Howard Cosell agree.
7:27 - And Singleton grounds out to Phil Garner at second. I'll try to get a picture of Ken's wife up during the break.

Top of the 2nd
7:30 p.m. - There she is. I'd let her buy a 200 dollar miniature tape player for sure.
7:31 - Willie Stargell batting with the bases empty. 32 home runs on the year plus another one last night.
7:32 - And 461 career homers. A sure Hall of Famer facing another one in Jim Palmer.
7:33 - Palmer just 10-6 on the year but he won 20 games eight times this decade. And Stargell singles to right!
7:33 - John Milner batting. He's the lefthanded part of the Pirates' left field platoon, .276 on the year with 16 home runs.
7:34 - And Milner singles too. Bill Madlock batting with a chance for a real good early rally.
7:36 - Speculation about bunting. No way I'd bunt with a man batting who owns a .320 career average.
7:37 - Madlock gets a fastball high and lines one to right center! Stargell is in to score and Milner is on third in scoring position for Ed Ott. 1-0.
7:38 - Ed Ott has been talking about wanting children in the next couple years, maybe a girl named Michelle. And he hits a sacrifice fly to right scoring Milner! 2-0 Pirates.
7:39 - Phil Garner is up, a dangerous hitter in the 8 hole with 11 home runs to go with his .293 average.
7:40 - Madlock tries to steal second and he's a dead duck there. What a terrible decision. Two out now with nobody on. Palmer can't find the plate unless it's a fastball down the middle, and you give him another out.
7:41 - And Garner grounds out to Belanger. I love the 2-0 lead but Palmer didn't have anything that inning. We could have chased him. Sammy Stewart was already warming up for Baltimore.

Bottom of the 2nd
7:44 - Eddie Murray up as the O's look to get something back here in the second.
7:44 - He's established himself as a top RBI guy for the O's, but the question is can he keep it up over a long career.
7:45 - Did he hear me? Home run and a long one down the right field line. Back to 2-1 that quickly, and Doug DeCinces is up now.
7:46 - And he grounds out to third. John Lowenstein is up now. He hit .254 this year with 11 home runs in his first year with the O's.
7:48 - Full count. We're informed that Bert Blyleven's father delivers molasses to cattle ranches out West.
7:49 - And he walks. There's Bill Madlock at third base in the picture. Second baseman Billy Smith is up.
7:51 - By the way, this is the first World Series since Pol Pot's government was overthrown in Cambodia. You would have expected forcibly evacuating the cities and having everybody farm the land to work great.
7:52 - Billy Smith lines to his second base counterpart Phil Garner, who almost doubles off Lowenstein. Two out.
7:54 - Blyleven is being really careful hear with the 8 hitter Rick Dempsey.
7:55 - Dempsey grounds one up the middle. Foli makes a good play to get to the ball but bobbles it while Lowenstein goes to third.
7:55 - And now Jim Palmer is up. If memory serves he was a pretty good hitter before the DH went in six years ago.
7:56 - Yep, he hit .224 in 1972. But it's 0-2 quickly. Doubt he ever got a hit off a Blyleven curve.
7:57 - Jim Palmer strikes out, and it's 2-1 heading into the third inning.

Top of the 3rd
7:59 - Back underway in a minute with Bert Blyleven leading off.
8:00 - Of course the Pirates could have turned the lineup over without Madlock's ill advised steal.
8:01 - He hit that one pretty well but Al Bumbry runs it down in center field.
8:02 - Omar Moreno up, 1-1 on the day.
8:03 - Moreno strikes out. Two out.
8:03 - Moreno now is 1 for 6 on the series, and he made a dumb out on the basepaths the one time he got on.
8:04 - What is your pick for best movie of the decade? Mine is Alien but there were a lot of great ones. I can't wait for 1980s cinema though, I'm rooting for another Godfather movie and maybe more in the Rocky series.
8:05 - Tim Foli singles on a pop up down the right field line. He's on now with two out for Dave Parker.
8:06 - Wild pitch, Foli to second and now Parker can make it 3-1 with a hit - and he had 193 this year.
8:07 - And Jim Palmer gets Parker to ground out, still 2-1 going to the bottom of the 3rd.
8:08 - Palmer gets credit for keeping his team in the game on a night when he clearly doesn't have his best stuff.

Bottom of the 3rd
8:12 - Al Bumbry flies out to lead off the 3rd.
8:14 - Mark Belanger, .167 on the season, is up and he's hitless in the series.
8:14 - Dave Parker drops a fly ball and Belanger makes it to second base! Keith Jackson on play by play criticizes him for trying the one handed catch.
8:15 - Costly error with Ken Singleton due up. .295, 35 home runs, and - the best measure of hitting - 111 RBI.
8:16 - Oh and just a gem of a play by Phil Garner on a ball in the hole between first and second. Belanger to third on the groundout but there are two out for Eddie Murray.
8:17 - Speaking of movies, I'm already seeing ads for a new one called Star Trek. I'm excited to see a good sci-fi flick without having to sit through three movies to know the whole story like Star Wars.
8:18 - Murray walks, and they pitched around him right there. Doug DeCinces is up, an accomplished hitter but no Eddie Murray.
8:20 - And DeCinces grounds out to shortstop. Keith Jackson still harping on Parker's carelessness catching the ball with one hand. After that play, I bet you'll see a lot more people using two hands in the coming decades. And the Bucs lead 2-1 heading to the 4th.


  1. Excited to go see The Who in Cinci. It's going to be one of those nights where nothing can go wrong.

  2. Blyleven is surely a future hall of famer, no questions asked. First ballot.

  3. Im pretty sure it'd be impossible to mess up a Godfather movie or a Rocky movie.

  4. Palmer will be gone next inning. Calling a Stargell HR right now.