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Should They Have Gone to Gooden?

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 08:12 PM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Sep 06 2005 10:03 PM

When Mookie Wilson hit the grounder between Bill Buckner's legs, the Mets had already tied it. According to a recent interview with John Gibbons that I read, he didn't see the play because he was warming Dwight Gooden up. I may have once known that Gooden had been warming to go in at that point, but I had forgotten.

The question --- should Johnson have used Gooden, had Buckner made the play and the game remained tied and the teams gone to the eleventh?

His numbers

Dwight Gooden
PeriodGIPWLPct.HRERHRSOBBGSCGShOSvERA
Season33250.0176.739197927917200803312202.84
LCS217.001.000162219520001.06
WS29.002.0001710829420008.00


Gooden had last pitched two days before and put up the following unpretty little line: 4.0 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO.

Now, the Mets had already burned McDowell, Orosco, and Aguilera, in addition to their starting pitcher, Bob Ojeda, so, while there were good options, there were no obvious ones. The rest of the Mets pen included.

Ron Darling
PeriodGIPWLPct.HRERHRSOBBGSCGShOSvERA
Season34237.0156.71420384742118481344202.81
LCS15.000.00054415210007.20
WS214.011.500710012920000.00


Sid Fernandez
PeriodGIPWLPct.HRERHRSOBBGSCGShOSvERA
Season32204.1166.72716182801320091312113.52
LCS16.001.00033325110004.50
WS24.100.00061106000002.08


Doug Sisk
PeriodGIPWLPct.HRERHRSOBBGSCGShOSvERA
Season4170.242.6677731240313100013.06
LCS11.000.00010000100000.00
WS10.200.00000001100000.00


Randy Niemann
PeriodGIPWLPct.HRERHRSOBBGSCGShOSvERA
Season3135.223.4004417152181210003.79
LCS00.000.00000000000000.00
WS00.000.00000000000000.00


Obviously, another important issue is rest. Darling was scheduled to go in game seven, but they could have theoretically went with him (he had been brilliant thus far) and still had Fernandez and Gooden for the clincher, along with the regular penners, with Ojeda and Darling perhaps available for emergency duty.

Innings Pitched by Game
Pitcher10/1810/1910/2110/2210/24
Gooden0.05.00.00.04.0
Darling7.00.00.07.00.0
Fernandez0.00.10.00.04.0
Sisk0.00.20.00.00.0
Niemann0.00.00.00.00.0


So, it's two days later, now, everything on the line, with one game left to go if the team survives, without the benefit of hindsight. To whom do you turn the ball over to and why?

Oh, and who was due up for Boston, and their 1986 numbers.

PlayerOPS vs. LHOPS vs. RH
Evans.760.885
Gedman.557.800
Henderson*.831.780
Owen*.750.580


*Combined numbers for Seattle and Boston are shown.

Zvon
Sep 06 2005 08:16 PM

very interesting post Edge.
Ill give this some thought.

Elster88
Sep 06 2005 09:11 PM

I would say, no, do not go to Gooden. 'Course, just because he was warmin' doesn't mean he's comin' in. But it's all speculatin' which is fun.
_____________________________
This post had the designation 162) Mike Phillips

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 09:13 PM

But to whom would you have gone?

mlbaseballtalk
Sep 06 2005 09:49 PM

Sid. No question.

Doc was innefective all series (and except for Game 5 of the NLCS he really had a poor PS)

Could have been a decoy

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 10:04 PM

Yeah, well, keep in mind that I screwed up my report. Sid, like Dwight, had thrown four innings two days before.

Spacemans Bong
Sep 06 2005 10:08 PM

mlbaseballtalk wrote:
Sid. No question.

Doc was innefective all series (and except for Game 5 of the NLCS he really had a poor PS)

Could have been a decoy


Well, Doc was alright in Game 1 of the NLCS. Just Mike Scott was even better.

ABG
Sep 06 2005 10:13 PM

Given what Sid did the next game, I wouldn't have brought him in. :D

Of course, thats totally unfair. Yeah, I woulda gone to Sid.

mlbaseballtalk
Sep 06 2005 10:18 PM

Edgy DC wrote:
Yeah, well, keep in mind that I screwed up my report. Sid, like Dwight, had thrown four innings two days before.


True but
A) Darling has to start Game 7. Sure its win or go home but I am NOT starting Randy Niemann in Game 7 of a World Series

and
B) Imagine the riot that would have broken out at Shea if Doug Sisk was brought in to hold off the Sox? Augie got saved by the Mets' rally, but Augie gets off scot free for the Henderson homer (granted Augie went on to have a most excellent career as a closer but still) if Sisk gave up a run? I shudder to think of the reaction. Only way Sisk gets in if the clincher was such a blowout that Davey felt like giving a "long time trooper" like Sisk a chance to hurl a WS inning

So its either Sid (experience in pitching relief with 1 game in the RS, and 2 in the postseason, okay little, but its still experience) or Niemann, or Doc (no relief experience)

I'd save Doc as the "ace in the hole" for the clincher and use Sid right away with Niemann milling around in the pen

Steve

mlbaseballtalk
Sep 06 2005 10:23 PM

BTW without going to Retro Sheet (or the worn out copy of the Sports Encylopedia: Baseball: The World Series book) how many pitches did Doc and Sid throw in Game 5?

Yancy Street Gang
Sep 06 2005 10:24 PM

If I remember right, and I think I do, Sisk was warmed up and ready to pitch the 11th. I don't think anyone else was throwing in the bullpen that inning.

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 10:25 PM

As suggested above, I don't think going to Darling there means that Niemann starts game seven.

mlbaseballtalk
Sep 06 2005 10:34 PM

Edgy DC wrote:
As suggested above, I don't think going to Darling there means that Niemann starts game seven.


True, but 86 was right about the time that arms were being "baybied" and such so I doubt the Mets would have wanted Darling to start the day after going who knows how many innings

I know pitchers have done the none/one/two days thing after starting, but the day before a start? (hindsight of course since Game 7 was rained out)

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 10:46 PM

Mlb ---Well, what I actually said above wasn't at all an endorsement of returning to Darling to start game seven, but that Fernandez could start, with Gooden and the regular penners available as well.

Yancy --- Yeah, I thought that Sisk was next, also, but then I just read this interview in which John Gibbons says he "thinks" he was warming up Gooden. He could be mis-remembering, but I've never confused Gooden and Sisk, and warming up a team's 21-year-old ace starter to go in for his first relief appearance during a World Series extra-inning must-win game is the type of thing you remember.

Johnny Dickshot
Sep 06 2005 11:04 PM

I have no idea. I don't get the impression Davey was a big Sisk fan. Maybe Sid. I don't know.

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 11:21 PM

If Johnson was crazy enough to play matchup with the last guy in his pen, Niemann had a Coolie High LOOGy split

Vs. Lefties: .217 / .321 / .348 // .669
Vs. Righties: .351 / .379 / .423 // .802

Of course, he walked a lot of them lefties, and if he walked either Evans or Gedman with Henderson coming up, it's particularly scary.

metirish
Sep 06 2005 11:26 PM

Great thread, I wish I was a baseball fan back then.

Edgy DC
Sep 06 2005 11:35 PM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Sep 07 2005 09:42 AM

Siskie, for all the hate residuals he was still drawing in from his 1985 season, had given up no homers in 41 games and 70.2 innings.

Which, of course, you've got to do if you're going to be jetting around the country with a 1:1 K:BB ratio.

I have half an instinct, as the home team, to try and clear the inning with Niemann first and Sisk in reserve. The pitcher batted second the next inning. They can go to their starters after that, if necessary.

I'm not at all sure I'd do that though. If they lose the series with Sisk on the mound, my name is Mudd.

Valadius
Sep 06 2005 11:43 PM

I wish I was ALIVE back then. I was merely a fetus, 3 1/2 months away from being born.

Zvon
Sep 06 2005 11:55 PM

this is tuff but fun to figure.

My initial reaction was similar to many here.
Niemans a lefty but i dont even consider him in that spot.
Id have gotten Sid and Gooden up,(or Sid and Sisk) and if Fernandez was showing his 'stuff', go with Sid.
I remember seeing how he used to just stymie betters at times.
And mostly with his off speed stuff and wicked curve set up with heat.

Your playing at home, and have to play one inning at a time at that point. Id have to think I want a lefty here cause I want those 1st two outs real bad in Bostons half. Thats my priority. One line of thought is go to Fernandez for Evans and Redman, then go to Sisk or Gooden for Hernandez and Owen. Just keep it tied until you can get to your half of the inning again.
That could backfire badly tho if the game goes many more innings.

With the offensive numbers that the '86 Mets put together, I would not expect them to go into a coma at the plate for too many innings in a row.
Beyond Schiraldi and Stanley, Boston pen wasnt the best. Crawford, Sambito, Id a liked my odds facin them at home in extra frames.

Sid could surely go 2 in that spot if you want to play it that way too, and get some mileage out of him. Cause if the game goes 14 or more innings, your in trouble. Sisk would have to follow Sid and then Niemann. Then Gooden. Id really want to save Darling and Gooden(not effective or dominating:/emergency:out of the pen) for game 7. Then you have those 2 plus McDowell, Aguilara, and Orosco, (who you would go to before Gooden as well).

I dont remember Fernandez giving up many gopher balls (Id like to have those numbers). I remember seein him go on streaks of retireing batter after batter in a row. I would have to work my way backwards at that point, and live one inning at a time. Who had the best 'stuff' at that moment and could keep us alive?
If Sid showed his usual 'stuff' warmin up in the pen he would be the best choice.

Zvon
Sep 06 2005 11:57 PM

Edgy DC wrote:
Siskie, for all the hate residuals he was still drawing in from his 1985 season had given up no homers in 41 games and 70.2 innings.

Which, of course, you've got to do if you're going to be jetting around the country with a 1:1 K:BB ratio.

I have half an instinct, as the home team, to try and clear the inning with Niemann first and Sisk in reserve. The pitcher batted second the next inning. They can go to their starters after that, if necessary.

I'm not at all sure I'd do that though. If they lose the series with Sisk on the mound, my name is Mudd.


lol---it took me like 1/2 hour to type my post above(yep,im a slooooooo typer)

But the homer Sisk homer factor might have changed my perspective.

Zvon
Sep 06 2005 11:59 PM

lets face it, no matter what you end up doing if you lose the game there gonna toss your name in the mudd.

G-Fafif
Sep 07 2005 12:53 AM

="Yancy Street Gang"]If I remember right, and I think I do, Sisk was warmed up and ready to pitch the 11th. I don't think anyone else was throwing in the bullpen that inning.


On May 7, 1987, the Mets and Red Sox played a charity exhibition game at Shea, the second half of their home-and-home from the September before when the Mets traveled to Fenway for a Jimmy Fund exhibition, the one that was hailed as a World Series preview. Needless to say, although '86 was history by May '87, there was more than the usual lack of interest for an in-season game that didn't count. It was played up in some quarters as Game Eight of the 1986 World Series.

Anyway, the most notable thing that happened was Bill Buckner played and got a huge ovation from the Mets' crowd (bad karma to my judgment) plus the Mets won. But relative to this discussion is that on Mets Extra that night (it was in its first season), the trivia question Howie Rose asked was, if the Mets had left Game Six of the World Series tied, who would have pitched the eleventh? And the answer was Doug Sisk. I trust Howie's memory 6-1/2 months removed from the event in question than any ballplayer's nearly 20 years later (though to be fair I couldn't open the link to Gibbons' quote).

Whether Doc should have been warming up is different from whether he was warming up. Hindsight aside, I can't imagine he ever would have been. It was a shock when Davey let Doc pitch 10 innings against Houston in the NLCS. They watched him like a hawk (at least when he was on the mound). Doc didn't make a relief appearance until Game 7 of the '88 NLCS when things were just about as hopeless. He did OK but it didn't matter against Hershiser.

It would be interesting to see stats on starters who did nothing but start across a season when they were thrown into emergency-type relief in the post-season (as opposed to Sid being assigned to the pen as he was in the WS). It always seems like such a good idea but it also backfires at least (a guess) half the time. Charlie Liebrandt in the 1991 World Series springs to mind. Kevin Brown as a Padre made it work one game and then didn't the next game. Those who screamed for John Smoltz, then strictly a starter, in Game 5 of the '99 NLCS (instead of the parade of Kevin McGlinchys) were first satisfied then humbled when the Mets rocked him in Game 6. On the other hand, bleeping Mussina and Wells kept the MFYs alive in Game 7 against the Red Sox in 2003; Javier Vazquez did not do the same a year later.

Edgy, thanks for taking our minds a little bit off current affairs, affairs which are mighty blowsome tonight.

Elster88
Sep 07 2005 09:52 AM

]Doc didn't make a relief appearance until Game 7 of the '88 NLCS when things were just about as hopeless. He did OK but it didn't matter against Hershiser.


More than okay if I remember correctly. Didn't he come in at 6-0 in the second, which was the final score?
_____________________________
This post had the designation 162) Mike Phillips

Edgy DC
Sep 07 2005 09:54 AM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Sep 07 2005 10:00 AM

Well, if the Toronto Star can't give me a better URL to link to than akfjsl;dfak ;knv;tku igaikrt90ap, they deserve to get copied.

Aw shucks, it's Gibby
Blue Jay manager tells Allan Ryan he isn't the smartest guy in the world, but here he is in the bigs and he's got `great patience


With Gibby, what you see is what you get," Blue Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi was saying the other day of his manager and old friend, John Gibbons. "He's just a real down-home guy."

Except, even Ricciardi had to admit with a laugh, when it comes to the perception that behind Gibbons' soft Texas drawl, behind his "aw shucks" laid-back nature, there's a fierce competitor who's a lot smarter than he lets people know.

"It's not," said Ricciardi with genuine affection, "like he's Deputy Dawg, you know."

They go way back these two to 1981, when they were teammates and roommates for a Mets' Class-A affiliate. Gibbons had been a first-round draft pick (24th overall) two summers earlier, a one-time serious catching prospect who ended up playing in nearly 1,200 minor-league games but in two brief stints with the Mets, in 1984 and '86, logged just 50 at-bats.

Managing, though, has proved another story. Twice named his league's manager of the year for the Mets organization, the 43-year-old Gibbons, now into the final month of his first full season as a major-league skipper, has calmly piloted the often underpowered Jays to the verge of contending status.

Known as a players' manager with a knack for getting the most out of his charges, Gibbons, who calls San Antonio home (with wife Julie and kids Jordan, Troy and Kyle), is also about as Texan as they come. For a guy born in Great Falls, Montana.

You were about 10 or 11 when the Air Force finally transferred your dad to Houston but, despite a lot of moving around as a kid Montana, Maine, Massachusetts, Puerto Rico, even Goose Bay, Labrador Texas seems clearly where the heart is.

Have I lived there all my life? No. Do I consider myself a Texan? Yeah, you bet.

What do you remember of Goose Bay?

Blackflies everywhere.

Turns out that's where you first played baseball despite the fact you wouldn't get out of the car for team tryouts.

I think that was about 1968, so I'd have been 6. I was scared to death. I wouldn't go. Luckily, one of the guys that worked in my dad's office was a coach of one of the teams. They just put me on it.

And a dozen years later, the Mets made you a first-round pick. Any bitterness, regrets, that the playing career didn't turn out more as promised?

There were a couple of injuries but I had plenty of opportunities. If I'd have played better, I would've got another shot. I got there fast, gave it what I had but, when I struggled, I had trouble dealing with it. I lost my confidence and never really regained it. I was never bitter. And I did get to be a part of a world championship team in 1986 a small part, a couple of months anyway (as bullpen catcher with the Mets).

Did you actually get to see the Bill Buckner error?

I think I was warming up (Dwight) Gooden at the time.

Given your contrasting natures, how was it you became such good friends with J.P. Ricciardi as minor-league teammates?

Yeah, he's New England, the East coast, kind of a high-strung guy and I'm more of a slow-moving, laid-back, southern boy, I guess you'd say. I don't really know why we hit it off so good. I guess we had a lot in common.

Any way you could tell back then, where either of you was headed?

I never knew I'd end up like this, and J.P. ... well, I knew he had it in him. He was a thinker, always had something to say. He had a good mind for baseball.

How much of a factor did that friendship play when Ricciardi hired you on as bullpen coach for 2002?

It didn't hurt. It got me in the door. I don't take anything for granted, but this whole business is that way.

Know the right person and they'll give you the opportunity but no guarantees. You've got to take advantage of the opportunity or, you know, somebody else shows up.

Your comfort foods?

Pizza. Green peppers and mushrooms, that's all I ever have on 'em. And, if not pizza, ice cream a big ol' hot fudge sundae, man.

Which ballplayer would you most like to have seen?

Mickey Mantle. Speed, power, a big-time Yankee hall of famer.

Which three people would you most like to have dinner with?

Colin Powell, because I respect what he's done, how he came from nowhere to lead the nation's military. Ronald Reagan, who I've always admired, a big-time leader who said his piece. And ... I guess I'll say Mantle.

Movies? Television?

I like war movies. My favourite all-time's The Green Berets. John Wayne. I like Tom Cruise, Bruce Willis, those action guys. TV, I'm not a big sit-com guy but I love watching news shows. Bill O'Reilly. Every now and then, I'll watch Fear Factor, because my kids are watching it. And Monday Night Football, that's something I'll watch.

And something you also played, with typical passion, in high school.

Yeah. Down in Texas, football's kind of bred into you. I was a fullback. Never fumbled. Needed a yard? I'd getcha it. If I'd have had a little more size, a little more speed, I'd have loved to have done that, but I had a good senior year (in baseball) and got drafted. Actually, I got invited to a Cincinnati Reds' try-out camp after my junior year and that kind of sparked me to give baseball a push.

On making the Mets out of spring training in 1984, what was the most eye-popping major-league perk you can remember?

We got on the charter in St. Petersburg and they were serving caviar. I didn't eat any of it but I thought, "My God, I guess it is as good as they say it is." And there wasn't a whole lot of letdown after that, either. It was pretty much the royal treatment. The thing about the big leagues is everybody caters to you.

Your best quality as a manager?

Being fair, being honest. I've also got great patience. You learn the most when you're going bad, right?

How did you get from playing to coaching?

I was with the Phillies' Triple-A my last year, 1990. At the time, I was thinking about just walking away. I'd just got to the point where I was burned out as a player and I thought, you know, it was time to make a different career choice. Then the Mets called. Their roving catching instructor was retiring, so I wound up doing that for a couple of years. This (managing) naturally evolved.

If you could, what one thing would you change about yourself?

I don't know, a little more self-discipline maybe. I'm a compulsive guy. When it comes to eating, whatever I do.

Your guilty pleasure?

A little dip of tobacco. I feel guilty doing it but it's very pleasurable. I've cut back, plan on quitting this year, this winter. But it's addictive, it's tough.

Your greatest fears?

I can do it, but I'm not real good at public speaking. It's not something I really enjoy doing. I don't like heights, either, and, for the longest time, I never really enjoyed flying. But I figured that, if you're flying with a major-league team and you go down, at least, you'll get your name in the paper.

You met your wife when she was going to college in San Antonio. Was she impressed you were a ballplayer?

Nope. This game doesn't do anything for her. She comes to the game 'cause the kids want to come to the game. She's been very supportive.

Where do you live in Toronto and how do you spend your free time in the city?

I'm in a condo over here by Gretzky's (just north of the Rogers Centre). I enjoy going out, just walking around but, basically, my life's here (in his clubhouse office) or there. I like quiet. I've been called a loner and probably am.

And your digs in San Antonio?

It's just in a little sub-division, maybe 20 miles from downtown. It's probably just a quarter-acre plot, a two-storey house. My parents live on about eight acres. (If) we want to get away, we go out there. I've got a couple of buddies who have ranches, farms. I'll go there for a little hunting or fishing.

And what about the suggestion that you're sharper than you let on?

Nawwww. I'm not the smartest guy in the world and never claimed to be. I'm just a guy that's been given a rare opportunity and trying to make the most of it, doing it my way the only way I know how.

Elster88
Sep 07 2005 09:56 AM

]A little dip of tobacco. I feel guilty doing it but it's very pleasurable.


Really?
_____________________________
This post had the designation 162) Mike Phillips

Edgy DC
Sep 07 2005 10:05 AM
Edited 1 time(s), most recently on Sep 07 2005 10:38 AM

Gooden went three innings of one-hit ball, with two walks and one strikeout. Darlin' had gotten singled to death in the second before getting an out. Jefferies had made a big error, and Backman error also cost the Mets after Gooden came in.

Gooden had thrown 8.1 three days earlier.

Elster88
Sep 07 2005 10:13 AM

Edgy DC wrote:
Gooden went three innings of one-hit ball, with two walks and one strikeout. Darlin' had gotten singled to death in the second before getting an out. Jefferies had made a big error, and Backman error also cost the Mets after Gooden came in.

Gooden had thrown 8.1 three games earlier.

One of the worst days of my life. Each inning was excruciating, and this I was amazingly (for me, anyway) sure that we had no chance of Hershiser. I still can't believe I liked this guy 11 years later. He was the first person I ever hated. I didn't even hate Mike Scott.