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Mike Bishop

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 10:00 AM

I received an e-mail today telling me that []Mike Bishop[/url] died in Bakersfield, CA on February 8, 2005.

I did a quick search and couldn't find independent confirmation.

The person who wrote to me is involved in minor league baseball, so perhaps he knows something that the media hasn't picked up on.

Anybody else hear anything about this?

Jun 29 2005 10:06 AM

The media's probably not going to get too worked up over obscure former backup catchers, but you'd think it would show up in an obit somewhere. I checked the [u:ccfd699701]Bakersfield Californian[/u:ccfd699701] obit archives, but came up blank.

Jun 29 2005 10:13 AM

Baseball Almanac says Bishop is still living..

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 10:14 AM

So does Retrosheet.

Johnny Dickshot
Jun 29 2005 10:16 AM

I couldn't find anything either.

Believe me, I did a lot of research around Mike Bishop in the past -- even wrote him a letter once (never returned). From that mbtn guy:

A seven-year Minor League vet, Mike Bishop was recalled on April 16 1983, despite hitting .091 in Tidewater, when it became apparent the Mets had activated injured catcher John Stearns from the disabled list too soon and prematurely sent down third-string catcher Ronn Reynolds to make room for him.

The roster move sort of embarrassed the Mets, who had gotten off to a poor start in '83 and were counting on a return from Stearns to boost the team's and the fans' spirits. And it was that unfulfilled need for a positive PR pop, as much as anything, that made them two weeks later designate Bishop for assignment and promote the raw but talented rookie Darryl Strawberry.

Bishop, who had hit .125 with a double in 3 games with the Mets, never appeared in the Majors again.

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 10:21 AM

Maybe he didn't return your letter because he knew that he'd eventually be dead.

(That doesn't make a lot of sense, does it?)

I've written back to the guy who told me about it. Maybe he can point me to some kind of confirmation.

In the meantime, a no-prize to whoever here can find something first.

Jun 29 2005 10:25 AM

Strange question, but why would someone randomly e-mail you and tell you Mike Bishop is dead? It must be a relative who was checking out his profile on the UMDB. Weird.

I had never even heard of the guy before this thread.

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 10:32 AM

I wouldn't call it a "random" e-mail. He was telling me that there was an entry missing from the Necrology. I get a lot of e-mail from visitors offering additonal information or corrections. Some of it is, unfortunately, wrong. A recent example was somebody who wrote to me saying that Joe Randa should have been included on the all-time roster.

Edgy DC
Jun 29 2005 11:39 AM

For all his obscurity, Bishop remains interesting because (1) he was clearly an accidental major leaguer (i.e. he didn't earn his promotion but was in the right place at the right time, requiring not only an injury and talent shortage, but a paperwork error), and (2) he was the player optioned down when the Mets promoted the most highly anticipated and most accomplished batter their system ever produced.

You'd've figured him to be a good bet to outlive Darryl Strawberry. Hope your correspondent is wrong.

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 11:49 AM

I agree, but I suspect he's probably right. Which would mean that Mike Bishop didn't live much past his 46th birthday.

The source appears to be a reliable one. He's the executive director of []this museum[/url].

Jun 29 2005 11:52 AM

Well I've searched high and low, I did find this about Mike, he played for a team called the Brooklyn Bombers.

Edgy DC
Jun 29 2005 12:02 PM

He lives on in sim leagues.

Diamond Dad
Jun 29 2005 12:12 PM
no obit

no obit in FACTIVA database for this year.

Edgy DC
Jun 29 2005 12:28 PM

I wrote to the editor of the Santa Maria Times asking for a confirmation.

He attended Righetti High School in Santa Maria and was drafted as a third baseman. I'll see if they have an alumni association.

On edit: Got it. February eighth.

Rest in peace, Mike Bishop.

Jun 29 2005 12:58 PM

Good work.

Rest in peace.

Jun 29 2005 01:15 PM

Nice job, Edgy.

Yancy Street Gang
Jun 29 2005 01:17 PM

Thank you!

I'll officially record Mr. Bishop's death this evening.

It's strange that his death wasn't covered in his local paper. Of course, it was almost five months ago. The article may have expired.

Edgy DC
Jun 29 2005 01:18 PM

Didn't find anything in the archives for the Santa Maria or the Bakersfield locals.

Jun 29 2005 06:39 PM

Nice detective work, Edgy.
Did you ever consider a job with the FBI?


Jun 29 2005 06:40 PM

EDIT: dupe post.
Silly fingers.


Jun 29 2005 06:41 PM

Or WP or IP/SK could recruit you to be a librarian.