Glenn Guzzo

 

 
 
 
GREAT MOMENTS IN STRAT
 
Have you experienced a game of Strat-O-Matic so thrilling, unique or bizarre that you just HAVE to share it with someone? That would be us. Send your Great Moments in Strat to SOMTalkShow@aol.com. Please include your name and hometown. Readers like to see that and you deserve the credit.
 
 
Sticking to a Game Plan Works
 
            I’ve gotta tell you about a game I just finished.  In my custom league, the ‘90 Bills played at the ‘72 Dolphins.  I always play as the home team.  On the second play of the game, Paul Warfield was injured for the rest of the game.  At halftime, Bob Griese was 2 for 9 for 24 yards, but Mercury Morris had already run for exactly 100 yards.  I decided to concentrate on the run in the second half.   Good decision. I ran the ball every single play in the second half and Miami ended up with 359 yards rushing, the most I ever remember, and I’ve been playing SOM football since 1972.  Morris ended up with 141, Jim Kiick had 92, Larry Csonka had 75 and 2 TDs, Hubert Ginn had 35, and Charlie Leigh had 16.   Miami controlled the ball for 20:55 in that 2nd half and won, 19-0.   I thought about throwing it a couple times, but if it ain’t broke ...

                         Mark D. Harrington, Everett, WA
 
 
One Day, Two Near-No-Hitters
 
            I’m doing a 1976 as-played replay. On April 27, Nolan Ryan faced the Baltimore Orioles and went eight innings without allowing a hit. In the 9th inning, Tommy Harper walked. Paul Blair then slapped a single to right. Ryan set down the next three Orioles to earn a 4-1 win. One day later on April 28, Bert Blyleven had a no-hitter against the Indians for 8 2/3 innings until Buddy Bell singled to left to break it up. Quite a Saturday morning for me!
 
Matt Runyon, Snowflake, AZ
 
 
One Team, One Week, Two No-Hitters
 
     I recently sent you an account of John Smoltz’s no-hitter in the Gentlemen’s Base Ball League. Smoltz’s rookie teammate, ‘07 Chris Young, was enthralled as he witnessed the gem and sought Smoltz’s advice for his next outing. Well, three days after Smoltz’s masterpiece, young Young (not an Asian) toed the rubber against a decimated first-place Zurich Zephyrs’ squad.
 
            Young, of course, dominates right-handed batters. The Zephyrs were down three players, due to injuries: Brian Roberts, Carlos Beltran, and Milton Bradley, so they had only three portside swingers in the starting lineup. You guessed it. Young unfurled a no-hitter of his own, as he fanned 13 and walked four. Victor Martinez rapped into a twin-killing, and Josh Hamilton was tossed out on a stolen base attempt, so Young faced only 29 batters.
 
            Young’s teammates provided four runs, as Jorge Posada stroked two doubles as part of his “3-for-3” performance. The 4-0 game consumed 2:45 with 39,980 very lucky fans on hand in the Zephyrs’ home park, 2004 Houston.
 
            The Zephyrs lineup included ‘06 Derek Jeter, ‘07 Chipper Jones, ‘06 Manny Ramirez, ‘06 Albert Pujols, ‘06 Jermaine Dye, ‘07 Victor Martinez, ‘07 Josh Hamilton, ‘07 Mark Ellis, and ‘07 Josh Beckett. ‘07 Mark Teixeira pinch-batted in the ninth inning. Ramirez, Pujols, Dye, and Hamilton were the recipients of walks.
                                                                                                                                                         Rick Zaborsky, Dublin, OH
 
 
The Unstoppable Chuck Klein
 
            I’ve been playing Strat-O-Matic since 1964. The most memorable performance I’ve seen is the 1930 Chuck Klein. He went 4-for-4, hitting 4 home runs. Two were grand slams and the other two were three-run shots for a total of 14 RBI. He led is team to a 22-5 victory over the Chicago Cubs.
Unsigned
[Note: the Major League record for RBI in a game is 12.]
 
 
Fireworks Galore
 
            In the third game of a three-game series, the 1972 Oakland A’s (who hit three home runs in each of the first two games, six total) blasted the 1972 Astros 13-1 to sweep the series. The A’s set an all time record (40 years of playing) by blasting NINE home runs. My previous record is seven, first set by the 1965 Reds vs. the 1969 Mets (seven of the first 17 batters homered) and later tied when the 1970 Orioles beat the 1969 Braves with Boog Powell hitting the home run cycle, all on 1 column rolls, (solo HR, two-run HR, three-run HR and a slam).
 
            Let me see, since this is so fresh, if I can recollect the rolls.
 
            Bottom first, Campy Campaneris singles and steals second. Sal Bando rolls a 1-4 for a two-run home run (exactly as game 1 started). Mike Epstein homers later in the first but I can not recall the exact roll.
 
            In the A’s fifth, leading 5-0, Joe Rudi greets reliever Jim Ray with a 3-4 roll for a home run. Up steps Reggie Jackson, who is hitless in the series and he rolls a 1-9 for his home run. Four homers after five innings.
 
            The A’s get lucky in the 6th as both light-hitting infielders, Tim Cullen and Campaneris roll 4-6 off Ray’s card and both split cards fall in the 1-14 range for two more homers. The A’s have six homers in six innings and are one away from tying my all-time record.
 
            The Astros’ 8th-place hitter makes the last out in the 7th, so Ray is still in there but the A’s get nothing in the 7th. Ken Forsch comes out in the 8th and despite a respectable 3.92 ERA he has a full home run roll on 5-10 and a partial one on 5-9. Bando rolls a 5-10 for a two-run homer and the next batter is Rudi and he rolls a 5-9 and the split roll is a 1, giving the A’s a new Cary record eight home runs. An out later, Epstein rolls a 5-9 and the split roll is a 5 and the A’s have now hit 9 homers in 8 innings.
 
            All I can say is WOW.
 
Cary A. Cardinale Dublin, CA
 
G10K Coming Soon
 
            I’m a long-time reader and first-time writer. I’m turning 30 this summer and have played, on average, 500 games per calendar year. I’ve got a few ongoing projects. My bread and butter is doing a 24-game season with all the current teams including two inter-league games, an unbalanced schedule and then full playoffs. In 1995, I began doing the 1941 complete replay. I’ve also organized a league based on the Hall of Famer set, in addition to the 36 old-timers cards. My friends from high school also started playing around the same time as I did. One did the 1968 replay and last weekend, my buddy finished his 1954 season replay. The six guys in our little league have never played computer and we do all the stats by hand.
 
            In the ‘54 World Series, Sam was the home team for every game. Me and two other guys managed the opposition. In Game 7, (managing Cleveland) I started little-used Bob Feller, going off nothing more than gut and knowing that Mike Garcia was available as soon as he got in trouble. What’s worse is Hegan’s card is ridiculous so I started Naragon behind the plate because he was a lefty. Of course, Vic Wertz never flies out to CF with a man on, but he does crush one in the 2nd inning for a 2-0 lead. Feller cruises, retiring 12 straight at one point before a leadoff single in the 8th. Garcia comes on and does the job, but during the course of the game, Feller hits a triple and Naragon a double. Did I mention that Feller was hitting 8th? Very odd game and it was a great win for the ‘54 Indians, who won 116 games and went 61-16 at home. The Giants had a four-game sweep of the Phillies to beat Brooklyn by one game with 101 wins.
 
            The seventh game was No. 9,800 for me. I’m on pace to hit my 10,000th game (aptly dubbed G10K after hitting game 5,000 on New Year’s eve 1999) somewhere around Sept. 20 (my birthday is the 22nd). To honor this event, the girlfriend is getting a cake (with the ‘41 Ted Williams card scanned on) and we’re going to have a party of course. The teams for G10K will be an NL-AL matchup of every MVP from 1990-2008 and the top eight Cy Young seasons as determined by Win Shares. ‘95 Maddux tops the list, of course. The NL team will have seven Bonds cards (no CF and no C). The honorary captains will be ‘98 McGwire and ‘93 Mickey Tettleton, who absolutely mashed it up during my ‘93 season (30 homers in a rare 78-game season!). Yes, it will be the Big Macs vs. the Froot Loops.
 
            This is such a rare deal that I had to share it with someone other than my circle and this seemed the appropriate place!
 
 
Brett, Wausau, WI
All-Time Football Tournament
            We are two guys in Baltimore, playing the football board game for the past two years. We purchased the All-Time Franchise teams and are now playing a tournament with 28 teams. All teams were ranked based on their total values of Offensive and Defensive player ratings.  There is an NFL and AFL bracket, with the two highest-rated teams in each bracket given the benefit of a first-round bye.  So the first two games played here were Rams (3 seed) vs. Tampa Bay (14 seed), and then Raiders (3 seed) vs. Bengals (14 seed). You will see that we’ve already had a major upset. Not putting a value on the skill players to determine the seeds appears to make lower seeds more dangerous when they have some good skill players (e.g. Kenny Anderson probably rates higher than Kenny Stabler because he has a very low INT % compared to Stabler.  Anyway, we’re having a ball.
 
 
 
 
 
 
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
Final
 
 
Tampa Bay
7
0
7
0
14
 
 
Rams
7
10
0
7
24
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Bucs came out and played an inspired 2nd half behind the pounding running of James Wilder, and in response to a first-half time-keeping
 
 
controversy.  They cut the Ram lead to 17-14, but the Rams’ Bob Waterfield,
 
 
subbing for an injured Norm Van Brocklin in the 4th quarter, put the game
 
away with a long bomb to Tom Fears over a drawn-up Bucs secondary, that led to the clinching TD.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
Final
 
 
Bengals
7
10
0
3
20
 
 
Raiders
0
0
7
0
7
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Raiders channeled many of the “bungling Bengals” teams of the past en route to being upset by the underdog Bengals. Key turnovers, an end-zone
 
 
interception and then a fumble at the goal line on an apparent TD catch by
 
by Tim Brown, were critical among five total turnovers by the Raiders. The Bengals’ offense, led by pin-point accuracy of Kenny Anderson (62%) and a
 
 
varied running attack ( 45+ yards each for Boobie Clark, James Brooks and
Corey Dillon), produced 379 yards total offense. The star of the game, however,
 
was the punter, Dave Lewis, who pinned the Raiders on their 4-yard line twice
 
in the second half with strategically placed coffin-corner kicks.