Category Archives: Inside SP78

The Oscillating Fan of Learning

Many years ago, when I was not so knowledgeable about baseball’s past, I was looking through a book and found a picture of old Forbes Field, where the Pittsburgh Pirates played their home games before moving into Three Rivers Stadium in 1970. The black-and-white photo showed a game in-progress as seen from the right field seats; what caught my attention was the obviously phony image of a skyscraper in the background, poorly crammed into the existing photo by some overzealous artist who didn’t care at all about realism.

I mean, c’mon! Was I supposed to think the ballpark was located in some empty section of downtown, where only one skyscraper had been built? It reminded me of those postcards I’d find in gas stations during vacation drives across the Midwest, showing a rabbit with antlers or a man standing next to a strawberry the size of a semi truck. I mean, pretty ridiculous, right? Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Johnny B!

Game Recaps Are Here!

Well, more recaps are here, I should say, with more on the way! While I continue getting additional scoresheets scanned and prepped for the Classic Scoresheets section of the blog, I thought I’d start adding game recaps to the Daily Scores section as well, which you can find in a dropdown box on the main page (see photo below). Over the past few years, I’ve randomly posted over thirty for July (starting with the July 21st slate of games) and nine for August, and I figured it was time for me to start adding them more frequently, beginning with April.


I’ve already posted six new recaps over the past few days, which you can find here (look for the blue ‘R’ links next to the score, as seen below), plus I found one for July in draft form that I decided to post as well (and can be directly accessed here).


I’m having fun writing these up, so hopefully I can get at least one posted every day or two…we’ll see how it goes. With every handful I add, I’ll make note in the Recent Site Updates section found on the bottom right side of the main page. Also, I may throw in a few recaps for May and June as well, just to balance things out a bit; as with April, I discovered they’d had no recaps posted yet, either.

A Dilemma in Detroit

As many of you know, I stopped following major league baseball in 1994, when the players went on strike mid-season and basically killed my enthusiasm for the sport. Luckily I had my Statis Pro season, video and audio tapes of old games, and the minor league Lake Elsinore Storm to quench my thirst, but I would never again be a fan of baseball—current baseball—after that season.

Of course, someone had to pay the price for this indiscretion, and when I saw a newspaper photo during the strike of Lou Whitaker emerging from a limousine, smartly dressed with several gold chains hanging from his neck as he headed for a players meeting, he became that someone, and I immediately suspended him for the remainder of my SP78 season. Fair or not, he became my scapegoat, and since that day he’s missed 62 games of the Tigers season, and with Detroit in a tightly-contested AL East pennant race, he’ll not only miss the remainder of the regular season, but possibly some post-season games as well.

It’s now been twenty-five years since the players went on strike and—along with the owners—ended the ’94 season; obviously it’s also been that long since Whitaker last played an SP78 game (his final appearance was on June 10, 1978). Until he was suspended, Whitaker was batting .303, with six errors in 48 games played. During his absence, utility infielders Mark Wagner and Steve Dillard have platooned at second, batting a combined .276 with only five errors over 62 games; for the month of August, however, they’re both hitting under .200, and have turned just 33 double plays with shortstop Alan Trammell since June, compared to the 31 that had been turned by Whitaker and Trammell before the suspension, in a fewer number of games. Continue reading