The Longest MLB Games Ever Played

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Baseball is Americas past time. And it is an all American game that kids play all across the country in the hopes that they will one day be able to play in one of the most exciting games in history. Some of these people grew up and became part of history in the fact that they played in some of the longest games in MLB history. These games will go down in history as being some of the longest games to ever occur.

New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox April 2015
This was a battle to the end between these two storied clubs. The game was so long that Mark Texeria was 34 when the game started and when it ended he was 35. This literally meant that he had a birthday while the game was going on. The game lasted 6 hours and 49 minutes not counting the 16 minute delay for fixing a malfunction with the lighting. This would mean that the total time that the teams were on the field was more than seven hours.

Tampa Bay Devil Rays at Baltimore Orioles
6 Hours and 54 minutes. That is the amount of time that these two teams played over the course of 18 innings. The game lasted so long that the Rays almost went through their entire pitching rotation and players were beginning to show signs of wear as they were having a harder time making contact with the ball. This was trumped in August of the same year when The Phillies and Diamondbacks lasted 18 innings and came in at seven hours and 6 minutes. This was still not close to the longest game as the mark would be high to reach.

San Francisco Giants New York Mets 5/31/1964
This was the second longest game in MLB history. It came in at 7 hours and 23 minutes and lasted 23 innings. This was a slug fest that saw the Giants win with a score of 8-6. the game saw one of the highest number of pitches ever thrown and fans began to actually boo as the game was taking longer than they thought it should. Some fans actually threw trash onto the field in protest of the game taking so long. Once order was restored, the Giants knocked two runs in and went home with the win over the Mets.

Brewers and White Sox 1984
This was a marathon that took everything that both teams had in them as the game went on for a grueling 8 hours and 6 minutes. And lasted a total of 25 innings. This was such a long game that it was actually suspended at the top of the 18th inning and picked up the next day in order to give the players the chance to get a little rest to be able to continue. This would go down as one of the longest games ever to be played in baseball and many games have tried to approach that record but none have actually made it that far.

Baseball can be a very fun sport to watch and if you are expecting the game to run a certain amount of time, you will be surprised to discover that a lot of the games go longer than what they were expected to. Who knows one day you may be in attendance at a game that surpasses the record of 25 innings and eight hours. You will be able to tell your grand kids that you were in attendance at the longest game in MLB history. It may not sound like a lot, but it will make for one interesting story.

Biggest MVP Snubs in MLB History

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Major League Baseball has seen some amazing performances by star players, but for some reason they fail to win the coveted MVP award. Numbers don’t lie but those who award the MVP may tend to ignore the numbers. The MVP award should be based on a player’s performance and not solely on the team’s performance as a whole. Even the greatest players from the past have been rejected.

1. Derek Jeter – New York Yankees 1996
In 2006, Derek Jeter shined for the Yankees. Jeter finished the season with 14 home runs, 97 RBI, 34 steals, scored 118 runs and a hitting average of .343. Jeter fell to Minnesota Twins star first baseman Justin Morneau who had lackluster numbers compared to Jeter. Morneau had an average of .321, hit 34 home runs and score 130 runs in the 2006 season. Derek Jeter has deserved multiple MVP titles but is always been rejected each time he came up for a vote.

2. Don Mattingly – New York Yankees 1986
Don Mattingly was a star despite never winning a World Series with the New York Yankees. Mattingly hit with great power and average, turned him into one of the must watch players of the 80s. In 1985, Mattingly won the AL MVP Award, after accumulating a .324 batting average and hitting 35 home runs. His numbers continued to grow as he finished the 1986 season with a .352 average and led the majors with 238 hits. Despite is power numbers, Mattingly lost the MVP title to Red Sox star pitcher Roger Clemens, who posted a 24-4 and 2.48 ERA record that year.

3. Reggie Jackson – Oakland Athletics 1974
Reggie Jackson helped lead the Oakland Athletics to three consecutive World Series titles form 1972 to 1974. Jackson won the AL MVP Award in 1973 with a 2.93 average, 32 home runs and 117 RBI’s. Jackson made his case against for an MVP title in 1974, when he ended the season with a .289 average, 29 home runs, 93 RBI’s and 25 steals. The 1974 MVP title would end up going to Jeff Burroughs, who had lackluster numbers compared to Jackson.

4. Willie Mays – San Francisco Giants 1960
Willie Mays is one of America’s greatest outfielders of all time. Willie Mays outshined the league in 1960 end the season with a .319 average, 29 home runs, 103 RBI’s and 25 steals. Mays and his stellar resume was passed over for Pirates shortstop Dick Groat, whose team won the World Series that year. Mays was a strong player because he could excel on the field and behind the plate.

5. Alex Rodriguez – Seattle Mariners 1996
Alex Rodriguez began his career in 1996 with the Mariners as the team’s starting shortstop. 1996 was an amazing year for A-Rod as he won the AL batting title with a record of .358, 36 home runs and 123 RBI’s. Alex Rodriguez was rejected by MVP voters because his team missed the playoffs. Rodriguez’s numbers show him worthy of being the 1996 MVP despite his team’s failings.

Top MLB Pitchers Who Had Their Careers Cut Short By Injury

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Playing any sport injury-free is a matter of luck. Pitchers are the luckiest of the bunch – the human body is simply not designed to repetitively throw a baseball at high speeds. Exercise and good mechanics are only hedges, not totally preventative. For every freak like Nolan Ryan, there are talented pitchers who get the short end of the stick. Here are several of these pitchers. This list doesn’t include the likes of Jose Fernandez or Steve Olin, whose lives were tragically cut short by accidents.

 

Mark Fidrych — “The Bird” was a comet who blazed across the baseball landscape in 1976. He won 19 games for the Detroit Tigers that year and was beloved by fans for his quirks, like talking to the baseball in his hand. The injury bug struck quickly, first he hurt his knee while goofing off during Spring Training in ’77 and then he tried to pitch through an undiagnosed rotator cuff tear for the next three seasons. His career was finally over after ’80 and Tigers fans could only wonder “What If?”

 

J.R. Richard — Richard was one of the most imposing pitchers to toe the rubber. The 6’8 behemoth looked large enough to reach out and grab batters from the mound. Add a tremendous fastball and it’s no surprise that he struck out over 300 batters in a season twice. Had he not suffered a stroke at the age of 30 in 1980, one that he was lucky to have survived, he might have rewritten a lot of pitching records. He didn’t pitch again.

 

Steve Avery — Over the past 25 years, Atlanta has had three Hall-of-Fame caliber pitchers on its staff: Tom GlavineGreg Maddux, and John Smoltz. Braves fans initially thought they might have a fourth in Avery. The lanky lefty was one of the big reasons for Atlanta’s Worst-To-First turnaround in 1991, winning 18 games. He won 18 games in ’93 and then started to fade because of injuries. Part of it might have been because he was throwing over 200 innings at age 22, something that would be unheard of in today’s innings-conscious game. He only had one more winning season after that before hanging up his cleats in 2003 – after not pitching in the majors the previous three years.

 

Mark Prior — Prior debunks the whole “mechanics” debate. When he was drafted, people pointed to his pitching motion and said that it was nearly impeccable. He proved that wrong when an avalanche of injuries that occurred after his amazing 2003 sophomore season saw him get on an endless treadmill of rehabilitation starts. Prior last pitched in the Majors in ’05 though he officially retired eight years later after aborted comeback after comeback.

 

Kerry Wood — Wood was another victim of overuse. He took the baseball world by storm in 1998, striking out 20 hitters in one game. He was injured in ’99 and he did bounce back from 2000-03, but then suffered a swift decline and never won more than five games again. At least we got to see Wood in a popular insurance commercial when he pulled Andre Dawson out of the Wrigley Field ivy.

 

Fernando Valenzuela — People who weren’t alive in 1981 won’t grasp what Fernandomania was like. The portly Mexican who was known for looking up at the sky at the beginning of his pitching motion, won the Cy Young that year, vexing batters with his screwball. He was on a Hall-of-Fame trajectory for the next several years, but then he lost effectiveness after the ’87 season. His ERA kept rising yearly and while he did pitch 17 years, many of his later years were not up to the standards of Fernandomania.

Top 5 Starting Pitchers of All-Time

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Over a century and thirty teams later, the Major League Baseball, one of the United States and Canada’s major sports league, can be said to have had many memorable moments and pitchers that have made the game worth participating in or watching.

A game of baseball usually starts and ends with a starting pitch, which usually is the winning or losing determinant. A pitcher is a defensive player (with the number 1) who throws the baseball to the catcher from the pitcher’s mound. Apart from the starting pitcher, we have other pitchers like the relief pitcher, the middle reliever, the lefty specialist, the set-up man, and the closer. Usually, the starting pitcher begins the game and is then followed by any of the pitchers mentioned above. Picking a starting pitcher who can bring his good stuff home is always a big challenge for coaches and managers as massive skill is required for a good starting pitcher. A skilled starting pitcher is expected to master pitches like fastball, curveball, sinker, slider, changeup and knuckleball among others. Most gifted and talented pitchers use hybrids. If one takes a walk down history lane of MLB, one is sure to find great pitchers who have broken records with their talent, skills and pitches. As a starting pitcher, my main aim will be to ensure the batter does not hit the ball when I throw it. To achieve this, I must put force and speed into my throw and employ throwing styles calculated to confuse or deceive the batter from hitting the ball.

Now I will look at the top five starting pitchers of all time in MLB history. As with any list of ‘top five’, there are usually arguments and debates, which I think arises from the basis or criteria used in arriving at the list. My ranking is based on starting pitchers with highest pitcher’s scores. So those whose records have been broken will not be considered, while those whose records are yet to be broken will be considered. Also, ranking starts from 1969 when modern practices and innovations were incorporated into baseball. I thus will not be mentioning legends like Cy Young and Bob Feller.
Bob Gibson

As a member of the great St. Louis Cardinals, he inspired modern practices and innovation in baseball like the lowering of the pitcher’s mound to give pitchers better advantage. His close-shave fastballs are as intimidating as his appearance. He won several awards like All-Star (9), World Champion (2), Cy Young Award (2) and various others. He has been put into the St. Louis Cardinal Hall of Fame.
Roger Clemens

In spite of the steroid scandal involving Roger Clemens, he showed extraordinary talent in his 24-season career. He has 354 wins to his credit and has won awards such as Cy Young Award (7), All-Star (11), and ERA Champion (7).
Greg Maddux

He was a member of about six teams like the Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers. He has a winning record of 355 and 3,371 strikeouts. Has won awards such as All-Star (8), Cy Young Award (4), and Gold Glove Award (18) and has been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Randy Johnson

He has great pitching styles like a fastball and hard-hitting sliders, with 303 wins and 4,875 strikeouts; his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame is well deserved. He was a member of about seven different teams at different times and won awards like Al-Star (10) Cy Young Award (5) and a Triple Crown.
Pedro Martinez

One of the most talented starting pitchers of all time, he has spent time with five teams from New York Mets to Boston Red Sox. Since his debut in 1992, he has made 219 wins and 3,154 strikeouts. His awards include All-Star (8), Cy Young (3) and a triple crown among others.