Monday, September 28, 2020

RIP - Jay Johnstone


Jay Johnstone, who played outfield for the Angels, Phillies, and other clubs from 1966-1985, passed away on September 26, 2020 at age 74, a victim of COVID-19.

Johnstone began his career with the Angels in 1966. For the first 3 years he was up and down between the Angels and their AAA club, but in 1969 Jay was the Angels' everyday center fielder. 

After the 1970 season he was traded to the White Sox, and played 2 seasons before he was released during spring training in 1973. The Athletics picked him up but he spent much of 1973 in the minors. 

The Phillies acquired him in April 1974 and finally recalled him to the majors in early-July. During the 2nd half of the season he became the Phils' regular right fielder, a job he would hold until they traded for Bake McBride in June 1977. 

During a game against the Pirates in 1975, Johnstone was playing right field. With Bucs' shortstop Frank Taveras taking a large lead off 1st base, Jay ran in and took a snap throw from catcher Johnny Oates to pick Taveras off FIRST BASE! The RIGHT FIELDER!

Johnstone's last 8 seasons were spent with the Yankees, Padres, Dodgers, and Cubs. He saw post-season action with the Phillies (1976-77), Yankees (1978), and Dodgers (1981, 85). 

He was also a broadcaster for the Yankees (1989-90) and Phillies (1992-93).

Washington Post obituary  

ESPN obituary


Monday, September 7, 2020

RIP - Lou Brock

Lou Brock, speedy outfielder for the Cardinals who led the NL in stolen bases 8 times, passed away on September 6, 2020 at age 81.

Brock was a starting outfielder for the Cubs in 1962 (CF) and 1963 (RF), then 50 games into the 1964 season he was traded to the Cardinals.

He played for the Cardinals for the next 15 1/2 years (1964-79), and was a starter every year (although he missed about half of the 1978 season). In that span, he played 2161 games in left field, 51 in right, and 4 in center.

He also played in the World Series in '64, '67, and '68.

He was a 6-time All-Star. He was a starter in his first All-Star appearance (in 1967), ending Willie Mays' long streak of starting All-Star games.

Brock led the league in stolen bases 8 times in the 9-year span from 1966-74, including a career-high 118 bases in 1974.  He twice led the league in runs scored.

He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1985.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch obituary

CNN obituary

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

RIP - Tom Seaver

Tom Seaver, the 1967 NL Rookie of the Year and 3-time Cy Young winner, passed away on August 31, 2020 at age 75.

Seaver played for the Mets from 1967 to 1977, and led the team to a World Championship in 1969, while winning a career-high 25 games.

He pitched for the Reds from 1977-1982, then spent his last 4 years with the Mets, White Sox, and Red Sox.

He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992 with 98.8 percent of the vote.

In 1967, I had cut various photos (mostly Phillies) out of the daily sports pages for a scrapbook. A few years ago, I discovered this on the back of a Willie Mays photo:

New York Post obituary