Video: The greatest World Series game ever?

posted at 2:45 pm on October 28, 2011 by Allahpundit

If it’s not the greatest, it’s easily top ten. The only Series game I’ve seen that compares is Game Six in 1986, but (a) I’m a Mets fan so I’m partial and (b) if I’m honest with myself, it was only one half-inning of that game that was memorable. If you missed it last night, do penance by carving out eight minutes for the video recap below. The first six innings were among the sloppiest ever played in the World Series; the last five were a Rocky movie. Absorb this:

Cardinals 1st team in postseason history to score in 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th inning in a game. Been done twice in regular season last 25 yrs

In other words, amid unbearable pressure, you saw the Cards pull off something last night that’s more unusual than a perfect game. They trailed five different times before coming back to win, the first time that’s happened in the Series. In two different innings, Texas was one strike from winning. I still think ’86 was the most miraculous ending ever to a Series game, but St. Louis’s comeback was more impressive by any measure. They had to do it from two runs down twice and they did it without benefit of any Buckneresque misplays. (Although Nelson Cruz should have caught Freese’s triple.) Simply astounding. You’ll never see another game like it.

Game Seven tonight. Good lord. Exit question for baseball junkies: Which Series games historically were arguably better than this? Game Eight in 1912, Game Seven in 1924, Game Seven in 1960, Game Six in 1975. What else? Click the image to watch.

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2

Most dramatic? Probably. Best? Hard to say. Baseball’s nature virtually demands that you win by your opponent making a mistake. This game spent the first half being a veritable comedy of them.

But for drama, tension, pressure, excitement, redemption, grit, and a bunch of other things that we all hope baseball exudes at its best moments, this game had it in spades.

Pulling for the Rangers, but how do they not feel utterly gutted by this?

Sgt Steve on October 28, 2011 at 4:55 PM

For those of you who think that baseball is boring, as Joe Posnanski often says, baseball is boring… until it isn’t. And that’s what makes it special.

Really, my watching of the World Series as an informed spectator only began in the 90s. I have dim recollections of Kirby in 91, but that’s about as far back as it goes as far as baseball, so I can’t comment on if last night’s game compares to the Mets in 86 or the Perfect Game in 56. But if you go by Posnanski’s adage that I paraphrased above, last night’s game definitely was boring… until it wasn’t: it definitely was not boring.

Vatican Watcher on October 28, 2011 at 4:57 PM

I’m a Rangers fan, and I was inconsolable at the end. Still am.

But being as objective as I can manage, I’d describe it as one of the worst played games in World Series history, but one of the most interesting to watch. Freese — holy cow, there’s some sort of made-for-tv movie in there for him, taking the header into the camera pit early on, then keeping them alive with the triple, then hitting the game-winner. Dang.

I’ll say this: the Cards have been mostly pretty good competitors and good sports; in fact, they remind me a lot of the Rangers. And if the Rangers don’t win tonight, I’d rather see a team like them taking it, not the Yankees, Phillies, or Giants.

RegularJoe on October 28, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Vatican Watcher on October 28, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Another Joe Posnanski fan…awesome sportswriter! I click his blog daily.

That game was so draining. I woke up this morning and it took a couple seconds before it occurred to me that “oh yeah, they have to win again tonight.”

I was there for the whole run in 06′, but haven’t been able to attend this year. In 06′ when we were sealing it in the late innings the stands were shaking like you wouldn’t believe. I have a friend that has been to both and he said 06′ doesn’t even come close to comparing to the noise generated last night.

Rangers are a good team, I’m expecting it to go right to the wire again tonight.

stldave on October 28, 2011 at 5:08 PM

IMHO the three greatest Series ever were 1924, 1975, and 1991.

But the greatest single GAME was clearly game 7, 1960. Everyone remembers Maz’s homer, but that was just the capper. But both teams were on the ropes because it was a game 7, and both teams battled back from certain defeat several times. If it weren’t for Maz’s homer, we’d probably still be talking about the freaky play in the top of the 9th in which Mantle somehow managed to get back to first on a sharp grounder to Rocky Nelson, just after he stepped on the bag. And if it weren’t for the Mantle play, we’d be talking about Hal Smith’s 2-strike, 2-out 3-run homer in the bottom of the 8th. And if it weren’t for Smith’s homer, we’d probably still be talking about young Clemente, also with 2 strikes and 2 outs, somehow reaching safely on a ball he just barely topped, in front of the plate. And if not for that, the sure double play that hit a pebble, tagged Kubek in the throat, knocked him out of the game, and kept the Bucs alive.

And of course, there was no other upset like that in Series history (except maybe 1914) — the 1950s Yankees had dwarfed all other dynasties, and the 1950s Pirates had bee as bad as they come.

I don’t know where last night’s game ranks in comparison to that one — but amazing as it was, it loses a little something because one team was not facing elimination, and neither team was quite the David or Goliath that Pirates-Yankees were in 1960.

Chuckles3 on October 28, 2011 at 5:10 PM

This whole series has been nerve racking! The Cards have been unbelieveable and last night was incredible for many reasons. I want the Rangers to win of course but you’ve gotta admire the Cardinals. After a lifetime of being disappointed in the Rangers I am so hoping tonight will change that.

txmomof6 on October 28, 2011 at 5:14 PM

Pulling for the Rangers, but how do they not feel utterly gutted by this?

Sgt Steve on October 28, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Because “that’s the way baseball go.”

These Rangers have been attempting all year to get to the place they are at this very instant. Yes, they lost last night, but they lost last year to the Giants. After that loss, they had to work for a year to get back. Now they just have to win one game. These guys are absolute masters at putting what happened yesterday instantly in the past.

I look for Harrison to pitch a great game, for Carpenter to not be sharp, and for an incredibly focused group of Rangers to take the game tonight.

Typhoon on October 28, 2011 at 5:15 PM

There’s no one word to adequately describe last night. I’ve been an avid Cardinal fan for forty-five years and that game was special. Can’t wait for tonight.

flyfisher on October 28, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Baseball is only exciting on the big screen.

Ortzinator on October 28, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Not surprised. We used to follow the Rangers when we lived in the Dallas area and went to some of their games.

Bottom line, the Rangers always, always choke just when it looks like they are going all the way. Back then, they would be number one in the league going into the All Star break and then never bothered to return from the break. Looks like they showed up after the break, but my money is on them choking again.

AZfederalist on October 28, 2011 at 5:21 PM

Just imagine how differently the game might have turned out if the @#%$ DH rule had been in effect.

Knott Buyinit on October 28, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Even as a die-hard Yankees fan, I have to say Game 7 of 2001. Clemens vs. Schilling, a close, well played game all the way, a young Soriano hitting a go-ahead homer off Schilling in the 8th inning, Randy Johnson pitching in relief after 100+ pitches the night before, and then the whole Mariano thing.

1975 was before my time, but I’d say that game, Game 7 of 1991, Game 6 of 1986, and Game 4 of 2001 also rank ahead of this one. This one was still pretty awesome though.

tneloms on October 28, 2011 at 5:26 PM

For all of us long time Rangers fans, we need to remember the famous words of Jimmy Dugan:

“There is no crying in baseball!”

Can’t wait for tonight.

Texican Ben on October 28, 2011 at 5:27 PM

I hate the fuc%ing Cardinals, but that was an astonishing game.

Jaibones on October 28, 2011 at 5:38 PM

No other game cam compare because there wasn’t just one thrilling moment but many, many, thrills for both sides. I love baseball. GO CARDS!!!

Vince on October 28, 2011 at 5:43 PM

1993 Joe Carter walk off home run against Mitch Williams. “Touch ‘em all Joe!”

Blaise on October 28, 2011 at 5:57 PM

Fan also named Dave meets team, hands home-run ball back to David Freese, rewarded with autographed bat and ball.

I love how he rolled on the ground expecting to be attacked for the ball, wasn’t, and one of the first things he was told was “Don’t sell it to anyone.”

Gotta love Cards fans.

Christien on October 28, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Allah, will we get an open thread?

Vatican Watcher on October 28, 2011 at 6:05 PM

I am a lifelong Cardinals fan since my dad took me to Sportsman’s Park on Grand in St Louis and I saw Stan the Man play, Curt Flood, and on through Gibby in 68 throwing those TRACERS at the “new” stadium World Series, to Whitey Ball, Bruce Suttor, and Joaquin Losing his coked out mind in KC and on and on.

I am no where near objective, but it WAS no doubt, one of the most amazing games I have ever seen, period. The foul ups were due to fate and pressure, I think. Something bigger than life almost. lol

I said at inning 7 this is like a ROCKEY movie…. ‘CUT ME”" :)
Little did I know what was coming.

That 8th inning would have been too much for a movie plot! People would have laughed at it.

Anyway, though I hope the Cardinals win, the Rangers, if they do, EARNED it all the way. Actually the Cards shouldn’t even BE THERE!

Wildcard?

What is this WILDCARD stuff?

I predict 1 to 0, 2 to 1 or 15 to 14 and extra innings. Could go either way for any of those tonight before she sings…

golfmann on October 28, 2011 at 6:09 PM

One of the luckiest decisions I ever made was to spring for relatively good seats for me and my college age son to the first two LA games of the 1988 World Series. We were there to see and experience Kirk Gibson’s walk-off home run, which is frequently replayed and mentioned. We talk about it often, and my son has now passed the experience on to his two baseball playing boys. It was a moment like no other I have experienced. Last night’s game winner was similar, and I imagine that the fans who were there will never forget it. Good for them.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:11 PM

Chuckles3 on October 28, 2011 at 5:10 PM

1960 WS..still the only series where the MVP played for the losing team.

know who it was?

DrW on October 28, 2011 at 6:11 PM

By the way, I enjoyed the HAir game commentary last night on the QOTD site as the game progressed.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:12 PM

I forgot how fun baseball is.

Christien on October 28, 2011 at 6:00 PM

I feel bad for the guy. He’s got a family. Why not sell the ball?

Ted Torgerson on October 28, 2011 at 6:16 PM

As a lifelong Cards fan last night was beyond incredible.
Still think though that the 1960 Pirate-Yankee Game 7 was just as dramatic and decided the Series.

jjshaka on October 28, 2011 at 6:19 PM

By the way, I enjoyed the HAir game commentary last night on the QOTD site as the game progressed.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:12 PM

+ 100..Let’s get it going again tonight..:)

Dire Straits on October 28, 2011 at 6:21 PM

Ted Torgerson on October 28, 2011 at 6:16 PM

He’s a radiologist and said he would’ve considered selling it if he needed the money.

Christien on October 28, 2011 at 6:25 PM

I haven’t been watching the Series although as a Texan I’d like to see the Rangers win because of our hometown hero Nolan Ryan.

Have Bob Gibson or Stan the Man been at any of the games? Musial’s over 90 but you never know.

TxAnn56 on October 28, 2011 at 6:27 PM

It has been a good series. Living in STL, we’ve won it ten times. We hate a lot of clubs. There is no animosity, just admiration for the Rangers. St. Louis fans know and appreciate the finer points of baseball and they know how good the Rangers are. I am listening to the radio guys trying to rationalize things one way or the other using historical stats. You can throw all that away after the first pitch. Both teams are pros. Both cities have acquitted themselves well. Even the Occupy St. Louis loons have behaved.

flyoverland on October 28, 2011 at 6:27 PM

Go Cards! And eat your hearts out, all you whiners.

labwriter on October 28, 2011 at 6:28 PM

Stan Musial was at the game last night. Seeing him made me feel real old.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:30 PM

Not many Cubs fans sharing their favorite World Series memories…

Ted Torgerson on October 28, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Let’s get it going again tonight..:)

Dire Straits on October 28, 2011 at 6:21 PM

I’ll be there, or here, or where-ever.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:36 PM

By the way, I enjoyed the HAir game commentary last night on the QOTD site as the game progressed.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:12 PM

So did I, but I ended up drinking a whole bottle of wine.

Knucklehead on October 28, 2011 at 6:38 PM

I’m not (at all) a baseball fan but I am a sports fan and games like this are why we watch sports: to witness the incredible.

jjraines on October 28, 2011 at 6:38 PM

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:36 PM

Good deal..I will be there as soon as I can..:)

PS..It should be fun..:)

PSS..Shout out to Rovin for having a WS open thread in the Green Room of Hot Air..:)

Dire Straits on October 28, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Knucklehead on October 28, 2011 at 6:38 PM

lol..Nothing wrong with that as long as the wine was a good red one..:)

Dire Straits on October 28, 2011 at 6:41 PM

I’ll say this: the Cards have been mostly pretty good competitors and good sports; in fact, they remind me a lot of the Rangers. And if the Rangers don’t win tonight, I’d rather see a team like them taking it, not the Yankees, Phillies, or Giants.

RegularJoe on October 28, 2011 at 5:02 PM

I never cared much for Berkman but then he admitted his mistake in putting down Texas this January. That makes me like him.
I have no dog in this fight and am just looking forward to another excellent game.

GaltBlvnAtty on October 28, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Chuckles3 on October 28, 2011 at 5:10 PM
1960 WS..still the only series where the MVP played for the losing team.

know who it was?

DrW on October 28, 2011 at 6:11 PM

Yeah, but only because when I was little I had a 1971 Series program (I went to game 5) that had all the info on every previous Series played in by the Pirates. I’ll keep mum in case anyone else wants to guess.

Now what I DON’T know is why I threw that program out.

Chuckles3 on October 28, 2011 at 6:54 PM

The Rangers haven’t lost two games in a row since August. And this may sound like the GOP establishment, but…it’s their turn!!! GO RANGERS!!!!

parteagirl on October 28, 2011 at 6:56 PM

I don’t know about World Series games but the greatest game ever was Ten Cent Beer Night at Cleveland Municipal Stadium on June 4, 1974.Cleveland Indians vs. Texas Rangers .

The only thing missing was adding a promotion for free bats the same night.

I’m betting OWS organizers are studying the riot techniques this very moment.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on October 28, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Baseball often seems like watching paint dry, but last night the Mother of All Paint Battles erupted over and over and over. Great game.

jimw on October 28, 2011 at 7:05 PM

Baseball is only exciting on the big screen.

Ortzinator on October 28, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Not if you’ve ever been to Fenway Park or Wrigley Field.

Del Dolemonte on October 28, 2011 at 7:06 PM

Not many Cubs fans sharing their favorite World Series memories…

Ted Torgerson on October 28, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Just give them a few years-Theo Epstein is now in town! His recent resume: 2004 and 2007 Boston Red Sox.

Del Dolemonte on October 28, 2011 at 7:09 PM

Miracle ater miracle in the last 4 innings for the Cards.

A-frikkin;-mazing!
Who beat the team I hoped would be in, the Phillies.

(And, if I watch the game without focusing too sharply, they almost look like the PHils… when they were playing well, just before their big choke zer0 game at the end.)

Major udos to Freese.

GO CARDS!

profitsbeard on October 28, 2011 at 7:15 PM

worst game ever!!!!

GO REDS!!!!

TheQuestion on October 28, 2011 at 7:25 PM

It’ll only be remembered if the Cards win tonight.

TexAz on October 28, 2011 at 7:25 PM

The only thing missing was adding a promotion for free bats the same night.

I’m betting OWS organizers are studying the riot techniques this very moment.

Dr. Carlo Lombardi on October 28, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Oh hell, Chicago can top that when we had Disco Demolition night at the old Comiskey Park LOL

Knucklehead on October 28, 2011 at 7:29 PM

The best game ever was Game 7, 1945 series. Last time the Cubs played in a world series….and lost to the Tigers. Oh the memories….

jbh45 on October 28, 2011 at 7:36 PM

FREESE

Metro on October 28, 2011 at 8:31 PM

I’d have to go with the 92 series, but I am a Ga girl, and whether they suck or not, I have to have some Braves loyalty.

di butler on October 28, 2011 at 8:53 PM

As a 12-year old kid living in the city of Detroit, Game 7 of the ’68 Series. Tigers win final 3 games of series against the Cardinals and Mickey Lolich outduels Bob Gibson for his 3rd victory of the Series on 2-days rest

PatMac on October 28, 2011 at 9:05 PM

Not to take anything away from St. Louie, but last night’s choke by TX calls to mind the ’86 Angels.

infidel4life on October 28, 2011 at 9:09 PM

It’ll only be remembered if the Cards win tonight.

TexAz on October 28, 2011 at 7:25 PM

Bingo! Which leads me to the ’91 series, Kirby Puckett’s walk off homer in the 11th of game 6, (called by Joe Buck’s dad!) followed by the greatest game 7 ever, won 1-nil in a 10 inning complete game by the Twins Jack Morris.

We’ll see…

2ipa on October 28, 2011 at 9:14 PM

Game 6, 1975.

That game had everything. Every time you thought it was headed one way, the baseball gods would flip it right on its noggin!

I watched it with a woman who hated most sports, but especially baseball. At first I had to explain what was going on. She literally didn’t know Boston (or Cincinnati) from an entrenching tool!

But by the end of the game, she was jumping up and down on the bed, waiving her arms in the air, tears in her eyes, and screaming for Boston. She told me it was the best sports event she ever saw.

And . . . I never saw her watch another baseball game after that.

I don’t think she ever did.

She had seen the best one ever played. And so had I!

Trochilus on October 29, 2011 at 1:18 AM

Knucklehead on October 28, 2011 at 2:52 PM

You got that right!

and

Del Dolemonte on October 28, 2011 at 3:57 PM

Good call!

and

Del Dolemonte on October 28, 2011 at 3:40 PM

Yup!

Trochilus on October 29, 2011 at 1:39 AM

It is at times like these i really miss living in these wonderful United States …back home in India now and watched the last 3 innings of Game 7 today morning on ESPN (we are 10.5 hours ahead of Central time)

I do not know if ESPN was broadcasting the entire World Series in India or if they did so only for Game 7 – either way, i did not watch Game 6 and only read about it :=(

What an emotional roller coaster that game must have been for both Cards and Ranger fans…i feel bad for Texas… two years on the trot they have lost the World Series – this year’s loss is easily the worst – to come within ONE Strike of a win TWICE… to be ahead by two runs TWICE and still lose… that is a level of losing that only the Sports Guy can think of.

Cardiac Cardinals !! 10 games out of a play off spot in late August – World Champion in late October.

As Jack Buck may say – “Go Crazy Folks, Go Crazy !!”

nagee76 on October 29, 2011 at 6:31 AM

Cardinals 1st team in postseason history to score in 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th inning in a game. Been done twice in regular season last 25 yrs

How did Jayson Stark at ESPN miss that one :=) for once he stopped being a statistician and became an engrossed baseball fan !!

For all those who say baseball is boring… really ?

This is a World Series for the ages… a true Fall Classic.

nagee76 on October 29, 2011 at 6:39 AM

Maybe one of the things that sets the 6th game of the Boston v. Cincinnati series in ’75 apart for me was great game saving defensive plays.

Here were three of them:

In the bottom of the 9th, with the bases loaded and none out, Freddie Lynn his a fly ball to left in foul territory, which Foster picked a few inches off the fences. Denny Doyle, who was on third, tagged up and took off for the plate, and the win. Foster pegged him out at the plate with a nearly perfect throw. Suddenly there were two out, and two on — first and second!

Doyle would later claim that he thought he heard third-base coach Don Zimmer yelling “Go, go, go!” And, of course, Zimmer said he was yelling “No, no, no!”

The second and third great defensive plays occurred in the top of the 11th right after the mystery pitch “hit” Pete Rose, sending him to first. Rose once later said it may have hit a loose thread hanging from his uniform.

Then, on an attempted sacrifice bunt by Ken Griffey, Fisk quickly grabbed the roller, and made a perfect throw to second, getting the force of Rose at second. What a throw.

That was immediately followed by Dwight Evan’s unbelievably great running catch in right field of what would surely have been a Joe Morgan homer.

It was without a doubt the greatest catch I ever saw. Every time I watch the footage, all I can think is, “He didn’t catch that, did he!?”

And then Evans pegged the ball in, and it was relayed to first for the double play of Griffey, retiring the side.

The outstanding offense on both sides would have made it a great game — including Carlton Fisk waiving the ball over to the inside of the foul pole. But you really don’t see stand-out, game saving defensive plays that often.

Trochilus on October 30, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Comment pages: 1 2