SABR

Real-life "Casey at the Bat" endings

From SABR member Diane Firstman at Value Over Replacement Grit on December 20, 2011:

While it may not be a literary work of art, there may be no more famous piece of baseball literature than “Casey at the Bat“.   Penned by Ernest Thayer in 1888, it has been the subject of numerous stage performances, songs, plays and movies.  But I got to wondering about the actual circumstances that unveiled themselves during the game.  Have any real-life games actually ended as this poem did?

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Armed with this description, I wanted to know if any game had ended 4-2 on a strikeout with runners on second and third, (hopefully after a two-out single and double), and . . . for the cherry on top, could the batter have looked at the first two pitches before swinging at the third?  I went through the 60+ years of Baseball Reference’s Play Index regular season play-by-play data to try and find a match.

Here’s all the games since 1950 that ended on a strikeout with the score 4-2 and runners on 2nd and 3rd.

Read the full article here: http://valueoverreplacementgrit.com/2011/12/20/real-life-casey-at-the-bat-endings/

Related link: Read the SABR biography of Dan Casey, celebrated as the real "mighty Casey" in 1939 (he wasn't), written by Charles Faber

This page was last updated December 21, 2011 at 11:50 am MST.

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