A small group of hearty Rogers Hornsby Chapter SABR members traveled to the northwestern lands of Cedar Park, Texas, to watch the San Francisco Giants get even with the Kansas City Royals in Game 4 of the 2014 World Series on Saturday, October 25, 2014.
Fueled by delicious cheeseburger sliders, cookies and brownies by host Jim Baker along with a mayonnaise-less cole slaw by Raeanne Martinez, five members provided our own commentary to much of the game, which the Giants won 11-4 after trailing early 4-1.
While there was no official World Series trivia quiz, there was plenty of chatter on social media to challenge us. After Giants reliever Yusmeiro Petit (he of the robust .049 batting average) hit a bloop single in the 4th inning, the television broadcast noted that that was the first hit by a reliever in a World Series since Al Leiter did it in Game 4 in 1993 in which the Blue Jays outlasted the Phillies, 15-14.
Jayson Stark of ESPN noted on Twitter the name of the last National League reliever to get a hit in the World Series, so I proffered it as a question. After a few seconds of cranial gear-turning, Ryan Pollack offered, “Jesse Orosco?” Resident Mets fan and expert Jim Baker scoffed and said Orosco was a horrible hitter and couldn’t have been the correct answer, but, of course, it was! Orosco got a hit in Game 7 in 1986! (Later, Raeanne Martinez found Orosco’s career batting average, .169, confirming Baker’s suspicion.)
Speaking of Ryan Pollack, he noted that his first Hornsby Chapter meeting was the year before at the group’s World Series Watch Party. Also, Ryan got married a few weeks after SABR 44 in Houston and watched the stars align to attend ALCS Game 1 in Baltimore – it’s been quite a year for him! (You can read about Ryan’s Game 1 experience by clicking here.)
There was also an update on recently moved-away Eric Robinson, whom we had last heard had moved to West Texas seeking fame and fortune. Raeanne Martinez bumped into him at a book festival in Midland two weeks ago. Eric shared with Raeanne that he met Jim Morris, the relief pitcher who made his MLB debut at age 35 with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 1999.
Many thanks to Jim Baker for hosting the World Series Watch Party for the fourth consecutive year. As I have always found, watching baseball with my knowledgeable Hornsby pals is the best way to watch baseball.
This was the 95th consecutive month in which the Hornsby Chapter has met.
The November meeting hasn’t been scheduled yet, but we’ll announce the date as we get closer.
Learn more about the Hornsby chapter by visiting its website at chapters.sabr.org/hornsby.