Sunday, May 31, 2020

1985 Game 45 - 1985 Drake's #27 Juan Samuel

Giants 4Phillies 3
Game 45 - Late Friday Night, May 31st in San Francisco
Record - 17-28, 5th Place, 11 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  A three-run home run from Ricky Adams sunk Charles Hudson and the Phillies in this 4-3 loss.

What It Means:  No offense to Adams, but his name was unfamiliar to me.  He was a back-up infielder for the Giants in 1985, occasionally filling in for Chris Brown at third base and Jose Uribe at shortstop.  His home run in this game was his third of four career big league home runs.  In two seasons with the Angels (1982-1983) and his year with the Giants, Adams appeared in 120 games, hitting .215.  He appeared on three mainstream baseball cards - in 1984 within the Donruss and Topps sets and again in the 1986 Topps set.

What Happened:  Hudson had cruised through six innings when Adams hit his unlikely blast.  The only other run he had allowed came on a first inning solo home run surrendered to Chili Davis.  Former Phillies Mike Krukow and Mark Davis held the Phillies line-up to five hits while striking out a combined eight batters.  Juan Samuel homered off Krukow in the eighth.

Featured Card:  I often used the end of each month to take stock of the Phillies season to date.  I took the time to handwrite the current roster, seemingly forgetting Darren Daulton and Kent Tekulve until after I was originally finished.

There aren't a lot of surprises below in the team leader categories, other than Steve Carlton's team leading ERA of 2.15.  His record was only 1-4, but Lefty continued to keep the Phils in the games he pitched.  Through the first 45 games of the season, only Von Hayes, Samuel and Glenn Wilson had appeared in every game.

May 1985 Leaders
Games:  Von Hayes, Juan Samuel and Glenn Wilson - 26
Average:  Ozzie Virgil - .278
Runs:  Juan Samuel - 14
Home Runs:  Mike Schmidt - 4
RBIs:  Glenn Wilson - 13
Stolen Bases:  Von Hayes and Juan Samuel - 6

Games:  Don Carman - 13
Wins:  Kent Tekulve - 2
Innings Pitched:  John Denny - 43 1/3
ERA:  Steve Carlton - 1.23
Strikeouts:  Kevin Gross - 22
Saves:  Kent Tekulve - 2
Cumulative Season Leaders
Games:  Von Hayes, Juan Samuel and Glenn Wilson - 45
Average:  Von Hayes - .313
Runs:  Juan Samuel - 28
Home Runs:  Mike Schmidt - 6
RBIs:  Glenn Wilson - 28
Stolen Bases:  Juan Samuel - 14

Games:  Don Carman - 21
Wins:  Shane Rawley - 4
Innings Pitched:  John Denny - 72 1/3
ERA:  Steve Carlton - 2.15
Strikeouts:  Kevin Gross - 39
Saves:  Larry Andersen and Kent Tekulve - 2

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Saturday, May 30, 2020

1985 Game 44 - 1985 Donruss #111 John Denny

Phillies 6Dodgers 1
Game 44 - Late Thursday Night, May 30th in Los Angeles
Record - 17-27, 5th Place, 11 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  John Denny out dueled Fernando Valenzuela and the Phillies took advantage of three Dodgers' errors in this 6-1 win.

What It Means:  This was Denny's second complete game in a row, but this time he got some run support from his offense.  He had lost his last complete game, 1-0, to the Padres a week earlier.

What Happened:  Ozzie Virgil continued to quietly pace the offense with two more RBIs - a sacrifice fly in the second and a solo home run in the ninth.  The Phillies took a 2-1 lead in the third when Jeff Stone reached on a fielder's choice, stole second and advanced to third on catcher Mike Scioscia's throwing error, and then scored when center fielder Ken Landreaux also misplayed the ball.

Denny allowed a solo home run to Mike Marshall in the second.  He closed out his complete game victory with three straight ground balls to short to retire the Dodgers in order in the ninth.

Featured Card:  Denny gets the card again here for his pitching efforts.  Once again, the boxscore is from the Philadelphia Daily News, as this game would have ended too late for inclusion in the Atlantic City Press.  My Dad's daily trips to Wawa to pick up the Daily News also meant a daily pack of baseball cards (or two or three) for me, and I'm reminded here that I hand collated our 1985 Topps and Fleer sets.  Our 1985 Donruss set was purchased in late June at that summer's Ocean City baseball card show.

I love the ad below from a 1985 Phillies program, noting that "Not only are baseball cards fun to collect but they are also a great investment."

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Friday, May 29, 2020

1985 Game 43 - 1986 Topps #200 Mike Schmidt

Dodgers 6Phillies 1
Game 43 - Late Wednesday Night, May 29th in Los Angeles
Record - 16-27, 5th Place, 11 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  The new look Phillies fell to the Dodgers, managing only four hits off Orel Hershiser in this 6-1 loss.

What It Means:  In an otherwise forgettable season, the Phillies made perhaps their biggest move prior to the start of this West Coast swing by shifting Gold Glove third baseman Mike Schmidt to first base, and recalling prospect Rick Schu to man the hot corner.  The news was announced by manager John Felske during a postgame press conference following the Phillies' Memorial Day win over the Padres.  The struggling John Russell, the team's opening day first baseman, would be heading back to Portland and moved to left field.  There's a great article (linked here) from The Morning Call with Schmidt's reaction to the move.

Before the 1985 season, Schmidt had made only 11 starts at a position other than third base - 7 at shortstop, 1 at second base and 3 at first base.  His first base starts had come in 1973 (2 games) and 1984 (1 game).

From a scrapbook logistics standpoint, the late night game meant a Philadelphia Daily News was needed in order to clip out the boxscore.  My Dad most likely made daily trips to Wawa to make sure I had access to these West Coast game boxscores.

What Happened:  Kevin Gross got hammered in 1 1/3 innings, giving up five runs on five hits before yielding to the bullpen.  Also notable from this game is it was Pat Zachry's final career appearance.  The 10-year veteran and former Rookie of the Year pitched a scoreless fifth and sixth innings, striking out two.  The Phillies would designate him for assignment a week later when Jerry Koosman came off the disabled list.

Schu and Schmidt went a combined 1 for 7 with no errors.

Featured Card:  Through the first 42 games of the 1985 season, I've consciously tried to only post featured cards from 1985 or prior.  Let's jump in our time machines for this post and fast forward to 1986, when the Topps flagship card for Schmidt listed his position as "1B."  Fleer followed suit with the first base designation, but Donruss still listed Schmidt as a third baseman on his 1986 Donruss card.

Transaction:  As mentioned above, Russell was optioned to Portland and Schu was recalled.  Schu had worn #53 following his September call-up in the prior season.  Now a regular, he switched to #15, last worn by John Wockenfuss in 1984.  (Wockenfuss switched to #14 for the 1985 season.)

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

1985 Game 42 - 1985 Tastykake Phillies #20 Mike Schmidt

Phillies 10Padres 9
Game 42 - Monday Afternoon, May 27th in Philadelphia
Record - 16-26, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Cubs

One Sentence Summary:  The Phillies treated a Memorial Day crowd to a come-from-behind victory, hanging on to beat the Padres, 10-9.

What It Means:  There's a few things to note from this game.  This was the last time I most likely watched live baseball as an 11-year-old for a week and a half, as the Phillies were about to embark on a west coast trip and a string of late night starts.  I doubt I watched much of this game either, as we would have been down at the shore at my grandparents beach house in Sea Isle for Memorial Day weekend.

This was also Mike Schmidt's last game as the team's regular third baseman in 1985, as the team was about to recall Rick Schu from the minors and he'd make the trip west with the club.  Schmidt would return to third more regularly in 1986.

What Happened:  On the day all fans received a free Phillies beach towel, the team scored early and often.  John Russell, about to earn a ticket to Portland, had a pinch-hit, three-run home run in the second.  Schmidt hit a three-run home run of his own in the fifth, and his 3 for 4 day also included a double.  Jeff Stone enjoyed a three-hit day.

Shane Rawley exited early having allowed four runs on six hits over just 1 1/3 innings.  The bullpen struggled, allowing the Padres to creep back into this game, but Kent Tekulve pitched the final two scoreless innings for the win.  With the score tied at nine in the eighth, Tim Corcoran's sacrifice fly scored Garry Maddox with the winning run.

Featured Card:  For one day at least, all was right in the Phillies' world.  Schmidt hit well and had a clean day in the field and the flight to Los Angeles was most likely cheerful.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

1985 Game 41 - 1985 Topps Circle K #19 Mike Schmidt

Padres 7Phillies 2
Game 41 - Sunday Afternoon, May 26th in Philadelphia
Record - 15-26, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Cubs

One Sentence Summary:  Lack of clutch hitting and a costly error from Mike Schmidt led to this 7-2 Padres win over the Phillies.

What It Means:  This was the fourth loss in a row and at this point, the Phillies' brain trust had to be thinking of ways to try to jump start a lethargic line-up and shore up the infield defense.  Schmidt went 1 for 5 to drop his average to .201 and his ninth error of the season led to three unearned runs in the fifth.  Tim Corcoran was doing a serviceable job at first base but he had slumped in May and was hitting .196 for the month.

Meanwhile in Portland, top prospect Rick Schu was hitting .280 with 22 RBIs through 42 games while playing solid defense at third base.  Could be something to watch.

At the ballpark, it was Phillies glove day, with all kids in attendance receiving a new glove.  Given the attendance of 40,182, this was a near sell-out.

What Happened:  Steve Carlton got hit around, and even though three of the four runs he allowed were unearned, he still surrendered nine hits in his 6 1/3 innings, including a solo home run to Bruce Bochy.  The game entered the ninth with the Padres holding a 4-2 lead, but Phillies reliever Rocky Childress allowed three more runs to score.

The Phillies actually outhit the Padres, 11-10, but went 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position.  Their two runs scored on a Carlton sacrifice fly in the second, and an RBI double from Schmidt in the seventh.  LaMarr Hoyt and Rich Gossage combined to contain the Phillies line-up, with Gossage recording his 13th save.

Featured Card:  I'm not trying to pick on Schmidt with these posts, but he had an awful start to his 1985 season.  He was about to turn things around, and he'd bat an even .300 from June through October, with 27 home runs and 73 RBIs.  An MVP-caliber 1986 season was also on the horizon.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Monday, May 25, 2020

1985 Game 40 - 1985 Topps Traded #33T John Felske MG

Padres 4Phillies 1
Game 40 - Saturday Night, May 25th in Philadelphia
Record - 15-25, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Cubs

One Sentence Summary:  Andy Hawkins easily handled the Phillies, pitching a complete game and only allowing a solo home run to Ozzie Virgil in this 4-1 Padres win.

What It Means:  The win improved Hawkins' record to 9-0 and I was surprised to see he didn't make the N.L. All-Star team.  He was probably the victim of the Padres, the reigning N.L. Champs, having too many other players either voted into the game or equally as deserving.  The N.L. All-Star starting line-up boasted five Padres - Terry Kennedy (c), Steve Garvey (1b), Graig Nettles (3b), Tony Gwynn (of) and LaMarr Hoyt (p).  Kennedy was injured and was replaced on the roster by the Mets' Gary Carter.  Along with the five starters named, manager Dick Williams brought Garry Templeton as a reserve.  There just wasn't any more room on the roster for another Padre, and Hawkins got left out.

Hawkins would finish the season with an 18-8 record and a 3.15 ERA, his best season in a 10-year big league career.

What Happened:  This was the first rough start of Charles Hudson's season and there would be a few more on the way.  He fell to 1-4 while pitching five innings and allowing four runs on five hits.  He wasn't particularly hit hard in the three-run second inning as the Padres scored their runs on a walk, single, single, single, and suicide squeeze sacrifice bunt (from Hawkins).

The Phillies had six hits, including Virgil's home run and a first inning double from Mike Schmidt.

Featured Card:  The 1985 Phillies Yearbook features an article by Larry Shenk celebrating the 40th manager of the club, John Felske.  In his first 40 games, Felske guided his Phillies team to a 15-25 record.  Here's a look at the group of managers who came before and after Felske and what they did in their first 40 games.  (I'm not counting Paul Owens here, who had his first stint as the club's manager back in 1972 and took over for Pat Corrales in 1983 with the club in first place.)

Felske joins Terry Francona as the two Phillies managers in recent history to have gotten off to the roughest starts.  No Phillies manager in recent history has won more than 24 games in his first 40.  Hopefully Joe Girardi breaks that trend.

Danny Ozark (1973) - 16-24
Dallas Green (1979 and 1980) - 24-16
Pat Corrales (1982) - 21-19
John Felske (1985) - 15-25
Lee Elia (1987) - 24-16
Nick Leyva (1989) - 17-23
Jim Fregosi (1991) - 19-21
Terry Francona (1997) - 15-25
Larry Bowa (2001) - 24-16
Charlie Manuel (2005) - 18-22
Ryne Sandberg (2013) - 19-21
Pete Mackanin (2015) - 19-21
Gabe Kapler (2018) - 24-16
Joe Girardi (2020) - ?

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Sunday, May 24, 2020

1985 Game 39 - 1985 Fleer #249 John Denny

Padres 1Phillies 0
Game 39 - Friday Night, May 24th in Philadelphia
Record -15-24, 5th Place, 9 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  John Denny received no run support and the Padres manufactured a run in the eighth to down the Phillies, 1-0.

What It Means:  Hard to believe, but at 2:08, this was the 12th shortest game of the season for the Phillies.  The shortest game came a week prior on May 13th when the Reds defeated the Phillies in a Monday night game that took 1:58.  That's absolutely unheard of today.

What Happened:  Denny went the distance in the loss, allowing a run on four hits while striking out four.  Dave Dravecky (7 1/3 innings) and Rich Gossage (1 2/3 innings) combined to shutout the Phillies, with Gossage recording his 12th save of the season.  Of the nine hits from the Phillies offense, two were from Glenn Wilson.

In the eighth, Denny allowed a lead-off single to Garry Templeton and then walked Dravecky.  Tim Flannery sacrificed both Templeton and Dravecky to third and second respectively.  Steve Garvey hit a sacrifice fly to right to score Templeton.

Featured Card:  Denny, Kevin Gross and Shane Rawley bolstered the Phillies rotation in 1985 with all three making at least 31 starts.  All three would throw six complete games, an impressive mark compared to today's starting pitchers.  In 2019, Zach Eflin threw two complete games for the Phillies with no one else going the distance.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Friday, May 22, 2020

1985 Game 38 - 1985 Donruss #431 Manny Trillo

Giants 6Phillies 2
Game 38 - Wednesday Night, May 22nd in Philadelphia
Record - 15-23, 5th Place, 9 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  A costly error from John Russell and a lack of clutch hitting cost the Phillies in this 6-2 loss to the Giants.

What It Means:  Once again, the Phillies couldn't pull off a series sweep.  After an off-day on Thursday, Tony Gwynn and the Padres were coming to town for a three-game weekend series.

What Happened:  The Phillies loaded the bases in the second and fourth innings, and both times Giants' starting pitcher Dave LaPoint was able to get out of those jams by retiring Phillies pitcher Kevin Gross.  The offense went 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position, and Mike Schmidt went 0 for 4 as his average fell to .189.

The Giants took a 2-0 lead in the sixth on an RBI-single from Manny Trillo.  Russell's error led to another run and Bob Brenly hit a ground-run double to give the Giants a 4-0 lead.  Dave Rucker had a rough outing in relief, lasting 1 1/3 innings and giving up a pair of runs while walking four.  Don Carman pitched a scoreless inning and his ERA went down to a surprising 0.59 mark.

The Giants had four errors of their own, but they ended up not really hurting the team.

Featured Card:  Trillo, a former Phillies All-Star and the team's second baseman when they won their first World Championship in 1980, was set to be inducted into the team's Wall of Fame this August.  There hasn't been any official announcement yet, but I'd have to imagine his ceremony will be postponed until next year and we'll get two Wall of Fame inductees in 2021.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Thursday, May 21, 2020

1985 Game 37 - 1985 Cigna Phillies #9 Glenn Wilson

Phillies 6Giants 5
Game 37 - Tuesday Night, May 21st in Philadelphia
Record - 15-22, 5th Place, 9 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  The Phillies took advantage of shaky Giants defense to score three times in the fifth and twice in the sixth to go on to a 6-5 win.

What It Means:  Four of the Phillies' six runs were unearned as Giants third baseman Joel Youngblood booted a ground ball and shortstop Jose Uribe had two errors of his own.  Another run scored on a Bob Brenly passed ball.

What I wouldn't give for a sloppy, Tuesday night Phillies game right about now.  This is one of those many, many games throughout the season where nothing particularly memorable happened and there wasn't any real excitement generated.  The Phillies and Giants were bad teams, already buried in the bottom of their respective divisions and this game slogged on for almost three hours.  But that sounds just fine to me, and given the choice between that and no baseball at all, I'd choose that.

What Happened:  The Phils got lucky.  The offense had six hits and went 3 for 11 with runners in scoring position.  Glenn Wilson had a pair of RBIs.  The team's regular first baseman (John Russell) and their regular third baseman (Mike Schmidt) exited this game below the Mendoza line at .189 and .195 respectively.  Schmidt also had a pair of errors in this game.  Changes to the corner infield spots were coming.

Shane Rawley picked up the win, lasting five innings and allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits.  Kent Tekulve recorded the final four outs of the game for his second Phillies save.

Featured Card:  Wilson had two clutch hits, singling home Juan Samuel for the Phillies first run in the fourth and doubling home Samuel in the fifth for the game-winning RBI.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

1985 Game 36 - 1985 Cigna Phillies #10 Steve Jeltz

Phillies 2Giants 1
Game 36 - Monday Night, May 20th in Philadelphia
Record - 14-22, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  A Steve Jeltz single in the seventh off Giants' reliever Vida Blue broke a 1-1 tie and ultimately led to this 2-1 win for the Phillies.

What It Means:  After this game, the Phillies and Giants had identical woeful records of 14-22.  The Giants would continue to be bad, ultimately losing 100 games and costing new manager Jim Davenport his job.  Roger Craig would take over in September, and he'd successfully manage the Giants through their 1992 season.  To date, 1985 is the only season in the 137 seasons in the history of the Giants franchise they have lost 100 games.

What Happened:  Steve Carlton won his first (and last) game of the season, pitching seven strong innings and allowing a run on five hits.  He struck out four.  Kent Tekulve got himself into a jam in the ninth with a pair of walks, but he worked out of it and recorded his first save for the club.

Mike Krukow started for the Giants, and lasted five innings, allowing a run on four hits.  The Phillies generated a run off Krukow in the first with back-to-back singles from Jeff Stone and Von Hayes, followed by an RBI groundout from Mike Schmidt.

Featured Card:  Jeltz had two hits in this game and the game-winning RBI, so that's good enough for the featured card.  This also gives me a good opportunity to cover one of the oddball Phillies sets issued in 1985.  I've always referred to this set as the Cigna Phillies set, as Cigna Corporation is indicated as the set's sponsor on the back of the cards.  The Standard Catalog lists this as the 1985 Police/Fire Safety set.  The cards measure 2 5/8" x 4 1/8" and there are 16 cards total in the Phillies set.  The set's listing also indicates these cards were distributed by several Philadelphia area police departments throughout the year.

The Standard Catalog also lists 1985 Police/Fire Safety sets for the Blue Jays, Braves and Brewers.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

1985 Game 35 - 1985 Topps Traded #58T Ken Howell

Dodgers 3Phillies 2
Game 35 - Sunday Afternoon, May 19th in Philadelphia
Record - 13-22, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  The Dodgers squeaked by the Phillies in this 3-2 loss.

What It Means:  Over 35,000 fans were treated to a Sunday afternoon pitching duel between Charles Hudson and Fernando Valenzuela.  As a bonus, all kids received a free Phillies windbreaker.

The Phils took two out of three from the Dodgers and the Giants would come to town next for three games beginning on Monday night.

What Happened:  The Dodgers scored first with back-to-back triples in the first from Bill Russell and Ken Landreaux.  Greg Brock hit a solo home run off Hudson in the fourth to make it 2-0 Dodgers.  Ozzie Virgil singled home Von Hayes, who had doubled and then stolen third, for the Phillies' first run in the fourth.  Hudson was victimized by the long ball again in the sixth when Mike Marshall hit a solo home run.  Ken Howell recorded the final five outs for the Dodgers, allowing a solo home run to Mike Schmidt in the ninth, before locking down his fifth save of the season.  Four of his five outs were recorded on strikeouts.

Hudson went eight innings, allowing three runs on six hits while striking out four.

Featured Card:  Both pitchers for the Dodgers in this game would eventually pitch for the Phillies, which would have blown my 11-year-old brain.  Valenzuela came to the Phillies during the strike-shortened 1994 season, appearing in eight games and going 1-2 with a decent 3.00 ERA.

Injuries cut short Howell's time with the Phillies.  He was acquired prior to the 1989 season and the expectation was he'd be a front of the rotation pitcher for the club for several years.  He made 50 starts for the Phillies in 1989 and 1990, going 20-19 with a 3.85 ERA.  I didn't realize he had been the closer for the Dodgers at this point in his career.  He preserved this win for Valenzuela by striking out Hayes with the bases loaded to end the eighth inning.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Monday, May 18, 2020

1985 Game 34 - 1985 Fleer #253 Von Hayes

Phillies 7Dodgers 5
Game 34 - Saturday Night, May 18th in Philadelphia
Record - 13-21, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  Back-to-back triples in the fifth from Glenn Wilson and Luis Aguayo tied this game at four and Von Hayes' two-run home run in the sixth broke the tie as the Phillies went on to beat the Dodgers again.

What It Means:  The Phillies beat Tommy Lasorda's Dodgers for the second game in a row, and they'd go for a series sweep in the Sunday afternoon game.  But with Fernando Valenzuela pitching on Sunday, it would be a tough path to a sweep.

What Happened:  Mariano Duncan's very costly error to open the fifth led to all four of the Phillies runs that inning being unearned.  Dodgers' starter Orel Hershiser was the recipient of the bad defense.  Still, Hershisher didn't pitch that crisply, and allowed the Phillies to score their first run in the second when he walked opposing pitcher John Denny with the bases loaded.  Wilson's three RBIs gave him a team-leading 25 and Hayes' home run was his third of the season.  In the fourth, Denny somehow stole second against Hershiser and Dodgers' catcher Mike Scioscia.  I was a bit surprised to learn that Denny had nine career stolen bases over his 13-year career, and this was his sixth.

Denny didn't factor in the decision, pitching 5 2/3 innings and allowing five runs on eight hits.  Larry Andersen got the win as he recorded the final out of the sixth inning before the Phillies took the lead for good.  Don Carman pitched three perfect innings for the save.  Carman was actually second on the team in saves in 1985 with seven.  Only Kent Tekulve had more with 14.

Featured Card:  Wilson had a big hit, but I'll give the card to Hayes for his clutch, tie-breaking home run.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Sunday, May 17, 2020

1985 Game 33 - 1985 Cramer Portland Beavers #31 Rocky Childress

Phillies 10Dodgers 5
Game 33 - Friday Night, May 17th in Philadelphia
Record - 12-21, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  Kevin Gross pitched well and benefitted from a 12-hit, 10-run outburst from the Phillies in this 10-5 win over the Dodgers.

What It Means:  For the third time this season, the Phillies scored at least 10 runs.

What Happened:  Juan Samuel, Garry Maddox, Von Hayes and Glenn Wilson all drove in two runs a piece, with Samuel and Hayes homering.  Ozzie Virgil went 4 for 5, the second (and final) time he'd have a four hit game in the majors.  Only Mike Schmidt (0 for 2) and Luis Aguayo (0 for 2) didn't get in on the hit parade, and Schmidt's average dropped to .208.  John Russell had a hit to increase his average to .152.

Gross pitched eight innings, tying his career high up until this point with 10 strikeouts.  (He'd strike out 13 in 1992 while a member of the Dodgers.)  Rookie Rocky Childress made his major league debut in a low-pressure situation, entering the game in the ninth with the Phillies ahead 10-3.  He got knocked around a a little and the Dodgers scored a pair of runs before he was able to get out of the inning.

Featured Card:  I have three Childress cards in my collection - this minor league card from the Portland Beavers team set and the team-issued cards Childress appeared on in 1985 and 1986.  He'd get a few proper mainstream baseball cards in 1988 when he appeared in the Donruss, Fleer and Topps sets with the Astros.

Transaction:  Before the game, the Phillies placed catcher Darren Daulton on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder and recalled reliever Childress from Triple-A Portland.  Daulton must have suffered the injury in the Monday night game against the Reds, as that was his last game action. Childress had been pitching well for Portland, but didn't expect to get the call.  Per this Reading Eagle article written by Larry Shenk, he arrived for this game around 10:30, in the bottom of the seventh, and was told by the bullpen coach, Mike Ryan, he'd be entering the game as soon as he warmed up.  Childress wore uniform #50, previously worn by Marty Bystrom between 1980 and 1984.

Starting pitchers (5) - Steve Carlton, John Denny, Kevin Gross, Charles Hudson, Shane Rawley
Relief pitchers (6) - Larry Andersen, Don Carman, Rocky Childress, Dave Rucker, Kent Tekulve, Pat Zachry
Catchers (2) - Ozzie Virgil, John Wockenfuss
Infielders (7) - Luis Aguayo, Tim Corcoran, Steve Jeltz, John Russell, Juan Samuel, Mike Schmidt, Derrel Thomas
Outfielders (5) - Greg Gross, Von Hayes, Garry Maddox, Jeff Stone, Glenn Wilson
Disabled List (4) - Darren Daulton, Bo Diaz, Jerry Koosman, Joe Lefebvre

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Saturday, May 16, 2020

1985 Game 32 - 1985 Topps Traded #121T Derrel Thomas

Braves 6Phillies 3
Game 32 - Thursday Night, May 16th in Atlanta
Record - 11-21, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  Shane Rawley left this game early and Derrel Thomas had a costly error as the Braves won again against the Phillies, 6-3.

What It Means:  A little over 10,000 paying customers watched two fairly bad teams play a somewhat boring game.

What Happened:  Rawley must have departed with an injury as he left with two outs in the third after issuing a walk to Brad Komminsk.  He'd make his next regularly scheduled start five days later, so the early hook ended up only being a precaution.  Pat Zachry entered the game after Rawley's exit, and he must have actually hurt something as he'd not appear in a game again until May 27th.  Zachry, Dave Rucker and Larry Andersen allowed six runs (four earned) on nine hits.  The unearned runs came courtesy of Thomas, who made his Phillies debut and booted his first chance at shortstop in the seventh inning.

Glenn Wilson had a three-hit game.  The three Phillies runs scored on RBI ground-outs and a Luis Aguayo sacrifice fly.

Featured Card:  Heck of a way to start your Phillies career.  Thomas entered the game in the sixth as a pinch-hitter for Steve Jeltz with the Phillies trailing 3-2.  His groundout to second scored Ozzie Virgil and tied the score at three.  In the seventh, with the score still tied, he whiffed on his first chance at short and the Braves took a 4-3 lead.  Two more unearned runs would eventually score later in the inning.  Somewhere, the recently designated for assignment Kiko Garcia was shaking his head.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Friday, May 15, 2020

1985 Game 31 - 1985 Donruss Action All-Stars #55 Steve Carlton

Braves 3Phillies 2 (10 Innings)
Game 31 - Wednesday Night, May 15th in Atlanta
Record - 11-20, 5th Place, 10 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  The Braves tied the game in the ninth and walked it off in the 10th on a Terry Harper home run given up by Kent Tekulve.

What It Means:  This is one of those brutal losses that must have stung for a few days.  The Phillies had a 2-0 lead going into the bottom of the ninth thanks in part to a great outing from Steve Carlton.  Carlton had pitched six shutout innings before yielding to the bullpen.

What Happened:  The downfall happened quickly.  Larry Andersen allowed a lead-off single in the ninth to Ken Oberkfell and Gerald Perry then promptly hit a two-run home run to tie the game.  Harper led off the 10th with his game-winning home run off Tekulve.

The offense had plenty of opportunities to score more, but went 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position.  The game was scoreless until the seventh thanks to the pitching duel between Carlton and Braves starting pitcher Steve Bedrosian.  In the top of the seventh, Tim Corcoran doubled home Von Hayes for the first run of the game.  Mike Schmidt would single home Luis Aguayo an inning later.

Featured Card:  This was to be Carlton's last outing of pitching at least six innings of shutout baseball for the rest of the season.  In mid-June, Lefty landed on the disabled list with a left shoulder injury and he'd return in September to make three rough starts.  He'd attempt a comeback in 1986, with a few starts showing promise, but the Phillies would ultimately release the greatest pitcher in the franchise's history on June 24, 1986.

That began a season and a half odyssey that saw Carlton pitch for the Giants, White Sox, Indians and Twins between mid-1986 and early 1988.  His longest stint during that period came with the Indians, with whom he made 23 appearances (14 starts) in the first half of 1987.

1985 Topps #763
1985 Fleer #314
Transaction:  Also on this day, the Phillies designated infielder Kiko Garcia for assignment and signed utility player Derrel Thomas as a free agent.  Thomas would make his Phillies debut on Thursday against the Braves and Garcia would be released by the club on May 23rd (according to the team's 1986 Media Guide).

Garcia had been released by the club once already, prior to the start of the regular season, but was quickly re-signed when the Phillies dealt Ivan DeJesus to the Cardinals.  Garcia had only appeared in four games for the Phillies in 1985, going 0 for 3 to end his 10-year big league career.

Derrel Thomas was a veteran of 14 seasons in the majors, having last appeared in 122 games with the Expos and Angels in 1984.  When the Phillies signed him, he had been playing for the Miami Marlins, an unaffiliated team in the Class A Florida State League.  Thomas took over Garcia's uniform number too - #18.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Thursday, May 14, 2020

1985 Game 30 - 1985 Donruss #355 Charlie Hudson

Phillies 7Reds 1
Game 30 - Tuesday Afternoon, May 14th in Cincinnati
Record - 11-19, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  Juan Samuel drove in five runs and Charles Hudson pitched eight shutout innings in this 7-1 victory over the Reds.

What It Means:  The win halted a seven-game losing streak and gave the Phillies their third win in 11 games in May.  Following this matinee, the club flew to Atlanta for a quick two-game series with the Braves.

What Happened:  Samuel went 2 for 5 with a three-run home run in the fifth off Reds starting pitcher Tom Browning and a two-run single in the ninth off reliever Frank Pastore.  Mike Schmidt hit a solo home run to lead off the sixth, and raised his average to an even .200 in the process.  Von Hayes and Ozzie Virgil also had multi-hit games.

John Wockenfuss got his first start of the season, playing first base and going 1 for 3.

Hudson made his first start of the season, filling in for the injured Jerry Koosman, and he was brilliant.  He walked three and struck out five, with the only hit allowed coming from a Dave Parker single in the fourth.  He was pinch-hit for in the ninth, which was somewhat surprising as the Phillies held a 4-0 lead at the time and Hudson was cruising.  Don Carman worked out of a small jam in the ninth, allowing a run to score on a Cesar Cedeno sacrifice fly.  Pete Rose went hitless in four at-bats.

Featured Card:  In his diary of his record-breaking season, Rose gives an explanation as to why Hudson went from Charlie to Charles following his rookie season in 1983.  By 1986, Donruss, Fleer and Topps had all updated their cards to reflect Hudson's preferred first name.

1985 Virtual Phillies Wall / 1985 Season Summary Index

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

1985 Game 29 - 1984 Fleer #63 Reds Reunited

Reds 7Phillies 3
Game 29 - Monday Night, May 13th in Cincinnati
Record - 10-19, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  A Tony Perez grand slam in the sixth off Dave Rucker sealed the Phillies fate in this 7-3 loss to the Reds.

What It Means:  The Phillies were getting dangerously close to falling into the basement of the N.L. East, and only the equally poor play of the Pirates kept the team in fifth place.  This was the Phillies seventh loss in a row.

What Happened:  Heading into the bottom of the sixth, the score was knotted at 3-3.  A fading John Denny walked the first two Reds batters, allowed a single to Dave Van Gorder and was lifted for reliever Dave Rucker.  Rucker allowed the grand slam to pinch-hitter Perez.

Earlier in the game, Mike Schmidt hit his third home run of the season off Reds starter John Stuper.  Darren Daulton started behind the plate for the second game in a row, and his last back-to-back starts until August, doubling and scoring a run.  Juan Samuel also had a double and an RBI groundout.

Reds player/manager Pete Rose had a pair of hits leaving him 71 hits shy of Ty Cobb's all-time record.

Featured Card:  Perez was now 43 and playing in his 22nd season in the majors.  Used primarily as a pinch-hitter, he'd enjoy a solid 1985 season, hitting .328 with six home runs and 33 RBIs.  He hit his sixth career and his final grand slam in this game.  At the time, he was also the oldest player in baseball history to hit a grand slam.  The previous record had been held by Cap Anson, who was 42 when he hit his last grand slam in 1894.  Julio Franco would break Perez's record with a slam in 2005 when he was 46 years old.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

1985 Game 28 - 1985 Donruss #477 Kevin Gross

Mets 3Phillies 2
Game 28 - Sunday Afternoon, May 12th in New York
Record - 10-18, 5th Place, 9 1/2 games behind the Mets

One Sentence Summary:  The Mets completed the three-game sweep with a Sunday matinee win over the Phillies, 3-2.

What It Means:  The Phillies losing skein continued as they dropped their sixth consecutive game.  Spoiler alert - The losing streak would grow to seven on Monday night before Charles Hudson and Juan Samuel contributed to stop the streak on Tuesday night in Cincinnati.

What Happened:  Kevin Gross took the loss, pitching six innings and allowing three runs (two earned) on eight hits.  He allowed a first inning home run to Keith Hernandez.  The Mets third and ultimately their winning run scored in the sixth when Juan Samuel booted a ground ball, prolonging the inning and allowing Danny Heep to score.  It was Samuel's fourth error of the season.

The Phillies offense continued to be ineffective.  Kevin Gross was the only Phillie to have a multi-hit game.  Glenn Wilson pinch hit for Gross in the seventh and hit a solo home run off Darling, his fourth of the season.

Featured Card:  Gross was decent in filling the role of the team's fifth starter, despite this game's outcome.  This was his third start, and he had lasted at least five innings in each outing.

Even though the Phillies were playing like crap, you could still look good while rooting for them.  Gold Medal Sporting Goods had you covered when it came to official Phillies gear and souvenirs.