Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Greatest Baseball Moment Ever?

Today is the anniversary of the "Shot Heard 'Round the World," Bobby Thomson's home run to lead the Giants past the Dodgers in a one-game playoff for the NL pennant.

It is widely regarded as the greatest single moment in baseball history.

Here's what I'd like to know: What is YOUR choice as the greatest single moment in baseball history?

Obviously, most of us weren't around for the Shot; does your choice necessarily have to happen in your own lifetime? (For example, how many people will say "Kirk Gibson in '88?")

Make your argument for the greatest single moment in baseball history in the Comments section.

(Don't forget to weigh in below with your MLB LDS picks and X-factors for each series, plus whether or not Brett Favre should hang it up after last night's debacle.)

-- D.S.


Christian Thoma said...

My apologies, dan. I didn't think I took any cheap shots; heck I defended you from a comparison to Skip Bayless. Point out the post in question, and I'll delete/edit to fix.

As for Greatest Baseball Moment Ever, my choice is Roger Clemens throwing the broken bat at Mike Piazza. That was just bizarre. (Followed closely by Pedro throwing Zimmer to the ground)

Jake C said...

IML - In my lifetime, I would have to say Buckner's error. For several reasons. One - I am a lifelong Mets fan. Two - my father's a Sawx fan. And three - the emotion, circumstances, thrill, and the fact I remember banging on the bathroom door as my father was in there (since he thought it was over & done) yelling, "You'll never believe what just happened. The Mets are alive!"

TBender said...

Greatest Baseball Moment Ever?
April 15, 1947, at Ebbets Field.
Thank you Mr. Robinson and Mr. Rickey.

FreKy J said...

Even if conspiracy is that Chan Ho Park threw a batting practice fastball over the middle of the plate, I think the greatest moment ever was Cal Ripken's 3rd inning home run in his final All Star game.

Perks said...

On a personal note- Dave Roberts stealing second in Game 4 at Fenway, 2004.

(by the way, I reccomend the 100 reasons to watch playoffs on espn.com's Page 2 http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=schoenfield/061002)

Being objective, and the overall "meaning", I'm going with "The Shot" as the best moment.

I'd also like to add the Greatest World Series. The 2001 World Series is my vote for the best ever.

Brian in Oxford said...

I'm a big fan of Fisk's shot back in '75.

And the thing about it is, unlike a lot of the moments that come to mind.....it won't KILL the Reds fans to think about it, because they came back to win Game 7.

A lot of the moments, although exalting for the winners, were utterly demoralizing for the losers. Like, if the Braves had won Game 7 in '91....they might not be killing themselves over losing game 6 singlehandedly to Kirby!

Ace Cowboy said...

Best moment in baseball history? Does it get any better than Scott Brosius? I was in the house that night, and I ended up about ten rows from where I started. Pandemonium was defined that night.

Add up the lingering effects of September 11th on the sports psyche, the Yankums being America's Team for once, BH Kim on the mound for the second straight night, the Yanks behind in the 9th with two outs again, *that* feeling of mystique and aura in the air, and a lovable third-baseman jacking one out of the park to send it to extras.

With all the implications and all the ridiculousness, I don't think it gets any better than that. It can't. That was too freaky to be reproduced, and the situational backdrop will hopefully never be in our minds again.

Perks said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jake C said...

No need for apologies...it needed to be said and probably will again. Sports arguments tend to bring out some bad sides of people...so, it's expected. Just imagine what people like Bayless hear/see. Could be worse :-)

Brian in Oxford said...

Something like Dave Roberts' steal obviously led to something great.....but at the time it happened, there was no guarantee he'd score, or that the Sox would win THAT game, let alone the next three.

Something like Bobby Thomson....you knew right then and there how great it was, its context was already defined. Even something like Reggie's 3rd homer....he had just hit 2 earlier in the game, so when he hit it, you knew what it meant at the moment it happened.

Mega said...

It really depends. For me personally, it was the White Sox winning it all in 2005.

But on a historical basis, Bobby Thompson's shot, Keith Hernandez's "I don't believe what I just saw" HR, 1991 World Series as a whole. Those are my top 3. Yeah.

Big D said...

This one requires some thought, something I'm not fully prepared to do seeing as how I'm on a caffeine low as my morning 36oz coffee is wearing off.

Obviously, as a Die Hard, card carrying (not really, thank God) member of Red Sox' Nation, anything from the 2004 postseason or the 2001 World Series instantly makes me smile. But those are too easy.

Since we're talking "In My Lifetime", which is admittedly short to date (Born late in '81), I don't have a whole lot to base this on.

From an overall world/baseball perspective, watching Mike Piazza single handedly wake up all of NYC with his game winner over the Braves just after 9/11 might be the single best "goose-bump" moment for me. Forget that it helped a New York team and hurt the only National League team I've ever supported, it just seemed right, after a week where so much else was wrong.

Other than that, for moments aside from the 2001 & 2004 postseasons, I'd have to refer back to Pedro in the 1999 All Star Game. He was an artist at work, setting down six of the game's best, in Fenway, after the 1998 home run love-fest. After having Teddy Ballgame come out for the first pitch, I got to watch Petey strike out Barry Larkin, Larry Walker, and Sammy Sosa in the first, followed by Mark McGwire and then Jeff Bagwell on a strike-'em-out / throw-'em-out with Matt Williams at second base.

Admittedly, I watched both events from home, and I'm certain each was 100 times more electrifying in person. But I can't think of any two other moments in the last 24 years that I witnessed that we as great as those.

Shums said...

I'm with Poppa Perks on the greatness of the 2001 Series. Being a D-backs fan (and only 23 years old), when that broken bat single from Luis Gonzalez cleared Jeter's head, well, nothing will feel so wonderful.

Hardly Greatest Moment Ever, but greatest moment of my baseball lifetime, most definitely.

William Joseph said...

October 23rd, 1993, Joe Carter's game winning home run! I was 10 years old, yet I still remember the date it happened. I was at a friend's birthday party and we all were going crazy. I believe this is the only come from behind bottom of the 9th homer to win the World Series ever.

Shums said...


I was totally going to mention the Ripken record, but memories of that D-backs series made me lose my... oh, man, take that Mariano... stupid Byung-Hyung Kim... go Gonzo!... um, where was I?

Pete said...

Maz's homer in the series to seal the deal. Great drama- great swing of the bat.

LoganAvatar said...

Oh, the Mariners!!

From http://www.baseballlibrary.com/baseballlibrary/features/postseason/mariners.stm

1995 was the season that saved baseball in Seattle. Capping a miraculous September surge that saw them end the season tied with Anaheim, the Mariners earned the first post-season berth in franchise history by thumping the Angels in a one-game playoff at the Kingdome. After dropping the opening two stanzas of their five-game ALDS matchup with the Yankees, the Mariners pulled off three straight dramatic wins. In the classic Game Five the M's rallied from an early deficit against Yanks starter David Cone to force extra innings before Martinez brought them back one last time on a two-run 11th inning double, inspiring pandemonium at the Kingdome.

pv845 said...

For my lifetime, born '81, it would be the Royals winning it all in 1985. For us Royals fans, that is a cherished memory since lately, we have had some bad, bad teams.

Shums said...

I was five years old when the Gibson game happened, Dan. Just don't have any emotional attachment to it. Except the Wheaties commercials.

Dan Shanoff said...

OK, whoever logged in as "Dan Shanoff" earlier is totally an imposter. This ticks me off to no end.

-- The REAL Dan.

RevScottDeMangeMD said...

It's amazing looking at people's responses. I'm willing to bet that the majority of the responses are personal. So I'll pick one of each.

Personal: When the Reds swept the A's in the 1990 World Series...I was only 8 years old that the time and my dad let me stay up to watch games 3 and 4.

Non-personal: Luis Gonzalez's bloop to end the Yankee's dynasty. Also, that was 2001 and it made us forget about 9/11 for that brief moment.

Dan...let's hug it out bitch.

Brien said...

If we're talking personal greatest baseball moment ever it's this one ...

"The 2-2 pitch to Willie Wilson ... struck him out ... and the Phillies are World's Champions!"

Now, if we're talking a moment that could be considered in the Pantheon (TM) of Greatest Baseball Moment Ever ... how 'bout this one ...

Game Seven, 1926 World Series. Grover Cleveland Alexander comes in, unexpectedly, to pitch for the Cardinals with the bases loaded and the dangerous Tony Lazzeri at the plate.

Alexander is hungover, having gone on another of his famous benders after having beaten the Yankees in Game Six the day before. He tells his manager that he wants no warm-up tosses for fear that the Yankees will surmise that he is unfit to take the mound.

Ol' Pete fans Lazzeri, then hangs on to record the save and a Cardinal championship as Babe Ruth ends the Series caught stealing second. When asked after the game why he tried to steal, Ruth admitted that the way Alexander was pitching, Ruth needed to get to second on his own ... he figured they would never get two hits to bring him around.


RevScottDeMangeMD said...

Fake Dan...stop being a jerk and ruining it for everyone else.

Mega said...

Oh my lord I typed Keith Hernandez instead of Kirk Gibson by mistake.

I am deeply, deeply sorry to Dodgers fans everywhere.

What about Scott Podsednik's HR to win Game 2 last year? How unlikely was that?

He hit a moonshot off Lidge. Pujols did it, but Pods is no Pujols by any stretch.

Dan Shanoff said...

Real Dan here: Fake Dan, thanks for 'fessing up and stopping.

I appreciate your enthusiasm for the blog -- seriously, I do.

But we're better off moving forward with no confusion about who "Dan Shanoff" is and what I'm saying on the blog.

I'm dangerously close to talking about myself in the third person ("Jimmy's getting upset!" -- anyone get that reference?), so I'll end it here.

-- D.S.

Sean said...

Puckett's catch followed by his home run in Game 6 of the 1991 World Series. He is a hero.

ToddTheJackass said...

I know we're not supposed to talk about Fantasy in here, but lately my favorite moment had to be on Sunday, when Ray Durham got a pinch hit out during the meaningless Dodgers/Giants game... because Durham got an out for another team, I won my fantasy league by .001 in OBP.

Best pinch hitting out ever!

Other than that, gotta go when Damon hit the grand slam in game 7 of the ALCS, at the point when all the Red Sox fans looked at each other and said, "you know, I really think this is going to happen."

-Todd (Boston)

bajump said...

I wasn't around to see it, but Bill Mazeroski's walk-off in game 7 of the 1960 Series has got to be the greatest HR of all time. It's the only walk-off to end a game 7. Yankee pitchers had shutout the Pirates in their 3 wins making a homer by the light hitting Maz even more improbable.

oasiserfede said...

Aaron Boone. Enuff said!!!!!

Jake C said...

George is getting upset!!

Gotta love the refernce!

mattie said...

My two seem to have been mentioned already, this is mainly personal (though I think 1986 cuts it as one of the greatest moments period).

-- Piazza's post-9/11 home-run. I cried. I'm not sure I can explain what that entire first game meant (or that year's World Series, where I unashamedly rooted for the Yankees, and it did my heart a lot of good to see the New Yorkers at those games).

-- Game 6. I was eight, and this game was single-handedly responsible for not only making me a Mets fan, but for making me a sports fan, period. And the drama of that comeback is truly unbelievable.

Unknown said...

My greatest baseball moment didn't even happen on the field.

It was Ken Griffey Jr. bucking the trend and taking LESS (a lot less) money to play for his hometown, small market team.
The injuries have dampened it slightly, but the idea of one of the greatest players ever taking less money...incredible. Humble, 'roid free, fun, and always, always plays 100% on the field.

Brian in Oxford said...

In ranking these, great moments shouldn't be caused by others' failings....that's why Buckner's play isn't as great as Boone's homer. Someone making a play is always greater than someone NOT making a play to turn a game.

Same idea with the Yankees homers in '01 off of BH Kim....the first time it happened, it was a great moment, but then as he imploded game after game, the succeeding homers weren't universally "great moments", unless you're specifically a fan of the team it's happening for....does that make sense?

The great thing about Gibson's homer is that it's one of the few plays where the radio and TV calls are equally famous. Jack Buck's "I don't believe what I just saw" versus Vin Scully's "You talk about a roll of the dice...."

Josh said...

How about Fransisco Cabrera in 1992?

That single has set off a chain of events for Pirate fans like me that we never would have imagined.

Bonds leaves, becomes the greatest player of his generation, the Pirates tank, and again, and again, ad nauseum, until here we are 14 years later.

I hate you Fransisco Cabrera.

FreKy J said...

I'm the real Dan Shanoff! No. Wait.. I'm the real Slim Shady! No, it's not that either. I'm Spartacus! No damnit.. I give up.

SF said...

I am a die hard Dodgers fan, and I was born in 1984, so as much as I'd love to say Gibson's Homer wasa my #1 moment, I'd be lying.

I am going to have to say that this year's Miraculous dodgers back-to-back-to-back-to-back Home Run comeback against the Padres, followed by Nomar's Walkoff to win it, was my #1 Baseball moment.

#2 would have to be Jose (LimaTime) Lima's complete game shutout against the Cards in the playoffs a few years ago, mostly because watching Lima on the mound is entertaining in itself.

#3, as much as I loath the guy, is Steve Finley's walkoff Grand Slam to beat rival Giants and win the Division 2 years ago

good times

chitown italian said...

Greatest baseball moment ever....there are a lot and NOT being a Yankees fan I would have to go with Drysdale's perfect game in the World Series. Greatest feat would be DiMaggio's hit streak. Remember, I AM NOT A YANKEES fan (Cubs fan, ouch!).

chitown italian said...

Wait, I forgot about the 1994 World Series. That had to be the BEST WORLD SERIES EVER.

Brave Sir Robin said...

Greatest moment ever? I can say what mine was.

Top of the eighth. Runners on Second and third. Indians up 1-0 over the Mariners. I'm 10, watching Game 6 of the 1995 ALCS, far past my bedtime.

Randy Johnson checks the runners. He goes into his motion and...WILD PITCH! Runner scores from third as the catcher jogs after the ball. Turning, he sees Kenny Lofton bearing down on Johnson, running from second base. Johnson has no idea; his look of shock as the catcher hurls the ball to him says it all. Lofton slides across the plate, breaking the Mariners' spirit. I go nuts. The Indians go to the World Series for the first time in 41 years.

All-Time great moment? I can't say. I can say that it certainly was for me, and that's how you have to define the moments, personally.