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As a prerequisite to this thread, please read the first post in The World Series thread. I would recommend not reading any further until you do. --- Assuming you've read that post, I'd now like to make a case for the *wrong* Second Baseman having been given the 1960 World Series MVP Award. The award was given to Bobby Richardson of the New York Yankees. The MVP Award didn't exist until 1955, and every year before 1960, it had been given to a pitcher; this was the first year (and the only year in history) it would go to a second baseman - the question is: *Which* second baseman? There is no doubt that Richardson had a tremendous World Series, batting .367, with 12 RBIs and a Grand Slam in the seven-game series. However, Richardson is the only player from a losing team ever to win the award, and I would argue that he was only the *second*-most-valuable second baseman playing in this series: Bill Mazeroski deserved the award. Mazeroski wasn't some little-known player like Rick Dempsey (in 1983) who had a fantastic World Series (no disrespect meant towards Dempsey, who was a better-than-average major leaguer); no, Mazeroski was a 10-time all-star (in 7 different seasons), an 8-time Gold Glove winner, and is in the Hall of Fame, primarily for his defense. All baseball fans know about "the most famous home run ever hit" - along with the 1993 shot by Joe Carter, the only walk-off home run ever to end an entire *season* (and still the only one in Game 7), giving the Pirates their first World Series championship since 1925! But what the average fan doesn't know is that Mazeroski batted .320 that series, and in Game 1, hit *another* game-winning home run: This one wasn't a walk-off home run; in fact, it happened in the 4th inning, but it provided the winning run in the game - that makes 2-out-of-4 games that Mazeroski won for the Pirates with home runs. The three games the Yankees won were blow-outs, by scores of 16-3, 10-0, and 12-0. They didn't *need* Richardson's RBIs; the Pirates, on the other hand, couldn't have won the series without Mazeroski - their four wins happened by scores of 6-4, 3-2, 5-2, and in the deciding game, 10-9: Both of Mazeroski's homers were indispensable, and Pittsburgh would have lost without them. I guess the New York publicity machine won the award for Richardson, but the real MVP of the 1960 World Series was Bill Mazeroski. If there's any doubt remaining, Richardson's OPS was 1.054 for the series; Mazeroski's was .960 - yes, Richardson's was stronger, but it wasn't *that* much stronger (Mazeroski got hits in 6 out of the 7 games). More importantly: Richardson committed errors in each of the first two games; Mazeroski didn't commit an error the entire series.
It about kills me to put this video up here, but the one person in the world I'll do it for is the great Roberto Clemente, killed in an airplane crash while making a humanitarian visit to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. He was 38 years old, and was still arguably the best right fielder in baseball at the time - it's hard to believe he was a year *older* than Frank Robinson, a pretty darned good right fielder himself, and whom you can see scoring the winning run here, the game before, off a Brooks Robinson sacrifice "fly" (if you want to call that a fly). This video is Clemente's second World Series championship, and his interview begins just after 2:06:30 (I have it set to this). Shortly after one year later, he was gone - I cannot believe I'm about to say this, but I'm glad for both him, and his mom and dad, that he won this World Series. Other than perhaps Jackie Robinson, can you name a greater human being who ever put on a mitt?
"Pirates Turn First 4-5-4 Triple Play In MLB History In Crazy Fashion" by Joe Rodgers on sportingnews.com Enjoy this now because MLB will have the video removed from YouTube due to copyright. --- ETA: It was removed from YouTube, but it's still here: "Must C: Pirates Turn Triple Play" on m.mlb.com "Bucs Stun Cards with First 4-5-4 Triple Play" on m.mlb.com
Here's a historically important video of Game 7 of the 1971 World Series, in which the Pittsburgh Pirates (affectionally known as "The Lumber Company") defeated the Baltimore Orioles, 2-1. I could only watch the first inning because there's too much memory of a ten-year-old's anguish, knowing what happened, but even watching the first inning alone is of historical importance - you get to see three hall-of-famers in action: Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, and Roberto Clemente. Willie Stargell played, of course, but didn't see any action in the first inning. Can any old-timer from Pittsburgh tell me why Billy Meyer's number was retired? It takes an aficionado for this to mean much, but Pittsburgh's retired numbers from the infield (Mazeroski at 2B, Wagner at SS, Traynor at 3B) are probably as fine as anyone's in baseball, especially Wagner (.328 career BA) and Traynor (.320 career BA) - you could justifiably place both of these two men on a major-league all-time roster by position, and be taken seriously.