The Greatest MLB Tournament Ever Created (AL, Round Two, Group 8)

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Last group

Only one group to go - here are 28 of the 32 greatest teams in AL history.

8 Yankees
5 Orioles
4 A's
3 Astros
2 Red Sox
2 White Sox
1 Jays
1 Mariners
1 Tigers
1 Indians

8. 1948 Indians (World Champions)
72. 1987 Blue Jays (2nd in AL East-no playoffs)

-this is it for both franchises; one will place two teams into the next round.

Catcher: Hegan (27) v. Whitt (35) Winner: Jays-Whitt
First Base: Robinson (27) v. Upshaw (30) Winner: Jays-Upshaw
Second Base: Gordon (33) v. Iorg (32) Winner: Indians-Gordon
Shortstop: Boudreau (30) v. Fernandez (25) Winner: Indians-Boudreau
Third Base: Keltner (31) v. Gruber (25) Winner: Indians-Mitchell
Left Field: Mitchell (26) v. Bell (27) Winner: Jays-Bell
Center Field: Doby (24) v. Moseby (27) Winner: Indians-Doby
Right Field: Clark (25) v. Barfield (27) Winner: Jays-Barfield
DH: Tucker (30) v. McGriff (23) Winner: Jays-McGriff
SP1: Lemon (27) v. Key (26) Winner: Jays-Key
SP2: Feller (29) v. Clancy (31) Winner: Jays-Clancy
SP3: Bearden (27) v. Stieb (29) Winner: Indians-Bearden
Closer: Christopher (30) v. Henke (29) Winner: Jays-Henke
Team Offense: Indians
Team Pitching: Jays

Jays 10 Indians 7 - Toronto sweeps nearly every pitching point and claims a second spot in the final 32.

25. 1931 Yankees (2nd in AL-no playoffs)
89. 1958 Yankees (World Champions)

-Yankee team #9 is about to move forward.

Catcher: Dickey (24) v. Berra (33) Winner: 1931-Dickey
First Base: Gehrig (28) v. Skowron (27) Winner: 1931-Gehrig
Second Base: Lazzeri (27) v. McDougald (30) Winner: Push
Shortstop: Lary (25) v. Kubek (22) Winner: 1931-Lary
Third Base: Sewell (32) v. Carey (26) Winner: 1958-Carey
Left Field: Chapman (22) v. Siebern (24) Winner: 1931-Chapman
Center Field: Combs (32) v. Mantle (26) Winner: 1958-Mantle
Right Field: Ruth (36) v. Bauer (35) Winner: 1931-Ruth
SP1: Gomez (22) v. Turley (27) Winner: 1931-Gomez
SP2: Ruffing (26) v. Ford (29) Winner: 1958-Ford
SP3: Johnson (25) v. Ditmar(29) Winner: 1931-Johnson
Closer: Pipgras (31) v. Duren (29) Winner: 1958-Duren
Team Offense: 1931
Team Pitching: 1931

1931 11 1928 4 - '31 becomes the 9th NYY team to move forward.  The bats.  The bats.  

9. 1998 Yankees (World Champions)
56. 1923 Yankees (World Champions)

And the Yankees are about to get a 10th - 10 of the 32 greatest teams in AL history wore pinstripes.

Catcher: Posada (26) v. Schang (33) Winner: 1998-Posada
First Base: Martinez (30) v. Pipp (30) Winner: 1998-Martinez
Second Base: Knoblauch (29) v. Ward (26) Winner: 1923-Ward
Shortstop: Jeter (24) v. Scott (30) Winner: 1998-Jeter
Third Base: Brosius (31) v. Dugan (26) Winner: 1998-Brosius
Left Field: Curtis (29) v. Meusel (26) Winner: 1998-Curtis
Center Field: Williams (29) v. Witt (27) Winner: 1998-Williams
Right Field: O'Neill (35) v. Ruth (28) Winner: 1923-Ruth
DH: Strawberry (36) v. Hoffman (29) Winner: 1998-Strawberry
SP1: Pettitte (26) v. Bush (30) Winner: 1923-Bush
SP2: Wells (35) v. Shawkey (32) Winner: 1998-Wells
SP3: Cone (35) v. Jones (30) Winner: 1998-Cone
Closer: Rivera (28) v. Mays (31) Winner: 1998-Rivera
Team Offense: 1998
Team Pitching: 1998

1998 14  1923 3 -- Wow.  

24. 1903 Red Sox (Americans) (World Champions) 
88. 2013 Red Sox (World Champions)

Catcher: Criger (31) v. Saltalamacchia (28) Winner: 2013-Saltalamacchia
First Base: LaChance (33) v. Napoli (31) Winner: 2013-Napoli
Second Base: Ferris (28) v. Pedroia (29) Winner: 2013-Pedroia
Shortstop: Parent (27) v. Drew (30) Winner: 1903-Parent
Third Base: Collins (33) v. Middlebrooks (24) Winner: 2013-Collins
Left Field: Dougherty (26) v. Gomes (32) Winner: 1903-Dougherty
Center Field: Stahl (30) v. Ellsbury (29) Winner: 2013-Ellsbury
Right Field: Freeman (31) v. Victorino (32) Winner: 2013-Victorino
DH: O'Brien (30) v. Ortiz (37) Winner: 2013-Ortiz
SP1: Young (36) v. Lester (29) Winner: 2013-Young
SP2: Dinneen (27) v. Lackey (34) Winner: 1903-Dinneen
SP3: Hughes (24) v. Dempster (36) Winner: 1903-Hughes
Closer: Altrock (26) v. Uehara (38) Winner: 2013-Uehara
Team Offense: 2013
Team Pitching: 2013

2013 13  1903 4 - double wow.  

We're done.  The Round of 32 is set.  Here are the 32 Greatest Teams in the History of the American League:

Group 1

1. 1939 Yankees (World Champions-Joe McCarthy)
96. 1977 Yankees (World Champions-Billy Martin)

16. 1936 Yankees (World Champions-Joe McCarthy)
48. 1973 Orioles (lost ALCS-Earl Weaver)

Group 1 has the top overall AL seed, the '39 Yankees, with 6 Hall of Famers led by a 24 year old Joe DiMaggio.  They'll take on the Bronx Zoo Yankees with a 31 year old Reggie Jackson for a spot in the Sweet 16.

The 16 overall seed is here; it's the '36 Yankees, a very similar squad to that '39 team - and they face the only team in Group 1 not to win the World Series, the '73 Orioles with a 27 year old Jim Palmer.  

Group 2

2. 1927 Yankees (World Champions-Miller Huggins)
98. 1950 Red Sox (3rd in AL-no playoffs-Steve O'Neill)

70. 2002 Red Sox (2nd in AL East-no playoffs-Grady Little)
47. 1922 Browns (Orioles) (2nd in AL-no playoffs-Lee Fohl)

Group 2 has the #2 overall seed, the most famous team in MLB history, a 32 year old Ruth, a 24 year old Gehrig - the 1927 Yankees.  They'll meet a 31 year old Ted Williams and a Red Sox team that didn't make the playoffs.  Another Sox team that didn't make the playoffs is still alive; the 2002 Sox - with 30 year olds Pedro Martinez and Manny Ramirez. And they face a team that doesn't exist anymore, the 1922 St Louis Browns, led by a 29 year old George Sisler.  

Group 3

3. 1942 Yankees (lost WS-Joe McCarthy)
30. 1932 Yankees (World Champions-Joe McCarthy)

14. 1929 A's (World Champions-Connie Mack)
83. 1985 Blue Jays (lost ALCS-Bobby Cox)

-DiMaggio puts his third team in the Final 32, the third overall seeded '42 Yankees....and they face a Yankee team from 10 years prior.  That means Dickey vs. Dickey, Ruffing vs. Ruffing, and Joe McCarthy managing against himself.  

We've got a Connie Mack A's team in this group and they are loaded - Al Simmons, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove Mickey Cochrane.  All headed to the Hall of Fame.  They face Bobby Cox and the '85 Jays.  

Group 4

125. 2003 Mariners (2nd in AL West-no playoffs-Bob Melvin)
93. 2017 Astros (World Champions-AJ Hinch)

116. 1963 White Sox (2nd in AL - no playoffs-Al Lopez)
20. 1917 White Sox (World Champions-Pants Rowland)

-Group 4 is the upset group; 29 year old Ichiro and a 40 year old Edgar lead the '03 Mariners against 27 year old Jose Altuve and the Astros team that won the '17 Series.  The '63 White Sox only Hall of Famers are a 35 year old Nellie Fox and a 40 year old Hoyt Wilhelm, but they will play for a spot in the sweet 16 --- against the top remaining seed in group 4, the Still White But Almost Black Sox of 1917. 

Group 5

5. 2018 Astros (lost ALCS-AJ Hinch)
37. 1938 Yankees (World Champions-Joe McCarthy)

117. 1980 Orioles (2nd in AL East-no playoffs-Earl Weaver)
44.  1934 Tigers (lost WS-Mickey Cochrane)

-The Astros team from Group 4 came back the next year and is the 5th overall AL seed (are the Astros from the last two years about to put two teams in the sweet 16?) and they face a Yankee team with both DiMaggio (that makes 4 for Joe D) and Gehrig.  Earl Weaver comes back in Group 5, bringing with him a 24 year old Eddie Murray and they meet Greenberg/Cochrane/Gehringer and the '34 Tigers.  

Group 6

123. 1974 A's (World Champions-Alvin Dark)
91. 1990 A's (lost WS-Tony LaRussa)

11. 1969 Orioles (lost WS-Earl Weaver)
22. 1998 Astros (lost NLDS-Larry Dierker)

-There will be an Oakland A's squad in the sweet 16; the Swingin' A's of '74 with 28 year olds Reggie Jackson and Catfish Hunter meet McGwire/Canseco/Eck and a 31 year old Rickey Henderson.  That winner will meet the winner of a matchup between the third Earl Weaver club, they've got a 33 year old Frank Robinson and a 23 year old Jim Palmer -- and their opponent, an invader from the National League, the '98 Astros with Bagwell/Biggio and a 34 year old Randy Johnson.  

Group 7

71. 1975 A's (lost ALCS-Al Dark)
26. 1971 Orioles (lost WS-Earl Weaver)

55. 1920 Indians (World Champions-Tris Speaker)
106. 1985 Yankees (2nd in AL East-no playoffs-Yogi Berra)

-joining the '74 A's in the Final 32 - the '75 A's.  Take that previous group and age them a year.  We've seen the '69 and the '73 Orioles, let's split the difference here; another Weaver squad in the round of 32.  Only one Cleveland club survives, it's the World Champions from 1920, led by a 32 year old Tris Speaker; and they play another Rickey Henderson club, the '85 Yankees.  

Group 8

72. 1987 Blue Jays (2nd in AL East-no playoffs-Jimy Williams)
25. 1931 Yankees (2nd in AL-no playoffs-Joe McCarthy)

9. 1998 Yankees (World Champions-Joe Torre)
88. 2013 Red Sox (World Champions-John Farrell)

-if you liked the mid 80's Blue Jays, you get a second look at the Barfield/Bell/Moseby outfield here; they face a Ruth/Gehrig Yankees club.  In our final Round of 32 game, we'll see a 24 year old Derek Jeter lead the '98 Yankees against a 29 year old Dustin Pedroia's 2013 Red Sox.  

One more NL Group to go in Round 2 - they're led by the 1905 Giants.

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