Rich "Goose" Gossage, was the only ballplayer voted yesterday into Baseball’s Hall of Fame.
Known mostly for his time with the Yankees, he pitched 22 seasons including stints with the White Sox, Pittsburgh, San Diego, the Cubs, San Fransico, Seattle, Oakland, and Texas.
Many longtime Royals fans will remember the great Goose vs. George Brett showdowns.
The first, October 10 th , 1980, top of the 7 th , two on, two outs in game three of the American League Championship series. George Brett goes deep to right field going into the third deck at Yankee Stadium off Goose to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 win. Royals would advance onto the World Series to meet the Phillies. The Manager of the Yankees that year…Dick Howser, the man who guided the Royals to their World Series in 1985.
Brett would get to Goose again on July 24 th , 1983. You’ll know it as the Pine Tar game. Brett hit a two-run homer to put the Royals up 5-4 in the 9 th inning. After Brett rounded the bases, Yankees manager Billy Martin calmly walked out of the dugout and used home plate to measure the amount of pine tar, a legal substance used by hitters to improve their grip, on Brett’s bat. Martin cited an obscure rule that stated the pine tar on a bat could extend no further than 18 inches. Brett’s pine tar extended about 24 inches. Brett was called out, he stormed the field and had to be held back, but the Royals appealed the call and eventually replayed the game after Brett’s homer and won the game 5-4.
By the way, Brett hit .289 off of Gossage going 11 for 38 for two doubles, three home runs, 11 RBI, five walks, two strikeouts, and three intentional walks.