Joe Morgan passes away at 77

DJnVa

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Yeah, I wish he figured out that the analytics folks fucking LOVED him. He seemed to battle against that for some reason.
 

curly2

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He's one of only 32 players with 100 or more WAR on Baseball Reference (he's No. 31) all time. The run he had from 1972-76 was amazing: 9.3, 9.3, 8.6, 11.0 and 9.6.

I can still see in my mind his little bloop single that made 10-year-old me cry.

Rest in peace.
 

snowmanny

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In a way it was his 1973 season that kind of seemed to start to mainstream the idea that the world was looking at the wrong numbers and the wrong stuff when determining the worth of a ballplayer. Pete Rose won the MVP narrowly and controversially over Willie Stargell largely on the strength of his league-leading .338 BA and his 230 hits - 200 hits used to be a really big deal, so 230...- and of course his reputation. Morgan finished fourth, but I remember there was a lot of talk about how people in the know knew that Rose wasn't the best player on his own team. Morgan only batted .290, but he got on base more than Rose, slugged higher, scored more runs, and played gold glove defense at a more important position.

Stargell got a dubious makeup co-MVP later and Morgan got his two so it was all good in the end for them.
 

pedro1918

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Add on to the 1975 heartbreak posts. I sat in the center field bleachers (when they were belachers) 45 years ago today to see the Reds beat the Sox. F'n Drago.

RIP Joe.
 

Kliq

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In a way it was his 1973 season that kind of seemed to start to mainstream the idea that the world was looking at the wrong numbers and the wrong stuff when determining the worth of a ballplayer. Pete Rose won the MVP narrowly and controversially over Willie Stargell largely on the strength of his league-leading .338 BA and his 230 hits - 200 hits used to be a really big deal, so 230...- and of course his reputation. Morgan finished fourth, but I remember there was a lot of talk about how people in the know knew that Rose wasn't the best player on his own team. Morgan only batted .290, but he got on base more than Rose, slugged higher, scored more runs, and played gold glove defense at a more important position.

Stargell got a dubious makeup co-MVP later and Morgan got his two so it was all good in the end for them.
I love going back on Baseball Reference and looking at the old awards voting and seeing if people would have voted differently. Here is 1973: https://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/awards_1973.shtml

Rose did have an 8.3 WAR season; but he also hit for no power. Morgan had a higher OBP despite only hitting .290, and hit for more power, leading hitters in WAR with 9.3. Stargell (7.2 WAR) was the best slugger in the league. Seaver led all players in WAR (11.0) and finished 8th. Hank Aaron led the league in OPS but finished 12th.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Say what you will about his announcing but for my money, Sunday Night Baseball hasn’t been the same since Miller and Morgan left the booth. Maybe it was just that I was at that perfectly impressionable age in the mid-90s where it was electrifying just to be watching baseball on a TV in my room and had the joy of 3 more hours before the horror of the final pre-school week sleep hit.

SNB is a monolith in my memory, Miller’s soaring HR call, Joe’s deep and soothing cadence, myself in comfortable pajamas, hair still dripping from the shower, Nomar hitting everything 150mph, not yet knowing or caring that Joe wasn’t much of a commentator. All of my senses can remember the feeling.
 

joe dokes

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I love going back on Baseball Reference and looking at the old awards voting and seeing if people would have voted differently. Here is 1973: https://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/awards_1973.shtml

Rose did have an 8.3 WAR season; but he also hit for no power. Morgan had a higher OBP despite only hitting .290, and hit for more power, leading hitters in WAR with 9.3. Stargell (7.2 WAR) was the best slugger in the league. Seaver led all players in WAR (11.0) and finished 8th. Hank Aaron led the league in OPS but finished 12th.
My first strat-o-matic set was based on the '73 season. If the die landed on Morgan's card, he coulod almost not make an out.
 

shaggydog2000

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Yeah, I wish he figured out that the analytics folks fucking LOVED him. He seemed to battle against that for some reason.
Because the Big Red Machine didn't have analytics folks. I kid. He was a hell of a player, but like many ex athletes he believed he knew the game and how it was supposed to be played, and when people who had not played started talking about things he had never heard of he automatically dismissed them, even though they were often praising him as you note. He didn't realize it was a different language for the same things he cared about.
 

BaseballJones

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Oct 1, 2015
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Joe Morgan's peak from 1972-1977 was insanely good.

Average season during his peak: .301/.429/.495/.924, 159 ops+, 22 hr, 13 r, 84 rbi, 60 sb, 8.9 bWAR

Even better if you take 1977 out and just go with 72-76. Crazy crazy good.
 

luckiestman

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Say what you will about his announcing but for my money, Sunday Night Baseball hasn’t been the same since Miller and Morgan left the booth. Maybe it was just that I was at that perfectly impressionable age in the mid-90s where it was electrifying just to be watching baseball on a TV in my room and had the joy of 3 more hours before the horror of the final pre-school week sleep hit.

SNB is a monolith in my memory, Miller’s soaring HR call, Joe’s deep and soothing cadence, myself in comfortable pajamas, hair still dripping from the shower, Nomar hitting everything 150mph, not yet knowing or caring that Joe wasn’t much of a commentator. All of my senses can remember the feeling.


This is what I think gets overlooked when judging announcing. Most of the time I care about the feel the booth is generating more than the intricacies of what they are saying.
 

InstaFace

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RIP to one of the greatest of all time, who added to baseball's fame and fanbase.

His broadcasting career, of course, is way more controversial, but particularly because of his style and thinking in the Moneyball era, up until he went off the air in 2011. Was he like John Madden, who was legitimately a world-class broadcaster earlier on in his career, and just lost his proverbial fastball long before losing his job? Or was he pushed out there because of his playing-career fame and his status as like the dean of retired ballplayers, and given umpteen chances that people without his on-field resume never would have gotten? I wasn't paying enough attention back pre-2000 to know one way or the other.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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This is what I think gets overlooked when judging announcing. Most of the time I care about the feel the booth is generating more than the intricacies of what they are saying.
Agree with this. ARod SHOULD be a great announcer with the information he is always providing, but I just don't get a great feel from him. Having a know-it-all talk at you for 3+ hours can also be off-putting. Joe Morgan was batshit crazy with some of his content while projecting his personal experiences ahead of black and white statistics, but him and Miller created a good baseball experience for more passive viewing (when it was not a Sox game and I admittedly would scream at the TV about how little he know about the team). Morgan often playing the straight man for Miller, which is somewhat reverse of the typical announcer/color man setup.

RIP Joe Morgan.
 

Earthbound64

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Say what you will about his announcing but for my money, Sunday Night Baseball hasn’t been the same since Miller and Morgan left the booth. Maybe it was just that I was at that perfectly impressionable age in the mid-90s where it was electrifying just to be watching baseball on a TV in my room and had the joy of 3 more hours before the horror of the final pre-school week sleep hit.

SNB is a monolith in my memory, Miller’s soaring HR call, Joe’s deep and soothing cadence, myself in comfortable pajamas, hair still dripping from the shower, Nomar hitting everything 150mph, not yet knowing or caring that Joe wasn’t much of a commentator. All of my senses can remember the feeling.
This is what I think gets overlooked when judging announcing. Most of the time I care about the feel the booth is generating more than the intricacies of what they are saying.
Most of what was said there was about the setting and environment, and would have been the same regardless of who was in the booth.

Not to speak ill of the recently-departed, but since these posts were talking about it and going down that path - he was not a good announcer.


It's been nearly 12 years since http://www.firejoemorgan.com/ shut up shop. Man.
Has it been that long?
That was quite a stalwart for a while.
 

Norm Siebern

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Visceral reaction to this news. Damn punch in the gut. What a tremendous, tremendous ball player . Godspeed and RIP.

And what the hell is going on? My youth is being torn apart. This is like the end of the movie where the bad guys win, and all the heroes are being mowed down by automatic fire.
 

trotsplits

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Jul 15, 2005
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Just last week I rewatched game 3 of the classic 1980 NLCS. Bottom 11 in a scoreless game, Morgan leads off by barely missing a walk-off to RF. Joe and his one good knee legs a triple which becomes the winning run (scored by a PR) on a sac fly.
 

Remagellan

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I'm stunned by this.

I remember him ending the Dodgers season with a game-winning three run homer on the last day of the season in 1982 as a member of the Giants the day after the Dodgers ended the Giants season. At the time he was 38, but still great.

Rest in peace, greatest second baseman I ever saw.
 

joe dokes

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A nice homage: