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Allen Craig the first with 2 go-ahead W.S. pinch-RBI

Posted by John Autin on October 21, 2011

With his 2-out go-ahead pinch-single in the 7th Thursday, Allen Craig became the 1st player with 2 go-ahead RBI as a pinch-hitter in World Series play (according to the B-R Event Finder).

Craig's RBI pinch-hits in games 1 and 2 were the 30th and 31st WS pinch-hit RBI that put the team in front. Here's the list in reverse date order, minus Craig's game-2 hit:

Date ▾ Series Gm# Batter Tm Opp Pitcher Score Inn RoB Out Pit(cnt) RBI WPA RE24 LI Play Description
2011-10-19 WS 1 Allen Craig STL TEX Alexi Ogando tied 2-2 1B b6 1-3 2 4 (1-2) 1 0.18 1.00 2.80 Single to RF (Line Drive to RF Line); Freese Scores; Punto to 3B
1996-10-23 WS 4 Wade Boggs NYY @ATL Steve Avery tied 6-6 BB t10 123 2 6 (3-2) 1 0.31 1.00 6.90 Walk; Raines Scores; Jeter to 3B; Williams to 2B
1995-10-24 WS 3 Mike Devereaux ATL @CLE Julian Tavarez tied 5-5 1B t8 1-3 1 2 (1-0) 1 0.13 0.73 3.72 Single to LF (Line Drive); Jones Scores; Justice to 2B
1995-10-21 WS 1 Luis Polonia ATL CLE Julian Tavarez tied 1-1 FC b7 123 0 2 (0-1) 1 0.02 -0.16 2.33 Fielder's Choice SS unassisted; McGriff Scores; Justice to 3B; Devereaux out at 2B/SS
1993-10-23 WS 6 Pete Incaviglia PHI @TOR Al Leiter tied 5-5 Out t7 123 1 1 (0-0) 1 0.03 -0.09 3.98 Flyball: CF/Sacrifice Fly; Hollins Scores; Daulton to 3B
1992-10-18 WS 2 Ed Sprague TOR @ATL Jeff Reardon down 4-3 HR t9 1-- 1 1 (0-0) 2 0.67 1.75 3.81 Home Run (Fly Ball to Deep LF); Bell Scores
1991-10-27 WS 7 Gene Larkin MIN ATL Alejandro Pena tied 0-0 1B b10 123 1 1 (0-0) 1 0.16 1.00 5.55 *ENDED GAME*:Single (Fly Ball to Deep LF-CF); Gladden Scores; Puckett to 3B; Hrbek to 2B
1991-10-23 WS 4 Jerry Willard ATL MIN Steve Bedrosian tied 2-2 Out b9 1-3 1 4 (1-2) 1 0.18 0.05 5.30 *ENDED GAME*:Flyball: RF/Sacrifice Fly; Lemke Scores
1988-10-15 WS 1 Kirk Gibson LAD OAK Dennis Eckersley down 4-3 HR b9 -2- 2 7 (3-2) 2 0.87 1.80 4.83 *ENDED GAME*:Home Run (Line Drive to Deep RF); Davis Scores
1985-10-26 WS 6 Dane Iorg KCR STL Todd Worrell down 1-0 1B b9 123 1 2 (1-0) 2 0.46 1.34 8.84 *ENDED GAME*:Single to RF (Line Drive); Concepcion Scores; Sundberg Scores; Wathan to 2B
1985-10-26 WS 6 Brian Harper STL @KCR Charlie Leibrandt tied 0-0 1B t8 12- 2 4 (1-2) 1 0.25 1.00 3.52 Single to CF (Fly Ball); Pendleton Scores; Cedeno to 2B
1984-10-14 WS 5 Rusty Kuntz DET SDP Craig Lefferts tied 3-3 Out b5 123 1 1 (0-0) 1 0.02 -0.13 3.22 Popfly: 2B/Sacrifice Fly (Short RF); Gibson Scores
1983-10-15 WS 4 John Shelby BAL @PHI Willie Hernandez tied 3-3 Out t6 123 1 2 (1-0) 1 0.02 -0.10 3.83 Flyball: LF/Sacrifice Fly; Dauer Scores
1982-10-13 WS 2 Steve Braun STL MIL Pete Ladd tied 4-4 BB b8 123 1 4 (3-0) 1 0.15 1.00 4.83 Walk; Hendrick Scores; Porter to 3B; Smith to 2B
1981-10-24 WS 4 Steve Yeager LAD NYY Tommy John tied 6-6 Out b7 123 0 2 (0-1) 1 0.00 -0.40 2.66 Flyball: RF/Sacrifice Fly; Baker Scores
1979-10-13 WS 4 Terry Crowley BAL @PIT Kent Tekulve down 6-5 2B t8 123 1 6 (2-2) 2 0.36 1.83 5.93 Double to RF (Deep RF Line); DeCinces Scores; Lowenstein Scores; Smith to 3B
1979-10-11 WS 2 Manny Sanguillen PIT @BAL Don Stanhouse tied 2-2 1B t9 12- 2 5 (1-2) 1 0.36 1.06 4.47 Single to RF; Ott Scores; Garner to 3B
1974-10-16 WS 4 Jim Holt OAK LAD Andy Messersmith tied 2-2 1B b6 123 1 6 (2-2) 2 0.19 1.63 3.83 Single to RF; Bando Scores; Jackson Scores; Washington to 3B
1972-10-19 WS 4 Angel Mangual OAK CIN Clay Carroll tied 2-2 1B b9 1-3 1 1 0.19 0.70 5.89 *ENDED GAME*:Single to RF (Ground Ball); Tenace Scores; Odom to 2B
1971-10-13 WS 4 Milt May PIT BAL Eddie Watt tied 3-3 1B b7 1-3 2 1 0.22 1.00 3.23 Single (CF-RF); Robertson Scores; Davalillo to 3B
1964-10-07 WS 1 Carl Warwick STL NYY Al Downing tied 4-4 1B b6 -2- 2 1 0.18 1.00 1.89 Single to LF; McCarver Scores; Warwick to 2B/Adv on throw to Hm
1959-10-04 WS 3 Carl Furillo LAD CHW Gerry Staley tied 0-0 1B b7 123 2 2 0.26 1.66 4.58 Single to CF (Ground Ball); Neal Scores; Larker Scores; Hodges to 2B
1954-09-29 WS 1 Dusty Rhodes NYG CLE Bob Lemon tied 2-2 HR b10 12- 1 3 0.29 2.35 4.29 *ENDED GAME*:Home Run (Deep RF); Mays Scores; Thompson Scores
1949-10-07 WS 3 Johnny Mize NYY @BRO Ralph Branca tied 1-1 1B t9 123 2 2 0.39 1.72 6.89 Single to RF (Deep RF); Berra Scores; Brown Scores; Woodling to 3B
1947-10-05 WS 6 Bobby Bragan BRO @NYY Joe Page tied 5-5 2B t6 -2- 1 1 0.16 1.00 1.91 Double to LF; Furillo Scores
1947-10-03 WS 4 Cookie Lavagetto BRO NYY Bill Bevens down 2-1 2B b9 12- 2 2 0.82 1.88 6.75 *ENDED GAME*:Double to RF; Gionfriddo Scores; Miksis Scores
1944-10-05 WS 2 Ken O'Dea STL SLB Bob Muncrief tied 2-2 1B b11 12- 1 1 0.29 1.00 4.31 *ENDED GAME*:Single to RF; Sanders Scores; Marion to 2B
1933-10-04 WS 2 Lefty O'Doul NYG WSH General Crowder down 1-0 1B b6 123 1 2 0.23 1.35 4.70 Single to CF; Critz Scores; Terry Scores; Ott to 2B
1916-10-09 WS 2 Del Gainer BOS BRO Sherry Smith tied 1-1 1B b14 -2- 1 1 0.32 0.84 3.19 *ENDED GAME*:Single to LF; McNally Scores
1912-10-09 WS 2 Moose McCormick NYG @BOS Charley Hall tied 5-5 Out t10 1-3 1 1 0.13 0.03 5.12 Flyball: LF/Sacrifice Fly; Merkle Scores
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 10/20/2011.

Craig also became the 4th player with 2 RBI pinch-hits in WS games wherein he batted only as a pinch-hitter, and joined Bobby Brown by doing it in consecutive games. None of the others put their team in front; both of Brown's hits tied the game in the early innings:

1 Jay Johnstone 1981 2 Ind. Games 2 2 2 0 0 1 3 0 0 1.000 1.000 2.500 3.500 0 0 0 0 0
2 Chuck Essegian 1959 2 Ind. Games 2 2 2 0 0 2 2 0 0 1.000 1.000 4.000 5.000 0 0 0 0 0
3 Bobby Brown 1947 2 Ind. Games 2 2 2 1 0 0 2 0 0 1.000 1.000 1.500 2.500 0 0 0 0 0
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 10/20/2011.

Craig's hit tonight wound up a mere footnote to the outcome, but it was huge at the time.

19 Responses to “Allen Craig the first with 2 go-ahead W.S. pinch-RBI”

  1. Timothy P. Says:

    I don't think it's an accident Michael Young won the ballgame tonight for Texas. The ball he hit to right-center was an excellent pitch and probably not a strike. Young mentality at the plate is to swing the bat and in this instance, it paid off.

  2. John Autin Says:

    Kudos to Michael Young, Timothy!

    Mad props to Elvis Andrus, too. I'm not a fan of hitting him 2nd, but that sequence in the 9th shows what he does bring to that role. Besides the hit, he made 2 great baserunning plays, advancing on the throw that Pujols didn't cut off and then on Hamilton's sac fly. Not every #2 hitter would have been able to take 3rd on that fly ball.

    I don't think LaRussa necessarily made any mistakes, but it will be nice to get a 2-day break from the blather about how he was outmanaging Ron Washington. I still can't believe how much criticism was leveled at Wash for using Esteban German instead of Yorvit Torrealba in game 1 -- I mean, really, Yorvit Torrealba?!?

    I had a post about that move that I never quite finished, and now it's stale, so it stays in mothballs; but really -- the folks that were clamoring for Torrealba should consider (among other things) that he's 1 for 28 as a pinch-hitter in his career.

  3. Johnny Twisto Says:

    Wade Boggs! What a fun, interesting team those '96 Yankees were. What an assortment of great and/or notable players shuttling on and off the bench. Boggs pinch hitting. Cecil Fielder coming over in mid-season and starting over the subsequently sainted Tino. Possible future HOFer Tim Raines. King Jim Leyritz spinning his bat. Darryl Strawberry crouched in the corner of the dugout, scaring the hell out of any opposing manager who brought in a righty reliever.

    That World Series win was the first in my memory, and I doubt I'll ever enjoy one more.

  4. Nick C. Says:

    Tonight marks the first World Series game since Game 2 in 1992 when a VISITING team rallied from a deficit entering the ninth inning to win.

    The Blue Jays had a) never won a Series and b) lost Game 1.

  5. Voomo Zanzibar Says:

    Seven in five years and then a 15 year gap.

    and poor Bill Bevens...

  6. Doug Says:

    If Craig gets another pinch-hit in the series, he'll tie these records:
    - most pinch-hits in a post-season: 5 by Lou Piniella (1981) and Gonzalo Marquez (1972)
    - most pinch-hits in a WS: 3 by Bobby Brown (1947), Dusty Rhodes (1954), Carl Warwick (1964), Gonzalo Marquez (1972), and Ken Boswell (1973)

    So, it's been a while.

    If Craig gets a pinch-hit in game 3:
    - he'll tie Rhodes and Marquez for consecutive WS games with pinch-hits
    - he'll set the record with pinch-hits in 4 consecutive post-season games

  7. Dave V. Says:

    #3 JT - I couldn't agree more. It was the first WS win I remember as well (I was just a baby for the 1977/1978 championships) and I'll always treasure that win the most. There were so many incredible comebacks from that team during the playoffs, including that Boggs BB game, where Jom Leyritz hit that huge 3-run HR to tie the game. Good memories for sure.

  8. Dave V. Says:

    Um, that should be Jim Leyritz 🙂

  9. Spindlebrook Says:

    Jerry Willard's sacrifice fly is probably one of the shortest I've ever seen; it was just beyond the edge of the infield.

  10. Tim L Says:

    Ed Sprague's homer in 1992 is one of the biggest hits in postseason history. And yet, you never hear about it. I had totally forgotten about it until looking at this list.

  11. Dr. Doom Says:


    Don't forget Doc Gooden coming in midseason and throwing a no-hitter! Definitely one of the most interesting teams of all time.

  12. Larry R. Says:

    Gene Larkin...Chaminade High School's finest (no offense, Mike Proly and Kevin Paisley).

  13. Hector Says:

    Nice to see Julian Tavarez as the only pitcher to show up twice, until now. Looks like he blew the 95 series as badly as bk kim nearly blew 01. But history has been kind to him, I don't remember that at all, just that he was a young flamethrower. And the 11 teams who kept his career alive seem to only remember his rookie regular season, because he just stunk for the next 14 years.

  14. Rich Says:

    @ 2 "I don't think LaRussa necessarily made any mistakes"

    Bringing in a 40 year old LOOGY to replace your closer is a pretty glaring bit of overmanaging

  15. Kahuna Tuna Says:

    Nick C. @4 and Tim L. @10, Sprague's 1992 Game 2 homer certainly lives on for us Blue Jay fans. Not that we're likely to go around crowing about it — the overwhelming impression of my only visit to SkyDome, in 1991, was how reserved the fans were unless there was something big happening on the field. (At one point I had an usher warn me that I was talking too loudly and disturbing someone sitting nearby. I'd been talking enthusiastically with the gentleman next to me, but heavens, in my native L.A. our conversation wouldn't have bothered anyone. Ah well.)

    Nineteen years on, I still have strong doubts the '92 Jays could have climbed out of an 0-2 hole against the Braves. Then the team would have had a World Series failure to stack next to their big pile of ALCS failures. All the joy and relief at finally winning the ALCS — gone, one week later. Take my word: two World Series titles can be savored through many, many mediocre seasons.

  16. John Autin Says:

    @14, Rich -- With all due respect ... I think that criticism does not withstand scrutiny. LaRussa brought in the pitcher he thought was most likely to get Hamilton out, and I agree with his decision.

    Three points loom large in my view:

    1. LaRussa gained a huge platoon advantage:
    -- Jason Motte has allowed a .284 batting average to lefties in his career, and .270 this year.
    -- Josh Hamilton has hit .322 against righties, but just .278 against lefties.
    -- Rhodes allowed a .245 BA to lefties this year (small sample), .217 for his career.

    2. Although a strikeout would have been great, the biggest objective was to get Hamilton out. With no outs, that runner on 3rd was very likely to score no matter what, and since the Cards were home and ahead by a run, the prudent strategy was to concede the tying run and focus on preventing the go-ahead run. So the respective K rates were not the main issue.

    3. For all his velocity, Motte got 2 strikes on both Kinsler and Andrus in the 9th and couldn't put them away. Now, that doesn't necessarily mean he's off his game, but it sure isn't an argument for letting him face Hamilton.

    This business about who's the closer is meaningless -- clearly, it was to LaRussa. Sure, Jason Motte's a real good pitcher; but so is Rhodes, who has a 2.76 ERA and 154 ERA+ over the past 4 years.

    I might add that Rhodes has faced 9 batters this postseason and only 1 reached safely, on a walk. He's allowed 2 of 8 inherited runners to score -- both were on 3rd base, with no outs (last night) and 1 out (NLCS game 4, run scored on Theriot's error, else Rhodes would have escaped unscathed).

    LaRussa has shown that he's going to play matchups at all times in this postseason, and it's served him well thus far.

    Besides, if he'd left Motte in and Hamilton had hit a 2-RBI single, the second-guessers would be wailing, "Why didn't he play the percentages?!?"

    P.S. On the Fox postgame, A.J. Pierzynski speculated that by removing Motte, LaRussa risked "losing him" not only for this postseason, but for next year as well. We've always known that A.J. had a few screws loose, but that statement was plumb dumb. Jason Motte is 29 years old and has 12 career saves, 8 of them this September. I'm 100% certain that he's not expecting to be treated as an established All-Star "Closer."

  17. World Series Opens With Two Fall Classics – Wall Street Journal (blog) : Says:

    [...] utility man with just 58 career regular-season runs batted in, and four as a pinch-hitter, the first player ever with two career World Series go-ahead pinch-hit runs batted in. But it wouldn’t be two [...]

  18. World Series Opens With Two Fall Classics | Augusta Blog Says:

    [...] utility man with just 58 career regular-season runs batted in, and four as a pinch-hitter, the first player ever with two career World Series go-ahead pinch-hit runs batted in. But it wouldn’t be two [...]

  19. Joy fleeting after Craig’s 2nd goahead pinch hit sets Series record | Flow Biz Mart Says:

    [...] and record-setting. Research by Baseball-Reference shows that Craig is the first player in World Series history to come through with two go-ahead, RBI pinch hits. Imagine how epic that would be if the Cardinals [...]