Baseball Toaster Cub Town
Nice Hat
2005-09-21 13:05
by Derek Smart

For those of you watching last night's game, thinking to yourself that Derrek Lee almost never wears a Golden Sombrero, well I was thinking the same thing (well, that and, "Dear God, did he just swing at that pitch again!"). So, as is my wont when these sort of things enter my mind, I had to take a look. Thank goodness for Retrosheet.

Below are the previous instances during Lee's career when he sank to such depths.

DateSOABOpposing TeamOpposing Pitcher
4/23/199844COLPedro Astacio
8/6/200444SFNJason Schmidt
9/20/200445FLACarl Pavano/Nate Bump

Little did I know anniversary congratulations were in order. Last night marked one year to the day for the last time Lee donned the Shiny Hat of Shame, and only the forth time over his entire career that he reached the dubious milestone. What we bore witness to was, indeed, a rare event in the life of The Savior.

Of course it's rare for anyone. Even the famously wifftastic Sammy Sosa only did it 13 times in 13 seasons with the Cubs, which means we can think of yesterday's glorious failure as uncommon, not just in the context of Lee's life in the Majors, but in anyone's life in the Majors.

So, welcome, my friends, to making history - the Chicago Cubs way.

2005-09-21 14:26:51
1.   Andy Rutledge
Well, rare for some! Corey Patterson's got eight Golden Sombreros in the four years since 2002, including one FIVE-strikeout performance back in that year. Yikes.

What was most disturbing is that each of Lee's four strikeouts came on that exact same pitch: a high and away fastball. All the talk this year has been about how Derrek has adapted to the inside pitch, but Davis could have written the textbook on how now the outside pitch is the way to get him out.

Surely it's just one bad game for Derrek (and there haven't been many), but I was hoping when there were two strikes on him in that last at-bat, he'd just move several inches closer to the plate as if to say "you can hit me, but you sure as heck ain't getting me out with that pitch again".

2005-09-21 17:13:05
2.   Derek Smart
You know Andy, I didn't look at Corey because...well...I thought it would be like that and I kinda didn't want to know. But also, if I remember correctly, I think three of those thirteen for Sammy were five-spots, too, so K-Pat doesn't have exclusive purview over that level of infamy.

I agree on your most disturbing thing. It was like watching replays, except the game was live. Hopefully, this is more of a Doug Davis issue (he had two homers and a double in 13 at bats against Davis going into last night's game, but he also had six K's in those 13 ABs), but it'll be interesting to see how the Brewers' staff pitches him the rest of this series.

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