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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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Coach Woodson
2008-01-29 08:18
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Tracy Woodson didn't do much statistically for the 1988 Dodgers, but he bonded with Tommy Lasorda. Woodson is now the baseball coach at Valparaiso, and Lasorda paid him a visit as part of a fundraiser.

I don't recall Woodson's greatest moment as a Dodger, but I'm sure there was one. Who thinks they can find it?

Comments (53)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2008-01-29 08:31:34
1.   D4P
Didn't Tracy have a peach fuzz mustache a la Cory Snyder?
2008-01-29 08:35:33
2.   wireroom
I met my girlfriend at Valpo a few years back when the band I played in did concert at the college. Good ol' Northwestern Indiana. I will have to forward these links to her seeing as how much she gets to watch and hear about the Dodgers from me.
2008-01-29 08:39:26
3.   ToyCannon
Tracy Woodson & Mike Busch always seemed like the same person.

Tracy hit a home run off of Nolan Ryan which turned out to be a the game winner but I don't know if that was his greatest moment. I remember him as an affable guy who just wasn't very good but someone you rooted for.

2008-01-29 08:47:57
4.   D4P
I remember him as an affable guy who just wasn't very good but someone you rooted for

I don't know whether it was my age or whether the late-80s were a "simpler," more "innocent" time, but I don't recall being nearly as critical (or even aware) of bad players back then. I suppose part of it is that player evaluation has come a long way in 20 years, as players like Tracy look a lot worse to me now than they did back then.

2008-01-29 08:49:29
5.   Penarol1916
4. Or maybe the years have just beaten you down and made you a more critical person in general, I know they have for me.
2008-01-29 08:49:50
6.   Eric Stephen
I remember Tracy Woodson for two things:

1) The massive, bone-crushing bearhug he laid on Kirk Gibson amid the celebration of his Game 1 HR.

2) Striking out to end Tom Browning's perfect game in 1988 (which happened on Orel Hershiser's 30th birthday)

2008-01-29 08:50:19
7.   Marty
Woodson was just another version of Jeff Hamilton wasn't he? Or I'm confusing my under-achieving third basemen.
2008-01-29 08:51:13
8.   wireroom
4 I think the quality of pitching back then compared to nowadays has a lot to do with our perceptions of who was good or bad.
2008-01-29 08:52:38
9.   old dodger fan
Woodson "knocks in" the 4th run in the Dodgers 4-3 win over the A's in Game 4 of the 88 WS.

DODGERS 7TH: Hamilton popped to first; Griffin walked; Sax
singled to center [Griffin to third]; CADARET REPLACED STEWART
(PITCHING); WOODSON BATTED FOR STUBBS; Woodson grounded out
(shortstop to second to first) [Griffin scored, Sax to second];
Hatcher flied to center; 1 R, 1 H, 0 E, 1 LOB. Dodgers 4,
Athletics 2.

2008-01-29 08:56:37
10.   D4P
I think the quality of pitching back then compared to nowadays has a lot to do with our perceptions of who was good or bad

I doubt the pitching was better. Rather, I think the hitting was worse, at least in part because of PEDs.

2008-01-29 08:57:58
11.   regfairfield
3 Brett Butler could tell the difference.
2008-01-29 08:59:37
12.   Jon Weisman
4 - Even though I did look at OBP and slugging back then, there's no doubt that a .249 average with no walks and little power offended me less then than it does now.
2008-01-29 08:59:44
13.   Bob Timmermann
Steroids. They even ruin our overly sentimentalized memories of youth.

Won't Congress do something about this scourge? D4P needs fonder memories of the late 1990s.

2008-01-29 09:01:13
14.   paranoidandroid
Woodson's greatest moment was when he realized that Tommy Lardsoda was as fake and phony as Dr. Phil.

During an "inspirational" locker room speech, Woodson reportedly blew a fuse and shouted, "Stop your nonsense dribble right now Pillsbury!"

Mariano Duncan was seen snickering and quietly clapping in the background. Mike Piazza had to bite his fist to keep from breaking up.

2008-01-29 09:05:39
15.   Kevin Lewis
So, how many of you are planning on going to the Coliseum game? A lot of it is going to depend on what type of seat I am able to get for $15 or $25 and whether they can show me with a diagram where I will be sitting.

I am starting to think the games at Dodger stadium might be more fun.

2008-01-29 09:10:17
16.   wireroom
10 I guess I have a perception that pitching was better because guys pitched more innings on average, had lower era's, and pitched more complete games. With less injury it seems, but maybe there are stats that prove this assumption wrong?
2008-01-29 09:10:34
17.   paranoidandroid
As a season ticket holder, I was forced to purchase two tickets to the Coliseum game for $20 each. I have no idea where the seats are or what would be a good seat. They haven't given any indication about when they will even assign seat numbers or anything. I'll go check the mydodgersaccount on dodgers.com and see if posted seat assignments.

I'll very likely sell them as I'd rather go to a regular season game. I much prefer the games that count unless I can get to a spring training facility and be able to chat with the players and coaches.

I suspect there will be people who want to get a glimpse of the Boston team though. You can cram a lot of people into that stadium. They might just make it general admission in two different price ranges.

2008-01-29 09:11:52
18.   wireroom
But I do agree the steroids probably had something to do with it as well.
2008-01-29 09:15:29
19.   regfairfield
16 Couldn't it be because hitters are worse? Or because we understand that running guys out there for marathon sessions don't result in long careers?
2008-01-29 09:18:14
20.   Jon Weisman
If I had only one game to go to this year, I wouldn't make it the Coliseum game. But I'm very much looking forward to going to that Coliseum game, although it's going to be a challenge for me to get to.
2008-01-29 09:21:08
21.   Jon Weisman
From Basketball Prospectus:

"Stanford has to be the least talked about top-15 team in the country. Never mind what you hear about alleged defensive stalwarts UCLA and Washington State. To this point the Cardinal has had far and away the best defense in the Pac-10. No, they can't score. I'm just saying, given the right opponent(s), they can make some noise in March."

http://www.basketballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=117

2008-01-29 09:21:36
22.   paranoidandroid
No tickets or seats are posted yet on the 'My Dodgers Account'.
2008-01-29 09:22:29
23.   Jason in Canada
I'm very excited that my dad has got tickets to the game on the 28th, the night before the Coliseum game. We are coming to visit family over spring break and are flying home on the 29th.

The best part will be bringing my 5 year old son and wife to their first Dodger game and Dodger dogs.

I will have to share with my boy how at one time there used to be this thing called "foul ball territory" at Dodger stadium. Right down where all those rich people are sitting. ;)

2008-01-29 09:22:37
24.   D4P
12
I probably considered a .249 BA to be "average" or "decent". Not "good", mind you, but not terrible either, especially since I didn't consider other stuff.
2008-01-29 09:29:38
25.   paranoidandroid
I seem to recall that the pitching mound was lowered at some point to increase offense in baseball. I thought this was in the 80's before steroids were rumored to be rampant. That would explain why pitchers dominated more in the 70s.

I wonder what a Bob Gibson would be like in today's game. They would protect him by not letting him go 9 innings so often, but I can't imagine a guy posting those sick E.R.A.s in the modern game.

2008-01-29 09:35:21
26.   fiddlestick
Tracy Woodson hit a home run in a game my grandfather took me to.
2008-01-29 09:35:25
27.   regfairfield
25 BP's translated stats do try to answer that question by moving everyones numbers to a neutral era.

Gibson '68: 278 IP, 2.23 ERA, 8.5 K/9, 1.9 BB/9, .8 HR/9

Peavy '07: 271.3 IP, 2.85 ERA, 8.5 K/9, 2.4 BB/9, .6 HR/9

Conclusion: Gibson would be pretty good still.

2008-01-29 09:36:17
28.   Brent is a Dodger Fan
Woodson's greatest moment? Watching Gibson hit the Game One Home run. Wasn't that your greatest moment of 1988 too?

;)

2008-01-29 09:37:09
29.   wireroom
19 are you saying today's average hitter is worse than in 1988?
2008-01-29 09:38:00
30.   Andrew Shimmin
Compared to Stubbs and Alfredo Griffin, Woodson was decent. '88 was the first full season I followed, and I only followed the Dodgers (we didn't have MLB Extra Innings back in the day) so the other Dodgers were my only basis for comparison. I thought Mickey Hatcher was terrific.

But since Orel was my point of reference for pitchers, I thought Fernando was a bum.

2008-01-29 09:38:28
31.   regfairfield
29 Yep. Though 1988 is really weird because offensive numbers collapsed for one year then they sort of went back to normal.
2008-01-29 09:39:00
32.   regfairfield
29 Wait, no, I'm saying that today's average hitter is better.
2008-01-29 09:45:50
33.   D4P
I thought Mickey Hatcher was terrific

We all did.

2008-01-29 09:51:12
34.   ToyCannon
11
True.
Still all these slow large white 3rd baseman seemed to be cloned from 87-95. Hamilton, Woodson, and Busch. All big guys (6'3-6'5)who should have had some semblance of power but hit the ball as though they were playing in Petco. Man it was frustrating. I wanted a Mike Schmidt and all I got was a Bob Schmidt.
2008-01-29 09:52:35
35.   wireroom
32 It is interesting that some people think that pitchers get hurt more now because they haven't built enough endurance, like pitching a ton of innings for years. Maybe with baseball having so many more teams now, a lot of mediocre pitching makes it up to the big leagues.
2008-01-29 09:56:42
36.   greenchris
Around 12 years old, sitting in the old dugout seats in a game against the Astros, during BP a ball gets loose and Woodson comes over to grab it while I yell "tracy, let me have that ball"...about 10 mins later at the end of BP Tracy comes looking for me to give me the ball. Was the first time I went home with a ball from a baseball game. I was also fortunate enough to have Nolan Ryan sign the ball.

A little nostalgic because I hadn't heard/seen Tracy's name in a while.

2008-01-29 09:57:03
37.   Inside Baseball
I was at the game when Gibson scored from second base on a wild pitch to win a game against the Expos?? in August of 1988. I'm pretty sure Tracy Woodson it a solo homerun maybe in the bottom of the eighth inning to bring the Dodgers within one run. Then Gibson tied it in the ninth with an RBI single and so on.

IIRC, I would characterize this as his greatest moment because it set up another great Gibson moment that season.

2008-01-29 09:57:20
38.   ToyCannon
But you have the influx of the Dominican and now Japanese pitchers to make up for some of the expansion.

25
The mound was raised after 1968. It wasn't just Bob Gibson who went crazy that year. It was also the last year of a 30 game winner Denny McLain the greatest character in baseball in the 70's.

2008-01-29 09:59:19
39.   GoBears
I think they lowered the mound in 1969, after Gibson's ridiculous season. Did they lower it again in the 1980s? Not that I recall.
2008-01-29 09:59:32
40.   Xeifrank
I will most likely only go to one Dodger game this year and it will hopefully be the Colliseum game. Not so much because of who they are playing against, but because of the venue they are playing at. How often do you get to see a MLB game at a "throw back" stadium? I wasn't around for the Wally Moon era, and would like to see todays major league players play in the Colliseum, even if it is only an exhibition game. To me, it's a can't miss event and much more attractive than sitting in the "All You Can Eat" pavillion at DS.
vr, Xei
2008-01-29 09:59:50
41.   wireroom
36 Dave Winfield did the same thing for me when I was a kid. Nice guy.
2008-01-29 10:00:14
42.   GoBears
TC beat me to the year, but I win in terms of the direction of the re-moundification.
2008-01-29 10:01:03
43.   kinbote
For never was a story of more woe
Than this of Bavasi and his Angelo.

(my deepest apologies to the poet)

2008-01-29 10:01:56
44.   GoBears
44. Ya mean, "the bard?"
2008-01-29 10:03:39
45.   kinbote
43 "Angelos"--rats!
2008-01-29 10:04:00
46.   fanerman
Oh happy baseball talk. Where the thing that angers me most is Juan Pierre. Thank goodness.
2008-01-29 10:19:21
47.   Jon Weisman
Baseball is killing the Hall of Fame game.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3220296

2008-01-29 10:22:07
48.   ToyCannon
42
Doh
2008-01-29 10:23:13
49.   Jon Weisman
Another tiny new post up top, or TNPUT.
2008-01-29 10:25:44
50.   ToyCannon
40
I think JD will be the most likely to put up a Moon shot from both teams. Has to be a LH that can go the other way.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2008-01-29 14:14:20
51.   Joe Pierre
TRACY WOODSON I remember him, but I can't remember anything anymore about him.
2008-01-29 14:56:07
52.   tjshere
I seem to remember Woodson lining a walkoff single up the middle at some point during the `88 season. I was quite thrilled.
2008-01-30 05:50:16
53.   Steve in Rochester
I must say I'm a little bitter about Mr. Lasorda visiting Valparaiso. I was a manager for the men's basketball team from 2000 - 2005 at Valpo, my alma mater. He visited in the spring of 2000 just before I got there and now went back just 3 years after I left. I would have KILLED to had a chance to meet him, since I'm pretty sure I was the biggest Dodger fan in Valparaiso during my time there. Oh well, I guess I just have bad timing.

But I can't be too bitter, at least it prompted a mention of my alma mater on the best Dodgers site on the web.

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