Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Barnaby Graves

Gregg Olson's batting career: 1-4, BB, HR, 1.400 OPS

Recommended Posts

Gregg Olson was a career relief pitcher (never started a game) who was known for his astonishing curveball.  Sometimes he played for the Baltimore Orioles but also sometimes he did not.

On April 20th, 1998, at age 31, he was pitching for the Arizona Diamondbacks.  He hadn't taken a live Major League at-bat since 1994.  In the bottom of the 7th, he crushed a 3-2 pitch from Óscar Henriquez into the left-field bleachers, scoring Devon White.

What could Gregg have been thinking as he trudged into the batter's box?  Was he thinking, here's a spot for a home run?  I'm looking fastball on the full count?  Here's where I get 2 of my 2 career RBIs?  Was he just saying, aw (freaking heck, jeez Louise), look at all this (stuff) my job is making me do?  And then he launches one.  Sends the big leathery boy into the night.  What was he looking for, trying to do?  Was he going for the big fly, or just trying to put it in play?  How do you hit a 4-bagger if you're going for contact?  Gregg must've been going for it.  He came, he saw, absolutely conquered.

What was his reaction?  Diamondbacks crushed the game, his donger was just a grave dance on a defeated opponent, but holy heck.  A live, major league home run you were never supposed to hit.  You'd be psyched for a year.  You'd be giving your significant other the extra spicy treatment for the next decade.  I tell you friends, I'd feel like a god forever.  Here I am, trying to do one job in professional baseball, getting sucked into another, and straight crushing it.  Metaphorically and literally hitting the jackpot.  I'd tell that story to anyone I ever met forever.  Yeah I pitched professional baseball, but let me tell you about the time they made me hit.  Oh, what do you do, sell insurance?  Shut up nerd, I destroyed a baseball on live television.

I don't even CARE about opposing pitcher Óscar Henriquez.  I don't even know who the guy is.  Was he a fan-of-the-month they let pitch, and that's why I hit a dinglerooski off him in a 15-4 game?  Go ahead and audit my home run, tell me I'm not legit.  I'm in Baseball-Reference, permanently.  People who do not like it can call the police.

What does Gregg Olson do now?  Does he ever think about that home run?  Because I do and it inspires me when I need it to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe he was like converse of Roy Hobbs. Started out as a great hitter before his career got sidetracked.

Edit: On the other hand maybe not.  Of his 5 plate appearnces, 3 were strikeouts.  Would Gregg Olson have hit better than 2018 Chris Davis ? 

Edited by GuidoSarducci

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, GuidoSarducci said:

Maybe he was like converse of Roy Hobbs. Started out as a great hitter before his career got sidetracked.

Edit: On the other hand maybe not.  Of his 5 plate appearnces, 3 were strikeouts.  Would Gregg Olson have hit better than 2018 Chris Davis ? 

Most ML pitchers were pretty decent to great hitters in their earlier years. Pitch one day, play the OF or somewhere for 4 days. Right up until pro ball.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, scOtt said:

Most ML pitchers were pretty decent to great hitters in their earlier years. Pitch one day, play the OF or somewhere for 4 days. Right up until pro ball.

They were 90th or 95th percentile hitters in high school.  Major League hitters are 99.999th percentile.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This thread triggered something deep, deep within the recesses of my brain: Gregg Olson went 0-for-1 as a batter for the Orioles, despite the fact he only played for the O's prior to interleague.  He was the only Oriole pitcher to get an at bat between 1973 and 1996.  Several others had pinch ran, or appeared in the box score as hitters after some kind of DH switch, but no one else ever actually batted.

It was this game against the Royals in '93. Chris Hoiles had started at DH, with Jeff Tackett behind the plate.  Brady pinch hit for Tackett in the 6th, necessitating Hoiles catch, meaning they lost the DH for the remainder of the game.  I guess they ran out of position players, so in the 8th Olson had to bat against Billy Brewer and struck out.

Looks like there were 81 AL pitchers who got at least one PA from '73-96.  That's more than I would have thought. Ken Brett, George's brother, is the only AL pitcher I know of who batted for himself all game in a DH league.  The White Sox voluntarily didn't use the DH in two of his starts in '76.  Both times he went 0-for-3, the second of which he batted 8th.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Who's Online   0 Members, 0 Anonymous, 89 Guests (See full list)

    There are no registered users currently online

Orioles Information


Orioles News and Information

Daily Organizational Boxscores
News

Tony's Takes

Orioles Roster Resource

Orioles Prospect Information

2018 End of Season Top 30 Prospects List

Prospect Scouting Reports

Statistics

2019 Orioles Stats

2019 Orioles Minor League Stats

Baseball Savant Stats






  • Posts

    • The latest mock from Jonathan Mayo... https://www.mlb.com/news/mlb-mock-draft-june-3?t=mlb-pipeline-coverage    
    • I'll be back because...well, I love baseball.  I love the Orioles.  I really can't imagine MLB being played and not paying attention on some dumb principle that I have against the players and the owners because they're both spoiled assholes.  You can't get mad at water for being wet.   That said... God #@$%ING DAMMIT.  @#%& every last one of them.  MLB just...never gets it right.  The most painful thing in all of this is that they had a chance to lead.  They had a chance to be the first pro sports league to get it together this summer, to come up with a plan to get back to playing and be the first ones on stage Nascar doesn't count, you can't prove me wrong with NO OTHER COMPETITION.  MLB, the sport with the oldest, fart-knockingist fanbase.  MLB, the sport that always seems to lag behind other sports in...just about everything.  MLB, the sport with the dumbest marketing where they try SO HARD TO BE COOL AND RELEVANT.  They had such a prime opportunity to be front stage and center.  No NBA, no NFL and no NHL.  They had an opportunity to be leaders, to show the other leagues how it's done and the opportunity for starved sports fan to see what a great game it can be.  THEY HAD A CHANCE TO HAVE A COMPLETELY CAPTIVE AUDIENCE. And they blew it.   The NBA made it back first, which is not surprising.  In the NBA, you get players that make a metric $%#*ton of money and are also hyper aware and concerned with defining their legacy.  LeBron James is chomping at the bit to get back on the court because he knows this might be the best/last time he can contend for a title and if he wins it, it'd add to his legacy.  You get a guy like Giannis who is obsessed with knocking him off.  Meanwhile, in the MLB you get guys like Snell and Harper who are sitting around bitching about money.  You get the feeling that if someone told Harper this year he would bat .400 but would have to play for free to do it, he wouldn't think twice about sitting out instead of doing something that hasn't been done since 1941 and might not ever happen again.  If someone told Snell he could break Bob Gibson's ERA record for a season or strike out 384 batters this year but not make any money doing so, he'd flip you the bird and sit around and play video games.  World Series?  Forget it, they would just view it as extra work.  I think LeBron would play for free the rest of this summer if he thought he had a chance at another title. I'm not sure where the NHL is in regards to restarting their season because it's...the NHL.  But it wouldn't surprise me if they got their act together and figured out a way to finish, it certainly looks like they're trying harder. And you know the NFL is going to play come hell or high water.  The NFL will not miss a week.  They will start on time.  Because they all know there's too much on the line and that by the end of this summer that people will look to their league as something that can bring people together and help them heal.  People will go ballistic if the NFL start date gets pushed back or if games are missed.  But baseball not happening is seemingly being met with apathy from the general sports fanbase.   @#$% you, MLB.  I'm not saying @#$% you forever, but for right now in this very moment, @#$% you.  @#$% you for being so far behind in everything.  @#$% you for being the last sport to make a statement on George Floyd, only doing so because people noticed you didn't and they called you out on it.  @#$% you players, @#$% you owners, @#$% you all.  @#$% you for not seizing a golden opportunity when you had one because you can't see past your stupid @#$%ing paychecks and your dumbass collective bargaining agreement.  @#$% you for not being able to put your differences aside to be able to play in a time where your fellow countrymen would love nothing more than to watch a game and forget about a pandemic and civil unrest.  @#$% you for not being there when we actually needed you.
    • This came up on my suggestions. Pretty good cover by some youngsters.  
    • Scores high as being personable and well spoken!   Was also interesting during the “Texas History Quiz”, when he and Millar were asked to name one of the seven Texas born Hall of Famers,  he quickly answered “ Nolan Ryan” (natch) but when neither he nor Millar came up with a second quickly, Chris Rose read the rest.   Frank Robinson was one of them, to which Lacy commented  “ I did not realize Frank Robinson was born in Texas”. (Almost like .... how did I miss that when studying up on the Orioles.... 🤔!)
    • This brings up a definitional question... is a five tool guy someone who is outstanding in each area or someone who is average-or-better (at MLB level). The latter may be more how it’s used for prospect evaluation, whereas the former is more from a historical look-back. 
    • Yes, but I would hardly call it a stadium. I can't believe that pro players played there. Its small for legion ball.
  • Popular Contributors

×
×
  • Create New...