"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Friday, November 4, 2011

Sad News - Bob Forsch

Bob Forsch, an unsung great Cardinals pitcher of the 70s and 80s, died suddenly today at the age of 61.   Forsch was never the best pitcher in the game, never won a Cy Young or, to my knowledge, got close to one.   Yet, if you look at his career, his stats match up very well to other Cardinals pitchers with much higher profiles.   Forsch had a record of 168-136 as a starter, with an ERA of 3.76, and he threw two no-hitters in his career.   In 1982, he went 15-9 for the Cardinals' World Series champions; he also was a starter in 1985 and 1987 when the Cardinals won the NL pennant.   Chris Carpenter, who has a Cy Young and, like Forsch, has pitched in three World Series for the Cardinals, has a much higher profile and is considered a "star."   He also was making $15 million a year for the Cardinals this year, while Forsch's top contract was $750,000.   Yet Carpenter's overall record is only 144-92 with the same 3.76 ERA, and he's never thrown a no-hitter.   Carpenter does have a deserved reputation as a big-game pitcher, and his post-season record of 9-2 far outshines Forsch's 3-4.   But you have to wonder.... what would a guy like Forsch who reliably gave the Cardinals 200 innings per year (7 times between 1975 and 1986).... what would a guy like that have been worth today?  

A sad day in Cardinals land.   But, then...  Forsch did get the opportunity to throw out the first pitch at Game 7 last week.    My thoughts are with his family, but, seriously... what a way to go out!  


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