30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Good Times... Good Times.


At this juncture in his career, who knows what Barry's balls will do.  Will his (curveballs hang?  Maybe they'll start to sink.  Whatever they end up doing... I'm just glad his balls are back in the A's organization.


Oakland's offseason hasn't been exactly kind to this particular A's fan.  They're obviously rebuilding and after last year's epic collapse, most of us saw it coming.  But that doesn't change the fact that I'm a little bummed out about the whole situation.

So what does this baseball fan do to cheer himself up?  Well if you're me... you reminisce.  And this week's topic... in honor of Barry's return... is The Big Three



From 2001 to 2004... Barry Zito, Tim Hudson, and Mark Mulder anchored one of baseball's best starting rotations.  During those four seasons, the three had a combined record of 198-99, made five all-star appearances, three playoff appearances, and won one Cy Young Award.


It's just a shame that they never found a way to get over the hump, because the A's were so talented back then.  Especially in 2001, when they featured the Other Big Three:  Eric Chavez, Jason Giambi, and Miguel Tejada.


Oh well... that has sort of been the Billy Beane theme since he became the A's GM in the late 90's.

Now don't get the wrong idea... I'm not complaining.  I'm sure he has something up his sleeve for the Athletics future.  Let's just hope it doesn't involve Barry's balls being centerstage.

Okay it's your turn...


Who's you favorite Big Three starting rotation of all-time?

I wish I could have seen Ken Holtzman, Vida Blue, and Catfish Hunter pitch during their run in the early 70's.  But that was a little before my time.  At least I was fortunate enough to watch Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and John Smoltz dominate the 90's on TBS.

Happy Hump Day and sayonara!

P.S.  There's still time to enter my first contest of 2015.  Just click here.

32 comments:

  1. I want to say Phil Hughes, Ian Kennedy and Joba Chamberlain, but they never panned out (at least not as planned).

    I also want to say Dellin Betances, Manny Banuelos and Andrew Brackman but that never panned out either (although Betances had one heck of a breakout 2014).

    It's a shame that the four aces never panned out. If they had then we might've had another meaning for a "core four" in baseball.

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    1. Wait... what up Mussina, Clemens, and Pettitte?

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    2. They were a little before my time. The only trio I grew up with are the Killer B's (Betances, Banuelos & Brackman).

      Hopefully Tanaka, Pineda and Eovaldi turn into the next three headed monster.

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  2. Seaver, Koosman and Gentry (with Cardwell, McAndrew and Ryan picking up the rest). And, yes, I watched them. And, yes, they were something to behold.

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    1. Can you imagine if the Mets didn't trade Ryan? The Mets had a pretty impressive rotation in the mid 80's too. Fernandez, Gooden, Darling, and Ojeda. Man those guys were amazing too.

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  3. Pedro Martinez-Jeff Fassero-Tomo Ohka from 2000

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    1. Forgot that Ohka played in Boston... always though of him as an Expo. You could have paired anyone up with Pedro and it would have been impressive.

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    2. That trio had a 15.7 WAR that year. Of course, Pedro's was 11.7.

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  4. My favorite big three rotation? I always liked the Mike Caldwell/Pete Vuckovich/Don Sutton combination late in 1982 for the Brewers. Sutton, in particular, was a giant among men in Milwaukee that year.

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    1. Wait... wasn't Haas in there too? The thing that I'll always remember Pete and Moose by were their mustaches. Throw in Rollie and the Brew Crew had one heckuva mustache gang.

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  5. 1982-83: Valenzuela-Reuss-Welch.

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    1. Great trio. For not being a Dodger fan, Fernando-mania sure played a big role in my cardboard history. Didn't Hershiser join them the following year? He's another guy I chased in the 80's.

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  6. I gotta go with 1996...Pettitte, Cone, Key.

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    1. That rotation was crazy. You now it's impressive when Gooden was your 4th/5th starter.

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  7. My favorite big three? Kip Wells, Oliver Perez, and...Josh Fogg? The Pirates have rarely been pitching rich.

    Love the autos, by the way. Better yet, you can pick up certified autos of most of those for a song and a dance now. I really liked the early 00's A's teams, even though I didn't get a chance to watch them very often.

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    1. Yeah that's a tough one. When it comes to Pirates pitching, I'd have to go back to the late 70's/early 80's. Here's what I've got: Mike Bibby, John Candelaria, and Kent Tekulve (sorry... couldn't think of another starter, so I threw in one of my favorite relievers of all-time).

      Yeah... all of those early 2000 Athletics have affordable autographs... which is good for me.

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  8. They brought back a *lot* of question marks, but if they pan as well as their usual scrap heap pickups, the A's could still be a legitimate threat for the second Wild Card spot.

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    1. I believe in Billy and figure whatever he does is the right thing. I don't have high expectations for them this year... so if they end up making the playoffs... it'll be a nice surprise.

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  9. I will never forgive Mark Mulder and his lousy tenure with the Redbirds arr....

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    1. Lol... at least he didn't have Zito's contract (or did he?).

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  10. Great cards! Those A's teams always gave me a scare. I was always afraid they would one day knock the Yankees out of the playoffs.

    For me, I'm going 1998. Cone, Pettitte, Wells.

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    1. Yankees fans have so many rotations to choose from. I think this is the fourth to be submitted and all have been amazing.

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  11. I'd have to go with Seaver, Koosman and Matlack.

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    1. Had to look up Mr. Matlack. Looks like he was a solid double digit winner for more than a few years. Great list.

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  12. I only need two. Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling with the 2001 D-Backs.

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    1. Pure domination! I'd love to see how these two compare to other great duos in MLB history.

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  13. I'm looking into the future and picking Gerrit Cole, Jameson Taillon and Tyler Glasnow

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    1. I'm pulling for Cole... but know next to nothing about Taillon (other than he's a top prospect) and Glasnow. Hope things work out for your trio.

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  14. I would have to go with the entire starting five of the 2001 Mariners pitching crew led by Freddy Garcia, Jaime Moyer and Paul Abbott with Kazuhiro Sasaki closing. That was an amazing team to watch.

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    1. What the heck ever happened to Sasaki? That guy had an amazing few years and then he disappeared.

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  15. Maybe have to go with Lincecum, Cain and Bumgarner of the 2010 Giants (Jonathan Sanchez and Zito had more starts than MadBum but these were my favorite 3) or Reushel, Garrelts and Don "Caveman" Robinson of the 1989 Giants.

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