Friday, July 3, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Frank Tanana

Frank Daryl Tanana (born July 3, 1953)

Continuing my
Baseball Theme Week the subject of today's The MMOB Daily Quote is a left-handed pitcher (or "southpaw" if you prefer) who spent half of his 21-year career with the California (now Anaheim) Angels. During the height of his career, Tanana had a 100+ MPH fastball that baffled hitters. Before he lost the blazing speed to an arm injury, he did strike out 17 batters in one game on June 21, 1975.

I enjoyed watching Tanana when he pitched for the Angels from 1973-1980 when he worked alongside fellow flamethrower
Nolan Ryan during the Tanana and Ryan and two days of cryin' years. Quite a combo! He also has the distinction of being one of the players involved in a three player for two swap with the Boston Red Sox that took my then-favorite player, Fred Lynn, away from my beloved Sox. I never did enjoy Tanana's pitching quite as much after that.

My own feelings aside, the second half of his career wasn't quite as good as the promise he showed with the Angels but he ended up with some pretty good number. In all, he racked up 240 wins (to 236 losses), had a lifetime 3.66 ERA and 2,773 strikeouts.

And now, some quotes from Mr. Tanana to get us going on this Friday morning.

"My best pitch has always been control. I lost some velocity, but at the same time, thank God, I didn't lose my control. That's 90% of pitching, keeping the hitter off balance."

"When people talk about the number one pitcher in baseball, I want Frank Tanana's name to come to mind first."

"I play the game because I love it and want to be the best at it. Sure, I make a lot of money, but that's only because they are passing it around."

And a few from some others who knew him

"I haven't seen Tom Seaver in a few years, but Tanana has to be the best pitcher in baseball." Kansas City Royals manager Whitey Herzog

"Tanana is the best pitcher, not only in the American League, but in the National League, too." Milwaukee Brewers manager Alex Grammas

Cheers! - Jason

No comments: