Throughout the 2016 season Roar from 34 will use Flashback Fridays to remember the 1966 Baltimore Orioles and to honor the 50th anniversary of the franchise’s first World Series title.
Given the events of the past week, it’s only fitting that I write about Milt Pappas for Flashback Friday and my season-long focus on the 1966 Baltimore Orioles .
Pappas was not a member of the 1966 team, and his widow noted following his death “He was first and foremost a Cub, absolutely.” Nevertheless, he was the centerpiece of the 1965 trade with the Cincinnati Reds that brought Frank Robinson to Baltimore for the 1966 season. An ESPN headline on Tuesday read, “Milt Pappas remembered for Frank Robinson trade and near perfect game.”
As I mentioned in a previous post, season ticket sales in Baltimore increased by 150 percent following the trade.
Meanwhile, Boog Powell offered this classic quote: “When Frank came over to the club, we were down in spring training, and Frank hit one over the palm trees. I turned to Etch [catcher Andy Etchebarren] and said, “Etch, I think we just won the [expletive] pennant.”
Pappas also shares some commonalities with former Orioles pitcher Jake Arrieta.
Like Arrieta, who tossed his second no-hitter on Thursday night, Pappas pitched a no-hitter for the Cubs after leaving Baltimore. (That’s the focus of my Friday guest post over at MASN.) Arrieta also won the most consecutive starts in Chicago since Pappas won 11 straight in 1972.
Pappas compiled a 110-74 record with a 3.24 ERA during his nine years in Baltimore. He was a two-time All-Star for the Orioles and started the 1965 All-Star Game. He had a league-best 3.27 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 1964, when he won 16 games with a 2.97 ERA. He shares the Orioles’ team record for fewest home runs allowed – eight in 209 innings pitched during the 1959 season – and is a member of the Baltimore Orioles Hall of Fame.
Watch the MLB Network piece on Pappas, which includes footage from his 1972 no-hitter.