For more great baseball stories like this one, 'like' us on Facebook -

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Mike Schwabe, Big Pitch - 148

Originally published Sept. 15, 2011
In Mike Schwabe's first major league start, June 6, 1989, and he went five-plus innings for his first major league win.

Making sure they were in a position to see it, were Schwabe's family and friends.

"They rented a room (in California) to watch it in satellite dish. There was probably 100 people there," Schwabe told The Associated Press afterward. "All my relatives in Iowa probably bribed bartenders to put the game on."

Those family and friends were ultimately right to rush to see that first major league start for Schwabe. Schwabe only had three more big league starts, in a career that included just 14 appearances in the majors.

Schwabe's career began in 1987, taken by the Tigers in the 21st round of the draft, out of Arizona State.

He played that first year between rookie Bristol and single-A Lakeland and Fayetteville. Between them, he went 5-3, with an ERA of 3.08. For 1988, he returned to Lakeland and got eight outings at AA Glens Falls.

Schwabe started 1989 at AA London, then, in May, got called up to Detroit. With the big-league Tigers, Schwabe went 2-4, with a 6.04 ERA in a total of 13 appearances. Part of that ERA came July 3, giving up five earned runs in 2.1 innings, including a home run to Mickey Tettleton.

He picked up the first of his four losses June 11, going 6.1 innings, giving up three runs. Schwabe described to The AP where he saw the start as going wrong.

"I hung an 0-2 forkball," Schwabe told The AP. "I think I gave up two 0-2 hits today. I didn't even do that in A-ball."

Schwabe was back in the minors by the end of July. At AAA Toledo, Schwabe went 5-3, with a 2.60 ERA. Schwabe returned to Toledo for 1990, getting into 51 games, largely in relief. He also got into one final game with Detroit, July 20. He went 3.2 innings, giving up one earned run.

Schwabe's career with the Tigers organization, though, was done. He signed for 1991 with the Twins, starting that year in the Mexican League.

He played his final two seasons in the Minnesota organization, at AA Orlando and AAA Portland. Schwabe, though, only got into six games in each season.

In late August 1991, though, at Orlando, Schwabe pitched a two-hitter, striking out 13 and retiring 23 batters in a row at one point, The Orlando Sentinel wrote.

Schwabe called it one of his best outings. His manager Scott Ullger told The Sentinel he know what made the outing successful for Schwabe.

"His forkball was his big pitch," Ullger told The Sentinel. "The bottom was falling out of it."

No comments:

Post a Comment