Wednesday, November 7, 2018

#163-164 Tug McGraw Tug McGraw In Action

Storied bullpen specialist....colorful and extroverted....longtime employed by both Mets and Phillies each for nearly the same length of time with very similar stats....debut for NYM in 1965... as a swingman had a decent 3.32 ERA but little to show for it, winning two and losing seven....had difficulties thereafter going to minors for ½ of 1966, most of 1967, all of 1968....reinvented himself as an effective and exclusive closer 1969....a role rarely relinquished until the tail end of his career....1969 post season was one game, but was able to hold off the Braves for 3 innings in the NLCS....As a Met racked up 86 saves sometimes sharing duties with off year in 1974 soured Mets brass on him...Made a second home with the Phillies in 1975....pivotal year was 1980....not only had a strong comeback but was the emotional leader for franchise’s first WS win....known for pounding his glove on his thigh....became the spokesman for 7up....1983-4 relinquished closer role for spot work resulting in no saves...after playing gained notoriety as the father of Country Music Star Tim McGraw....a soap operatic story with twists Tim was born out of wedlock when McGraw was in the minor during 1967....minimal contact was made father and son while Tug played, but eventually Tug help support his budding career...Tim in turn, was the emotional and financial foundation as Tug fought brain cancer....Sadly Tug succumbed to his condition in 2006.    


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