Each year, Americans take pause to celebrate Veterans Day on November 11. The day, occasionally confused with the intentions of Memorial Day, recognizes and honors veterans of military service and not just those who paid the ultimate price during active duty. Known initially as Armistice Day to mark the end of World War I, the holiday’s name was changed in 1954 to its current incarnation, but is no less significant in its purpose.
Major League Baseball has had its fair share of ball players with military experience, including a total of 68 members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame who are recognized there by medals hanging below their bronze plaques in the Plaque Gallery in Cooperstown. Some of these players fulfilled their commitments prior to their playing careers while others completed theirs afterwards. Plenty, however, sacrificed time during the prime years of their professional careers to serve the greater good and protect the nation as a whole.
Starting pitcher Cliff Lee takes home the American League Cy Young Award after his 22-3 season for the Indians during the regular season. Cleveland is now home to back-to-back Cy Young winners after ending a drought dating back to 1972 with CC Sabathia‘s win in 2007.
In honor of Veterans Day, we at Did The Tribe Win Last Night look back at one of many heroes who represented the Indians on the field and the United States on the battlefield. This story by Vince Guerrieri was originally published December 24, 2013. – BT
At first glance, Lou Brissie’s major league career doesn’t look very impressive.
Brissie, whose seven-year career included three with the Indians, went 44-48 with a 4.07 career ERA, one All-Star Game appearance and no postseason experience.
But Brissie had an amazing career just by making it to the major leagues.
Because I’m middle-aged, and have friends of similar vintage or older, the Browns laying an egg this season after being on the Sports Illustrated cover as the trendy pick to win the division – and possibly more – has brought a lot of comparisons to the “Indian Uprising” cover of 1987.
The year before, the Indians fielded a lineup with four .300 hitters and finished with a winning record for the first time in seven years. Sports Illustrated said the 1987 Indians were the best team in the American League. They went on to lose 101 games, the second 100-loss season for the Tribe in three years.
It was a bad combination of a staggering fall after elevated expectations – exactly what this season appears to be for the Browns.