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Today in Jays History: Devon White homers to leadoff game and homers in extras

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Outfielder Devon White #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays heads to second base during Game Four of the 1992 World Series against the Atlanta Braves  Photo by MLB via Getty Images

28 Years Ago Today

Devon White led off with a home run and then hit a home run in extra innings, scoring the game-winning run. That has only happened six times in MLB history. The extra-inning home run was an inside the park homer. Devon could fly.

In the game, played at the wondrous thing called the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. If you don’t remember it, it had this white trash bag like roof (actually fiberglass), which was held up mostly by air pressure. We scored 1 in the top of the first.

Dave Stieb got the start. At 34, he wasn’t the Dave Stieb of old.

In the third: Kent Hrbek hit a leadoff homer. Then, with one out, Chili Davis and Pedro Munoz had back-to-back singles. After another out and a walk to Jeff Reboulet, Shane Mack singled to score two. Stieb would pitch 7 innings, and these were the only runs scored against him.

We tied the game in the sixth. John Smiley was the starter for the Twins. In the sixth, Roberto Alomar singled, and Joe Carter followed with a home run.

That was all the scoring until the top of the tenth. With 1 out, Devon White hit his inside the park homer:

An out later, Joe Carter singled and scored on Dave Winfield’s double.

After Stieb came out of the game, Duane Ward came in and pitched 2 scoreless innings allowing just 1 hit. He got the win. And Tom Henke pitched the bottom of the tenth, picking up his 9th save of the season. Henke would end up with 34 saves in his last season with the Blue Jays.

The win made the Jays record 32-19, which had us in first place, a game ahead of the Orioles. I don’t have to tell you how the rest of the season went.

The loss gave the Twins a 27-21 record. They were first in the AL West (this was before we had a Central Division). They finished 2nd to the A’s, 6 games back. They had a pretty good team in that era; they won the World Series the season before. They had some of my favorite players:

  • Chuck Knoblauch was an excellent second baseman and top of the order guy, and then, one day, he forgot how to throw to first base. He had been Rookie of the Year in 1991. He finished 1992 with a .297/.384/.358 line with 34 steals.
  • As I’m sure you remember, Kirby Puckett was a center fielder with a fullback body. He hit .329/.374/.490 with 210 hits that year. Kirby’s in the Hall of Fame. His career ended when he lost vision in one eye due to glaucoma. Kirby died young of a stroke.
  • Kent Hrbek was the prototype first baseman of the era. Big and strong, he could hit the ball a mile. Kent was nearing the end of his career in 1992. He hit .244/.357/.409 with 15 home runs that year.

Toronto Blue Jays Table
Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA OBP SLG OPS Pit Str WPA Details
Devon White CF 5 2 2 2 0 2 5 .238 .304 .371 .676 26 18 0.387 2·HR
Roberto Alomar 2B 2 1 1 0 2 0 5 .347 .422 .472 .894 26 13 0.103 SB,CS,HBP
Joe Carter RF 5 2 3 2 0 0 5 .265 .304 .465 .769 15 8 0.269 HR
Dave Winfield DH 5 0 1 1 0 1 5 .294 .371 .497 .868 20 13 -0.064 2B
Kelly Gruber 3B 5 0 0 0 0 2 5 .241 .284 .465 .749 24 14 -0.158
Pat Tabler 1B 4 0 1 0 0 0 4 .204 .259 .204 .463 18 12 -0.086
John Olerud 1B 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .230 .352 .348 .700
Candy Maldonado LF 4 0 0 0 0 2 4 .222 .303 .310 .612 15 10 -0.127
Pat Borders C 4 0 1 0 0 0 4 .250 .317 .396 .713 12 9 -0.052
Manuel Lee SS 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 .242 .309 .329 .638 11 8 -0.136
Team Totals 38 5 9 5 2 7 41 .237 .293 .500 .793 167 105 0.136
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/1/2020.
Minnesota Twins Table
Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA OBP SLG OPS Pit Str WPA Details
Shane Mack LF 5 0 1 2 0 1 5 .317 .386 .487 .872 18 13 0.152
Chuck Knoblauch 2B 5 0 2 0 0 0 5 .332 .404 .402 .806 14 8 0.125 SB
Kirby Puckett CF 5 0 0 0 0 0 5 .335 .351 .560 .911 19 12 -0.293
Kent Hrbek 1B 3 1 2 1 1 0 4 .302 .432 .500 .932 19 8 0.123 HR
Brian Harper C 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 .296 .333 .375 .708 14 10 -0.247 2·GDP
Chili Davis DH 4 1 2 0 0 1 4 .283 .388 .399 .787 17 12 -0.028
Pedro Munoz RF 3 0 1 0 0 1 3 .275 .302 .415 .718 7 5 -0.009
Gene Larkin PH-RF 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .264 .347 .434 .781 5 4 -0.044
Greg Gagne SS 4 1 1 0 0 1 4 .295 .340 .383 .722 19 12 -0.104
Jeff Reboulet 3B 1 0 0 0 2 0 3 .207 .378 .276 .654 11 3 0.007 CS
Randy Bush PH 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 .241 .283 .352 .635 7 6 -0.046
Team Totals 36 3 9 3 3 5 39 .250 .308 .333 .641 150 93 -0.364
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/1/2020.
Toronto Blue Jays Table
Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA BF Pit Str WPA
Dave Stieb 7 7 3 3 3 2 1 4.17 28 110 65 0.032
Duane Ward, W (3-2) 2 1 0 0 0 2 0 3.00 7 26 18 0.241
Tom Henke, S (9) 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 2.81 4 14 11 0.089
Team Totals 10 9 3 3 3 5 1 2.70 39 150 94 0.362
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/1/2020.
Minnesota Twins Table
Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA BF Pit Str WPA
John Smiley 7 5 3 3 1 4 2 4.92 27 111 68 0.032
Gary Wayne 0.1 1 0 0 1 1 0 0.81 3 13 7 -0.070
Carl Willis, L (1-2) 2.2 3 2 2 0 2 1 4.71 11 43 31 -0.100
Team Totals 10 9 5 5 2 7 3 4.50 41 167 106 -0.138
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/1/2020.