Friday, June 26, 2009
As I'm sure you've heard already, Michael "Mike" Jackson passed away yesterday. Jackson had a 17 year career, coming up with the Phillies in 1986. He was a Thriller with the Giants, leading the NL in appearances in 1993 and posting a 266 ERA+ in 1994. He finished 21st in AL MVP voting in 1998. With the Indians in 1997 and 1998, Jackson pitched 5.1 scoreless postseason innings against the Yankees, winning Game 4 of the '97 ALDS and saving the infamous Chuck Knoblauch Game 2 of the '98 ALCS.
Jackson was Bad late in his career, posting ERAs poorer than league average in two of his final three seasons. Many thought he hung around the game too long, but he said he still had the desire to play and that he wouldn't stop until he got enough.
With a fastball that topped out around 98 MPH, Jackson earned the nickname "The King of Pop" from the sound the ball would make smacking the catcher's mitt. He certainly wasn't the King of Pop at the plate however, with just five hits, collectively known as The Jackson Five, in 28 career ABs, for a .179 average.
All of us at Fack Youk extend our condolences to the Jackson family.