Rich 10 MLB Moments of the 2010s

In this decade, baseball has had its fair share of memorable events take place over the last ten years. Everything from goodbyes from some of the most notable players of this generation, unexpected and historical World Series wins and more emotional events with young ball players unfortunately passing away and how their teams responded to it. Here at the Rich Report, we have delved into all of the best moments in baseball from 2010 to 2019 and picked out ten moments that stood out the most. Links to moments are highlighted in green.

Honorable Mention: Bartolo Colon hits his first career home run(May 7, 2016)

Starting the list off on a lighter note, It is safe to say that Bartolo Colon is not the most successful pitcher when it comes to batting. Big sexy sports a .084 batting average spanning his entire career of over 20 years. But one summer evening in San Diego, Colon did the impossible and crushed a dead center fastball from Padres pitcher Jake Shields to the left field corner. Colon’s fellow New York Met teammates went crazy as he jogged around the bases, and they gave him the old silent treatment as he came back into the dugout. A memorable moment from one of baseball’s most lovable characters. – David

10. Gallaraga near-Perfect(Jun. 2, 2010)

Armando Galarraga, a 27-year old with just two full seasons of mediocre-at-best pitching, toed the rubber for a game against the Cleveland Indians. Galarraga was at his best that day, though, and he retired the first 26 batters with ease. With one out remaining before completing a perfect game, Indians shortstop Jason Donald hit a weak grounder to the right side of the infield. First baseman Miguel Cabrera fielded it and threw to Galarraga covering the base, where both Galarraga and the throw beat Donald to the bag. It was a close play but Donald was definitely out. Still, umpire Jim Joyce called Donald safe and ended the perfect game bid. While it was a heartbreaking moment for all of baseball, the sportsmanship that Joyce and Galarraga showed after the game will always be remembered. -Josh Schneider

9. 2012: Perfect Games Galore 

22 perfect games have happened in the modern era (1901-present). In 2012 alone, there were three. The first came in late April, where Philip Humber of the Chicago White Sox needed only 96 pitches to retire all 27 batters of the Seattle Mariners in Seattle. The next one came less than two months later, when San Francisco Giants ace Matt Cain struck out 14 batters and used 125 pitches to dominate a rebuilding Houston Astros team in front of 40,000 fans at AT&T Park (now called Oracle Park). The final perfect game of the season occurred at a familiar venue in mid-August, as Felix Hernandez of the Mariners reached perfection against the Tampa Bay Rays. He struck out 12 and needed 113 pitches to retire all batters faced. In the modern era, no other season has had three perfect games in one season. -Johnny Crane

8. The Big Papi homer heard around the world(Oct. 13, 2013)

2013 David Ortiz was reminiscent of David Ortiz from previous years: power, power and more power. The Ortiz-led Boston Red Sox posted a 97-65 record and won the American League East by 5.5 games, and after beating their division rival Tampa Bay Rays in the American League Division Series, they found themselves against the Detroit Tigers in the American League Championship Series. After Boston lost the first game to Detroit 1-0, they again found themselves behind in Game Two, this time with the score being 5-1 with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning. However, with the bases loaded and Ortiz at the plate, there was a feeling in the air at Fenway. That feeling in the air turned out to be in favor of the home crowd, as Ortiz sent a first-pitch delivery from Joaquin Benoit over the bullpen fence, with outfielder Torii Hunter flipping over the fence in an attempt to catch the ball. At the same time, a Boston police officer stationed in the bullpen, along with the rest of the Boston crowd in the stands, had their hands up in joy and shock. The Red Sox eventually won the game 6-5 on a walk-off hit from catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The Red Sox went on to win the World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals 4-2. The shot by Big Papi, though, was just as defining as the World Series victory. -Johnny Crane

7. 2011 World Series Magic was in the cards for St. Louis(Oct. 27, 2011)

The 2011 season was one to remember, especially for the National League. With the Cardinals, Braves, Phillies and the then national league based Astros all bidding for a wild card spot, it came down to game 162 to decide the postseason participants. The Cardinals were able to survive and advance to the postseason were even more magic took place. Against all odds St. Louis advanced to the World Series to go up against the Texas Rangers. That was when the postseason legend of David Freese was born. With one strike away from losing Game 6 and the series, Freese blasted a ball to the opposite field for a triple that tied the game at seven. Later in extra innings, Freese did it again, but this time it was the dagger that forced a Game 7. The Cardinals went on to win the 2011 World Series in front of the always passionate St. Louis fans. Without a doubt, this moment has cemented its place as one of the greatest moments of the decade, as well as one of the greatest moments in postseason history. -David Church

6. A Jeter walk-off and send-off(Sep. 25, 2014)

While the 2014 New York Yankees in late September were not in the position they usually found themselves in regarding postseason preparation, they were in a position to let homegrown player Derek Jeter wrap up his playing career on a high note. Despite a sub-par year in regard to production from future first-ballot shortstop, his tendency for netting clutch hits held true in his final home game in front of the Yankee faithful. With the Yankees blowing a three-run lead in the top of the ninth inning against the Baltimore Orioles, the stage was set for Jeter to take one more at-bat in the bottom of the inning. In that final at-bat, he swung on a cutting fastball from Evan Meek to take it the other way, with the pitch lining into right field. That hit would be the winner as it would score Antoan Richardson who was on second base to start the at-bat. And so, Jeter would go out of Yankee Stadium as a walk-off hero, adding yet another memory in his 19-year playing career with the Bronx Bombers. -Johnny Crane

5. 2014 Madison Bumgarner: A Postseason Hero

After winning the World Series in both 2010 and 2012, the San Francisco Giants returned to the playoffs again in 2014. This time, they rode one of the greatest postseason pitching performances of all-time from Madison Bumgarner to their third World Series title in five years. After throwing a complete game shutout against the Pirates in the Wild Card game and being named the NLCS MVP against the Cardinals, Bumgarner turned in likely the best World Series performance ever from a pitcher. He started the series strong with a solid seven-inning start, then followed that up with a complete game shutout in game five and a legendary 5-inning save in game seven. In total, Bumgarner pitched 21 innings in the 2014 World Series, allowing just one earned run while tallying 17 strikeouts and allowing one walk. -Josh Schneider

4. The Dee Gordon home run in honor of Jose Fernandez(Sep. 26, 2016)

In the early morning hours of September 25th, 2016, the 2013 NL Rookie of the Year and perennial Cy Young candidate Jose Fernandez died in a boating accident at just 23-years old. Fernandez was a budding superstar for the Miami Marlins who had escaped Cuba as a child to pursue his dream of playing professional baseball. The untimely death shook Major League Baseball to the core, as the sport tragically and suddenly lost one of its best players. After cancelling their game on the 25th, the entire Marlins team wore number 16 jerseys (Fernandez’s number) in tribute to the late pitcher the next day. Shortstop Dee Gordon, who had just 8 home runs through 474 career games and none that season, led off for the Marlins against the New York Mets. On the third pitch of the at-bat, Gordon belted a fastball deep into the right field seats. As he rounded the bases, Gordon started to cry and was comforted by other visibly emotional teammates in the dugout. This home run helped start the healing process, as difficult as it was, and showed us all how powerful baseball can be. -Josh Schneider

3. The Cubbies break the curse(Nov. 2, 2016)

It takes time to make a baseball team great in the MLB, its prospect and drafting system is unlike any in sports. In basketball, number one draft picks are with the team the minute their name is called. In the MLB, a number one draft pick may take years to be called up to the big show. That was the mindset of Theo Epsein, the President of Baseball Operations for the Chicago Cubs. Epstein built his team through developing prospects and finding the right pieces to get his team to the promised land. 2016 felt like the year to break the curse of the billy goat, but it would not come easy. Chicago found themselves in a 3-1 game deficit, but that did not stop the Cubs. Led by a three headed monster in the rotation of Jake Arrieta, Jon Lester and John Lackey and a cool and revolutionary manager like Joe Maddon, the Cubs forced a Game Seven. The game went back and forth, clutch hitting and game changing home runs on both sides. But finally, the Cubs edged out the victory and ending its 108-year World Series drought and brought joy and hope to the faithful fans of Chicago. -David Church

2. The Ichiro Farewell(Mar. 21, 2019)

For over 20 years, Ichiro Suzuki made his talents known. After practically winning every Nippon Professional Baseball award he qualified for, he took his talents overseas to the Seattle Mariners of MLB, where he won American League Rookie of the Year and MVP in his debut season in 2001. After stints with the New York Yankees and Miami Marlins late in his career, he made a return to Seattle. When the Mariners opened the regular season in Tokyo against the Oakland Athletics in 2019, Ichiro played his final two games of his professional baseball career in front of the crowd that saw his talents before anyone else. At 45 years old, Ichiro was able to go out on his terms in front of his homeland. No retirement party can beat that. – Johnny Crane

1. Angels Complete a No-Hitter in remembrance of Tyler Skaggs(Jul. 12, 2019)

Topping our list is a moment that is bigger than baseball. Tyler Skaggs was a 27-year-old lefty starter who was drafted by the Angels. Although he was traded away and made his MLB debut with the Arizona Diamondbacks, he found his way back to the team he grew up watching. Injury trouble slowed some of his years down, but he possessed an above average fastball and a knee buckling curveball that could freeze the best hitters. The baseball world was shocked to hear that on July 1st, two days after his last appearance on the mound, Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room. The Angels took the news hard, as one of their brothers was no longer with them. But in their first home game after Skaggs’ death, the Angels did something truly remarkable. The Angels completed a combined no-hitter, and after the game, with every Angel player bearing Skaggs’ name and number on their backs, gathered to the mound and paid their respects to the young pitcher gone too soon. The big picture here isn’t just the no-hitter, it’s the numbers behind it and many other ‘to good to be true’ moments. Starting out with Skaggs’ mother throwing out the first pitch, which was a perfect strike. In the first inning, Angels center fielder Mike Trout blasted a dead center home run that went 454 feet, Skaggs wore number 45 for the Halos. It was the 11th no-hitter in franchise history for the angels, Skaggs wore number 11 at his high school in Santa Monica, California. Finally, the last no hitter to take place in the state of California was in Oakland between the Athletics and the Orioles on July 13, 1991, that is also the day Tyler Skaggs was born. There are just some things that are bigger than baseball, that one summer night is a perfect example of that. -David Church

One thought on “Rich 10 MLB Moments of the 2010s

  1. These are right on. The Dee Gordon HR was obviously set up, but that’s okay under the circumstances. Normally, there’s no crying in baseball; but that rule was suspended for a couple of days.

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