Mood: don't ask
Topic: "Tom" (4)
Todd Cruz, age 53, died yestereday. Todd Cruz was a professional baseball player who happened to be a member of the Baltimore Orioles on their championship team in 1983. Frodo knows because he was a big fan, at the time, of the team they defeated in the World Series, the Philadelphia Phillies.
Tom had lived in Baltimore his whole life, and was even more of a sports fan than his friend, Frodo. The two friends bet on everything, and reveled in Pyrrhic victories which caused the other to buy the beer, or crack the crabs. When there was no game, they tested each other in trivia from games past. Frodo fondly remembers upsetting his friend when he could name each of the four Baltimore pitchers who won 20 or more games in the same season, the only time in the entire history of the game that such has occurred. (Answer below for anyone stricken with a need to know; Frodo will be disappointed by any reader from the gentler sex who is unable to name the one who was a model for underwear at the time).
When Frodo lost the bet on the 1983 World Series, he had to go to Baltimore and purchase a plateful of steamed crabs (Note: steamed, not boiled). Sharing the crabs, even in a losing cause was, well, not to be forgotten. While there, his friend gave him a Baltimore Orioles "World Champion" Tee Shirt. Frodo still has that shirt, although it reflects the hard use of a quarter century.
Tom died several years ago. Frodo always figured it was a combination of Carling Black Label Beer, Kool cigarettes, and steamed crabs. Frodo realized as he thought of his old friend, that he can no longer remember his last name. Sometimes we let the important stuff just slip away, don't we?
(Trivia Answer: Dave McNally, Pat Dobson, Mike Cuellar, and Jim Palmer).