calvin schiraldi, 1984 donruss #38, mets

Player: Schiraldi, Calvin

Card:1984 Donruss #38

Position: RHP

Calvin Drew Schiraldi (born June 16, 1962 in Houston, TX) is a former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1984 through 1991 for five different teams. He is best remembered as the losing pitcher of Game 6 and Game 7 of the 1986 World Series, when he pitched for the Boston Red Sox.

He was also a tremendous college star, considered better by many people than his teammate Roger Clemens. He attended the University of Texas, which won the 1983 College World Series; he was given the award as the Most Outstanding Player. Teammates at Texas included Clemens and Spike Owen, who would also be his teammates on the 1986 Boston Red Sox.

While pitching for the Longhorns, Schiraldi accidentally hit Wichita State outfielder Kevin Penner just below the left eye with a 90-mph fastball, fracturing four bones and knocking him unconscious. Some accounts of the game noted that Penner lay in the batter’s box for 10 minutes while awaiting an ambulance. After Penner was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital, where he was reportedly in a coma for two days, Wichita scored six runs in the next inning as Schiraldi alternated between walking batters and giving up hits. Schiraldi revealed how much it had rattled him. He told Michael Kelly of the Omaha World Herald, “It bothered me the whole rest of the summer. Just thinking that you might have injured a player like that…I was terrible over the summer: 4-6 with a 7.00 ERA. I didn’t feel like I wanted to throw any more. Mentally, it affected me.”

Drafted in the first round by the New York Mets in the 1983 amateur draft, he had a great year in the minors with the Jackson Mets in 1984, when he went 14-3. He then moved up to the Tidewater Tides where he was 3-1 that same season. He made his debut in the majors that September.

By 1986, Schiraldi had found a role with the division-winning Boston Red Sox, as he posted a 1.41 ERA with 9 saves in 25 appearances. He was their closer in the 1986 World Series against his former team, the Mets and in the famous Game 6 on October 25th, he failed to protect a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the 8th, then given another chance with a 5-3 lead in the 10th, he got the first two batters out, but then allowed three consecutive singles before being replaced by Bob Stanley, who allowed the tying an winning runs to score. He pitched again in Game 7 and had another meltdown, as he replaced Bruce Hurst in the bottom of the 7th with the game tied at 3-3. He allowed a lead-off homer to Ray Knight, then a single, a wild pitch and another single before retiring his first batter on a sacrifice bunt. He was replaced by Joe Sambito, who allowed the inherited runner to score, and he was charged with the loss again.

The 1986 World Series events effected his career and his home life, and he retired at 29 years old.

After retiring, he became the baseball coach at St. Michael’s Catholic Academy. Calvin’s son Lukas, whom he coached at St. Michael’s. Lukas was a star high-school pitcher, like his father. He was an All-American at Navarro College and was drafted by the Washington Nationals, but also decided to go to the University of Texas instead. He went on to pitch in the minors.

(excerpted from SABR, BR Bullpen & Wikipedia)

1986 Topps #210
1987 Topps #94

Calvin is part of the Boston Red Sox Player Tour – Go to the Next Stop


See all Schiraldi’s baseball cards at TCDB


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