I’m someone who truly believes in order to know where you’re going, you have to know where you’ve been.
Even though Richard Griffin reported there was descention from players in the clubhouse last year regarding Flashback Fridays, personally I think it’s important to acknowledge and respect the accomplishments from the past.
For the Toronto Blue Jays and fans alike, yesterday was a time to honour the accomplishments of perhaps the best starting pitcher this franchise has ever seen. None other than number 37, Dave Stieb.
On paper it was billed as Dave Stieb Bobblehead day, but it was surprisingly much more than that. Basically, it was a full-out tribute to the 20th Anniversary of Stieb’s no-hitter on September 2nd 1990, and I was surprised it wasn’t advertised as such.
Either way, it was great to see a mini-reunion of sorts with Jesse Barfield, Duane Ward, Tony Fernandez and Pat Hentgen all in attendance to pay tribute to Dave Stieb.
For those who couldn’t make it down to the Rogers Centre, I urge you to check out the entire on-field tribute as well as the video package the Blue Jays made to honour Dave Stieb. Honestly, it’s tough to watch this and not tear up just a little bit.
In my mind, the best part of the entire ceremony was when Shaun Marcum, Ricky Romero, Brandon Morrow and Brett Cecil presented Dave Stieb with the portrait made by Vernon Wells Sr.
It signified a passing of the torch from one era of starting pitchers to another. And aside from one man named Harry Leroy Halladay, I truly believe the next Dave Stieb is in that core four of starting pitchers … but I’m not sure which one it is just yet.
Didheley on Twitter also pointed out that Dave Stieb is wearing a road grey jersey that says “Blue Jays” when in fact the Blue Jays have never had a road jersey that said anything other than “Toronto” on the front. It’s minor nitpicking, but as a self-appointed bobblehead aficionado, you tend to pick up on these things.
Overall, it was a great day to pay tribute to Dave Stieb and it’s hard to believe it’s already been 20 years since his no-hitter happened. Let’s hope it doesn’t take another 20 years for the next Blue Jays no-hitter to come along.