Doug DeCinces, ex-Angels player (1982-1987), has done some bad, bad things over the years. He is a man who has betrayed trusts, crushed dreams; he has, on more than one occasion, drained thousands of people’s joy and happiness through his actions. This is a man that MUST be brought to justice, and today, we take a step towards his much-needed comeuppance.
No, I’m talking about his diamond crimes; his assaults on the senses and well-being of the Angels, and more importantly, their fans. The Halo faithful are the plaintiffs in this case now being opened by the Halos Heaven Department of Angels Justice, DeCinces is our dastardly defendant.
He is charged with two counts of Serious and Grievous Baseball Harm and Frustration. This is SERIOUS business, with SERIOUS ramifications (if found guilty, then I will officially not like him as a baseball player. Harsh? Sure. But it’d be fair). How did we even get to this acrimonious state of affairs? This is THE Doug DeCinces, after all...#27 on Halos Heaven’s Top 100 Angels list.
Well, he may have been the second-greatest 3B in franchise history, but all that gets thrown out the window when you commit crimes against our beloved Angels club.
Crime #1: The 1979 ALCS
This was the Yes We Can era, with so much electricity in the air for Halos fans ( I imagine, at least...I was not born yet) and so much hope. But to get to the World Series, they’d have to go through the Baltimore Orioles in a five-game series. It was a hard-fought set of games, that’s for sure, and I’m pretty sure any fan who was around in those days forlornly remembers it like it was yesterday.
Game 4 of that series was the nail in the coffin, and DeCinces’ important hit in the fourth, and eventual run scored, would help the Orioles take a commanding lead, but the Angels would later mount a comeback an inning later.
That rally, sadly, was extinguished all by DeCinces’ glove work on a Jim Anderson screaming line drive that he caught and then turned into a double play. I’ve heard/read a handful of accounts of this moment, and they all portray a galvanized Halos fan base, screaming “Yes We Can” in unison, suddenly going as quiet as a church mouse. Brutal. Thanks a lot, Doug!
Ok, so is holding DeCince’s feet to the fire, decades later, for contributing to a playoff series win for his team a little petty? Sure. It’s A LOT petty, and I have no regrets. Doug DeCinces, you ruined 1979, pretty much.
Crime #2: The Donnie Moo-...I mean, The Doug DeCinces Game
We all know the lore surrounding the Donnie Moore game aka game 5 of the 1986 ALCS, in which the Angels were trying to take down the dumb Red Sox and get to the World Series promised land. Again, we all know what happened, at least in broad strokes...and it’s tragic and sad in at least a few different ways.
But perhaps it should be called The Doug DeCinces Game. I mean, any Angels fan who has done their research, or who was a fan of the Angels in ‘86, will know that while Moore did indeed give up the gutpunch homer, our boys still tried to mount a comeback later on in the game.
They actually had tied the game back up in the ninth, it was a miracle! Bases loaded up, one out, and wouldn’t you know? Doug DeCinces coming up to bat. Bobby Grich on deck.
DeCinces swung on the very first pitch he saw, and he hit a pop up to shallow right field. /sad trombone.
He had a chance to be a hero. Shoot, the Angels just needed a sac fly from him, and then who knows how many lives would’ve been changed that day. Instead, fans got a measly little pop up from ol’ Doug DeCinces. You still want to gripe about the homer Donnie Moore gave up? Yeah, didn’t think so.
As prosecutor, judge and jury of the Halos Heaven Department of Angels Justice, I have found Doug DeCinces guilty of harshing so many mellows, killing so many buzzes, and raining on thousands of parades. Sure, he had plenty good moments in his Halos career, but I cannot idly stand by while these affronts to our fanatical decency get forgotten or pushed to the wayside.
I don’t know what’s going on with this whole insider trading thing that he’s now in court for, but can it be any more serious than the Halos-related crimes mentioned here? Nope. No way.
Doug DeCinces, I do not like you as a baseball player.