Thursday, April 14, 2011

Birthday Trifecta: Steve Avery, David Justice, Greg Maddux

Happy Birthday wishes to three former members of the Atlanta Braves: Steve Avery, David Justice, and Greg Maddux-each celebrating their birthdays today, April 14. All three were integral to the dominant Braves teams of the 90s. Let's take a look at how they performed on this day over their careers...

Steve Avery-
Avery ascended to post-season glory as he completely dominated the Pirates in the '91 NLCS, and then followed it up with a very good '92 season. At that point, he looked like he would be the ace of the staff for years to come. 1993 would be his best season, but then arm problems began to occur-and by 1995 he was essentially done. Steve would appear in two April 14th games during his career- one coming in 1992 against the Reds. Avery pitched 7 innings that day, allowing 4 runs on 5 hits while getting a no-decision. His second April 14th appearance came as a member of the Boston Redsox in 1998 vs. the A's, facing only one batter, whom he would walk (Avery would be charged with allowing a run scored, as Spiezio would later score on a Bournigal single).

Greg Maddux-
Amazingly, Mad Dog appeared in an April 14th game only once during his twenty-three year career. That came in 1994 against the Giants. That night, in typical Maddux fashion, he would dominate the team by the Bay, picking up the win in a complete game shutout, allowing only 3 hits, while striking out nine hitters.

David Justice-
Justice, a career .279 hitter who finished with 305 Home Runs, 1017 RBI, and 929 runs scored, often seemed to rise to the occasion in his playing days. His birthday was a different story. David was only 3-27 (.111) with 2 runs, 2 RBI, and 2 walks on this date. The two runs and two RBI came in the first April 14th major league game he appeared in, which was in 1991.

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