Greatest Pen Call Theme Never Adopted

"Hold on! I'm Coming!" By Sam & Dave 1967

“Hold on! I’m Coming!”
By Sam & Dave
1967

 

Sure, “The Sandman” by Metallica worked wonders as the bullpen call “closer theme” for both Mario Rivera of the Yankees and Billy Wagner of the Astros back in the 1990s and early 21st century, but we’ve often thought that some other great baseball lights-out themes from a slightly earlier, less music-branded bullpen killer-guy call time because of a branded closer dog present in that earlier era to grab it up. 1967’s big soul music hit by Sam and Dave, “HOLD ON, I’M COMING” is exactly the number we have in mind.

Wrap your mind around this list of MLB Save Leaders in 1967 as you hit the following link of “Hold On, I’m Coming” on YouTube. The low save totals and the scarcity of disgruntled old-timers still alive beating up on the Hall of Fame for passing them by is simply not a credible mix for protest here, but please, give these less rally-killer-reputed relievers a chance for earning this great identity-call-song from 1967 as their mantle of promise. Imagine your favorite pitcher-pick from either the list, or from your own choice from those relieved over the next  five to ten years (1967-1977) that followed.- Now visualize this guy coming out of the pen in the 9th with his club leading, 3-2, with 1 out, and the bases loaded, as “Hold On, I’m Coming” blasts their first appearance, as they are coming in from the distant bullpen gate to handle the situation.

Multiple answers are less clarifying, but still acceptable, if you absolutely can’t pull the trigger on a one-man call.

Top Ten MLB Save Leaders in 1967

1) TED ABERNATHY, NL REDS (28)

2) MINNIE ROJAS, AL ANGELS (27)

3-4) BOB LOCKER, AL WHITE SOX (20)

3-4) JOHN WYATT, AL RED SOX (20)

5) DOOLEY WOMACK. AL YANKEES 18

6-7) FRANK LINZY,  NL GIANTS (17)

6-7 ) ELROY FACE, NL PIRATES (17)

8-9) RON PERRANOSKI, NL DODGERS (16)

8-9) AL WORTHINGTON, AL TWINS (16)

10 tie) JOEL HORNER, NL CARDINALS (14)

10 tie) DAROLD KNOWLES, AL SENATORS (14)

“Closer” was not even yet a part of the everyday baseball game plan or language in 1967. The 1967 leader board “Save” numbers speak to that point right away, but there still were some pretty tough late inning pitching dudes birds on this list. If their clubs could just hold on to a late inning lead, these were the guys who would be most ready to come in for the more rarified, but still important “save” of that era. Help us decide who was best among them. And please. you “gotta” listen to the song as you are reflecting on your best answer as to who best deserves this number as their late inning call from bullpen into game-saving action.

Just hit the play arrow on the yellow Sam & Dave album cover. Kick back and listen.

 

Then, whenever you are ready, please record your answer in the comment section that follows this column.

Thanks too for going along with the fun!

____________________

eagle-0range
 Bill McCurdy

Publisher, Editor, Writer

The Pecan Park Eagle

Houston, Texas

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2 Responses to “Greatest Pen Call Theme Never Adopted”

  1. Fred Soland Says:

    Mike Marshall of the Dodgers was the first go to guy I really recall who absolutely was dominant in the closer role. I really believe that his success was what spurred all teams to look for someone to handle that role.

  2. Tom Hunter Says:

    Sorry, Bill, for being slightly off-topic here, but the greatest call-to-the bullpen closer theme–that I actually experienced in San Diego–was AC/DC’s “Hells Bells,” which announced the entrance of the Padres’ great closer, Trevor Hoffman. As the bells tolled and the scoreboard flashed “Trevor Time,” it was the most stirring music I have ever heard in a baseball park, save The Star-Spangled Banner.

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