Today’s Random Player From the Baseball Project That May Or May Not Amount To Anything is Will Clark. On the list of players I take a deeper look at on the “Marginal Hall of Fame List” Will The Thrill is one of them. His credentials are worth considering — not saying HOF worthy, but worth considering, especially to certain fans — but this is not about his candidacy.
He was known for his intensity, his scowl, his sweet swing. He made his debut on April 8, 1986. With one out in the top of the first he homered off of Nolan Ryan. While a shining moment, his best game came a few years later.
You see, he was drafted second overall by the Giants in the 1985 draft (a draft whose first round included Barry Bonds, BJ Surhoff, Rafael Palmeiro, Walt Weiss, Mike Morgan, Barry Larkin, and Pete Incaviglia), and the once proud Giants team was looking for hope after losing 100 games. In 1987 the Giants won the NL West. In 1989 they won the NL West again and were set up to play the Cubs the NLCS.
Of course the Cubs were the story, but Will Clark took over. In the NLCS he hit .650/.682/1.200, including the series clinching hit, and earned NLCS MVP honors. But Game One was a game for the ages.
In Game One Clark started off with an RBI double. His next at-bat he hit a solo hormerun. His third at-bat he cleared Wrigley with a grand slam. His fourth at-bat he shot one back up the box for a single. They walked him on his fifth plate appearance. Those first three at-bats were against a decent pitcher, too. He was Greg Maddux.