Mike Bacsik (left-handed pitcher)

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Mike Bacsik
Pitcher
Born: (1977-11-11) November 11, 1977 (age 36)
Dallas, Texas
Batted: Left Threw: Left
MLB debut
August 5, 2001 for the Cleveland Indians
Last MLB appearance
September 30, 2007 for the Washington Nationals
Career statistics
Win-loss record 10-13
Earned run average 5.46
Strikeouts 97
Teams

Michael Joseph Bacsik (/ˈbæsɨk/; born November 11, 1977) is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. Bacsik is the son of Michael James Bacsik, who was a pitcher in the majors from 1975-1980. He is particularly notable for giving up Barry Bonds' 756th career home run, which broke the all-time record formerly held by Hank Aaron.

Bacsik also has a long-running media career. A former intern at Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX radio station KTCK ('Sportsradio 1310 The Ticket') for the Bob and Dan (BaD) Radio Show prior to beginning his Major League career, Bacsik later served as the show producer on 'The Ticket' for midday host Norm Hitzges and performed other fill-in on-air host duties. He was fired in late April 2010 for offensive comments he made on Twitter. Bacisk currently serves as a color analyst for selected college baseball games on Fox Sports Southwest and Fox College Sports.

Early years[edit]

Bacsik was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in the 18th round (543rd overall) in the 1996 Major League Baseball draft. He was in his 6th minor league season with the Indians organization before making his debut on August 5, 2001. He was supposed to be serving mop-up duty, as the Seattle Mariners had opened up a huge lead on the Indians. He was knocked around at first and settled in. The Indians rallied from 12 runs down to win the game in extra innings. He had a 9.00 ERA in 3 relief appearances (9 innings) in 2001.

On December 11, 2001, as part of a big trade, he was traded along with Roberto Alomar and Danny Peoples to the New York Mets for Matt Lawton, Alex Escobar, Jerrod Riggan, Earl Snyder, and Billy Traber. On July 5, 2002, he got his first big league win when he made his debut with the Mets. He would later go on to have a 3-2 record with a 4.37 ERA in the 2003 season. He spent just two seasons with the Mets before becoming a free agent on October 15, 2003.

Two months later, on December 23, 2003, he would sign a contract with the Texas Rangers (incidentally, the team where his father was a member when he was born). He spent most of the 2004 season for the Oklahoma Redhawks, the Rangers Triple-A affiliate. He made just 3 starts in 2004 for the big league club, going 1-1 with a 4.60 ERA. He became a free agent after the 2004 season and signed a contract on November 18, 2004, with the Philadelphia Phillies. However he spent the whole 2005 season with the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons, the Phillies Triple-A team. He opted for minor league free agency after the 2005 season. While in Dallas, he interned for the popular KTCK mid-day show the Bob and Dan radio program, and gave them many interviews both before and after 756, at one point claiming he would "give up the home run to Bonds" to be immortalized in baseball history.

He signed a contract with the Washington Nationals on February 9, 2006, with an invitation to spring training. He made just one start in spring training and gave up 6 runs in 0.2 innings before getting cut in April. Afterwards, he signed a minor league contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks. He had an impressive minor league season with the Diamondbacks Triple-A team, the Tucson Sidewinders, in which he went a perfect 11-0 with a 2.79 ERA in 28 games (10 starts). He became a free agent after the 2006 season and later signed a minor league contract with the Washington Nationals again on November 6, 2006.

2007[edit]

Bacsik did not make the major league team when the Nationals broke camp, and started with the Columbus Clippers, the Nationals Triple-A team. After the Nationals found themselves with four of their five starting pitchers on the disabled list, Bacsik and other pitchers were brought up from their farm system. Despite a record of 1-3 and a 4.00 ERA with Columbus (and an ERA of 5.26 as a starter), Bacsik made his debut with the Nationals on May 19, throwing six shutout innings in a game the Nats eventually lost. In his following start, he pitched 7-2/3 innings, his longest outing of the year including the minors, allowing three runs, and earning his first win in the majors since August 4, 2004.[1]

On August 7, 2007, Bacsik sealed his name to baseball history as he gave up career home run number 756 to Barry Bonds, who broke a 33-year-old record previously held by Hank Aaron. During the post-home run celebration, Bacsik tipped his cap to Bonds in a gesture of respect. Bacsik visited the Giants clubhouse to personally congratulate Bonds on his achievement and Bonds gave Bacsik an autographed bat that read: "To Mike, God Bless. Barry Bonds."[1]

Coincidentally, Bacsik's father had faced Aaron (as a pitcher for the Texas Rangers) after Aaron had hit his 755th home run. On August 23, 1976, Michael James Bacsik held Aaron to a single and a fly out to right field. The younger Bacsik commented later, "If my dad had been gracious enough to let Hank Aaron hit a home run, we both would have given up 756."[2]

In 2007, he did not miss a start in the rotation after his last callup until he was sent to the bullpen, and went 5-8 with a 5.11 ERA in 20 starts and 9 relief appearances.

During the 2007 postseason, Bacsik worked as an analyst for ESPN.

2008 baseball season[edit]

On October 26, 2007, the Washington Nationals signed Bacsik to a non-guaranteed minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.[3] After spring training, on March 5, 2008, the Nationals reassigned Bacsik to minor league camp[4] and he was assigned to Triple-A Columbus. He became a free agent at the end of the season.

2011[edit]

In 2011, Bacsik pitched for the Fort Worth Cats, an independent club, in the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball.

2012[edit]

During the 2012 college baseball season, Bacsik served as the baseball analyst for broadcasts of the TCU baseball team on "The Mountain", the official Mountain West conference cable TV channel. He has also carried that role into the 2013 season, serving as a color analyst for TCU games on Fox Sports Southwest and Fox College Sports.

Personal[edit]

Bacsik married Sue Myers in February 2000. He has a daughter, Mary Grace, and a son Jacob Ryan. Jacob was born in late April due to complications during pregnancy. Mike announced on Dallas radio station KTCK the Ticket that he and his wife are expecting their third child.[5]

Twitter comments[edit]

Bacsik made offensive comments on his Twitter account following the loss of the Dallas Mavericks to the San Antonio Spurs in game 4 of the first round of the 2010 NBA Playoffs. The comments, most notably "Congratulations to all the dirty Mexicans in San Antonio," quickly circulated on social networks online before Bacsik deleted the comments.[6][7] The following Monday, on April 26, 2010, Bacsik was suspended indefinitely from his KTCK duties by owner Cumulus Media for "comments [that] were unacceptable and offensive, and are inconsistent with the core values of KTCK and Cumulus."[6] The next day, Bacsik was fired by The Ticket.[8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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