Thursday, May 26, 2011
#350) DON SCHULZE
Don Schulze was traded from the Cleveland Indians to the New York Mets in exchange for Ricky Nelson on May 11, 1987. He was assigned to Triple-A Tidewater until injuries of the Mets starting rotation led to his recall to New York. Schulze made his Mets' debut on July 20, 1987 at Shea Stadium. Don was the winning pitcher during the 9-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves. Throwing six and a third innings in a starting assignment. In his first at-bat for the Mets that night he drew a bases-loaded four pitch walk off of Braves pitcher, Randy O'Neal. It was history repeating itself. In Schulze's first major-league at-bat while then with the Chicago Cubs, Don walked on four pitches off the Mets' Ron Darling. "Now, I know he can't hit," said Darling. "If I'd known that then, I wouldn't have walked him."
After four more appearances, Schulze was sent back to the Tidewater Tides. His final line in New York was a 1-2 record, with a 6.23 ERA in 21.2 innings of work. He finished with a much better 11-1 record for the Triple-A club. Don signed a free agent contract with the Minnesota Twins on December 7, 1987. "They had spots in the starting rotation and a need in the bullpen too," Schulze said. "I'll try to fill either void."
Don retired from pitching in 1993. A journey that even took him to Japan as a member of the Orix Blue Wave in 1990 through 1992. Schulze has used his experience as both a coach and private instructor. He became the pitching coach for the Midland Rockhounds in 2011.
Don Schulze signed his card in the set for my friend Nick Bean following the Midland Rockhounds and Corpus Christi Hooks game at Whataburger Field on May 22, 2011.