As told in his obit in the Chicago Tribune, Pappas no-hit the San Diego Padres at Wrigley Field on Sept. 2, 1972, but lost his perfect game on the last batter. I interviewed him just under a year ago, and it was so much fun. He was, of course, still upset with Bruce Froemming about the umpire not giving him calls on the final batter to give him the perfecto.
Pappas told me that people still came up to him to talk about that game.
“I’m still being recognized and still going out and signing autographs, and I’m wondering to myself on numerous occasions, ‘If I would have done the perfect game, would I be getting this kind of adulation?” he asked. “I wouldn’t have had the 40 years of ‘Man, you got screwed’ and ‘Who’s that umpire that called that?’”
I’m also forever thankful to Pappas for reading the book, enjoying the book and taking the time to give me a blurb. He will be missed by many.