- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Minnesota pitchers have been sneaking into the batting cage for extra practice. Luis Tiant, notably, got three hits, drove in three runs, scored two runs and raised his batting average to .435 in the Twins' 11-2 victory over Milwaukee. He, Jim Perry, Jim Kaat and Dave Boswell batted in nine runs and scored 14, one of them a winning run, coming when Kaat reached home from first on a single. Their hitting may be in apology for having only eight complete games thus far. Boswell, in fact, at 2-5 with a 7.17 ERA, was not apologizing so much as castigating himself. "I could make excuse after excuse, and maybe the public would buy it, and some of my teammates, too," he said. "But I am cheating myself, because I am not extending. I worked four or five years to get this job, and it only takes eight or nine games to lose it. If they think the bullpen will be beneficial, to the bullpen I will go. I'm a team player." But the Twins are still hitting .282 as a team.
California (page 28) took three mean losses. Recently arrived from Des Moines, OAKLAND Second Baseman Tony Larussa drove in both runs as the A's beat the Angels 2-0. Sore-elbowed Blue Moon Odom was hurting all over when he gave up no earned runs and lost on his 25th birthday, 2-1 against Cleveland, as Shortstop Bert Campaneris made two errors on routine chances.
Wally Bunker, 0-6, gave up three runs in the 12th inning against Washington to help spoil KANSAS CITY pitchers' ERA which had been 2.25 in six games (five of them won by the Royals). But Moe Drabowsky gave up only one run in four relief appearances after emerging from the hospital.
Holes were showing. The CHICAGO White Sox, losers of 10 of their last 12 games, visited a Red Sox team that had lost 12 of 16. The Pales succeeded in losing two more games, plus one helmet. Never very big gauge, the Sox docked Syd O'Brien $17.50 when he cracked his batting helmet by slamming it down on the clubhouse runway. His teammates chipped in for a new one and the short-fused O'Brien took the old helmet out on the field and ceremoniously smashed it to pieces. MILWAUKEE gave up 41 runs and lost four of six.
MINN 31-13 CAL 30-17 OAK 25-23 KC 19-27 CHI 18-29 MIL 15-30
Not long ago BALTIMORE'S Earl Weaver complained, "We went into Kansas City and three straight days they knocked out our starters. I never saw anything like it." (When someone pointed out that the Orioles won all three games, Weaver said, "Yeah, we did, didn't we?") Now he doesn't even have nonfinishing pitchers to worry about. Mike Cuellar and Jim Hardin threw four- and five-hit shutouts, and Dave McNally pitched a six-hit complete game as Baltimore won four straight before losing two at California. Tom Phoebus lost a six-hitter, but then he's been in on a winless two-hitter, a three-hitter and a four-hitter too. Until Paul Blair was beaned Sunday, matters were going almost too well. When Second Baseman Dave Johnson was sidelined, for instance, Chico Salmon came in and went 3 for 5, 2 for 3 and 4 for 5, fielding flawlessly. Johnson recovered quickly. "He was cured by Dr. Salmon," Frank Robinson said.
New York fell 7� games behind Baltimore. The Yankees lost four out of six as the league's poorest long-ball-hitting team got only three home runs. Reliever Steve Hamilton lost twice, but Fritz Peterson won his seventh. Relief pitching and timely hitting carried WASHINGTON to its best week of the season. Fireman Darold Knowles picked up his first win and eighth save, and the Senators, after three weeks below .200 in team batting, finally bettered the mark with fewer than 10 hits in only two games. Washington is two games ahead of last year's pace, when the Senators made Ted Williams manager of the year by finishing over .500.
On two successive nights, DETROIT beat the Yankees on home runs in the bottom of the ninth, one by Bill Freehan and another by Willie Horton. Young Les Cain won a complete game, and rookie Dennis Saunders pitched his 10th inning of relief without a run. BOSTON Owner Tom Yaw-key noted that the Red Sox had not had four back-to-back hits all season and said, "I can't fault a manager because guys don't get runs." Lefty Sam McDowell halted a five-game CLEVELAND losing streak. He had earlier stopped two streaks of three games and one of four. McDowell has accounted for seven of the Tribe's 16 wins.