St. Louis lost seven of eight and its lead over Philadelphia shrank to a stalemate. The Cards scored just 12 runs in those losses, the solitary win being a 10-0 drubbing of Atlanta. That outburst provided a happy ending to righthander Bob Forsch's first week in the majors. Five days earlier he had lost 2-1 to the Reds. It all added up to tight pitching by a rookie who obviously is undaunted by crowds. Forsch appeared before 94,015 people in the two games.
Philadelphia had a chance to retake the lead if it could pick up a win at San Francisco, but the Phillies phlopped 13-3 despite the efforts of Willie Montanez and his wife Maria. Batting in the third inning, Montanez received word that Maria had given birth to a boy. He turned to the umpire and said, "I've got a son now. Watch me go." Montanez delivered four singles.
The Expos were one and six, largely because of a demonstrable lack of clutch hits. Montreal lost two of three to the Giants, although the Expos outhit San Francisco by 96 points (.294 to .198) and had better pitching.
Chicago kept its perfect record at the Astrodome intact by losing twice and running its indoor total to 0-5 for the year. Shortstop Don Kessinger led off one of the losses with his first home run in two seasons—but it ended up hurting his team. Humiliated Astro Pitcher Don Wilson dusted off the next two batters. Cub Rick Reuschel retaliated, hitting Wilson with a pitch that set off a five-run Houston rally and the Astros won 5-4.
New York split six games and moved within a half game of fourth with help from some unrenowned players. When Tom Seaver's sore buttock forced him from the starting rotation, Bob Apodaca started against Los Angeles and pitched six scoreless innings before Jack Aker came on to save the win. The pitching was backed up by Ted Martinez, who was filling in for injured Shortstop Bud Harrelson. Martinez broke a scoreless tie in the seventh inning with a bases-loaded single and made three dazzling plays as New York triumphed 5-2. That victory left the Mets a shade behind Pittsburgh, which lost five of seven.
ST. L 44-43 PHIL 44-43 MONT 40-44
PITT 37-48 CHI 37-48 NY 37-49
New York enjoyed its best week of the year with six wins in seven games. The Yanks wound it up by embarrassing the first-place A's 12-6 for their sixth straight victory and the first of the week for Dick Tidrow. The successes moved New York into a fifth place tie with Detroit and only 3� games behind division-leading Baltimore. The Orioles lost just two of seven games, consecutive ninth-inning defeats by the White Sox that left Manager Earl Weaver fuming. Ejected from one game, Weaver sent a message from the clubhouse to Outfielder Jim Fuller whose error had allowed two unearned runs. "Tell him that he's hurting us out there," Weaver instructed. "He thinks he's great. I either have to accept it or put his rear on the bench."
When Gaylord Perry's win streak was ended by Oakland at 15, his Cleveland teammates seemed more shaken by the loss than he did. The Indians were on a 12-2 streak and leading the division before Perry's defeat, but they promptly lost two of their next three and fell into second.