The love affair between the Expos and their once ardent followers is on the wane. Attendance is down, booing is up and fans, upset by Expo errors (nine last week) and lopsided losses, have been leaving Jarry Park early. Outfielder Pepe Mangual, a Puerto Rican who speaks neither English nor French, has at least been communicating with his bat. Last week he had two game-winning blows and ran his hitting streak to 13 games.
CHI 20-12 PHIL 19-14 PITT 16-13 NY 15-14 ST.L 14-17 MONT 13-16
With Outfielder Bin Buckner and Reliever Mike Marshall ailing and Shortstop Bill Russell on the disabled list again, this time with an injured knee, Los Angeles seemed vulnerable. But the Dodgers were 4-2 and widened their lead to 5� games. They toppled the Cardinals 6-4 in 10 innings when Tom Paciorek, filling in for Buckner, drove across the go-ahead run and substitute Shortstop Rick Auerbach punched home two more. The victory went to Jim Brewer, who pitched four innings in his longest relief job in four years. Despite a touch of the flu, Don Sutton beat the Pirates 7-0, and former Cub Burt Hooton got his first win, a 5-0 two-hitter against the Cardinals. Andy Messersmith recovered from the same bug that had bitten Sutton to hold off the Pirates 4-3 in 10 innings with the support of a three-run homer by Lee Lacy and a game-winning hit by Joe Ferguson. For Lacy it was his first-ever major league home run in 188 games and 538 at bats.
San Diego, 3-2, was the only other West team with a winning record. Dave Freisleben beat the Cubs 2-1 and 4-1, the latter win coming on Helmet Night before the largest crowd in Padre history, 49,599.
Houston dug itself deeper into the cellar by losing four of six games. Most galling of the setbacks was a 2-1 loss to the Cubs in which the Astros gave away the deciding run on a single, a walk, a wild pitch and a passed ball. James Rodney Richard, a 6'8", 220-pound righthander, has always had a world of stuff, but little control. In a 4-2 defeat by the Cubs he walked eight men, bringing his season total to 47 bases on balls in 49 innings.
The Reds dropped six games in a row—their longest losing streak since 1971—in which they hit .212, had just one homer and were shut out for 18 consecutive innings by lefthanders. Cincinnati salvaged a 5-3 win in Montreal on 10th-inning home runs by Ken Griffey and Johnny Bench.
Despite four homers and .615 hitting by Vic Correll plus two homers and seven RBIs by Earl Williams, Atlanta was 2-4. San Francisco, 1-4, snapped a six-game losing string with a 4-3 win when the Cardinals committed a 10th-inning error.
LA 24-13 CIN 19-19 SD 17-18 ATL 18-20 SF 15-19 HOUS 12-27