Doug Rau, Mike Marshall and Jimmy Wynn have a share-the-ride system when driving to Dodger Stadium. Despite their divergent tastes, there is no argument about what music to listen to in the car, that being the prerogative of the driver. Says Rau: "Mike likes classical, Jimmy soul-brother stuff, and I like country music." The three pooled their talents for a 4-1 victory over the Padres in a 5-2 Dodger week, Rau earning the win, Marshall saving it and Wynn pounding out four hits. Andy Messersmith beat Houston 6-1 and San Diego 4-3 for his 10th and 11th victories, and Don Sutton won No. 11, curbing Houston 4-2.
Cincinnati, winning five of six, retained its three-game lead but lost its top pitcher, lefthander Don Gullet (9-3), for a month or more when he broke his left thumb. Johnny Bench hit five doubles; he now has 27 and a good shot at the major league record for catchers (42).
Sunday was doubly disappointing for San Diego fans: the Padres lost 6-0 to the Mets and for the fourth time they were denied the free hamburgers Owner Ray Kroc has promised whenever the team wins on that day. But the Padres (2-5) were encouraged by Brent Strom, who came up from Hawaii and limited the Dodgers to four hits in a 2-1 win.
For the Giants (3-4) Randy Moffitt has been strong in relief, with 11? scoreless innings in his last seven appearances.
Dave May of the Braves hit a grand-slam homer in a 5-1 win over the Reds (Carl Morton pitching a three-hitter) and homered in a 4-2 defeat of the Giants. Tom House saved the Giant game with three innings of perfect relief, coming in with the bases loaded.
Back in February, Houston Manager Preston Gomez said, "To be a winner all we need to do is reverse our records against Los Angeles and Cincinnati. We were 9-27 against them last year." Sad to say, last week the Astros lost five in a row to these nemeses; their 1975 record against them is now 3-14.
CIN 42-26 LA 40-30 SF 32-34 SD 31-36 ATL 28-38 HOUS 24-47
This is no ball park, it's an insane asylum." That was Phillie Manager Danny Ozark's assessment of Wrigley Field after four nerve-scraping games there with the Cubs. The Phillies blew 5-1 and 5-0 leads in losing the first two, 9-7 and 9-5. They also frittered away leads in the other two, but a two-run pinch homer by Tommy Hutton gave them a 9-7 win in one and three runs in the 14th made them 6-3 winners in the other. Jay Johnstone hit .421 and Dave Cash .419, and Greg Luzinski took the league lead in homers, at 15, hitting three. On top in batting was Chicago's Bill Madlock, whose .375 week lifted him to .352. Another Cub hitting with oomph was Jerry Morales, who batted .406 for the week with three homers and 10 RBIs.