- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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San Francisco (5-2) zapped Atlanta 7-6 on a ninth-inning single by Willie Montanez and put down San Diego 3-1 on Gary Matthews' three-run homer in the first. A pinch single in the 12th by Ken Boswell lifted the Astros (3-2) past the Dodgers, 6-5.
CIN 102-53 LA 85-70 SF 76-79
Oakland (4-3) romped to a 16-4 defeat of Kansas City that clinched a tie for first place. Vida Blue earned the win, his 20th; Rollie Fingers pitched the ninth inning, his major league-leading 71st appearance; and Billy Williams hit his 23rd homer.
The Royals were also 4-3 on the week but there was no fire left in Chicago (2-5), which was bumped out of fourth place by Minnesota (5-2). One of the better bumpers was Craig Kusick, whose three-run pinch homer toppled the Angels 4-3 and raised the team's pinch-hitting average to .314. Jim Hughes registered his 15th and 16th victories, the most for any rookie this season.
David Clyde, the phenom of 1973, returned to the Rangers (3-4) at age 20 and might have won had he not turned an Angel bunt into a two-run error. The Angels lost the game 3-2. California (3-4) beat Texas the next day in an untypical way. Andy Etchebarren sealed it with a three-run homer, only the 54th four-bagger all year for the Angels.
OAK 94-60 KC 86-68 TEX 76-80
While Baltimore and Boston battled, Cleveland clung to faint hopes of displacing the Yankees from third place. At week's end the Indians (3-3) had won 22 of their last 33 games. Most responsible for the surge was Fritz Peterson, who beat New York 3-2 for his 10th consecutive triumph. Catfish Hunter of New York (3-2) gained his 22nd win by downing Cleveland 6-2. And later the Yankees frustrated the Brewers 6-5 by scoring two runs with two out in the ninth to tie the score at 2-all and then adding four more in the 11th inning.
Gerry Augustine of Milwaukee (1-5) beat New York 5-2 in his big-league debut but flunked the rookie test given him by team prankster Jim Colborn. Told to report to it by Colborn, Augustine showed up for a post-game TV show that never was.