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Former Pirate Pitcher Jim Rooker, who's now a Pittsburgh broadcaster, vowed not to shave until the last-place Bucs (2-4) get to first. Don Robinson had two hits while beating the Dodgers 9-3 and hurling the Pirates' first complete game of the season. Despite three more hits his next time out, Robinson, who is batting .360 this year, lost. Rooker may have a long beard.
The Expos (5-1) played some hair-raising games of their own. Woodie Fryman had to come on in the ninth to seal Bill Gullickson's 2-0 triumph in Houston. It took a three-run homer in the eighth by Gary Carter to make Steve Rogers a 4-1 victor over Cincinnati. And Tim Wallach's three-run home run highlighted a four-run 10th that did in the Astros 4-0. That victory went to Charlie Lea, who gave up a single to the second batter he faced and then retired the next 26 before being lifted. The win concluded a 6-0 road trip for Montreal, its best ever. Those victories were also part of a winning streak that reached eight games. In a week in which Expo pitchers had an 0.78 ERA and held opponents to a .214 batting average, two of the best outings were by pitchers who have overcome arm troubles. Lea was told late last year that his arthritic elbow would keep him from ever pitching again. And David Palmer, who had elbow surgery in November of 1980, pitched for the first time since then and yielded only two hits in six innings while gaining a 6-1 victory over Houston.
Two pitchers who were woeful early this season continued their resurgence for Philadelphia (3-2). Steve Carlton, once 1-4, improved his record to 6-6 by beating the Reds 9-1 and the Braves 6-2. Dick Ruthven, who was 1-3, boosted his mark to 4-3 by defeating Atlanta 1-0 on five hits. In his last five starts, Ruthven has given up a total of only 18 hits and three runs while lowering his ERA from 3.99 to 2.49.
St. Louis (5-1) got .550 hitting from Mike Ramsey, who took over at second for injured Tommy Herr. Joaquin Andujar shut out the Giants 6-0, and Bruce Sutter chalked up his 13th and 14th saves. Dane Iorg's run-scoring single wrapped up a three-run, bottom-of-the-ninth rally that carried the Cardinals past the Padres 6-5 on Sunday.
Five whiffs in one game put Dave Kingman of the Mets (3-3) in the major league record book with 22 others who have flailed away with like futility. But three saves by Neil Allen rescued New York. Ferguson Jenkins of the Cubs (3-3) also made it into the book, becoming the seventh pitcher to rack up 3,000 strikeouts. Bill Buckner merely joined the list of players who have scuffled with their managers. It all began when Buckner was knocked down by a pitch by San Diego's Tim Lollar. Chicago's Dan Larson then hit the Padres' Tim Flannery, apparently in retaliation. At the end of that inning. Cub Manager Lee Elia, believing that Buckner had usurped his authority by egging on Larson, engaged Buckner in a brief brawl. Buckner denied Elia's allegations but subsequently apologized to him. Three last-inning hits led to Cub victories, Gary Woods beating the Padres 5-3 and Ryne Sandberg knocking off the Dodgers 4-3 and 3-2 on successive days.
ST.L 30-18 MONT 24-20 NY 26-21 PHIL 23-21 CHI 21-27 PITT 18-26
"The organization is a loser," said an angry Jack Clark of San Francisco (2-4) on Wednesday. Owner Bob Lurie suggested that Clark, who was hitting .215 at the time, should glance in a mirror. Next time out, Clark slugged two home runs and had five RBIs to finish off the Pirates 10-5. Then, in an almost identical performance the next night, Clark again homered twice and drove across six runs to finish off Pittsburgh 9-5.
Tim Flannery of the Padres (3-3) also responded well to criticism. Manager Dick Williams was upset when the front office refused to sign former Expo Infielder Rodney Scott after San Diego Second Baseman Juan Bonilla was injured and lost for the season. Williams then knocked the fielding of Flannery, who had taken over at second. But even Williams smiled when Flannery doubled in a run in the ninth to help beat St. Louis 4-2. Ruppert Jones took over the league batting lead with a .348 average. Alan Wiggins was hitting .326, and his five steals put him fifth in that category, with 17. Wiggins also helped turn a single by Lonnie Smith of St. Louis into a double play during the 4-2 win over the Cardinals. Pitcher Joaquin Andujar was out trying to go from first to third on Smith's hit. Third Baseman Luis Salazar then had the ball swatted from his hand by Andujar. In the confusion, Smith sped to third, beating a wild throw from Shortstop Gary Templeton, who had recovered the loose ball. Wiggins, alertly dashing in from leftfield, retrieved the ball and fired it back to Templeton, who was covering third. Templeton tagged out Smith, who had rounded the base too far.