Wednesday, January 26, 2011

GAME #7 - 1962 ALCS - Wagner's Power paints victory for Halos

GAME 7 - Dodgers Stadium - LAA 5, CHW 2
Juan Pizarro vs Ken McBride
With all the hyperbole surrounding game 7 the fans of this newly christened expansion club, the Angels, were just not sure how to react.  After 3 1/2 scoreless innings even the novice baseball fan began to feel the tension mount.  The home team was able to load up the bases with one out in the bottom of the 4th, but all Felix Torres could do was lift a sac fly to left to score Billy Moran.  The Angels had Pizarro on the ropes and more often than not when you squander those opportunities in big games it comes back to bite you.  This time however the bottom of the fourth served merely as the appetizer for the meal that was going to be served up by Pizarro in the 5th.  Buck Rodgers, who struck out to end game 6, opened the 5th with a clean single right back through the originator.  Albie Pearson, who was batting 8th today vs a lefty, showed he can hit anyone with a rocket to right center that culminated in a stand up RBI double.  LA was now up 2-0.  Pitcher Ken McBride, who was doing a wonderful job on the hill, grounded weakly to short for the first out.  Young Fregosi, who looks to be a star in the making, lined a single to left to score Pearson to make it 3-0.  Moran would ground to Smith at third for the second out and up came Leon Wagner.  Odds heavily favored the left handed Pizarro vs the lefty batting Wagner, who hit in the low .200's all year vs southpaws.  Today turned out to be the day that Wagner solved his portside jinx as he launched a mammoth opposite field homer to left center that only a man with power and timing could hit.  LA was now up 5-0 and as hard as it is for me to say it fans back in Chicago could have turned off their Dumont consoles and found other tasks at hand to be more rewarding than watching this agony.  Chicago threatened in the 6th but a tailor made DP by Hershberger ended an inning that netted just one run and started out looking like it had possibilities.  Tom Morgan would start the 9th for LA and easily get 2 quick outs.  Dom Zanni, the Chisox reliever, was allowed to hit for himself in a situation which his team looked to have thrown in the towel.  Morgan let his guard down and Zanni wound up with a Texas leaguer that flared into right center for hit.  Aparicio's one hopper to short was booted by Fregosi and Fox's single to center scored Zanni to make it 5-2, which shouldn't have panicked anyone, but after all the great comebacks in this series nothing could be taken for granted.  The Angels went to the pen one more time and this time it was veteran Don Lee who got the call.  Lee warmed up quickly and was ready to face Al Smith, who was sporting a 2-3 with a walk day.  On Lee's third offering Smith hit a one hop bullet back to the box that easily found Lee's glove.  The veteran righhander took three strides toward first, then flipped a perfectly timed underhand toss to Tom Burgess who was covering the bag to end the series.  The LA Angels improbable run to the 1962 AL Pennant would now setup the first ever All-SOCAL series as the Angels will face their landlord, the Dodgers in a series that will be played entirely in Dodger Stadium.  Just five years earlier major league baseball wasn't even played on the West Coast.  Now the World Series would be played in it's entirety here.  Boy has the world changed !
Angels win series 4-3.

GAME #6 - 1962 ALCS - Chisox turn tables on Halos with comeback of their own to force game 7

GAME 6 - Dodger Stadium - CHW 4, LAA 3
Eddie Fisher vs Bo Belinsky

Returning home turbo charged from the game 5 comeback victory the Halos jumped out to a 3-0 lead vs surprise starter Eddie Fisher.  Bo Belinsky who made a concerted effort to get home before the sun rose was dominating Chisox hitters for 5 innings.  Belinsky was a bit wild in walking 5, but for 5 innings he was posting goose eggs.  In the top of the 6th the Chisox finally cracked the scoreboard.  With the bases loaded and nobody out Belinsky's day was done.  Dan Osinski was called on to minimize the damage and he went right to work by striking out Joe Cunningham for the first out of the inning.  Mike Hershberger would not fall victim to Osinski and a run would score on "Hershey's" line single to center.  After Al Smith easily scored the Chisox got aggressive and sent Floyd Robinson from second in hopes of getting another run.  Albie Pearson, who was charging hard, made a great play to throw Robinson out at the plate by a stride.  Sherm Lollar was then given an intentional pass to load the bases and force Chicago's hands on whether to allow Fisher to hit or go with a pinch hitter.  Fisher, who started out slow (3 runs over 1st 3 innings) had settled down into a nice run, but the game was on the line and Charlie Maxwell was ready to go.  Osinski attempted to jam Maxwell, but the pitch caught way too much plate.  Maxwell turned on it and on most days and in most other ballparks he would have had himself a grand slam homer.  Dodger stadium is 420 feet to dead center and that's just where the ball died as Pearson was able to catch it just before colliding into the wall for what looked to be a game saver.  LA still had a 3-1 lead and the Chisox were running out of outs.  No additional scoring occurred, and so the game headed into the top of the 9th with Chicago down to their last 3 outs and needing at least 2 runs to tie.  Inexplicably reliever Frank Baumann led off the inning and somehow managed to get a single.  Either the Chisox manager was a genius in rolling the dice this way or he was busy on the phone making his flight reservations.  Somehow we might never know the answer to that question.  When Aparicio single there were now runners on the corners.  Nellie Fox fought off a few pitches then slapped a slow roller to short that easily scored Baumann and easily advanced Aparicio to second with 1 out.  With the score now 3-2 Angel fans were now beginning to feel the same way White Sox fans felt two days earlier.  They began biting their nails and wondering if what they were seeing was really happening.  Up stepped Al Smith, who before this at bat might best be remembered for having beer spilled on his head as he stood against the left field wall in Comiskey during the 1959 Series while watching a Dodger batter hit a big homer.  Now was the time for Smith to etch himself into a more positive light as he launched a sailing shot over Pearson's head in center that easily scored Aparicio and landed Smith on third with a stand up triple.  Just like that the game was now tied.  Floyd Robinson came to the plate and wasted no time serving an opposite field single into left to score Smith and give the Chisox a 1 run lead.  The next two batters would easily make out, but the damage was already done.  Chicago now had to get 3 outs and live for tomorrow.  Baumann, who started the whole rally in the 9th, was back on board to close out his win.  It was his game to either win or lose as the Chisox pen was empty.  Billy Moran hit a sinking liner to center that Jim Landis easily gobbled up for out number one.  Leon Wagner grounded easily to short and up stepped Lee Thomas as the final out.  Thomas would single for the fourth consecutive time on the afternoon to keep the Angels fading hopes alive, but Buck Rodgers would end all hopes by fanning on 4 pitches to send the series to a decisive game 7.
Series tied 3-3

GAME #5 - 1962 ALCS - Halos take 3-2 series lead via late inning comeback

Felix Torres / Luis Aparicio
GAME 5 - Comiskey Park - LAA 7, CHW 6 (10 inn)
Dean Chance vs Ray Herbert

Ray Herbert left the game with 2 outs gone in the 7th and his team up 4-0.  Dean Stone came on board to fan lefty Leon Wagner to end the inning and seemingly end the Angels chances.  Stone would start the 8th by getting Lee Thomas to pop out to third, but it would all be downhill from there.  Felix Torres would double to right center and Buck Rodgers would single, but when pinch hitter Steve "Sgt" Bilko fouled out to catcher Cam Carreon the Chisox looked to be dodging a bullet.  Reliever Turk Lown was able to get Bilko out, but could not do the same when he walked the appropriately nickamed "walking man" Eddie Yost on 5 pitches to load the bases.  Tom Satriano was once again called upon in a pinch and the backup backstop delivered an RBI single to get the Halos on board.  Albie Pearson would be the next to deliver a key hit.  Pearson's 2 run single to left center scored Rodgers and Yost and just like that a comfortable 4-0 lead was now a tight 4-3 crapshoot.  Mike Joyce would start the top of the 9th for the Pale Hose in search of 3 big out for victory.  Leon Wagner led off the inning by grounding to Cunningham at first who took it unassisted to the bag for out #1.  Lee Thomas hit a routine grounder to short that Aparicio fielded cleanly, but inexplicably threw wide of the bag, which pulled Cunningham into foul territory to allow Thomas to reach on an error.  All looked good as Felix Torres hit virtually the same grounder to "Little Luis", who this time easily threw out the runner to put the Chisox 1 out from victory.  Buck Rodgers came to the plate and used his batter's eye pefectly to work out a walk as he battled back from an 0-2 count.  Bilko did the same and now the bases were loaded for rookie shortstop Jim Fregosi.  At the start of the 1962 campaign Fregosi was toiling in the minors like so many other young players hoping for a chance.  Fregosi got his chance and made the most of it by slashing a liner to right field to tie the game at 4.  A huge hush came over the crowd in the Southside of Chicago, who only a few innings before were watching their team cruising toward victory.  As extra innings loomed the momentum truly shifted to the visitors from Southern California.  A 3 run outburst in the top of the 10th led by an RBI double by Leon Wagner and a two run single by Felix Torres sucked the remaining air out of Comiskey.  To their credit the Chisox were not about to roll over and die.  Angel reliever Bobby Botz gave up doubles to Joe Cunningham and Cam Carreon to cut the Halo lead to 2.  A two out single by Aparicio scored Carreon and got the crowd back into the game.  With Aparicio on 1st and two outs already on the board Chicago needed to get "Little Luis" into scoring position.  With his running mate Nellie Fox at the plate there were two options:  steal second or play hit and run.  After throwing over twice Halo reliever Ken Bowsfield was paying close attention to the speedster on 1st.  Aparicio tried to extend his lead just a bit further, but in doing so got caught leaning.  Bowsfield's pick off throw to Bilko at first was right on the money and Aparicio was called out to end the game.
Angels lead series 3-2

Monday, January 24, 2011

GAME 4 - Thomas' Promises - Halo slugger helps tie series with 2 dingers

GAME 4 - Comiskey Park - LAA 10, CHW 3
Eli Grba vs John Buzhardt
3-4 + a walk & 2 HR's
The Halos scored early and often off of Buzhardt who walked 8 and gave up 11 hits over 6 eventful innings of work.  With the game tied a 1 after 2 innings LA went on a run scoring spree that added 7 unanswered runs, which blew the game wide open.  Eli Grba went 7 innings and gave up just 1 unearned run in the second.  Ryne Duren cleaned off his glasses and finished the game out fine after a shaky 8th inning that cost him 2 runs.  Every regular in the Angel lineup had at least 1 hit.  Lee Thomas had himself a 3 for 5 day where he had 3 runs scored as well as 3 runs knocked in.  Thomas' 2 homers were not cheapies either.  Light hitting shortstop Joe Koppe, who hit .227 in the regular season, went 3 for 4 out of the 8th hole as the Halos won this one walking away.
Series tied 2-2

GAME 3 - Chisox take 2-1 series lead

GAME 3 - Comiskey Park - CHW 4, LAA 2
Ken McBride vs Early Wynn
3 scoreless relief innings
Once again it was a day for the willey vet, Early Wynn who scattered 7 hits over 6 innings and gave up just 2 runs before giving way to reliever Frank Baumann.  While many speculate that Wynn is hanging around just to pad his numbers in his personal quest for 300 wins, others say the veteran still has enough in the tank for those big pressure games when the money is on the line.  Judging by his performance during this tournament I would have to agree with the latter.  Floyd Robinson would single home Nellie Fox with 2 out in the first to make it 1-0.  After 3 shutout innings Wynn would have 2 skaky ones.  After getting 2 quick outs in the 4th it looked like he was on cruise control, but 3 consecutive singles (inclduing 1 by the pitcher) led to a 1-1 tie.  Wynn himself would let his bat do the talking in the bottom of the 4th.  With runners on 1st and 2nd and 1 out he hit a bullet to third that ate up Yost and allowed Cunningham to score all the way from second.  The official scorer gave Yost an error on a ball that would eat up anyone not named Brooks or Clete.  Aparicio followed with a clean single to center to score Hershberger to make it 3-1 Chisox.  Bill Moran's lead off homer in the 5th made it 3-1, which is how it stayed until the 7th when the Pale Hose scored on a wild pitch from Angel reliever Tom Morgan.  That was what we in the trade call a back breaking run since it occurred with 2 outs after Jim Landis tripled.  Morgan then served up a single to Cunningham, which would have scored Landis anyway, but you can't speculate just how he would have pitched him if Landis was still on third.  Baumann was locked in and allowed just 2 two out hits over his 3 scoreless innings in relief to post the save in relief of Wynn.
White Sox lead series 2-1

GAME 2 - Chisox even series behind Pizarro

GAME 2 - Dodger Stadium - CHW 6, LAA 3
Juan Pizarro vs Bo Belinsky
3-5 + 2RBI's for Luis
Popular legend has it that the "playboy" Bo Belinsky was out for a night on the town prior to his important game 2 start.  Bo says, "Game time is 7:30pm, so no one should be concerned what I'm doing at 7am".  Simply put Belinsky didn't have much on his fastball and the way Pizarro was pitching it probably didn't matter much anyway.  For the second day in a row Chicago would be the first to post a pair of runs on the scoreboard in the second.  Luis Aparicio would have himself a 3 for 5 day and 2 RBI's in the second to put his team on top 2-0.  Angel secondbaseman Billy Moran would single home Koppe with 2 outs to make it 2-1.  For the next 3 innings Belinsky looked to be in fine form by posting donuts on the scoreboard.  Chicago struck for 2 more runs in the 6th thanks to Belinsky's lack of control on the mound and his lack of control off of it, as he airmailed a comebacker into the fourth row to allow Floyd Robinson to get to second and Nellie Fox to move to third.  A walk to Jim Landis loaded the bases and a ground out by Cunningham would score Fox to make it 3-1.  A two out single by Mike Hershberger would score Robinson and make it 4-1.  A walk to the opposing pitcher, a single by Aparicio and a pair of consecutive wild pitches would spell the end of Belinsky's up and down day.  Chicago would score two more runs in the 7th thanks to balls in the dirt, not balls resting safely past the infield.  A two run homer by Felix Torres off of reliever Dom Zanni in the 8th gave some hope to the hometown fans, as did a two out rally in the 9th.  The "walking man" Eddie Yost singled with 2 out while pinch hitting and Moran followed with a single of his own.  Albie Pearson came to the plate as the potential game tying run, but instead popped out weakly to Al Smith at third to end the game.
Series tied 1-1

ALCS: Halos comeback with 2 in the 9th to take opener

GAME 1 - Dodger Stadium - LAA 3, CHW 2
Ray Herbert vs Dean Chance
Game winning Sac Fly
After loading the bases with nobody out Chicago was poised for a big inning. Dean Chance dug down deep and got Joe Cunningham to pop out and Cam Carreon to ground back to the box for two quick outs and no runs allowed. Up stepped the number 8 hitter Bob Sadowski, who must have thought he was a cleanup hitter since he line a 2 run single to right to score Floyd Robinson and Jim Landis to make it 2-0 Chisox. For most pitchers and most franchises this type of an inning can be deflating, but not for the second year Angels who are gritty and resolute. The Halos made it 2-1 in the 5th when George Thomas walked and eventually scored on a Bill Moran groundout. Still it looked like the pitching rich Sox were going to be able to hold on. Reliever Turk Lown was brought on in relief of Hebert who allowed a lead off single to Felix Torres in the bottom of the 9th. Lown would leave 3 batters later having not recorded an out and having walked in the tying run. Catcher Buck Rodgers singled to greet Lown, who proceeded to walk the next two hitters. The walk to Jim Fregosi plated Torres to tie the game at 2. Dean Stone was brought in to face Tom Satriano, who lifted a fly ball deep enough to score the slow footed Rodgers from third, which made it a 3-2 final in favor of the Halos.
Angels lead series 1-0

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Dodgers sweep series in 4 vs arch rival Jints

GAME 4 - Dodger Stadium - LAD 5, SFG 3
Billy Pierce vs Don Drysdale
Tommy_Davis Right from the very start it was apparent that Pierce was not the right man for the job of extending the Giants season past today.  With the melodious prose of Vin Scully being broadcasted off of the transistor radios that more than half of the 54,000 fans in attendance brought, the happy sounds of Dodger runs crossing the plate numbered 3 after the first inning ended.  Wills led off the game with a bunt single, then began dancing off of first in what looked like a perfect imitation of the way Jackie Robinson harassed pitcher a decade earlier on the other side of the continent.  Wills need not imitate anyone, for his base running artistry was an original unto itself.  In this case Pierce was convicted to keeping Wills for pilfering second, and in a sense the veteran lefty was quite successful in his designated task.  Unfortunately for him and Giants Wills was able to reach second and beyond on the second pitch to batter Junior Gilliam.  This would occur thanks to Gilliam getting a flat fastball that cut right down the middle of the plate like the double yellow line cuts through a major thoroughfare.  Gilliam wasted no time in turning on the offering and lining it just over the 3 foot railing in left field to make it 2-0 for the home team.  Piece was now beyond rattled as evidenced by the ball Willie Davis hit to the base off the wall that Matty Alou barely was able to track down.  Left fielder Harvey Kuenn would not be so lucky with the long fly ball Tommie Davis would hit to left that not only cleared the wall, but wound up 15 rows deep in the  left center field pavilion.  Drysdale with a 3-0 lead looked like a sure thing.  It was anything but a sure thing when Mays hit a solo shot in the 2nd to make it a 1 run ball game.  San Fran had now scored solo runs in consecutive innings and Drysdale looked to be struggling with his control.  Thanks to back to back walks to Ron Fairly and Frank Howard to lead off the 4th the Dodgers were able to push across a fourth run on a ground out to put Big D up by 2 again.  Matty Alou, who was getting his first start of the series, made the most of it with an RBI single in the top of the 5th to make it a 1 run game again.  Fairly would single home Willie Davis in the bottom of the inning to bump the lead back up to 2.  This time Don Drysdale would lock it down by allowing just 1 hit over the final 4 innings of play and striking out 4.  In the end the Dodgers out hit and out pitched their rivals to the north who relied purely on the long ball and had no answers for Wills on the base paths.
Los Angeles wins series 4-0

GAME 3: Dodgers go up 3-0 with extra inning win

GAME 3 - Dodger Stadium - LAD 3, SFG 2 (11 inn)
Juan Marichal vs Johnny Podres
Juan_Marichal Heading back to Southern California the Dodgers had the Giants right where they wanted them, which was down two games to none.  San Fran had one trump card left to play, their ace, Juan Marichal.  The high kicking "Dominican Dandy" was trusted to get the Giants back into the series.  His opponent, 1955 World Series MVP, Johnny Podres, was given the assignment to keep it close and hopefully LA could steal the game.  Marichal played prominently in the scoring of San Fran's first run as he led off the top of the 3rd with a clean single to left.  He would move over to second thanks to a beautifully executed sac bunt by Pagan.  Felipe Alou's single to center was not deep enough for Marichal to score, so runners were on 1st and 3rd for the Say Hey kid.  Willie Mays lashed a 2-2 Podres change up into left that a hard charging Tommie Davis barely caught on his shoe top.  Davis wound up sliding head first on the grass and was lucky to keep the ball in the webbing of his glove.  Marichal would walk home from third to give the Jints a 1-0 lead.  The Dodgers would finally score in the bottom of the 5th and take a 2-1 lead when Daryl Spencer led off the inning with a clean single to right.  Spencer wasn'tJim_Gilliam even in the starting lineup when the Dodgers took the field in the 1st, but wound up being pressed into action after veteran Andy Carey booted his second grounder of the inning to load the bases for the Giants.  LA's manager had had enough of Carey's poor display with the leather and yanked him right on the spot, which sent a message to his team that he would not tolerate lackadaisical behavior.  Spencer would capitalize on his opportunity by going 2 for 5 on the day.  He would also score the Dodgers first run of the day on a two run single by Junior Gilliam.  Prior to Gilliam's single Maury Wills, who singled himself, stole second to put both runners in scoring position.  Once again Wills' legs played a prominent role in the Dodger offense.

Willie_Mays As the game progressed the Giants started looking like a beaten team.  Only Marichal's guile and assortment of pitches kept the Dodgers off stride and his team in the game.  In the top of the 8th Pagan hit a one hopper that went off Spencer's chest for the Dodgers third error on the day at the "Hot Corner".  Alou popped out to catcher John Roseboro in foul territory for the first out of the inning and Pagan was nailed by Roseboro at second attempting to steal to make it 2 outs.  To make matters worse the man at the plate was Willie Mays, and wouldn't you know it the Say Hey kid launched a double down the right field line that would have scored Pagan if he was still on the base paths.  The Baby Bull, Orlando Cepeda was next to bat and on the first offering hit a clean single to right center to score Mays and tie the game as reliever Larry Sherry couldn’t not protect the lead Podres handed him.  Nether team could push across a run during regulation.  The Dodgers had a chance in the bottom of the 10th when they had runners on the corners with 1 out, but the diminutive Stu Miller was able to get his sinker working and Roseboro hit into a tailor made 6-4-3 DP.  Miller would not be able to produce any miraculous escape acts in the 11th, which started out poorly for him when Manny Mota airmailed a throw from 3rd over Cepeda's head to allow Spencer to reach 1st safely.  DonDon_Drysdale Drysdale, who is one heck of a hitter for a pitcher, was sent up to bunt.  Miller quickly got 2 strikes on Big D, who was then given the green light to swing away.  Drysdale hit one off the top of the wall in left center that bounded back to the infield which prevented Spencer from scoring the winning running.  Wills came up and hit a bullet right at Pagan who was playing in like the rest of the infield.  Inexplicably Spencer broke for home and was thrown out by 15 feet.  Wills didn't stay on first for too long, as he stole second easily on the 1st pitch.  Gilliam was then given an intentional pass to load the bases and create a force everywhere as well as a possible DP chance.  3-Dog, Willie Davis rendered that strategy useless as he hit a ball just shy of the tack that Mays easily caught and Drysdale easily scored the winning run on.
Los Angeles leads series 3-0

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

GAME 2 - ‘62 NLCS - LAD 13, SFG 4

GAME 2 - Candlestick Park - LAD 13, SFG 4
Sandy Koufax vs Bill O'Dell

4 RBI’s & HR – by Hondo

The Dodgers staked Koufax to a 10-0 lead after just 3 1/2 innings worth of play.  The lanky lefthander from the Dodgers former home (Brooklyn) let his guard down and gave up 2 runs in both the 4th and 5th innings before blanking the Giants for his final 2 frames.  By the time Phil Ortega took over in the 8th the score was 13-4 and the outcome was no longer in doubt.  LA banged out 17 hits with Ron Fairly being the only regular not to reach base safely via the bat.  Willie Davis went 4 for 6 with 3 runs scored and 3 runs knocked in.  Frank Howard and Daryl Spencer each had 4 RBI's and a homer.  Spencer was 3 for 4 and Howard was 2 for 5.  Wills only had a 1 for 6 day, but that didn't seem to matter one bit.  For their part the San Fran offense had 10 hits, but couldn't seem to string them all together like LA did.  Mays did have a homer and 2 hits on the day in a losing cause.

Dodgers lead series 2-0

1962 NLCS GAME 1 - LAD 6, SFG 0

GAME 1 - Candlestick Park - LAD 6, SFG 0
Don Drysdale vs Jack Sanford
4 hit shutout by Big D
This much anticipated duel between 25 game winner Don Drysdale and 24 game winner Jack Sanford turned out to be a dud.  Drysdale was dominant from the beginning and San Fran's fabled lineup stood no chance vs the tall righty.  Sanford on the other hand began leaking oil from the get go.  LA scored a Maury Wills manufactured run in the first as the mobile shortstop singled and stole second so fast the echos from the National Anthem were still reverberating.  Junior Gilliam's single put runners on the corners for Ron Fairly who doubled home Wills.  Gilliam attempted to score as well and was pegged at the plate by right fielder Felipe Alou.  "Jumbo" Frank Howard crushed one to deep left, but Fairly got a bad jump and was thrown out at the plate by a great throw from Harvey Kuenn.  All in total the Giants outfield threw out 4 Dodgers attempting to score.  Without those arms he score would have been much worse.  With one out in the 5th Tommy Davis was hit in the ribs by an errant pitch and trotted down to first.  Up stepped "3-Dog" Willie Davis and what the fans were then treated to was the most exciting play in baseball:  The inside the park homer.  Davis launched one into the right center gap that even the great Willie Mays couldn't track down.  By the time Alou could gather the ball Davis was heading for third and not letting up.  Alou hit his cutoff man  (Hiller) perfectly.  Hiller turned and threw a perfect one hopper to Haller who turned to tag Davis, but was a hair too late.  LA
Inside the park HR - 3Dog
now had a 3-0 lead and probably could have had 2 or 3 more runs if it wasn't for San Fran's arms.  With 2 out in the top of the 6th catcher Johnny Roseboro doubled down the right field line to score Tommy Davis, who singled with one out.  Light hitting second baseman Larry Burright lined one to the opposite field to score Roseboro and make it 5-0.  LA would add another run in the 7th thanks to a throwing error by Haller, who was attempting to throw Wills out at second on a steal attempt.  All in all Wills was on base 3 of 4 times today (3-4 with a walk).  When Wills, the 1962 NL MVP, gets on base he creates havoc and drives the Dodger offense.  Drysdale, who got stronger as the game went on was the beneficiary of inning ending DPs in the 7th and 9th innings.  He also managed to hit 2 batter including Haller and Mays.  When hitters attempt to dig in against Big D they find one sailing right at their ear.
Dodgers lead series 1-0

Sunday, January 16, 2011

1962 ALDS - LAA 4, MIN 0

[AP News Flash]

62 Los Angeles Angels 4 – 62 Minnesota Twins 0
In a series that was closer than the final score belies, the Los Angeles Angels led by skipper Douglas Zaner swept the Minnesota Twins and their rookie skipper Ron Burnette, 4-0.  After a dominate win in game 1, the last 3 games of the series were hard fought 1-run affairs that found the mighty Angels victorious in each of them.  The Angels skipper made all the right moves in those taught final 3 games. Quote “I was lucky” did little to take away from excellent decision making that proved to be the difference in those hard fought affairs.

GAME 1: Los Angeles (A) 9 – Minnesota 4
Leon Wagner 3 HR's
On paper this looked like a great match up as Dean Chance faced off against Jim Kaat. But alas the Angels bats were too hot today. Led by Leon Wagner's 2 HR's and 5 RBI's the Angels moved out to a 5-0 led by the top of the 6th before cruising to victory. Chance was solid while Kaat started out strongly but seemed to wilt in the 88 degree Minnesota summer. Steve Bilko, yes that fleet-footed Steve Bilko, was 4-5 with 4 RBI's including a two-bagger and a triple. Twins skipper was amazed that Steve could make it all the way to 3rd without running out of breath. It was a portent of things to come.

GAME 2: Los Angeles (A) 5 – Minnesota 4
Bo Belinsky vs. Camilo Pascual. On paper another great match up but the Angels scored 5 times in the 1st two innings and held on for 5-4 win. Leon Wagner had the big bat again as he went 2-4 with 1 HR and 2 RBIs. Belinsky, who definitely stayed out too late the night before was effective for 5 innings allowing only 1 run on 3 hits while walking 4. The Twins made in close in the bottom of the 9th scoring 2 on Harmon Killebrew HR, but Art Fowler was able to get the final two outs without further damage for the save.

GAME 3: Minnesota 2 – Los Angeles (A) 3
Grounder nets big run
A heart-breaking loss for the visiting Twins as the Angels score two runs in the bottom of the 9th to win game 3 of the series 3-2. This was close hard fought game all the way. The Angels scored 1st with a run in the 3rd as Leon Wagner continued his hot hitting driving the run in with a base hit. That was all the Angels could muster against Jack Kralick. Ken McBride on the other side was pitching just as well. His only blemish was an unearned run in the 6th that tied the game at 1. Things got interesting as both teams turned to their bullpens. The Angels bullpen walked 5 batters over the final 3 innings but somehow managed to only give up one run as the Twins could not come up with the big hit. They did manage to take the lead in the 8th on, you guessed it, a bases-loaded walk to pinch hitter George Banks. But then things began to unravel for the Twins in the bottom of the 9th. Leading 2-1, they brought in suspect closer, Frank Sullivan. He promptly gave up a 2 bagger to Lee Thomas. A single by Buck Rodgers scored Thomas and to tie the game and set up an extraordinary finish. Things happened so fast that the Angels skipper had to ask for an instant replay review. Tom Satriano grounded into what looked like a double play but great hustle by the slow footed catcher kept the rally alive. With one out and the go-ahead run on third, Jim Fregosi grounded one to the normally sure handed Rich Rollins. But alas it wasn't to be. The ball glanced off his glove allowing Rodgers to score the winning run as pandemonium reigned at the Halo.

GAME 4: Minnesota 3 – Los Angeles 4 – 10 innings
Hustle & pinch hitting
The Twins while down, played their hearts out in a tough loss. Jim Kaat seemed to like the dry California summer air as he went 8 innings giving up 3 runs on 6 hits while striking out 7. Eli Grba gave the Angels yeoman mound work as he went 6 giving up 3 earned. The Twins led 3-1 after 6 but the Angels came back with single runs in the 7th and 8th innings to tie the game at 3. In the top of the 9th. Zoilo Versalles tripled with 2 outs, but the Twins could not get him home as Tom Morgan struck out super star to be, Tony Oliva. In the top of the 10th, the Twins loaded the bases after two outs on a single and a couple of walks. But hard throwing Ryne Duren came in and got Bob Allison to ground out meekly to him setting the stage for another Angels rally. A walk to George Thomas and a single by Billy Moran left Angels at 1st and 2nd with 2 outs. Steve Bilko was the scheduled hitter. Steve had been having a pretty good tournament up till then. But this is where the pure genius of the Angels skipper came to fruition. Playing a hunch or reading all his statistics at hand, he pinched hit for Bilko, with …., Tom Satriano. Yes, the same Satriano who's hustle in game 3 allowed the Angels to pull of that 9th inning rally. Tom pays off his managers faith in him with a single scoring Moran with series winning run.
--submitted by Ron Burnette--

Saturday, January 8, 2011

1962: Chisox sweep Bosox in 4 to head to ALCS

GAME 1 - Comiskey Park - CHW 1, BOS 0
Ray_Herbert Ray Herbert
went the distance tossing a neat 4 hitter vs the potent Red Sox lineup.  Bill Monbouquette started the game, but had to leave after getting 2 outs in the 4th thanks to a blister.  Hal Kolstad would come on in relief and do a great job allowing just a 2 out RBI single to Al Smith in the 5th.  Thanks to Herbert pitching prowess that one run would wind up being more than enough.
White Sox lead series 1-0


GAME 2 - Comiskey Park - CHW 7, BOS 4Floyd_Robinson
Finally some offense in the big ballpark on the south side of the "Windy City".  Boston staked Big Gene Conley to a 4-0 lead, which he protected well until the bottom of the 6th when the hometown heroes got RBI's from Nellie Fox and Al Smith to cut the deficit they faced in half.  The bottom of the 7th would mark the end for Conley and the Bosox.  Mike Hershberger's double made it 4-3 and Floyd Robinson's single would give Chicago their first lead of the day.  Two insurance runs in the 8th put the game away for the Southsiders
White Sox lead series 2-0

GAME 3 - Fenway Park - CHW 5, BOS 0
Early_Wynn Early Wynn
, who has been attacked by many for "hanging around" too long in search of 300 wins, was able to turn back the clock by going the distance in a complete game shutout 6 hitter.  Chicago touched Red Sox starter Earl Wilson for 3 run in the first 3 innings before future South Sider Wilbur Wood would take the hill.  Wilson would be his own worst enemy by walking 2 and uncorking 2 wild pitches in the top of the 2nd.  Back to back errors by Ed Bressoud (SS) and Wilson would allow an unearned run to score on a sac fly by Cunningham.  A sac fly by Jim Landis in the 6th narrowly missed being a homer to dead center.  An RBI single by Nellie Fox locked up the game at 5-0.
White Sox lead series 3-0

GAME 4 - Fenway Park - CHW 4, BOS 2Camilo_Carreon
A 45 minute rain delay in the 3rd chased both starters (Buzhard / Schwall).  By that point Chicago was up 3-0 in their quest ofr the sweep.  After Schwall walked Smith and Landis with 2 outs Fox singled home Smith to make it 1-0.  A 2 run homer by Cam Carreon in the 4th made it 3-0 Chisox.  Boston answered back in the bottom of the inning with a two run pinch hit blast by Pumpsie Green, which made it 3-2.  Boston would get no closer as Eddie Fisher would come out of the pen for Chicago and toss 6 solid innings of relief, including 5 shutout innings after a slow start in the 4th.  Luis Aparicio's lead off homer in the top of the 9th gave Fisher an insurance run and some margin for error.  After Chuck Schilling singled with 1 out in the bottom of the 9th pinch hitter Dave Philley grounded int a tailor made series ending 6-4-3 DP.
White Sox win series 4-0