Happy Birthday–January 18

Eddie Moore (1899)
Danny Kaye (1913)
Mike Fornieles (1932)
Chuck Cottier (1936)
Satch Davidson (1936)
Curt Flood (1938)
Carl Morton (1944)
Billy Grabarkewitz (1946)
Sachio Kinugasa (1947)
Scott McGregor (1954)
Dave Geisel (1955)
Brady Anderson (1964)
Mike Lieberthal (1972)
Wandy Rodriguez (1979)

Entertainer Danny Kaye was one of the original owners of the Seattle Mariners.

Satch Davidson was a National League umpire from 1969-1984.

Sachio Kinusaga played in 2,215 games in Japan from 1970-1987.

We would also like to wish a happy birthday to Scot's oldest son.

Continue reading Happy Birthday–January 18

1987 Rewind: Game One Hundred Six

OAKLAND 6, MINNESOTA 5 IN OAKLAND (11 INNINGS)

Date:  Sunday, August 2.

Batting stars:  Gene Larkin was 3-for-4 with a home run, his fourth.  Kent Hrbek was 2-for-5 with a double and a run.  Al Newman was 2-for-5 with a double and a run.

Pitching stars:  Les Straker pitched five innings, giving up two runs on four hits and a walk with two strikeouts.  Keith Atherton pitched a scoreless inning, giving up one hit and striking out one.  George Frazier pitched 1.1 scoreless innings despite giving up three hits and a walk while striking out one.

Opposition stars:  Terry Steinbach was 4-for-5 with a two-run homer (his eleventh), scoring twice.  Alfredo Griffin was 3-for-5 with a double and a stolen base (his twentieth), driving in two.  Carney Lansford was 1-for-4 with a home run (his twelfth) and two walks.

The game:  Steinbach's two-run homer in the second put Oakland up 2-1, but Gaetti singled in a run in the third to tie it and Larkin homered in the fourth to give the Twins a 3-2 advantage.  The score stayed there until the sixth, when Lansford homered tie it 3-3.  Griffin's two-run single in the seventh gave Oakland the lead at 5-3, but Tom Brunansky homered in the eighth to cut the margin to 5-4.  In the ninth, Larkin led off with a single and was replaced by pinch-runner Mark Davidson.  Davidson took second on a passed ball, went to third on a fly to center, and scored on a wild pitch to tie it up 5-5 and send the game to extra innings.  In the eleventh, a two-out single by Jose Canseco scored Luis Polonia with the winning run.

Of note:  Newman was at shortstop, replacing Greg Gagne and batting second.  Gagne would enter the game in the ninth, with Newman moving to second base...Kirby Puckett was 0-for-5, dropping his average to .321...Larkin was the designated hitter in this game.  Roy Smalley was used as a pinch-hitter in the eleventh...Oakland starter Curt Young lasted only 3.2 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and no walks with two strikeouts.  He was replaced by Dennis Eckersley, who had seven saves to this point in the season but was still considered the setup man for Jay Howell.  Eckersley pitched 4.1 innings of relief, which was only tied for his fifth-longest outing of the season.  He had one start of 6.1 innings and relief appearances of six, five, and 4.2 innings.  He would become Oakland's closer in mid-August and remain their closer through 1995.

Record:  The Twins were 56-50, in first place, one game ahead of Oakland.

We hope to resume player profiles either late this week or early next.

Winter Wonderland: Games of January 16

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

LARA 5, LA GUAIRA 3 IN LA GUAIRA

Lara led 3-0 after four, but it was tied 3-3 going to the ninth.  A two-out two-run double by Paulo Orlando put Lara ahead to stay.  Gustavo Molina hit a home run for Lara.

Lara leads the best-of-seven series 3-1.

ZULIA 5, ANZOATEGUI 2 IN ZULIA

Zulia scored three in the first and it was all they needed.  Anzoategui cut the lead to 3-2 in the fifth, but Zulia added single runs in the fifth and eighth.  Reynaldo Rodriguez was 0-for-4 for Zulia.  Alex Romero was 3-for-4 with an RBI for Zulia.  Jose Pirela hit a home run for Zulia.

Zulia leads the best-of-seven series 3-1.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

LICEY 10, GIGANTES 1 IN LICEY

Licey scored three in the fourth to go ahead 5-0 and got five more in the eighth to seal the deal.  Arturo Lopez pitched 5.1 innings for Licey, giving up one run on two hits and two walks with three strikeouts.

AGUILAS 4, ESCOGIDO 0 AT AGUILAS

The Aguilas scored two in the third and got a two-run homer from Zoilo Almonte in the fifth.  Six Aguilas pitchers combined on a three-hit shutout.  Kennys Vargas was 0-for-1 with a walk and an RBI for the Aguilas.  Angel Franco was 3-for-4 with three doubles for the Aguilas.

STANDINGS

Aguilas, 13-4
Gigantes, 8-9
Licey, 8-9
Escogido, 5-12

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

HERMOSILLO 4, MEXICALI 1 IN HERMOSILLO

Carlos Alberto Gastelum's two-run double in the fourth opened the scoring and put Hermosillo ahead to stay.  Mexicali got one back in the fifth, but Hermosillo got single runs in the sixth and seventh to stretch their lead.  Jeremy Kehrt pitched 6.2 innings for Hermosillo, giving up an unearned run on four hits and three walks with two strikeouts.  Jose Amador was 3-for-4 with a home run and two doubles for Hermosillo.

The best-of-seven series is tied 2-2.

LOS MOCHIS 3, CULIACAN 2 IN LOS MOCHIS

Los Mochis scored two in the fifth to take a 3-1 lead.  Culiacan got one back in the bottom of the fifth and had the tying run in scoring position in the fifth, sixth, and seventh.  Leandro Castro was 0-for-3 with a walk for Los Mochis.  Manny Barreda struck out five in 5.2 innings for Los Mochis, giving up two runs on five hits and five walks.  Lew Ford was 3-for-4 with an RBI for Los Mochis.  Eugenio Velez hit a home run for Los Mochis.

Los Mochis leads the best-of-seven series 3-2.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

Happy Birthday–January 17

Louis Santop (1890)
Hank Leiber (1911)
Lum Harris (1915)
Mayo Smith (1915)
Don Zimmer (1931)
Keith Lieppman (1949)
Antonio Munoz (1949)
Pete LaCock (1952)
Darrell Porter (1952)
Mark Littell (1953)
Jerry Turner (1954)
Doug Simunic (1956)
T. R. Bryden (1959)
Chili Davis (1960)
SBG (1965)
Tyler Houston (1971)
Rob Bell (1977)

Catcher Louis Santop was a star in the Negro Leagues, hitting .349 over fifteen seasons.

Keith Lieppman has been Oakland's Director of Player Development since 1992.

Antonio Munoz was a long-time star in Cuba, winning eight home run titles and becoming the all-time leader in walks.

Doug Simunic has been the manager of the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks since 1996.

Right-hander Thomas Ray Bryden did not play for the Twins, but was in their minor league system in 1988.  He was born in Moses Lake, Washington, went to high school in Enumclaw, Washington, and was signed by California as a free agent in 1981.  After two ineffective minor league years as a starter, he was moved to the bullpen in 1983.  He did substantially better there, reaching AA in 1984.  He worked mostly in AAA in 1985 and had a bad year, but pitched very well in spring training in 1986 and made the major league team.  Bryden made sixteen appearances with the Angels through early June, going 2-1, 6.55, 1.72 WHIP with 21 walks in 34.1 innings.  He was sent back to AAA after that and did well, but did not make it back to the major leagues.  In 1987, he was still in AAA, posting a record of 9-1 despite a 6.35 ERA and a 1.69 WHIP in 72.1 innings.  The Angels were not fooled by his won-lost record and released him after the season.  Bryden signed with Minnesota and spent 1988 in AAA Portland.  He made 30 appearances there, 13 of them starts, and went 8-8, 4.99, 1.56 WHIP in 113.2 innings.  That brought his playing career to an end.  No information about T. R. Bryden since that time was readily available.

Switch-hitting outfielder Charles Theodore "Chili" Davis was with Minnesota from 1991-1992 and was used almost exclusively as a designated hitter.  He was born in Kingston, Jamaica, one of four major league players to be born in Jamaica.  He attended high school in Los Angeles, and was drafted by San Francisco in the 11th round in 1977.  He hit well in three minor league seasons and made the Giants out of spring training in 1981, but was seldom used and was sent back to AAA in early May.  Davis had a huge year in AAA Phoenix, hitting .350 with 19 homers and an OPS over 1.000.  He was the regular center fielder for the Giants in 1982, and remained a big league regular for the rest of his long career.  He finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting in 1982, hitting .261 with 19 homers.  His best year as a Giant was 1984, when he hit .315 with 21 home runs and an OPS of .875.  He made his first all-star team that year, making the team again in 1986.  Davis became a free agent after the 1987 season and signed with the California Angels.  He put in three solid seasons for the Angels from 1988-1990.  He received a few MVP votes in 1989, but there was nothing about that season that made it particularly better than his other Angel seasons, as they were all good.  A free agent again after the 1990 campaign, Davis signed with Minnesota.  He had started doing some DH-ing in 1990, and was the regular designated hitter for the Twins for two seasons.  He put up good numbers for the Twins in those two seasons:  he hit .282/.385/.476, with 41 home runs and 159 RBIs.  He finished 14th in MVP voting in 1991, when the Twins won the World Series.  Davis was once more a free agent after the 1992 season, and returned to the California Angels.  He was an Angel for four years this time, and after a disappointing 1993 went on to produce three of his best seasons, hitting over .300 and averaging 25 homers for those years.  He was traded to Kansas City for 1997, the only time in his career he was ever traded.  After a good year there, he became a Yankee for 1998, but was hurt early in the season and missed most of the year.  Healthy again in 1999, Davis had another solid season, hitting .269 with 19 homers at age 39.  He retired after that season.  He has been coaching for several years, three of them with the Australian national baseball team.  He was the batting coach for the Dodgers’ instructional league team in 2010, the batting coach for AAA Pawtucket in 2011, was the batting coach for the Oakland Athletics from 2012-2014, and has been the batting coach for the Boston Red Sox since 2015.

SBG made contact on the first pitch ever thrown to him in an organized baseball game as a seven year old, rolling out to shortstop off of a pitch from his 10 year old cousin. He played baseball for SBGville for 11 years with only moderate success. He was a left handed first baseman for most of those seasons, but making contact was always a problem. His last season was played for the same team that his cousin played for, as SBGville didn't field a team. Jim Kaat used to say that Chili Davis had a slider speed bat. After his baseball career was over, SBG discovered that he has a slowpitch softball speed bat. After not having hit a single homerun as a baseball player (his last at bat ended with a ground rule double), SBG displayed pretty good power, hitting well north of 100 home runs in about 12 years of softball. After his playing career ended, he lived and worked in the Twin Cities area for several years.  He continues to live there, but now regularly commutes to beautiful downtown Fargo, where he is currently employed.

January 17th, 2017: School’s Closed Again

Schools across the state are closed today. Of course, they didn't announce it around here until after I got the Trinket up to start getting ready. She was pretty upset about it, which is both good that she likes going and bad that she gets really upset about something out of my control.

Humorously, though, the local news keeps telling us how terrible it is out there but showing video of traffic moving as normal...

Winter Wonderland: Games of January 14-15

GAMES OF JANUARY 14

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

GIGANTES 8, AGUILAS 3 AT AGUILAS (GAME 1)

Garabez Rosa hit a two-run homer in a three-run sixth that put the Gigantes up 5-3.  The Gigantes added three more in the eighth to put the game out of reach.  Danny Santana was 0-for-4 for the Aguilas.  Kennys Vargas was 2-for-3 with a home run and two walks for the Aguilas.  Rosa was 4-for-5 and had two doubles in addition to his home run, scoring twice and driving in three.  Ketel Marte was 3-for-6 with a triple for the Gigantes, scoring once and driving in two.  Cam Perkins was 3-for-5 for the Gigantes.

GIGANTES 8, AGUILAS 2 AT AGUILAS

The Gigantes scored at least once in each of innings two through six, building a 6-2 lead.  It was a bullpen game for the Gigantes, as they used seven pitchers.

LICEY 11, ESCOGIDO 1 IN LICEY

Emilio Bonifacio's RBI double in the fourth put Licey up 2-1.  They then scored two in the fifth, three in the sixth, and four in the eighth.  Jorge Polanco was 0-for-3 with a walk for Escogido.  Evan MacLane struck out six in six innings for Licey, giving up one run on four hits and a walk.  Engel Beltre was 3-for-4 with a run and two RBIs for Licey.

STANDINGS

Aguilas, 11-4
Gigantes, 7-8
Licey, 7-8
Escogido, 5-10

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

CAGUAS 1, SANTURCE 0 IN SANTURCE

Randy Ruiz singled Jorge Padilla home in the first inning and Caguas made the run stand up.  Orlando Roman struck out four in 4.2 scoreless innings, giving up three hits and a walk.

Caguas leads the best-of-nine series 1-0.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

CULIACAN 7, LOS MOCHIS 3

Jose Guadalupe Chavez hit a three-run homer in a four-run sixth that put Culiacan ahead 7-3.  Leandro Castro was 1-for-3 for Los Mochis.  Daniel Rodriguez pitched seven innings for Culiacan, giving up three runs on six hits and no walks with three strikeouts.

Los Mochis leads the best-of-seven series 2-1.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE*

MELBOURNE 6, CANBERRA 5 IN CANBERRA

Trailing 5-4, Melbourne scored twice in the seventh to take the lead to stay.  The go-ahead run scored from third when Canberra had to throw to first to record a strikeout.

ADELAIDE 2, PERTH 1 IN ADELAIDE

Stefan Welch's two-run double in the first provided all the runs Adelaide would need.  Steven Chambers struck out six in 4.1 scoreless innings for Adelaide, giving up three hits and four walks.

SYDNEY AT BRISBANE

Rained out.

*Games played January 15.  It's timey-wimey.

GAMES OF JANUARY 15

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

LARA 9, LA GUAIRA 3 IN LA GUAIRA

Lara scored two in the first and never looked back, building an 8-0 lead after six.  Jorge Martinez pitched five shutout innings for Lara, giving up four hits and a walk with two strikeouts.  Ildemaro Vargas was 3-for-4 with a double and two walks for Lara, scoring twice and driving in one.  Juniel Querecuto was 3-for-5 with a triple for Lara, scoring twice and driving in three.

Lara leads the best-of-seven series 2-1.

ZULIA 3, ANZOATEGUI 2 IN ZULIA

Zulia scored two in the second and never trailed.  Anzoategui cut the lead to 3-2, left the bases loaded in the sixth, and stranded two more in the seventh.  Reynaldo Rodriguez was 0-for-4 with a run for Zulia.  Rolando Valdez pitched five innings for Zulia, giving up one run on three hits and three walks with four strikeouts.

Zulia leads the best-of-seven series 2-1.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

AGUILAS 8, ESCOGIDO 0 IN ESCOGIDO

Angel Franco hit a grand slam to cap a five-run second that gave the Aguilas all the runs they needed.  Danny Santana was 0-for-4 with a walk for the Aguilas.  Kennys Vargas was 0-for-2 with two walks for the Aguilas, scoring once and driving in one.  Alfredo Marte hit a two-run homer for the Aguilas and Jonathan Villar hit a solo homer for the Aguilas.

GIGANTES 10, LICEY 6 AT GIGANTES

The Gigantes trailed 6-4 after seven but scored six runs in the eighth to win.  Melvin Mercedes was 3-for-4 with two RBIs for the Gigantes.  Leury Garcia was 3-for-5 with two runs for the Gigantes.

STANDINGS

Aguilas, 12-4
Gigantes, 8-8
Licey, 7-9
Escogido, 5-11

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

SANTURCE 6, CAGUAS 3 IN CAGUAS

Santurce trailed 2-0 after six but scored five in the seventh to win.  Drew Ferguson had a three-run double to break a 2-2 tie.

The best-of-nine series is tied 1-1.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

HERMOSILLO 2, MEXICALI 1 IN MEXICALI

Hermosillo got RBI singles by O'Koyea Dickson and Jose Amador in the eighth to overcome a 1-0 deficit.  Barry Enright pitched eight innings, giving up an unearned run on six hits and two walks with five strikeouts.

Mexicali leads the best-of-seven series 2-1.

CULIACAN 4, LOS MOCHIS 1 IN CULIACAN

Ramiro Pena's RBI single in the seventh broke a 1-1 tie and Culiacan added a pair of insurance runs in the eighth.  Leandro Castro was 1-for-3 for Los Mochis.

The best-of-seven series is tied 2-2.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

1987 Rewind: Game One Hundred Five

OAKLAND 3, MINNESOTA 2 IN OAKLAND

Date:  Saturday, August 1.

Batting stars:  Kent Hrbek was 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI.  Kirby Puckett was 1-for-3 with an RBI.  Tim Laudner was 1-for-3 with a double.

Pitching star:  Frank Viola pitched a complete game, giving up three runs on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts.

Opposition stars:  Dave Stewart struck out fourteen in a complete game, giving up two runs on eight hits and a walk.  Carney Lansford was 2-for-4 with a home run, his eleventh.  Tony Bernazard was 1-for-2 with a double and a walk, driving in one.

The game:  In the second, Steve Henderson scored from first on a Bernazard double to put the Athletics ahead 1-0.  The Twins did not score until the eighth, when Puckett tied the score with a sacrifice fly and Hrbek put the Twins ahead with a run-scoring single.  Alfredo Griffin tied it in the bottom of the eighth with an RBI single.  In the ninth, Lansford hit a leadoff walkoff homer.

Of note:  Puckett's average was .325 after this game...Greg Gagne batted second, with Steve Lombardozzi dropping to eighth...This is another time where a starter probably would not be allowed to finish in today's game.  Stewart probably would've been replaced after giving up a double to Dan Gladden to start the eighth and almost certainly after walking pinch-hitter Randy Bush.  Viola would almost certainly have been removed after starting the eighth by hitting Terry Steinbach and walking Tony Bernazard, if indeed he'd even have been allowed to start the inning.  This is not to say which is better or worse, but the game has definitely changed.

Record:  The Twins were 56-49, in first place by 1.5 games over California.

We hope to resume player profiles late this week or early next week.

Happy Birthday–January 16

Jimmy Macullar (1855)
Art Whitney (1858)
Jimmy Collins (1870)
Ferdie Schupp (1891)
Buck Jordan (1907)
Dizzy Dean (1910)
Jim Owens (1934)
Ron Herbel (1938)
Joe Bonikowski (1941)
Tsuneo Horiuchi (1948)
Dave Stapleton (1954)
Steve Balboni (1957)
Marty Castillo (1957)
Dave Jauss (1957)
Jack McDowell (1966)
Ron Villone (1970)
Jack Cust (1979)
Albert Pujols (1980)
Matt Maloney (1984)
Jeff Manship (1985)

Jimmy Macullar holds the career record for most games by a left-handed-throwing shortstop (325). Oddly, he batted right-handed.

Pitcher Tsuneo Horiuchi made nine all-star teams in Japan and won seven Gold Gloves.  On October 10, 1967 he pitched a no-hitter and also hit three home runs.

Dave Jauss is a long-time minor league manager, scout, and major league coach.

Marty Castillo was drafted by Minnesota in the twenty-first round in 1975, but did not sign.

Continue reading Happy Birthday–January 16

1987 Rewind: Game One Hundred Four

MINNESOTA 5, OAKLAND 3 IN OAKLAND

Date:  Friday, July 31.

Batting stars:  Gary Gaetti was 2-for-4 with a three-run homer (his twenty-first) and a double, scoring twice.  Kent Hrbek was 1-for-4 with a run and an RBI.

Pitching stars:  Bert Blyleven pitched 7.1 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits and a walk with five strikeouts.  Jeff Reardon retired all five men he faced striking out two.

Opposition stars:  Jose Canseco was 2-for-4 with a home run (his twenty-second) and two RBIs.  Luis Polonia was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.  Carney Lansford was 2-for-4 with a run.

The game:  Canseco homered in the fourth to put Oakland ahead 1-0.  The Twins took the lead in the sixth with an RBI single by Kent Hrbek and a three-run homer by Gaetti.  The Athletics got one back in the bottom of the sixth on a Canseco single.  They closed to 4-3 in the eighth when Polonia drove in a run with a double.  That brought on Reardon, and he slammed the door, retiring all five men he faced.  Randy Bush drove in an insurance run with a pinch-hit single in the ninth.

Of note:  Kirby Puckett was 0-for-4 with a run, dropping his average to .325...Greg Gagne batted second in this game, with Steve Lombardozzi batting eighth...Dennis Lamp started for Oakland and went six innings, giving up four runs on five hits and a walk with two strikeouts.

Record:  The Twins were 56-48, in first place, 2.5 games ahead of California.

We will try to resume player profiles some time next week.

Winter Wonderland: Games of January 13

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

ANZOATEGUI 7, ZULIA 1 IN ANZOATEGUI

Anzoategui scored four in the third, three of them on a home run by Denis Phipps, to take a 4-1 lead.  Reynaldo Rodriguez was 0-for-3 with a walk for Zulia.  Yohan Pino pitched 4.2 innings for Anzoategui, giving up one run on six hits and a walk with three strikeouts.  Phipps was 3-for-4 and drove in four runs.

The best-of-seven series is tied 1-1.

LARA 9, LA GUAIRA 5 IN LARA

Lara trailed 3-0 going to the bottom of the sixth, when they scored five times to go ahead to stay.  Rangel Ravelo had a two-run double and Carlos Rivero had a three-run double in the inning.  Lara added four more in the seventh to take control of the game.

The best-of-seven series is tied 1-1.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

GIGANTES 5, ESCOGIDO 3 IN ESCOGIDO

The Gigantes scored two in the fourth and two in the eighth to take a 4-1 lead.  Jorge Polanco was 2-for-4 with a run for Escogido.  Ernesto Zaragoza pitched 5.2 innings for the Gigantes, giving up one run on five hits and no walks with four strikeouts.  Ketel Marte was 3-for-5 with a triple and an RBI.  Moises Sierra hit a home run for the Gigantes.

AGUILAS 6, LICEY 0 AT AGUILAS

The Aguilas scored two in the third, two in the sixth, and two in the eighth.  Danny Santana was 1-for-3 with two RBIs for the Aguilas.  Jose Urena struck out five in five shutout innings for the Aguilas, giving up five hits and a walk.  Juan Perez was 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI for the Aguilas.  Zoilo Almonte hit a two-run homer for the Aguilas.

STANDINGS

Agulias, 11-2
Licey, 6-8
Gigantes, 5-8
Escogido, 5-9

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE

ADELAIDE 4, PERTH 3 IN ADELAIDE (GAME 1--7 INNINGS)

Adelaide built a 4-1 lead in the first two innings and held on.  Perth advanced the tying run in to scoring position in both the sixth and seventh.  Jordan Cowan hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Angus Roeger and Jordan McArdle each hit a solo homer in the second.

PERTH 5, ADELAIDE 3 IN ADELAIDE

Perth trailed 3-2 after seven but rallied for three in the eighth to win.  Michael Lee pitched seven innings, giving up three runs on nine hits and a walk with two strikeouts.

CANBERRA 8, MELBOURNE 1 IN CANBERRA

Already leading 4-0, Canberra scored four in the eighth to put the game out of reach.  Sean Guinard walked seven in 7.1 innings, but only gave up one run because he only gave up two hits and struck out six.  David Kandilas was 3-for-4 with a walk and two runs for Canberra.  River Stevens was 3-for-5 with a double and two runs for Canberra.  Josh Almonte hit a home run for Canberra and drove in five runs (not all on the home run--that would be a record).

BRISBANE 7, SYDNEY 6 IN BRISBANE

Trailing 4-1, Brisbane scored five in the third to take the lead, getting home runs by Trent Oeltjen and Mitch Nilsson in the inning.  Aaron Whitefield was 2-for-5 with a double and two runs for Brisbane and is now batting .350.  Logan Wade was 1-for-4 with a double and a run for Brisbane.  David Sutherland was 4-for-4 with two RBIs for Brisbane.

1987 Rewind: Game One Hundred Three

SEATTLE 8, MINNESOTA 3 IN SEATTLE

Batting stars:  Kirby Puckett was 2-for-4 with two doubles and two runs.  Gary Gaetti was 2-for-4 with an RBI.  Steve Lombardozzi was 2-for-4 with a run.

Pitching star:  Les Straker pitched three innings of relief, giving up one run on four hits and a walk with two strikeouts.

Opposition stars:  Alvin Davis was 3-for-3 with two home runs (his twelfth and thirteenth), a double, and a walk, driving in four.  Mike Kingery was 2-for-4 with a home run (his sixth) and a stolen base (his seventh), driving in two.  Lee Guetterman pitched eight innings, giving up three runs on ten hits and a walk with one strikeout.

The game:  The Mariners scored three in the first to take the early lead.  The Twins cut it to 3-2 in the top of the third, but Davis hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the third to put Seattle up by three again.  Davis hit another two-run homer in the fifth to make it 7-2 and put the game out of reach.

Of note:  Puckett raised his average to .328...Gene Larkin was used at DH...Starter Mike Smithson pitched five innings, giving up seven runs on six hits and two walks with three strikeouts...It seems likely that Straker was used in relief because the next day was an off day and he was going to be skipped in the rotation.  Skipping guys and using them in relief doesn't seem to happen as often as it used to, but when you really only have two starting pitchers you can rely on it makes sense to keep them on regular rest and use them as often as you can.

Record:  The Twins were 55-48, in first place by two games over Oakland.  They seem to have been exactly two games ahead of Oakland for quite some time now.

I hope to get back to doing player profiles, because I find them interesting and fun, but it probably won't be for a week or so.

Happy Birthday–January 14

Billy Meyer (1892)
Smead Jolley (1902)
Phil Piton (1903)
Chet Brewer (1907)
Sonny Siebert (1937)
Dave Campbell (1942)
Ron Clark (1943)
Derrel Thomas (1951)
Wayne Gross (1952)
Terry Forster (1952)
Mike Pelfrey (1984)
Erick Aybar (1984)
J. R. Graham (1990)

Billy Meyer won 1,604 games as a minor league manager, mostly in the Yankees organization.

Phil Piton was president of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues from 1964-1971.

Chet Brewer was a star pitcher in the Negro Leagues known for his mastery of throwing scuffed baseballs.

Continue reading Happy Birthday–January 14

Winter Wonderland: Games of January 11-12

GAMES OF JANUARY 11

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

LA GUAIRA 4, ARAGUA 2 IN ARAGUA

Jose Castllo's RBI single in the ninth broke a 2-2 tie and a wild pitch brought home an insurance run.  Castillo was 3-for-4 with a walk.

That sets up the semi-final round, with La Guaira playing Lara and Zulia playing Anzoategui.  Both series are best-of-seven.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

AGUILAS 6, LICEY 0 IN LICEY

Orlando Calixte's two-run triple capped a three-run first and the Aguilas led all the way.  Danny Santana was 2-for-4 with a triple for the Aguilas, scoring once and driving in two.  Chris O'Grady struck out six in five shutout innings for the Aguilas, giving up five hits and four walks.

ESCOGIDO 4, GIGANTES 2 AT GIGANTES

Escogido trailed 2-0 after four but scored one in the fifth, two in the sixth, and one in the seventh to win.  Jorge Polanco was 0-for-4 with a walk and scored once for Escogido.  Eury Perez hit a home run for Escogido.

STANDINGS

Aguilas, 10-2
Licey, 5-7
Escogido, 5-8
Gigantes, 4-7

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

CAGUAS 1, MAYAGUEZ 0 IN CAGUAS

The game's lone run was scored in the fourth on a hit batsman, a walk, a single, and another walk.  There were only seven hits in the game, four by Mayaguez and three by Caguas.  Eddie Rosario was 0-for-4 for Mayaguez.  Kennys Vargas was 0-for-3 with a walk for Mayaguez.  Benji Gonzalez was 1-for-3 for Mayaguez.  John Brownell pitched seven shutout innings for Caguas, giving up three hits and a walk.

Caguas wins the series 4-2.  That sets up the finals, which will be a best-of-nine series between Caguas and Santurce.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

LOS MOCHIS 5, CULIACAN 0 IN LOS MOCHIS

Los Mochis put together a single, a walk, and three more singles in the sixth, scoring three runs to take a 4-0 lead.  Manny Barreda struck out ten in eight shutout innings for Los Mochis, giving up two hits and two walks.  Leandro Castro was 3-for-3 with a home run for Los Mochis, scoring twice and driving in two.

Los Mochis leads the best-of-seven series 1-0.

MEXICALI 8, HERMOSILLO 7 IN MEXICALI

Hermosillo built a 7-2 lead through seven and a half, but Mexicali scored six runs in the eighth to win.  Luis Juarez hit a three-run homer in the inning and the go-ahead run scored on a Yuniesky Betancourt single.

Mexicali leads the best-of-seven series 1-0.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE*

MELBOURNE 11, CANBERRA 1 IN CANBERRA

Allan de San Miguel hit a two-run homer in a four-run first and Melbourne cruised to an easy win.  Mark Hamburger pitched a complete game for Melbourne, giving up one run on eight hits and a walk with seven strikeouts.  de San Miguel was 5-for-5 with a double in addition to his home run, scoring twice and driving in six.

ADELAIDE 5, PERTH 1 IN ADELAIDE

Adelaide hit three home runs in a four-run sixth, giving it a 4-1 lead.  Stefan Welch, Karl Hoschke, and Connor O'Gorman all had home runs in the inning.  Zach Cooper struck out seven in six innings for Adelaide, giving up one run on five hits and two walks.

BRISBANE 9, SYDNEY 4 IN BRISBANE

Brisbane turned six singles into a five-run sixth that gave it a 6-0 lead.  Aaron Whitefield was 2-for-5 and is batting ,345 for Brisbane.  Logan Wade was 1-for-5 with a run and is batting .309 for Brisbane.  Kramer Champlin pitched seven inning for Brisbane, giving up one run on three hits and no walks with six strikeouts.  David Sutherland was 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs for Brisbane.  Mitch Nilsson hit a home run for Brisbane.

*Games played January 12.  It's timey-wimey.

GAMES OF JANUARY 12

VENEZUELAN LEAGUE

ZULIA 3, ANZOATEGUI 2 IN ANZOATEGUI

Three walks and an error plated two runs for Zulia, breaking a 1-1 tie and putting Zuila ahead to stay.  Reynaldo Rodriguez was 0-for-3 with a walk for Zulia.  Wilfredo Boscan pitched four innings for Zulia, giving up one run on four hits and a walk with two strikeouts.  Anzoategui out-hit Zulia 10-2.  The first two Zulia batters got hits, and Zulia did not get another hit the rest of the game.

Zulia leads the best-of-seven series 1-0.

LA GUAIRA 7, LARA 6 IN LARA

La Guaira took a 5-0 lead in the first, but needed an RBI double by Heiker Meneses in the ninth to get the win.  Alcides Escobar hit two home runs for La Guaira.

La Guaira leads the best-of-seven series 1-0.

DOMINICAN LEAGUE

LICEY 4, GIGANTES 1 IN LICEY

Jason Rogers had a two-run single in a three-run third that put Licey in the lead to stay.  Cesar Valdez struck out six in 5.2 innings for Licey, giving up one run on five hits and a walk.

STANDINGS

Aguilas, 10-2
Licey, 6-7
Escogido, 5-8
Gigantes, 4-8

PUERTO RICAN LEAGUE

No games scheduled.

MEXICAN LEAGUE

LOS MOCHIS 14, CULIACAN 2 IN LOS MOCHIS

Already leading 3-1, Los Mochis scored seven in the seventh to put the game out of reach.  They had four home runs in the inning, solo shots by Juan Carlos Gamboa, Eugenio Velez, and Yosmany Guerra, and a three-run homer by Saul Soto.  Leandro Castro was 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI for Los Mochis.  Luis Niebla pitched six shutout innings for Los Mochis, giving up five hits and two walks with three strikeouts.  Velez and Gamboa were each 3-for-4 and each scored twice.

Los Mochis leads the best-of-seven series 2-0.

MEXICALI 16, HERMOSILLO 6 IN MEXICALI

Leading 1-0, Mexicali had an eight-run inning in the third to take control early.  Yordanys Linares was 4-for-6 with a triple and a double for Mexicali, scoring three times and driving in two.  C. J. Retherford was 3-for-5 with a home run and a walk for Mexicali, scoring twice and driving in two.  Luis Juarez was 3-for-4 with a walk and two runs for Mexicali.  Xorge Carrillo was 3-for-4 with a double and a walk for Mexicali, scoring once and driving in four.

Mexicali leads the best-of-seven series 2-0.

AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE*

MELBOURNE 12, CANBERRA 6 IN CANBERRA

Melbourne lost leads of 3-0 and 6-3, but scored two runs in the fifth on three walks, a sacrifice fly, and a wild pitch to take the lead for good.  Brad Harman was 3-for-4 with a home run, a double, and a walk for Melbourne, scoring twice and driving in three.  Liam Bedford 3-for-3 with a walk for Melbourne, scoring twice.  Mike Walker hit a three-run homer for Melbourne.

SYDNEY 10, BRISBANE 9 IN BRISBANE

Sydney led 5-0 and 8-3, fell behind 9-8, and got a two-run single from Tucker Neuhaus in the eighth to go ahead 10-9.  Aaron Whitefield was 1-for-2 with a run and is batting .347 for Brisbane.  Logan Wade was 0-for-4 with a walk for Brisbane.  Todd Van Steensel struck out two in a perfect inning for Sydney.  Neuhaus was 4-for-5 with two doubles, scoring once and driving in seven for Sydney.

PERTH AT ADELAIDE

Rained out.

*Games played January 13.  it's timey-wimey.

1987 Rewind: Game One Hundred Two

SEATTLE 6, MINNESOTA 1 IN SEATTLE

Date:  Tuesday, July 28.

Batting stars:  Kent Hrbek was 1-for-3 with a walk.  Gary Gaetti was 1-for-3 with a walk.

Pitching star:  Juan Berenguer pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits while striking out one.

Opposition stars:  Mike Morgan pitched a complete game, giving up one run on four hits and three walks with no strikeouts.  Phil Bradley was 4-for-4 with a double and a stolen base (his twenty-seventh), scoring twice and driving in two.  Gary Matthews was 1-for-4 with a two-run homer, his second.

The game:  Matthews hit his two-run homer in the third, giving the Mariners a 3-1 lead.  Seattle added single runs in the fifth, seventh, and eighth.  The Twins had only four hits.

Of note:  Kirby Puckett was 1-for-4 with an RBI, making his average .326...Al Newman started at shortstop in place of Greg Gagne and batted second...Randy Bush was in right field and Tom Brunansky was out of the lineup...Joe Niekro started for the Twins and pitched six innings, allowing five runs on eleven hits and no walks...As unusual as complete games are these days, I would think a complete game with zero strikeouts is a fairly rare thing.

Record:  The Twins were 55-47, in first place by two games over Oakland.

Player profile:  Due to personal time constraints, the player profiles are taking a few days off.

Happy Birthday–January 13

Ernie Calbert (1887)
Fred Schulte (1901)
Ron Brand (1940)
Makoto Matsubara (1944)
Mike Tyson (1950)
Bob Forsch (1950)
Odell Jones (1953)
Gene Roof (1958)
Kevin Mitchell (1962)
Kevin McClatchy (1963)
Elmer Dessens (1971)

Ernie Calbert won six minor league home run titles.  He also once pitched a minor league no-hitter.

Makoto Matsubara was an eleven-time all-star in Japan.

Kevin McClatchy was the CEO of the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1996-2007.

When Elmer Dessens made his major league debut in 1996, he was the first big leaguer in thirty-five years to have the first name "Elmer".

There do not appear to be any players with connections to the Minnesota Twins who were born on this day. The closest we come is Gene Roof, whose brother, Phil, played for the Twins.

We would, however, like to wish a happy birthday to The Dread Pirate.

Remodeled basement. Same half-baked taste.