Tag Archives: good-hitting pitchers

1970 Rewind: ALCS Game Three


Date:  Monday, October 5.

Batting stars:  Cesar Tovar was 2-for-4 with a triple.  Tony Oliva was 2-for-4.

Pitching stars:  Bert Blyleven pitched two innings, giving up an unearned run on two hits and no walks and striking out two.  Tom Hall struck out two in two shutout innings, giving up a walk.

Opposition stars:  Brooks Robinson was 3-for-4 with a double.  Dave Johnson was 2-for-3 with a home run (his second), a walk, and two runs.  Don Buford was 2-for-4 with two RBIs.  Jim Palmer struck out twelve in a complete game, giving up one run on seven hits and three walks.

The game:  The Orioles took the lead in the first inning, as Buford singled, was bunted to second, and scored on Boog Powell's single.  In the second, Palmer reached on a two-base error and scored on Buford's single, making it 2-0.  In the third Robinson doubled and went to third on Johnson's single.  An error brought home a run, a force out put men on first and third, Palmer hit an RBI double, and a sacrifice fly made the score 5-0.

The Twins put two on with none out in the fourth but did not score.  They got on the board in the fifth when Tovar hit a two-out triple and scored on a Leo Cardenas single.  But they only got two baserunners after that, and did not get a man past first base.  The Orioles added a run in the seventh on Johnson's homer.  They won they game 6-1 and took the series 3-0.

WP:  Palmer (1-0).

LP:  Jim Kaat (0-1).

S:  None.

Notes:  Jim Holt was in center field, with Tovar moving to left and Brant Alyea out of the lineup.  Paul Ratliff was behind the plate in place of George Mitterwald.  Danny Thompson was at second base in place of Rod Carew.

Charlie Manuel pinch-hit for Blyleven in the fifth.  Bob Allison pinch-hit for Thompson in the sixth, with Frank Quilici going to second base.  Carew pinch-hit for Hall in the seventh.  Alyea pinch-hit for Quilici in the ninth.  Luis Tiant pinch-ran for Rich Reese in the ninth.  Rick Renick pinch-hit for Jim Perry in the ninth.

Kaat started but pitched just two innings, allowing four runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks and striking out one.

This was the first playoff appearance for Blyleven.  He would not appear in another playoff game until 1979 with Pittsburgh.

The pinch-hit appearance by Allison was the last at-bat of his career.

Oriole pitchers went 5-for-13 with a grand slam, two doubles, four runs, and six RBIs.  None of their pitchers were particularly good batters--the highest batting average on the staff was by Tom Phoebus, who did not pitch in this series, and his average was a mere .163.  The best OPS among Oriole pitchers (not counting Dave Leonhard's 1-for-2) was .461 by McNally.  They had no one else over .350.

Oriole pitchers were just too much for the Twins in this series.  They scored only ten runs, and six of them came in the first five innings of the first game.

So another quick, frustrating exit for the Twins.  But it was still a fun season, and I still remember it fondly.  I hope you do, too, and I hope this was a fun series for anyone who was reading it.  We'll put up a couple of season wrap-up posts before the series ends.  And, God willing, we'll pick another season to rewind next off-season.

Record:  The Twins lost the best-of-five series, 0-3.

1970 Rewind: Game Fifty


Date:  Tuesday, June 9.

Batting star:  Jim Holt was 1-for-3 with a double and a walk.

Pitching stars:  Bill Zepp pitched two shutout innings, giving up a walk.

Opposition stars:  Bobby Murcer was 3-for-4 with a walk, a stolen base (his fifth), and two RBIs.  Danny Cater was 2-for-4.  Stan Bahnsen was 2-for-4.  He also pitched a complete game, giving up two runs on four hits and four walks and striking out seven.  Roy White was 2-for-5.

The game:  The Yankees put men on first and third in the first inning but did not score.  It looked like it would cost them, as the Twins scored two in the second.  Harmon Killebrew led off with a walk, Holt hit a one-out double, and Leo Cardenas singled them both home, giving the Twins a 2-0 lead.

New York matched the two runs in the bottom of the second, though.  Ron Woods walked, Gene Michael singled, and Bahnsen had a bunt single, loading the bases with one out.  Horace Clarke struck out, but Murcer delivered a two-run single, tying the score 2-2.

Cesar Tovar led off the third with a single-plus-error but was stranded at second.  Paul Ratliff hit a two-out triple in the fourth but was also stranded.  In the sixth, singles by Thurman Munson and John Ellis and a walk to Woods loaded the bases with none out.  All the Yankees got out of it was a sacrifice fly by MIchael, but it was enough to put New York ahead 3-2.  They added two more in the seventh when Murcer and White singled, moved up on a ground out, and scored on a fielder's choice-plus-error, giving the Yankees a 5-2 lead.  The Twins did not get a hit after the fourth inning.

WP:  Bahnsen (4-4).

LP:  Jim Kaat (5-3).

S:  None.

Notes:  Holt was in left field in place of Brant Alyea.  Ratliff was behind the plate in place of George Mitterwald.  The Twins made no position player substitutions.

Rod Carew returned to the lineup and was 0-for-3.  He was batting .385.  Tony Oliva was 0-for-4 and was batting .332.  Killebrew was 0-for-2 and was batting .320.

Kaat was pitching in consecutive games, although with an off-day in-between.  He didn't do terribly, but he wasn't great, either.  He pitched six innings, giving up five runs (three earned) on twelve hits and two walks and striking out two.  Bringing him in to pitch relief might not have been the best idea, although I'm sure he was more than willing to do it.

It's interesting how many times pitchers have shown up in the best batter lists lately.  I'm all for the DH, but there were at least some pitchers who could hit back in the day.

We think of the Yankees of this era as being bad teams, but they were not bad in 1970.  They were 93-69-1, and no, I did not check to see what happened that they had a tie.  Presumably a rain-shortened game.  But anyway, they had a very good team.  They just weren't as good as Baltimore.

Record:  The Twins were 34-16, in first place in the American League West, two games ahead of California.  Again, the difference was all in the loss column, as the Angels were 34-20.