Babe Hits For Cycle – Again!, Oakland Amazes, and Full Action From Around The League For Aug. 28-30

New York Wins 2 of 3 in Minnesota
August 28: New York 8, Minnesota 4
August 29: New Yor 20, Minnesota 3
August 30: Minnesota 2, New York 1

The Yanks won the first two games of the set on the strength of mammoth hitting. In game one, Minnesota starter George Mogridge made his Rhubarb debut and performed admirably for his seven innings of work and handed the bullpen a 4-3 lead. Joe Nathan quickly coughed up the lead in the top of the eighth on a two-run Derek Jeter jack, and Joe DiMaggio added a three-run dagger to the seats in the ninth. Lou Gehrig tacked on three more hits and a walk to his ludicrous season totals. Dellin Betances made an appearance from the New York bullpen to become the first player in the Rhubarb to take the field with 2017 stats factored into his card.

In game two, the biggest offense in the league had their biggest offensive game of the season as a string of Minnesota hurlers got bashed. Gehrig reached four times again and knocked his 33rd dong, and Babe Ruth collected his and the league’s second cycle of the season. The Babe first pulled the trick on May 13th in Seattle. Ruth singled in the first against Dutch Leonard, flew out in the third against Leonard, launched a three-run homer in the fourth against Firpo Marberry, drove in two with a double in the fifth against Marberry, drew a walk in the seventh off Al Worthington, and collected his sixth RBI of the game with a triple off Rick Aguilera in the eighth.

The finale could not have been much different. Minny starter Camilo Pascual managed to hold the NY bats to one run in seven innings, and Eddie Guardado nailed down two shutout innings to make the Twins’ two runs hold up.

Oakland’s Amazing Run Gains Momentum With Suffocating Sweep of Detroit
August 28: Oakland 3, Detroit 2 (16 inn.)
August 29: Oakland 3, Detroit 0
August 30: Oakland 7, Detroit 0

The Swingin’ A’s won their fifth straight series and are on a 17-4 roll that has them within two games of the division-leading Red Sox.

Detroit started the series in good shape, taking a 2-0 lead into the top of the eighth inning in game one. Starter Schoolboy Rowe made his season debut for the Tigers and did not allow an earned run in seven innings. But center gardener Al Kaline erred on a Bert Campaneris fliner to start the eighth, and the Tigers were doomed for the rest of the series. The two runs Detroit plated in the second inning of game one were the first and last they would score in the whole three-game, 34-inning series.

But game one was far from over after Campaneris reached in the eighth. Campy came around to score, and the A’s tied it up in the top of the ninth on the strength of a Jason Giambi walk and singles by Home Run Baker and Mickey Cochrane. The two bullpens dug in from there and it took seven extra innings to decide the competition. Oakland starter Chief Bender was strong for eight innings, and then Huston StreetDennis Eckersley, Rube Walberg, and Eddie Rommel came out of the Oakland pen for eight shut-down frames.

Dizzy Trout mowed down Oakland in the 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, and 15th and was still going in the 16th when Cochrane started it off with a single and Campaneris frozen-roped a triple to finally break the stalemate. In the bottom of the 16th, the Tigers got runners on the corners with just one out against Walberg, who was pulled in favor of Rommel. Rommel whiffed Hank Greenberg and grounded out Travis Fryman to end the saga.

Detroit looked dejected and done with their disappointing season in the next two games. Barry Zito twirled a shutout for the A’s in the middle game and Rube Waddell turned the same trick in game three. Jimmie Foxx provided fireworks on offense for Oakland with a homer in game two and three hits that included two doubles in game three.  Continue reading “Babe Hits For Cycle – Again!, Oakland Amazes, and Full Action From Around The League For Aug. 28-30”


Oakland Rolls To 4th Straight Series Win, New York Slips Further Back

bakerAugust 25: Oakland 8, New York 7

Rube Waddel twirled a complete game for Oakland and was excellent in eight of his nine innings. He lost it completely for a while in the fifth inning when nine Yanks reached and seven scored, and the A’s fell behind 1-7. But the Oakland offense stormed back against the pitiful NY pitching and defense and scored seven unanswered runs of their own to squeak out the win. Home Run Baker walked, smacked two singles, and homered. Reggie Jackson, Jason Giambi, and Jose Canseco also dropped bombs for Oakland

August 26: Oakland 10, New York 3

Lefty Gomez deftly maneuvered through the Yankees lineup against everyone not named Derek Jeter (who was 3-for-3 with a walk and three stolen bases), while the Oakland offense detonated with seven walks and 17 hits. Eddie Collins walked four times and added a single. Home Run Baker hit another dinger, his sixth homer of the season but second in the last two days.

August 27: New York 16, Oakland 7

The Yankee bats exploded the way they have to to make up for their run-prevention woes in the finale. Eight of the nine Yanks reached safely more than once, and all Alex Rodriguez, the one who didn’t reach more than once, could muster was a three-run dinger. Mickey Mantle, Charlie Keller, and Babe Ruth also added circuit clouts. NY racked up nine walks and 17 hits, most of them against starter Tim Hudson and reliever Eddie Rommel.

Still, time is running short for the Yankees to make a turnaround, who find themselves nine games back with five teams ahead of them. The A’s on the other hand won their fourth straight series and have catapulted into second place, four games back

New York Tries To Keep Hope Alive With Victories in Cleveland

Lou_and_Babe_Better_Days.0August 22: New York 4, Cleveland 1

Ruth & Gehrig both hit dingers and Ray Caldwell gave New York the type of start that the club is desperate for as they try to keep their slim hopes for the division title alive.

                  R  H BB
NY  001 001 002 - 4 11  6
CLE 000 000 010 - 1  5  1
HR: L. Gehrig (32), B. Ruth (29), J. Romano (12)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Caldwell  7.2  1  1  1  1  3  
S. McDowell  7.1  2  1  1  6  7 

NY 64-60, CLE 59-65

August 23: Cleveland 15, New York 1

Orlando Hernandez made his debut in a start for the Yankees, and it did not go well. He had a perfect first inning, but Jim Thome led off the second by mashing a tater. The Naps batted around, and Thome mashed a second tater against Hernandez in the inning, ending Hernandez’s rough day. Thome added a third spud to his pile of mashed taters later in the game to become the third player to 30 home runs. Manny Ramirez and Joe Jackson also had three-hit games for Cleveland. Stan Coveleski hypnotized the New York bats in a complete game gem.

                   R  H BB
NY  000 001 000 -  1  6  4
CLE 080 202 03x - 15 15  5

HR: J. Thome-3 (30)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
O. Hernandez  1.2  8  8  2  1  1  
S. Coveleski  9.0  1  1  0  4  3 

NY 64-61, CLE 60-65

August 24: New York 7, Cleveland 3

Charlie Keller led the way for New York in the rubber match with a single, double, homer, two RBI, and three runs scored.

                  R  H BB
NY  212 000 200 - 7  8  2
CLE 101 000 100 - 3 12  2
HR: C. Keller (16), R. Cano (13)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
H. Pennock   6.0  3  3  0  2  1  
C. Kluber    6.0  5  4  1  2  6 

NY 65-61, CLE 60-66

Boston Grabs 2 of 3 in New York

August 19: Boston 3, New York 2

The Yankees rotation is a bit of a mess, Roger Clemens and Bob Shawkey having both pitched so poorly that skipper Joe McCarthy is grasping around for other options in two spots. Rather than give Shawkey and his 6.47 ERA another chance, he handed the ball to Whitey Ford, who made just his fifth appearance of the year. Ford did an admirable job keeping things close against a strong Pedro Martinez, but a flurry of hits from Bobby Doerr, Wade Boggs, and Ted Williams plated two runs in the seventh to give Boston the edge.

Lou Gehrig recaptured a piece of the homerun lead by tying Texas’s Alex Rodriguez with 31.

                  R  H BB
BOS 100 000 200 - 3 10  1
NY  000 100 010 - 2  4  4

HR: L. Gehrig (31)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
P. Martinez  7.1  2  2  1  3  7  
W. Ford      6.2  3  3  0  1  1 

BOS 68-53, NY 62-59


August 20: Boston 8, New York 1

Waite Hoyt could not keep things close against a sharp Cy Young. The Sox pounded Hoyt for nine hits and seven runs while Hoyt only recorded three innings pitched. Every Boston batsman collected at least one hit, and Nomar Garciaparra led the way with three.

Young has pitched his best ball of the season over his last two starts, in which he’s pitched 18 innings and given up one earned run.

                  R  H BB
BOS 020 501 000 - 8 15  4
NY  000 010 000 - 1  7  1

HR: T. Speaker (6)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
C. Young   9.0  1  1  0  1  1  
W. Hoyt    3.0  7  7  0  2  1 

BOS 69-53, NY 62-60

August 21: New York 4, Boston 2

A Boston sweep would have left the Yankees in sixth place and eight games back of first place Boston and would have felt pretty much like the nail in New York’s coffin as far as any hope for winning the division. Lefty Gomez gave the Yanks the start they needed, and took a shutout into the ninth inning before Jimmie Foxx drilled a two-run bomb. Mariano Rivera quickly came in and got the next three batters in order to save the game for New York.

Even with the salvaged third game, the Yanks are still in bad shape in sixth place and six games back, but McCarthy says they still have their eyes on the pennant. “We’ve got 39 games left, plenty of time to get on a streak and make a run at it. We’ll just need our pitching and defense to bear down a bit more, and our bats can take care of the rest.”

Boston kept a razor-thin lead at the top of the division.

                  R H BB
BOS 000 000 002 - 2 7  2
NY  101 010 01x - 4 6  3

HR: J. Foxx (14), M. Mantle (21), B. Ruth (28)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
L. Grove   7.0  3  2  1  3  2  
L. Gomez   8.0  2  2  1  2  3 

BOS 69-54, NY 63-60

Chicago Takes Series From Fading New York

walshAugust 16: Chicago 1, New York 0

Lefty Gomez and Ed Walsh were both filthy and took turns trading zeroes for six and a half innings without ever getting into trouble.

Chet Lemon drew a walk off Gomez with one out in the bottom of the seventh, Lemon moved to second base on the second out, and Miguel Ordonez rolled a medium-speed grounder a few feet from third baseman Alex Rodriguez. The lack of range on the Yankees infield has been an issue all year, and A-Rod waved helplessly at the grounder as it rolled into left field and Lemon tore around third and scored. It didn’t go down as an error since Rodriguez didn’t get to it, but it was a bad play that lost the game for NY.

Ed Walsh was beastly and put together one of the best starts of the year, walking two and giving up two singles to the most fearsome offense in the league. The shutout dropped his ERA to 3.03, fourth best in the loop.

                  R H BB
NY  000 000 000 - 0 2  2
CHI 000 000 10x - 1 3  4
HR: none

starters   IP  R ER HR BB SO
L. Gomez  8.0  1  1  0  4  2  
E. Walsh  9.0  0  0  0  2  5 

NY 61-57, CHI 66-52

August 17: New York 8, Chicago 3

It was another well-pitched, tight affair the next day for the first seven innings. Then in the top of the eighth, the Yankees offense exploded on Thornton Lee for four runs. Mickey Mantle added another tally in the inning with a homer against Terry Forster. Every Yankee had a hit, seven of which went for extra bases, and Joe DiMaggio and Don Mattingly led the way with three hits each.

                  R  H BB
NY  100 010 051 - 8 15  3
CHI 100 100 100 - 3  9  3

HR: M. Mantle (20)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Caldwell  7.0  3  3  0  3  1  
T. Lee       7.2  6  6  0  2  2 

NY 62-57, CHI 66-53

August 18: Chicago 9, New York 5

New York has skipped the beleaguered Roger Clemens’s spot in the rotation the last couple of times through in favor of Herb Pennock, who has been much better than the Rocket. But the Yanks recently received a strongly worded reminder from the commissioner’s office that each team is required to have a starter in the rotation who amassed most of their value to the team after 1972. So the Yankees reluctantly put Clemens on the mound again, and things went worse than ever for the Rocket. He faced just five batters, all of whom reached safely and two of whom took him to the cheap seats, and the Sox were up 5-0 and Pennock was on the mound before Clemens recorded an out.

Chicago’s first two hitters in the lineup were Eddie Collins and Minnie Minoso and they were both perfect in five plate appearances. Collins knocked four singles and a double, and Minoso walked, singled twice, doubled, and homered. Chet Lemon was a double short of the cycle.

The White Sox are tied for second place with Boston and just one game behind first-place Minnesota.

Clemens’ ERA rose to 6.73 and the Yanks are expected to look for other options for the rest of the season, though none of the other post-1972 starting pitchers available to the Yankees are especially enticing. The eligible pitchers are Mike Mussina (the only one besides Clemens for whom I’ve made a card), Orlando Hernandez, David Cone, Andy Pettitte, CC Sabathia, and David Wells.

                  R  H BB
NY  000 001 220 - 5 10  3
CHI 510 000 21x - 9 15  3

HR: B. Ruth (27), A. Rodriguez (18),
M. Minoso (7), C. Lemon (8)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Clemens  0.0  5  5  2  2  0  
J. Rigney   7.1  5  5  2  3  4 

NY 62-58, CHI 67-53

New York Takes Series Against Seattle, Comes Back From 11 Run Deficit in 2nd Game

August 13: Seattle 7, New York 6

Seattle starter Randy Johnson got tagged for three homers that helped the Yankees to a 6-2 lead after seven innings, but New York relievers Goose Gossage and David Robertson coughed up the lead over the course of the eighth and ninth innings. Ken Griffey, Jr. and Alex Rodriguez went back-to-back donging against Gossage in the eighth, and Griffey knocked in the tying and go-ahead runs on a single against Robertson in the ninth.

                  R  H BB
SEA 000 000 232 - 7 12  3
NY  000 201 300 - 6 10  7

HR: K. Griffey, Jr. (21), A. Rodriguez-SEA (23), M. Mantle (18),
B. Williams (9), A. Rodriguez-NY (17)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Johnson  6.0  5  5  3  5  7  
H. Pennock  7.0  3  3  0  1  3 

SEA 62-53, NY 59-56


Keller & DiMaggio

August 14: New York 13, Seattle 12


I expect that this was the biggest come-back win in Rhubarb history.

A Charlie Keller error in the top of the first helped Seattle to a 2-0 lead, and then Seattle obliterated NY starter Bob Shawkey for nine earned runs in the second inning. Ken Johjima, Griffey, and John Olerud all doubled in the second amidst plenty of walks and singles from other Mariners hitters and Seattle went up 11-0.

But Red Ruffing was excellent in long relief of Shawkey, and the big Yankees bats started chipping away at the lead right away in the bottom of the second. By the time Lou Gehrig knocked a three-run homer in the seventh, the Mariners were still in good shape with a 12-8 lead. But reliever Michael Jackson got smeared for six runs in a second straight appearance, raising his ERA from 3.15 to 5.10 in those two combined innings.

After a Mickey Mantle homer in the eighth got New York to with a run, Seattle turned to their ace reliever Arthur Rhodes even though he’d pitched two innings the previous day. Charlie Keller welcomed Rhodes to the game and knocked him out of the game with a game-tying ding-dong, Keller’s second of the day.

In the bottom of the ninth, mad man Don Mattingly completed the massive comeback with a yak against J.J. Putz. Mattingly is hitting .444/.470/.667 in his 15 games since joining the Yanks recently.

                   R  H BB
SEA 290 000 100 - 12 13  8
NY  030 011 341 - 13 13  5
HR: M. Mantle (19), C. Keller-2 (15),
L. Gehrig (29), D. Mattingly (2)

starters     IP   R ER HR BB SO
E. Hanson   6.0   5  5  1  3  4  
B. Shawkey  1.2  11  9  0  5  1 

SEA 62-54, NY 60-56

August 15: New York 8, Seattle 3

There was considerably less drama in the finale. Griffey had a huge game with four hits that included a double and a dinger, but Waite Hoyt tamed the rest of the Seattle lineup.

Gehrig became the first player to reach 30 homers.

New York took five of six against Seattle for the year.

                  R  H BB
SEA 001 000 002 - 3 10  4
NY  300 020 03x - 8  9  4

HR: K. Griffey, Jr. (22), L. Gehrig (30), J. DiMaggio (10)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Garcia  7.0  5  5  1  4  3  
W. Hoyt    9.0  3  3  1  4  2 

SEA 62-55, NY 61-56

New York Wins First Two, Kansas City Pulls Out Incredible Finale

August 10: New York 9, Kansas City 2

Waite Hoyt matched his best line of the season in a strong complete game. Things really blew up in the top of the eighth when Bernie Williams crushed a grand slam against Kelvin Herrera.

                 R  H BB
NY 210 000 060 - 9 10  2
KC 000 001 001 - 2  7  1

HR: J. DiMaggio (9), B. Williams (8), A. Rodriguez (16)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
W. Hoyt     9.0  2  2  0  1  1  
D. Jackson  7.0  3  3  1  0  4 

NY 58-54, KC 58-56

August 11: New York 6, Kansas City 1

Lefty Gomez then matched his best line of the year with a strong complete game and the Yanks bats found the going fairly easy against Mark Gubicza.

                 R H BB
NY 130 002 000 - 6 8  3
KC 000 000 010 - 1 5  1

HR: D. Jeter (6)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
L. Gomez    9.0  1  1  0  1  4  
M. Gubicza  5.0  6  5  1  3  2 

NY 59-54, KC 58-57

August 12: Kansas City 4, New York 3 (15 innings)

After those two yawners, the teams played an instant classic in the finale. A Tony Lazzeri error in the third helped KC to a 1-0 lead, and Jose Rosado had a no-hitter going after five innings. Lou Gehrig led off the top of the sixth by reaching on a Frank White error, and Babe Ruth followed it up with a dinger to give New York a 2-1 lead on their first hit of the day.

Pitching for both sides was great, and the score was still tied 2-1 in the bottom of the ninth with starter Ray Caldwell still going when Hal McRae led it off with a walk. Kevin Seitzer followed that with a single that pushed McRae to third, and Caldwell got yanked for Mariano Rivera, who got the first out with a strikeout of Alex Gordon. Then Darrell Porter came up huge with a slow fielder’s choice that allowed McRae to race home to tie the game.

The bullpens were both filthy as the game went on and on. The KC bullpen never did allow an earned run in their 7.2 innings. The stalemate finally broke in the top of the 15th in a supremely disappointing way–Willie Wilson and McRae both made errors to help Lou Gehrig come around to put the Yanks up 3-2.

Sparky Lyle had pitched scoreless frames in the 13th and 14th, and came back out to try to end things in the bottom of the 15th. Alcides Escobar led off with a single, and then came up huge with a gutsy steal of second against Yogi Berra on a 1-15 chance. Freddie Patek then rolled into what would have been a double-play ball had Escobar not stolen but instead was just the first out of the inning. Wilson followed with a walk, and John Mayberry followed with a flyout to make it two on and two out, Yanks still up 3-2. Luckily for KC, George Brett stood in the batter’s box, and he brought the house down by slashing an RBI single to tie it up. McRae then atoned for his error in the top of the inning with a walk-off single.

Lou Gehrig was awfully quiet in the series, including an 0-for-7 in the finale, and shaved eight points off his wOBA. Chicago’s Joe Jackson is now just .008 behind Gehrig’s league-leading .420 wOBA. (Thanks to the Iron Horse’s durability, his lead in total runs created is still massive.)

                         R  H BB
NY 000 002 000 000 001 - 3  7  6
KC 001 000 001 000 002 - 4 11  5
HR: B. Ruth (26)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Caldwell  8.0  2  1  0  4  3  
J. Rosado    7.1  2  1  1  3  2 

NY 59-55, KC 59-57