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”


Boston Stomps Seattle in Meeting of First-Place Teams

August 25: Boston 2, Seattle 1

Erik Hanson valiantly dueled Cy Young, but a couple of Boston second-stringers at the bottom of the order were his undoing. Second baseman John Valentin homered for the Sox’s first run, then doubled in the seventh and was driven in by catcher Rick Ferrell.

Meanwhile Young continued his recent stretch of excellence after having had a merely decent season up until recently. He’s allowed just two earned runs combined over his last three starts, each of which nine innings in length.

                  R H BB
SEA 000 010 000 - 1 5  2
BOS 000 010 10x - 2 8  4

HR: J. Valentin (3)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
E. Hanson   7.0  2  2  1  4  8  
C. Young    9.0  1  1  0  2  4 

SEA 68-58, BOS 73-54

August 26: Boston 11, Seattle 5

The next two games were old-fashioned beat-downs by Boston. Freddy Garcia pitched a scoreless first and got his first two men in the second inning before Boston went ballistic on him. Eight straight Sox reached and seven runs had scored before Garcia finally found the third out. Bobby Doerr donged, and Nomar Garciaparra, Carl Yasztremski, Ted Williams, and Jimmie Foxx all doubled in the inning. The Sox drilled nine doubles in the game. Incredible on-base machine Wade Boggs reached five times, including two doubles

                   R  H BB
SEA 010 000 112 -  5 11  4
BOS 072 011 00x - 11 16  7
HR: A. Davis (12), B. Doerr (10)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Garcia   2.1  9  9  1  4  1  
L. Grove    6.0  1  1  0  2  3 

SEA 68-59, BOS 74-54



August 27: Boston 11, Seattle 3


Felix Hernandez suffered a similar fate in the finale, getting slammed early and often in a short outing. Yaz reached safely four times, and Tris Speaker, Jimmie Foxx, and Fred Lynn all collected three hits. Speaker leads the league in hits with 169.

It was a miserable set for Seattle, who were unfortunate to miss their top two starters, Randy Johnson and Jamie Moyer, in the series. Boston took five of six from Seattle this year. Despite still being in first place, Seattle has the worst inter-division record in the league at 10-29.

                   R  H BB
SEA 000 120 000 -  3  7  8
BOS 115 310 00x - 11 17  5

HR: none

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Hernandez  2.2  7  7  0  0  3  
S.J. Wood     5.0  3  3  0  5  2 

SEA 68-60, BOS 75-54

Seattle Keeps The Wins Coming Against Toronto

August 22: Seattle 4, Toronto 3

Starters Jimmy Key and Felix Hernandez both had better than usual days and kept it close. Alvin Davis drilled a three-run bomb for Seattle, and then Edgar Martinez drove in Kenji Johjima on a double-play ground ball for the winner.

                  R H BB
TOR 000 201 000 - 3 4  3
SEA 003 000 10x - 4 9  1
HR: C. Delgado (26), A. Davis (11)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Key        6.0  4  4  1  1  7  
F. Hernandez  7.0  3  3  2  3  5 

TOR 52-71, SEA 67-56


August 23: Seattle 10, Toronto 2

Doyle Alexander could not keep it close for Toronto the next day and got pounded for seven runs. Ichiro Suzuki slapped three singles, Martinez and Alex Rodriguez both reached safely four times, and Kyle Seager dropped two bombs on Alexander. Seager racked up seven RBI. Mark Langston was sharp in a spot start.

                   R  H BB
TOR 100 000 100 -  2  4  8
SEA 000 253 00x - 10 10  8

HR: K. Gruber (6), K. Seager-2 (16)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
D. Alexander  4.2  7  7  2  4  3  
M. Langston   7.0  2  2  1  6  6 

TOR 52-72, SEA 68-56

August 24: Toronto 6, Seattle 2

Seattle liked their chances for a sweep with Randy Johnson, coming into the game with a 3.36 ERA, facing Dave Stieb and his 5.62 ERA, but the pitchers regressed in opposite directions and Stieb ended up leading the birds to a victory. Devon White, Tony Fernandez, Kelly Gruber, and Ernie Whitt made up the last four hitters in Toronto’s lineup but provided most of the offense.

The victory kept the Blue Jays from falling into last place. It’s been a dramatic fall for the team that was tied for first at the All-Star break. They are 13-31 since then as their lack of pitching and defense has caught up with them. Seattle has the exact opposite record since the break, 31-13, to grab control of the Expansion Division.

                  R H BB
TOR 000 130 200 - 6 9  5
SEA 000 000 020 - 2 8  2

HR: A. Rodriguez (24)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
D. Stieb    7.2  2  2  1  2  0  
R. Johnson  6.0  4  4  0  3  5 

TOR 53-72, SEA 68-57

Seattle Adds To Division Lead With Series Win Over Houston, Unit Records 200th K

unitAugust 19: Seattle 2, Houston 0

Starters Mike Scott and Randy Johnson were both wicked.

Houston back-up Adam Everett is one of the best fielding shortstops in the league, but he made a back-breaking error in the bottom of the third, after which Edgar Martinez drove in the only two runs of the game.

Johnson pitched his second shutout of the year, and gave up just three hits, all singles. And his 11 strikeouts, par for the course with Johnson, made him the first pitcher to reach 200 strikeouts on the season. The gem also boosted him to the ninth best ERA in the league.

                  R H BB
HOU 000 000 000 - 0 3  5
SEA 002 000 00x - 2 5  3
HR: none

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
M. Scott    6.2  2  0  0  3  6  
R. Johnson  9.0  0  0  0  5 11 

HOU 52-68, SEA 65-55

August 20: Houston 7, Seattle 6

After neither team managed an extra-base hit in the first game, the Houston bats exploded for five doubles, a Lance Berkman triple, and two homers.

                  R  H BB
HOU 200 021 200 - 7 12  6
SEA 030 100 020 - 6  9  3

HR: M. Alou (24), B. Watson (14)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
J.R. Richard  7.0  6  4  0  3  4  
E. Hanson     6.0  5  5  1  4  6 

HOU 53-68, SEA 65-56

August 21: Seattle 12, Houston 3

After two close games, the rubber match turned into a blow-out for the Mariners. Houston’s fielding was pernicious. They committed three errors in the first two innings that helped Seattle to five unearned runs, and some poor range piled on some more runs for Seattle later.

Edgar Martinez, Alvin Davis, and Phil Bradley all had three hits. Bradley was just a double short of the cycle when he came to the plate in the ninth, but he struck out.

Seattle’s lead in the Expansion Division grew to 4.5 games.

                   R  H BB
HOU 110 000 100 -  3  8  5
SEA 230 010 60X - 12 14  2

HR: K. Griffey, Jr. (24), P. Bradley (4)

starters      IP  R ER HR BB SO
M. Cuellar   6.0  7  2  2  1  4  
F. Garcia    7.0  3  3  0  4  5 

HOU 53-69, SEA 66-56

Seattle Smacks Toronto In 2 Game Set

August 16: Seattle 11, Toronto 7

The Seattle bats came out with a vengeance over the first five innings, during which they recorded all of their 11 runs and 13 of their 14 hits in the game. Jays starter Jimmy Key was lifted after yielding four runs in three innings, but things only got worse when his replacement Kelvim Escobar got pounded for seven runs in 1.1.

Roberto Alomar had a day, drawing a walk and knocking two singles and a dong.

                   R  H BB
SEA 112 340 000 - 11 14  5
TOR 003 101 101 -  7 11  7
HR: L. Moseby (11), R. Alomar (3)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
F. Hernandez  7.0  6  6  2  5  6  
J. Key        3.0  4  4  1  0  4 

SEA 63-55, TOR 50-68

August 17: Seattle 9, Toronto 1

The Doyle Alexander magic of the first half is long gone, and he pitched poorly and in front of poor defense, a combination that led to nine runs rung up against him (four earned).

Jamie Moyer’s magic shows no signs of slowing down. This was his 10th straight start in which he’s allowed three earned runs or less. His 3.09 ERA is best in the Expansion Division.

Ken Griffey, Jr. led the way for the M’s offense with a single, double, homer, and stolen base.

                  R  H BB
SEA 200 034 000 - 9 11  3
TOR 100 000 000 - 1  7  0

HR: K. Griffey, Jr. (23), C. Delgado (23)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
J. Moyer      7.0  1  1  1  0  3  
D. Alexander  5.1  9  4  1  3  3 

SEA 64-55, TOR 50-69

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

Oakland Overpowers Seattle


August 10: Oakland 12, Seattle 4

The Mariners entered the series on a six game win streak, and the opener started well for them as Freddy Garcia took a 4-2 lead into the seventh inning. He got two outs pretty quickly in the seventh with just a runner on first, but the game blew up for him as Rickey Henderson doubled, Eddie Collins took a HBP, Home Run Baker singled in two, and Jimmie Foxx tripled in two more.

The final score got really ugly after the A’s abused M’s reliever Michael Jackson for six runs in the ninth.

                   R  H BB
OAK 010 001 406 - 12 13  5
SEA 040 000 000 -  4  8  6

HR: E. Collins (2), M. McGwire-2 (4)

starters     IP  R ER HR BB SO
R. Waddell  9.0  4  4  0  6  9  
F. Garcia   6.2  6  6  2  3  4

OAK 58-54, SEA 61-51

August 11: Oakland 11, Seattle 3

Felix Hernandez could not build on the shutout he hurled last time out and the A’s pounded him. Home Run Baker collected his league-leading 19th triple and a homer, and Dwayne Murphy drove a double and a dinger.

                   R  H BB
OAK 005 033 000 - 11 15  7
SEA 100 100 010 -  3 10  1

HR: H.R. Baker (4), D. Murphy (4)

starters       IP  R ER HR BB SO
L. Grove      9.0  3  3  0  1  6  
F. Hernandez  4.0  8  8  1  4  1 

OAK 59-54, SEA 61-52

August 12: Oakland 3, Seattle 1

Jamie Moyer managed to contain the Oakland bats much better than the previous two Seattle starters, and he dueled with Tim Hudson to a 1-1 tie after eight innings. But after Collins was hit by a pitch in the ninth, Jose Canseco crushed a Moyer offering over the fence for Oakland’s winning runs.

Seattle has had a terrible time against the Original Division, going 9-24 in inter-divisional play, but are holding a 3.5 game lead in the Expansion Division even after getting swept.

                  R H BB
OAK 001 000 002 - 3 5  5
SEA 100 000 000 - 0 6  4
HR: J. Canseco (2)

starters    IP  R ER HR BB SO
T. Hudson  8.0  1  1  0  4  4  
J. Moyer   8.1  3  3  1  4  2 

OAK 60-54, SEA 61-53