On Monday night in Philadelphia there was an explosion of cheers and fireworks for what turned out to be an error. It all happened in the first inning of the Second Season. A huge crowd was on hand in anticipation of Pete Rose's 3,631st hit. Phillie Executive Vice-President Bill Giles, who was to give the signal for the pyrotechnics, shouted "No! No! No!" into a microphone when Rose's chopper was muffed by Cardinal Shortstop Garry Templeton. Alas, the man in charge of touching off the fireworks thought Giles said "Go! Go! Go!" Thus the barrage was ignited. In the eighth came another round of throaty cheers and pyrotechnics and the release of 3,631 balloons—but this time it was no mistake as Rose had singled cleanly. St. Louis won that game 7-3 with a four-homer outburst. The Cardinals took two more games in Philly, 11-3 as George Hendrick homered twice and 5-2 as John Martin and Bruce Sutter combined on a four-hitter that ended Steve Carlton's 10-game victory streak over St. Louis. That was one of three saves for Sutter, another coming when Joaquin Andujar ran his career record against Montreal to 8-0 with a 3-1 triumph. The Phillies salvaged a 6-5 win over the Cardinals when Keith Moreland singled with the bases loaded in the 10th. Then, with Larry Christenson fanning nine in six innings, Mike Schmidt slamming his 300th homer and Moreland driving in five runs, the Phils beat the Mets 8-4.
Reliever Neil Allen chalked up three saves and a win, Dave Kingman hit his 15th and 16th homers, rookie Hubie Brooks chipped in with his first three round-trippers and Rightfielder Ellis Valentine had two game-winning hits for the Mets. Valentine also threw out Tim Blackwell at second after the Chicago catcher had knotted the score at 5-5 with a single and then inexplicably slowed down after rounding first. "I had a brain spasm," Blackwell said. That wasn't the only boo-boo by the Cubs, Centerfielder Bobby Bonds and Rightfielder Heity Cruz were chasing a long drive by Kingman in the 10th when both suddenly backed off and let the ball drop for a triple that led to the decisive run in a 7-4 loss. Both outfielders thought they heard the other yell "I've got it." But, as Bonds later related, "The voice came from a fan behind us." Bonds, who had three RBIs, and Blackwell, who had two hits and scored twice, made up for their gaffes during Sunday's 6-4 triumph over Pittsburgh. Doug Bird and Mike Griffin, new acquisitions from the Yankees, downed the Mets 6-1 with the aid of a three-run homer by Jody Davis, a onetime Met farmhand.
Andre Dawson of the Expos slugged three home runs, including a grand slam that was his first four-bagger with anyone aboard this season. Bill Lee came out of the bullpen to thwart the Pirates, winning 3-1 when he tossed four innings of one-hit ball and saving a 3-2 victory by whiffing Dave Parker on three pitches with the bases jammed in the ninth. It was a dismal week for Pittsburgh, which lost twice because of errors. Fielding lapses undid Luis Tiant in his first game back in the big leagues after he had allowed only one hit to the Expos in his first five innings. The Pirates had to scramble to beat the Cubs on Sunday, Tony Pena singling in the 11th to make a 4-3 winner of Kent Tekulve, who pitched 4‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬® innings of shutout relief.
August 23, 1981
ST.L 4-1 NY 5-2 MONT 3-2 CHI 3-4 PHIL 2-5 PITT 2-5
Lured by owner Ray Kroc's offer of free seats, 52,608—the largest crowd in the Padres' history—attended the second-half opener against the Braves. Juan Tyrone Eichelberger, San Diego's starting pitcher, supplemented Kroc's generosity by donating his day's pay—approximately $300—to charity. Such good deeds went for naught as Atlanta swept three games from the Padres; only 35,499 paid to see the last six games of the week. Reliever Rick Camp of the Braves saved the 3-2 opener and won the 4-3 closer. Gaylord Perry (page 92) went five strong innings for a 5-1 victory over the Padres, and No. 295 in his career. San Diego's two one-run losses to Atlanta gave the Padres a 4-15 record in that department. But Pitcher Chris Welsh provided some solace when he had 15 ground-ball outs in seven innings while muzzling Houston 9-1.
A pair of pinch hits by Dennis Walling carried the Astros past the Giants 6-5 and 5-4. Nifty pitching by Nolan Ryan (two hits and one run in six innings), Don Sutton (three hits in eight innings) and Joe Niekro (two hits in seven innings) provided 5-1, 5-0 and 3-0 wins over the Padres.
Los Angeles won two shutouts, Steve Howe going the final three innings in relief of Jerry Reuss as the Dodgers beat Cincinnati 4-0, and Dave Goltz and rookie reliever Alejandro Pena stopping Atlanta 5-0. Pena, a 22-year-old Dominican, allowed only one hit in four innings; he had 23 saves in the Pacific Coast League before being brought up last week. The Dodgers' other Latin whiz, Fernando Valenzuela, was a 7-6 loser to the Reds. Cincy took another 7-6 contest, beating the Giants when Sam Mejias singled in the 10th.
When Doyle Alexander of the Giants beat the Reds 5-2, he became the fourth pitcher in history to gain wins against all 26 clubs. Ed Whitson was also sharp, blanking Cincinnati 4-0. But Vida Blue was cuffed around by Houston and lasted only 2⅖ innings. Similar shellackings were absorbed by most of the league's other All-Star hurlers last week. Collectively, the nine pitchers on the NL staff had a 5.94 ERA.
ATL 5-2 HOUS 5-2 LA 4-3 SF 3-4 CIN 3-4 SD 1-6
It was, as Dave Stieb put it, "a fun-filled week" for the Blue Jays. Especially for All-Star Stieb, who defeated Detroit 4-3 on Wednesday and was married on Friday. Other Jays had fun, too. Buck Martinez and Otto Velez hit three-run homers to beat the Tigers 6-4 and halt a 12-game losing streak. Roy Lee Jackson saved three straight games with five innings of scoreless relief. Damaso Garcia had the first 4-for-4 game of his career and his first game-winning RBI of the season. And newcomer Greg (Boomer) Wells was 4 for 8 with two run-scoring pinch singles.
After Ken Singleton and Eddie Murray of the Orioles hit back-to-back homers in the first inning of the opener against the Royals, the Birds went hitless for 10‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬® innings. Singleton broke the spell with a double in the 12th, and then John Lowenstein gave the Orioles a 3-2 victory with an RBI single. Doug DeCinces made two dazzling plays at third base and drove in both runs during a 2-1 win over Kansas City, and then slugged a grand slam as Dennis Martinez downed Chicago 4-0 on three hits.
While taking four of five games in Cleveland, the Brewers hammered out 65 hits. Cecil Cooper, a .400 batter for the week, was the big gun against the Indians as he went 13 for 23 with three homers and four doubles. Gorman Thomas homered twice last week and had 11 RBIs. And reliever Rollie Fingers, who picked up three saves, preserved both ends of a 6-2, 2-0 doubleheader sweep on Sunday in Toronto.
Six homers—two by Joe Rudi—helped Red Sox rookie lefthander Bobby Ojeda, just up from Pawtucket, coast past the White Sox 8-1. Carl Yastrzemski, using a new stance in an effort to hit the ball to all fields, had a homer and three RBIs to stop Chicago 9-6, and then singled in the go-ahead run in the 10th as the Red Sox won 5-3 in Texas, where they hadn't won since July 15, 1980.
Tommy John, Ron Davis and Rudy May of the Yankees teamed up for a three-hitter and a 2-0 triumph over the Rangers. Graig Nettles homered in that game, and later hit a two-run shot to beat Texas 5-4.
Milt Wilcox of the Tigers attributes much of his success in recent years to a pair of wooden "Hawaiian war gods" he keeps in his locker. Of more practical value to Wilcox was the last-out relief of Kevin Saucier, who nailed down a 1-0, three-hit win over New York. Overall, Saucier had a win and two saves. Alan Trammell, who hit .423, drove in the only run in Wilcox's win and singled in the ninth to beat Toronto 4-3. Kirk Gibson's three-run homer in the ninth decked New York 5-4 on Sunday.
Cleveland sent Joe Charboneau, last season's Rookie of the Year, and his .206 average to the minors. Rick Manning's three RBIs and Mike Hargrove's four hits downed Milwaukee 9-4. A pinch RBI single by rookie Von Hayes led to an 8-6 defeat of K.C.
MIL 6-3 BALT 4-3 DET 4-3 TOR 4-3 BOS 3-4 NY 3-4 CLEV 2-7
Seattle had no Costello to go with its Abbott and no Lewis to go with its Clark, but it had plenty of firepower. Glenn Abbott and Bryan Clark combined on a four-hitter that stopped the Twins 6-0 as their teammates pounded out 11 hits. The Mariners, who batted .307 for the week, had a club-record 19 safeties while zapping the Twins 11-1. Jeff Burroughs became the first Seattle player to wallop three homers in a game as Minnesota succumbed to an 18-hit attack 13-3. Burroughs had nine RBIs for the week; Tom Paciorek had six doubles, two homers and drove in 10 runs; and Richie Zisk added three homers and eight RBIs. Julio Cruz, who had tied the unofficial league record for consecutive steals before the strike, was gunned down by Angel Catcher Ed Ott when he went after his 33rd in a row.
Home runs by Dwayne Murphy and Mike Heath enabled the A's to take extra-inning games and improve their overtime record to 7-1. Murphy slammed a two-run shot in the 10th for a 4-2 defeat of California as Steve McCatty pitched a complete-game five-hitter. Heath's blast came in the 13th and finished off the Angels 8-7.
Bobby Grich of California socked five homers, two paying off in a 4-1 triumph over Seattle. Grich homered in the second inning of that contest, then settled the score with a three-run drive in the 11th.
With two out in the last of the ninth, a runner at third and Dave Winfield up, Manager Don Zimmer of the Rangers went to a rookie to protect his 1-0 lead. Zimmer replaced lefthander John Henry Johnson with righthander Dave Schmidt, who got Winfield to weakly ground out. New York was limited to four singles off Rick Honeycutt, who hurled the first 5‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬® innings, and Jim Kern, who pitched the next three. Honeycutt (8-1) later beat Boston 3-0 on six hits. Earlier, Ranger Leftfielder Billy Sample, who had dropped a routine fly in the top of the ninth to let the Red Sox tie the score at 2-2, singled in the bottom of the inning and scored the winning run on a single by Jim Sundberg.
Jim Morrison, Tony Bernazard and Bill Almon of the White Sox also atoned for errors with vital hits that knocked off the Orioles 5-3. Baltimore got two home runs and six RBIs from Eddie Murray on Sunday, but lost to Chicago 8-7 in 10 innings when Harold Baines doubled and came home on a single by Bernazard.
Minnesota, which was 0-7 against Oakland in Part I, took two of three games from the A's. Longtime starter Jerry Koosman was effective in relief, saving a 6-2 decision over Oakland and a 6-1 verdict against Seattle. Kansas City (page 28) split eight games.
SEA 6-2 OAK 4-2 CHI 4-3 KC 4-4 TEX 3-3 MINN 3-5 CAL 1-5
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
PETE ROSE of the Phillies acknowledges the cheers of 60,561 fans in Philadelphia after picking up his 3,631st hit, an eighth-inning single, that surpassed the National League career record belonging to Stan Musial (right).