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Notes From Baseball Past

May 11, 2021

The great broadcaster, Bob Murphy (how fortunate we were to have Lindsey Nelson and Bob, now?) informs the radio audience that Gene Mauch’s Phils got 2 runs/b9 to beat the Houston Colt-45’s. (Mauch, a cast member in the Monte Stratton Story, starring Jimmy Stewart).

Murphy added, while broadcasting the first of 2 between the Giants and Mets on May 5, 1963, that the year before, the expansion Colt-45’s first, the Phillies won 17 of the 18 games played.

I add 18, the Jewish “Chai,” as operative, since 18 years after the Phillies’ dominance vs Houston in ’62, they also prevailed, vs Houston, by then the Astros, but in an NLCS, that ranks among the best, in any sport’s post-season annals.

Philadelphia won that ’80 NLCS, in the maximum 5 games, and went on to win the franchise’s first title.

Meanwhile on May 31, 1977, the superb hitting, once Pittsburgh Pirates catcher, Manny Sanguillen, is the Oakland A’s right fielder, for the 1972 ALCS redux, between the A’s and Detroit Tigers.

Both LCS in ’72 went the maximum 5 games and were decided by one run. Sanguillen was the Pirates’ catcher and speaking of Manny and right field, he, maybe more than anyone beyond family, mourned, when the great Pittsburgh “RF” Roberto Clemente was killed in a plane crash. That game 5 of the ’72 NLCS was, tragically, Roberto Clemente’s last.

Back to A’s/Tigers in ’77 and more important the ’72 ALCS. On May 31, 1977 the A’s start Vida Blue while Detroit counters with John Hiller, better known as a relief pitcher.

Blue had a number of relief appearances for the A’s in post-season action as that great team, won 3 consecutive World Series from (1972-1974).

The most notable one, was Blue getting the save in the A’s (2-1) win in the decisive 5th game vs Detroit, in that ’72 ALCS.

In game 4, the Tigers staged a 3 run, bottom 10 rally to (4-3) Oakland in game 4, forcing that decisive 5th game. John Hiller was in that game as a relief pitcher and became the winning pitcher after the Tigers’ rally.

 

Manny Sanguillén 2008.jpg

Manny Sanguillen, pictured above.

I add that Tony Taylor got the big hit as the Phils rallied to win that doubleheader opener on May5, 1963. 

Nine years later Vida got Tony to fly to George Hendrick in center field to clinch the A’s franchise’s first pennant in 41 years, when another great A’s team won its third straight, mind you beating out the Babe Ruth/Lou Gehrig/other greats New York Yankees.

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