Category Archives: TWISP Notes

TWISP Notes #66

December 8, 2016

• June stats have finally been calculated and finalized, and teams are currently being updated on the SP78 site. All National League teams are complete, and American League teams have been updated through the Kansas City Royals, with seven AL teams left to fill out. After that, work will begin on July stats.

• Giants veteran Willie McCovey drilled his 499th home run in a game against the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on August 12th. McCovey connected off LA reliever Rick Sutcliffe, a solo shot in the eighth inning that gave the Dodgers some insurance in an eventual 4-2 win. McCovey also had two singles in the game to complete a 3-for-4 night.

• The Brewers have lost five in a row, and have dropped to five games back of the first-place Yankees in the AL East. Continue reading

TWISP Notes #65

July 15, 2016

• With right-hander Nino Espinosa starting on the mound for the Mets on Sunday, the opposing Cardinals will start LH-batting rookie Todd Benefiel at short, after he sat out the past two games so that regular shortstop Garry Templeton could bat against left-handed starters. Benefiel, hitting .438 since his call-up from Springfield, will bat second behind veteran Lou Brock, who for this game will switch to the lead-off spot in hopes of sparking his dismal SP78 batting numbers. For the season, Brock is hitting an uncharacteristic .227 with only seven stolen bases, and in August just .115 with no stolen bases.

• St Louis is currently riding a 4-game winning streak, the longest such streak in the major leagues through Saturday, and a victory over the Mets will cap a sweep of their 3-game weekend series and move the Cards to within one game of fifth-place New York in the NL East.

• My year-long task of re-calculating all June statistics continues, and with work through June 21st finished, only 118 scoresheets (out of 368 total for the month) remain to be tabulated before June’s numbers are complete. The player and team stats will then be added to the site, and June award winners will announced soon thereafter.

• The current SP78 game site at AZ18 in Peoria, Arizona has now hosted 34 games since last December, good for 17th place on the all-time list, and one behind site RB1, which hosted the very first SP78 Replay game in 1980.

• With their top hitter and reliever—George Brett and Al Hrabosky—having returned from their respective disabled lists on Friday and Saturday, the second-place Royals are back to full strength and eager to make a run at the AL West lead. Utility infielder Jerry Terrell, who took over at third base for Brett during his absence, batted .255 with five RBI in fifteen games, while KC relievers were a combined 3-2 with just one save after Hrabosky was injured in mid-July.

• Twins slugger Roy Smalley has hit eight home runs in 12 games during the month of August; he now has 24 round-trippers for the season.

• In Saturday’s doubleheader against the Angels, speedster Julio Cruz of the Mariners moved two steps closer to Ty Cobb’s AL record for stolen bases in a single season, swiping a base in each game of the twinbill to climb to 88, just eight behind Cobb’s long-standing mark of 96, which he established in 1915.

• The second-place Cubs, who are 13 games behind the front-running Phillies in the NL East, received a welcome boost to their starting rotation—and their chance at catching the Phils—when Mike Krukow returned from the 21-day disabled list on August 10th. Krukow, who was 8-7 when he went on the DL on July 20th, started for the Cubs one day after his return, against Montreal, and combined with Bruce Sutter for a 4-0 shutout win at Olympic Stadium.

Fans! Sunday, August 13th is Thrifty’s Halter Top Day
at Exhibition Stadium in Toronto!

TWISP Notes #64

November 3, 2015

• A total of nine SP78 games were played by my friend Steve P and I during our minor league baseball tour throughout New England this past summer, at least a game a day between June 22nd and June 29th. After three games were played in New Mexico to begin the trip (at Steve’s home in Las Cruces), four took place at hotels in Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Maine, one was hosted by the University of Vermont in Burlington, and the last—an exhibition game between the Tigers and Mets—was played at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. The won-lost between the two managers over the course of the trip was an even 4-4, with Steve abstaining from one of the NM2 match-ups.

• The past few weeks have been tough ones for the Mets; they’ve gone 3-11 over that span, are currently mired in a 3-game losing streak, and for three games were without their starting outfield of Lee Mazzilli, Steve Henderson, and Bruce Boisclair. Mazzilli came off the 15-day disabled list on the 7th, while Boisclair returned on the 9th after missing a month with a head injury. Left fielder Henderson has been out since the 4th, and will likely return to action in the next few days.

• A’s speedster Mike Edwards stole home for the second time this season, doing so August 5th against the Mariners at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. The theft came in the first inning off M’s pitcher Tom House, after Edwards had singled, stole second, and advanced to third on a groundout. Edwards also stole home on July 27th against the White Sox, after stealing second and third off Ross Baumgarten in the same inning. Edwards becomes the first SP78 player this season to collect two home thefts. Continue reading

TWISP Notes #63

May 20, 2015

• The first game at site AZ15 in Peoria, Arizona was played on March 1, 2015 between the Mets and Cardinals at Busch Memorial Stadium, an NL East match-up won by the Cards 8-7 in 15 innings. The new 1-bedroom apartment site is located in the same complex as AZ8, the all-time games hosted leader.

• With the August 5th slate of games wrapped up, AZ15 has now hosted a total of 15 games, tying it with RB8 for 21st on the all-time SP78 games hosted list. Five more games played there will bump it past CA14—my brother Scott’s former Carlsbad apartment—into the 20th spot on the list.

• Pirates backstop Ed Ott was ejected from a game for the third time this season when he argued with home plate umpire Dutch Rennert over balls and strikes calls during the first game of a doubleheader between the Bucs and Phillies at Three Rivers Stadium on August 5th. Catchers Gene Tenace of the Padres and Bob Boone of the Phillies still lead the majors in expulsions, with four apiece.

• While researching an entry for a recent This Day in SP78 History, it was discovered that the final score of a Reds-Mets game from June was incorrectly recorded, on both the SP78 site and the original scoresheet! No team or player statistics were affected, however, and the error was corrected without further incident. Continue reading

TWISP Notes #62

December 31, 2014

• With Game #1427 between the Twins and Angels in the books, site AZ14 in Gilbert, Arizona passed site RAM in Ramona, California for 9th on the all-time games hosted list, moving up 75 spots in just five months. AZ14 has now hosted 44 games in that five-month span, dating back to August 1st, 2014.

• In the sixth exhibition game of the SP78 season, the Charleston Charlies of the American Association defeated their parent club, the Houston Astros, by a 3-1 count. Charlies third baseman Rob Sperring was the star of the game, collecting three hits in three at-bats; two of the hits were good for a triple and a home run. Reliever Gene Pentz went two innings for the win, with Oscar Zamora working the final frame for the save. The next SP78 exhibition contest is scheduled for August 7th, the annual Hall of Fame Game at Cooperstown, with the Mets squaring off against the Tigers.

• The Dodgers lost two outfielders to injuries on August 3rd when Dusty Baker and Billy North collided in the eighth inning of Game 2 of a twinbill against the Giants. Baker was placed on the 15-day disabled list, while North’s injuries required a 30-day stay. Albuquerque Dukes outfielders Rudy Law and Joe Simpson were called up to replace them on the LA roster.

• The Baker-North collision occurred with Giants pinch-hitter Willie McCovey at the plate, resulting in the second inside-the-park home run of McCovey’s career; he belted his first off Steve Blass of the Pirates in 1967. The HR was also the 498th for McCovey, two shy of his landmark 500th.

• Cubs utility infielder Mick Kelleher returned from the 30-day disabled list on August 1st, after 12 long years out of action. On the same day, Chicago placed starting pitcher Dennis Lamp on the 15-day DL, retroactive to July 31st. Lamp was hurt July 30th against the Giants, after slipping on the mound during a pitch and injuring his left knee.

• Seattle Mariners speed demon Julio Cruz has 81 steals through August 4th, and with 51 games left on the M’s schedule, he needs 38 more steals to break Lou Brock’s major league record of 118, set in 1974, and just 16 more to break Ty Cobb’s AL mark of 96, established in 1915.

• Montreal’s 8-game winning streak was snapped August 2nd with a 2-0 loss to the Pirates at Olympic Stadium.

• Kansas City’s Dennis Leonard became the second pitcher this season—joining Yankees ace Ron Guidry—to face the minimum 27 batters in a game; after allowing three baserunners via two base hits and a walk, all three were cut down trying to steal by backup catcher Art Kusnyer. It was the second time this season Kusyner has been credited with three runners caught stealing in a game, tying his own SP78 AL record.

• Check out the SP78 Museum, where four historical game tickets and a ticket order form have been added—along with their histories—to the Tickets page.