May 5, 2021
• Tigers second baseman Lou Whitaker returned from his 27-year suspension in Game 2 of a Detroit-Toronto doubleheader on August 23rd, and with his squad down by one in the last of the ninth, and the tying and winning runs on base, he stroked a triple to the gap to score both runners and win it for Detroit; it was his first hit of the game, and first since June 10th.
• Don Baylor of the Angels and Roy Smalley of the Twins went into their August 23rd games tied for the American League lead in RBI, at 99. With a solo home run off Rangers starter Dock Ellis in Game 1 of a doubleheader at Metropolitan Stadium, Smalley thus became the first AL player to reach 100; it was also the first time in his career he’d reached that milestone. Dodgers outfielder Reggie Smith still leads the major leagues, with 107.
• With a hit in both games of that Rangers-Twins twinbill, Texas designated hitter Al Oliver extended his hitting streak to 15 games, the longest current streak in the majors.
• After each sitting out a handful of days due to minor injuries, outfielder Steve Kemp of the Tigers, pitcher Larry Sorensen of the Brewers, and outfielder Juan Beniquez of the Rangers will return to action with their respective clubs on August 24th.
• While working on adding all SP78 player names to an Excel spreadsheet, so I could begin posting league leaders for every day of games played, I noticed the Montreal Expos had only three position players on their AAA team in Denver, and all three were catchers: Ed Herrmann, Bobby Ramos, and Jerry Fry. Ramos and Fry, who played only a few games between them in ’78, have horrible cards: Ramos strikes out 11-88 and Fry strikes out 11-76, while both are ‘E’ runners and have ‘C’ arms. The rest of the team is made up of five pitchers, all with PB ratings of 2-5.
• In a match-up between the Giants and Mets on August 23rd, SF pitcher Bob Knepper tied an SP78 record—shared with hurlers Tom Seaver of the Reds and Don Sutton of the Dodgers—for sacrifices in a game, with three.
• With its 146th game played, site AZ18 in Peoria, Arizona moved past site AZ7 into third place on the all-time SP78 games hosted list.
• Phillies slugger Greg Luzinski connected for his 30th home run—and first grand slam—of the season, in Philadelphia’s 7-1 win over the Padres on August 23rd.
• Also on the 23rd, Yankees outfielder Mickey Rivers drilled his first career grand slam, off Angels starter Chris Knapp, in a 6-0 New York win over California.
• In Kansas City’s 12-1 drubbing of Chicago on August 23rd, all nine KC batters who came to the plate in the ninth scored.
Fans! August 25th is Publix Back-to-School Night at Comiskey Park!