Tag Archives: 1978

Inside the SP78 Vault: 1978 Royals Program

For this first entry in this new series of posts, I take a look at my most recent addition to the vault, a 1978 game program for the Kansas City Royals. It’s an unscored copy I purchased off eBay a few weeks ago for $10.50…a full ten bucks more than it cost at the ballpark back in ’78. It’s in near-perfect condition, and from what I can gather from the insert scorecard pages, this copy was sold at a Royals-Red Sox game played on either May 15th or May 16th, when the two teams split a 2-game weeknight series at Royals Stadium.

What I noticed when I first leafed through the program was a photo and bio for pitcher Andy Hassler, included with the listings for other KC players; what’s odd about that is, in my SP78 season, he’s pitching for the Red Sox. A quick check on-line told me that he was purchased from the Royals by the Sox on July 24th. Of course, Avalon Hill chose to include him with the Boston player cards; if I’d known about these wacky AH decisions early on, I would’ve sent him back to Kansas City where he belonged.

With the purchase of this program, I now own all American League team programs for the AL West, and need only one from the Red Sox to complete the AL East. Look for more programs to be spotlighted here—along with other SP78 and 1978 baseball memorabilia—in the coming months!

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NL League Leaders Through July are Available!

League leaders in all major categories, both player and team (and current through July 31st), have been added to all team stat pages in the National League, and are ready for your perusal. Bold red numbers indicate individual leaders in that category, while bold orange numbers designate players tied for the league lead. If you’d rather not dig through each team’s page searching for these select players, leaders in a few of the major categories are listed below. And check out that Triple Crown contender!

Batting
Batting Average: .389, Reggie Smith, LA
Runs: 80, Reggie Smith, LA
Hits: 153, Larry Bowa, PHA
Doubles: 32, Dave Concepcion, CIN
Home Runs: 37, Reggie Smith, LA
RBI: 90, Reggie Smith, LA
Walks: 70, Jeff Burroughs, ATL
Strikeouts: 117, Dave Kingman, CHI
Stolen Bases: 66, Ozzie Smith, SD
HBP: 13, Dave Cash, MON

Pitching
Games: 49, Doug Bair, CIN
Starts: 24, Pat Zachry, NY-N
Innings Pitched: 182.0, Vida Blue, SF
Wins: 14, Gaylord Perry, SD
Losses: 15, Jerry Koosman, NY-N
Saves: 20, Kent Tekulve, PIT
ERA: 1.35, Craig Swan, NY-N
Complete Games: 11, Gaylord Perry, SD
Strikeouts: 168, JR Richard, HOU
Walks: 64, Pat Zachry, NY-N

Padres Keep Pace with Dodgers in July

The surprising San Diego Padres kept pace in the NL West with the front-running Dodgers throughout the month of July, posting a respectable 17-12 record and remaining just two games out of first place by the end of the month (and doing this despite leading the NL with 40 errors, nine ejections, and ten runners picked off base). At this time during the actual 1978 season, the Padres had a record of 54-52 (compared to 65-40 in SP78) and were in fourth place, nine games behind the first-place Giants.

Gene Richards led the team with a .340 average for the month, while Dave Winfield connected for eight home runs and collected 17 RBI to lead in the power department. And though Gaylord Perry led the starting rotation with a 1.80 ERA (and is currently 14-4 for the season), it was Bob Owchinko who dominated the won-lost column, going 4-0 in six starts and posting an impressive 2.16 ERA. Relief ace Rollie Fingers was 1-0 with five saves and a 0.63 earned run average over 12 relief appearances, and is a solid contender for the NL Fire Chief Trophy.

To peruse the Padres page for stats through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will be added after all NL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been picked, which will be soon.

TWISP Notes #67

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TWISP Notes

August 7, 2017

• National League statistics for July have been finalized, and are in the process of being uploaded to the SP78 site; the Mets are the most recent team to have their stats posted. Stats for the American League are still being calculated and waiting to be added to the site; the Orioles, Red Sox, and Angels are complete, while the White Sox are currently in-progress, with ten AL teams still on the docket to be completed.

• Catcher Johnny Oates made his first appearance of the season for the Dodgers on August 15th against the Phillies, after his recent call-up from AAA Albuquerque. He grounded out in a pinch-hitting appearance, then took over for Steve Yeager behind the plate, where in the next inning he threw out the first baserunner he faced, Larry Bowa, who was trying to steal second.

• The Brewers snapped their 6-game losing streak with a 6-3 win over the Blue Jays, in the second game of their Tuesday twinbill at County Stadium. Mike Caldwell will go for his 19th win of the season when he faces the Jays the following night.

• Tribe first baseman Andre Thornton hit his first grand slam of the SP78 season—and the first of his career—to help the Indians to a 9-4 win over the Twins at Municipal Stadium. The shot came off Minnesota reliever Darrell Jackson, and gave Cleveland a 9-0 lead after just two innings. For Thornton, it was his 22nd HR of the season.

• The Red Sox have won five games in a row, while the Astros have lost five in a row.

• In his second game after converting from shortstop to left field, Cardinals phenom Todd Benefiel went 3-for-4 with two doubles and two runs scored to help the resurgent Cards to a 6-4 win over the Astros. Benefiel is now batting an even .400 since his August 1st call-up from Springfield of the American Association.

• The White Sox set an SP78 record by committing six errors in their game against the Rangers at Arlington Stadium on August 15th. The errors—by Francisco Barrios, Eric Soderholm, Lamar Johnson, Claudell Washington, and two by Ralph Garr—led to four unearned runs, and helped Texas coast to a 10-1 win. The six gaffes broke the mark of 5 held by four other teams.

• The Mariners lost shortstop Craig Reynolds to injury on August 15th when he collided with left fielder Tom Paciorek during the eighth inning of a game against the Orioles at the Kingdome. Reynolds was placed on the 15-day disabled list the following day; with utility infielder Larry Milbourne available to cover short, the M’s bolstered their pitching staff by calling up Mike Parrott from the San Jose Missions of the Pacific Coast League.

• And an SP78 goodbye to Angels slugger and potential AL MVP Don Baylor, who passed away today at the age of 68.

Fans! Be sure to catch Baseball Night on C-SPAN when 16-game winner
Rick Waits and the Indians square off against Mark Fidrych and the Tigers
at Tiger Stadium in Detroit
!

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Mets’ Zachry Stymies Padres With 1-Hit Gem

A Senior Citizens Day crowd was on hand at Shea Stadium on Wednesday afternoon to witness Pat Zachry pitch the 13th one-hitter in Mets history, a sparkling 4-0 shutout win over the Padres at a windswept Shea Stadium in New York. The victory improved Zachry’s season record to 14-9, and it was the first one-hit gem thrown by a Mets pitcher since former staff ace Tom Seaver blanked the Cubs 6-0 on April 17th of last year.

The only hit allowed by Zachry was a solid single by Gene Richards with two out in the sixth; Richards then stole second, but was left stranded when Ozzie Smith popped out to Zachry to end the frame. Beyond that, only two other Padres batters were able to reach base: lead-off hitter Richards opened the game with a walk, and pinch-hitter Derrel Thomas coaxed another walk from Zachry to lead off the eighth.

To read more about the game, and to find out why I included a photo of Mets pitcher Jerry Koosman on the recap page, click here.