Tag Archives: Mike Willis

TWISP Notes #72

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TWISP Notes

January 11, 2020

• In the August 20th game against the Yankees at the Kingdome in Seattle, M’s second baseman Julio Cruz stole his 91st base of the season, a sixth-inning theft of second off NY pitcher Bob Kammeyer, leaving him just five short of tying Ty Cobb’s AL record of 96.

• Steve Garvey and Reggie Smith of the Dodgers connected for two home runs apiece in LA’s 11-2 win over the Mets at Los Angeles. The four round-trippers came at the expense of four different New York pitchers: Nino Espinosa, Paul Siebert, Dwight Bernard, and Dale Murray. It was the first time this season two NL players on the same team had connected for two HR’s in the same game; Ben Oglivie and Gorman Thomas of the Brewers accomplished the feat in the AL on July 1st at Seattle.

• The Blue Jays have lost six games in a row, while the Mariners and Red Sox have lost five.

• A new location was added to the long list of SP78 games-hosted sites, as two games were played in November at the newly-christened NM5, my friend Steve P’s apartment in Las Cruces, New Mexico. In the first game, the visiting Reds defeated the Steve-led Cubs 6-4, while Steve took Game 2 the next day with a 13-2 Cardinals win over the Braves.

• With first place in the NL East now in their sights, the Pirates called up starter Odell Jones and reliever Clay Carroll from their AAA affiliate in Columbus, hoping to bolster their pitching staff for the stretch run. To make room for the pair, the Bucs sent utility infielder Mario Mendoza and pitcher Dave Hamilton to the Columbus.

• Detroit second baseman Lou Whitaker, who’s been practicing with members of the University of Michigan baseball team in Ann Arbor, is set to return to the major leagues from his two-month suspension on August 23rd, when the Tigers travel home after a five-game road trip to meet the Blue Jays in a twi-night doubleheader at Tiger Stadium. Whitaker, who last played on June 10th, is slated to make his comeback in the second game of the Wednesday night twinbill.

• A’s outfielder Glenn Burke was injured when he crashed into the center field wall at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on Sunday, while chasing a long drive off the bat of Red Sox designated hitter Jack Brohamer, which dropped for a triple. Burke left the game with a serious shoulder injury, and will likely be placed on the disabled list on August 21st.

• In New York’s 9-7 win over Seattle on August 20th, the teams combined for six home runs, with Yankees outfielder Gary Thomasson connecting for his second career grand slam, off M’s starter Paul Mitchell in the fourth.

• In need of left-handed relief pitching, the Blue Jays recalled Mike Willis from Syracuse of the International League yesterday; also recalled was outfielder Willie Upshaw, currently batting .328 for the Chiefs. On the same day, Jays pitcher Dave Wallace and outfielder Sam Ewing were both sent down to Syracuse.

• Against the Blue Jays on August 20th, Twins reliever Mike Marshall earned his 20th save of the season in a 5-3 Minnesota win; it was the first time he’d collected twenty saves since 1974, when he played for the Dodgers and won the NL Cy Young Award.

Fans! Be there for the SP78 40th Anniversary celebration on August 22nd,
when the Cardinals take on the Reds at Riverfront Stadium!

 

TWISP Notes #71

a
TWISP Notes

October 1, 2019

• LA starter Doug Rau was forced to leave the August 19th game against the Mets in the second inning with what Dodgers pitching coach Red Adams called ‘stiffness in his left shoulder’. Rau has been listed as day-to-day, but will likely miss his next start.

• With the Blue Jays extra-inning loss to the Twins on Saturday, which saw them without a left-handed reliever when the Twins sent four left-handed batters to the plate in the extra frame to win it, Toronto manager Roy Hartsfield will be looking to Syracuse for a southpaw to add to his all-righty bullpen. The likely candidate is Mike Willis, who in 17 games with the Jays earlier this season was 0-0 with one save and an unfortunate 7.64 ERA.

• The resurgent Pirates have suddenly found themselves in second place in the NL East, having won 10 of their last 13, which included three wins in a four-game series against the division-leading Phillies. For the moment, however, the Phils can rest easy; the Bucs are still 14½ games back.

• With voting on Tigers second baseman Lou Whitaker’s return to major league action stalling at 13 votes (11 for his return, and two for keeping him suspended), the commissioner’s office will now make a decision regarding Whitaker’s status, taking into account the preferences of SP78 voters as well as the input of other AL team administrators. No date has been set for this announcement.

• The first game of the just-completed August 19th slate, a Padres-Expos match-up at Olympic Stadium, was the 100th game to be played at site AZ18 in Peoria, Arizona. The site is the fourth to reach the coveted century mark, and with 112 games now hosted, AZ18 is just 33 games behind ESC7 for third place on the all-time list.

• Dusty Baker of the Dodgers returned from the 15-day disabled list on the 19th; to make room for him on the roster, the club sent outfielder Joe Simpson—who had one hit in two at-bats during his three-week ML stint—to the Albuquerque Dukes of the Pacific Coast League.

• Boston’s Luis Tiant tied an SP78 record for runners picked off in a game by a pitcher when he nailed Oakland’s Miguel Dilone and Mitchell Page on August 19th at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. Tiant now shares the record with Geoff Zahn of the Twins and Dave Freisleben of the Indians.

• White Sox second baseman Jorge Orta slugged his first career grand slam on Saturday, in the sixth inning off Tribe starter Mike Paxton, in a 7-3 Sox win at Municipal Stadium. The blast erased a 3-1 Cleveland lead, and was Orta’s only hit of the night after collecting three walks in his other plate appearances.

• My week-long ‘check the SP78 schedule and make sure each team is on track for 162 games played’ project has been completed, and I was surprised to find I’d only made only a handful of errors overall. Twice I’d flat-out failed to schedule games, and three times I wasn’t aware that single games were actually doubleheaders (thanks to the confusing term ‘twilight night’ I’d found on some schedules). I’d also had a postponed game that I didn’t realize was the last meeting of the season between the two teams, and since I want every team to play their full 162 games, I had to wedge that contest in where both teams happened to have an off day. Now, with so many games to add into the August-September schedule, I’m thinking I might have them all played on the October 2nd ‘free day’ between the end of the regular season and the start of the post-season…and maybe even turn October 3rd into a make-up day as well.

• My next project will be scanning the remainder of classic scoresheets from my list and adding them to the site, as well as figuring out how to get them lined up properly into rows of four. I think I’ve found the solution, so we’ll see if it works.

August 21st is McDonald’s Junior Jays Day at Toronto!