The California Angels enjoyed their second straight winning month in July, going 15-14 and moving from sixth to fifth place in the AL West with an overall record of 48-58. However, they’re still quite a long way from first, as they dropped to 16½ games behind the front-running Rangers, and three games back of the fourth place A’s. In contrast, the 1978 club at this point in the season was in second place with a mark of 56-50, just four games behind the Kansas City Royals, who went on to capture the division crown.
Third baseman Carney Lansford continued his bid for AL Rookie of the Year honors, batting .339 for the month with a team-leading 38 hits and nine doubles; for the season he has 144 hits in 102 games, good for a .335 mark. Designated hitter Don Baylor hit nine HRs and drove in 21 runners in July to lead California in the power department, and by the end of the month had reached the 30-HR plateau for the first time in his career; he also added a second 3-HR game to his list of SP78 achievements. And newcomer Dave Machemer made a statement after his mid-season call-up from Salt Lake City by hitting four home runs (two of them grand slams), collecting 14 RBI, and hitting .368 in just seven games with the parent club. On the mound, starter Dave Frost went 4-1 with a 2.43 ERA, and reliever Dave LaRoche went 2-0 with three saves and a 0.47 ERA, to lead an otherwise underachieving Angels pitching staff.
To check out the Angels statistics page for totals 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 AL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been picked.
With a season best 16-13 won-lost mark for July, the Baltimore Orioles have remained on the edge of contention in their division, with two months left to close the 12-game gap between fourth place and the top spot in the AL East. And with nine games scheduled in August against the first-place Yankees, that gap could be shortened to a few games very quickly.
And with Ken Singleton, Eddie Murray, and Pat Kelly all hitting over .350 for the month, and starters Mike Flanagan and Scott McGregor posting identical 4-1 records (and closer Don Stanhouse contributing with a 4-0 mark and five saves), the O’s seem poised and ready for a high-flying August. But to do so, they’ll have to improve their overall mound numbers: as a team, their ERA was a shocking 5.11, and seven pitchers went winless in July (Dennis Martinez was 0-4 with an embarrassing 10.20 earned run average). McGregor and Stanhouse have been the lone bright spots through the SP78 campaign; at 16-4, McGregor is well on his way to his first 20-win season, while Stanhouse has already equaled his career-best year for saves, with ten.
To check out the Orioles stat page for the season 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 AL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been chosen.
The St Louis Cardinals are hoping to bounce back from a disappointing 11-16 record in July, where the team ERA was a staggering 4.09, and with a handful of pitchers and a 15-year-old rookie phenom waiting for a call-up from AAA Springfield in August, they seem to be primed and ready to move out of the cellar and into fifth—and maybe even fourth—place in the NL East. With an overall record of 40-65 and just a 5½ game gap between them and the fifth-place Mets, that goal seems more than possible.
Though Cardinal batters seemed to be living up to expectations (team batting for July was .270, with catcher Ted Simmons leading the squad with a .394 mark), team pitching was definitely on the skids. Bob Forsch’s ERA was a lofty 8.00, and he completed no games over six starts (the staff as a whole completed only four), while Card starters could muster only one July shutout, when reliever Tom Bruno made a rare start and blanked the Padres 2-0 on the 28th. Meanwhile, spot starter Pete Falcone’s ERA ballooned to 7.82 for the year after he allowed 11 runs over six innings pitched in July, prompting a demotion to Springfield.
To check out the Cardinals stat page for numbers 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, both of which will be very soon.
While the Dodgers and Padres have been battling each other for first place in the NL West, the Giants have been quietly biding their time in the third place position, never straying more than five games back and hoping to make a move if the top two teams happen to implode. With an SP78 won-lost record of 63-42, the Giants’ mark is nearly identical to that of their 1978 counterparts, who were 63-43 and sitting atop the West by the end of July, just a stone’s throw ahead of the Reds and Dodgers. And with six games scheduled against LA during the first half of August, the Giants may find themselves leading the division at some point over the next few weeks.
Keeping the Giants alive in July were their pitching staff, whose team ERA topped the National League with an eye-popping 1.58. Randy Moffitt and Charlie Williams both went 4-0 for the month, and John Montefusco led all starters with a 0.87 mark (only two members of the staff had an ERA higher than 1.89). At the plate, Mike Ivie’s .339 average was tops on the team, and his .389 BA for the season ranks among the league leaders in the NL. Jack Clark leads the squad with 20 home runs and 60 runs batted in through July, while Willie McCovey is still waiting for his elusive 500th career home run; with just three HRs hit this season, he’s still four pokes short of the milestone.
To take a look at how the Giants are doing 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.
Posted in Inside SP78
Tagged board game, Giants, Jack Clark, July, National League, NL West, San Francisco, SP78 Replay, Statis Pro Baseball, statistics, Willie McCovey
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.
Posted in Inside SP78
Tagged 1978, board game, Bob Owchinko, Dave Winfield, Gene Richards, July, NL West, Padres, San Diego, SP78 Replay, Statis Pro Baseball, statistics