Tag Archives: TWISP Notes

TWISP Notes #79

September 2, 2022

• The Padres have attempted five steals of home this season, and have been caught stealing each time. The most recent victim was Bill Almon on August 23rd, when he was caught thanks to a missed squeeze bunt by pitcher Randy Jones.

• After going 0-3 with two strikeouts in yesterday’s Cards-Braves match-up, St Louis manager Ken Boyer took rookie Todd Benefiel out of the game for precautionary reasons, worried that the beanball he suffered on Saturday may have given him vision trouble, or worse. With the Cardinals off today, Benefiel was sent to a medical specialist in Atlanta, and if he’s cleared will catch up with the team in Houston for their upcoming series against the Astros.

• The Expos and Giants participated in SP78 Game #1700 on August 27th, the second game of a doubleheader at Candlestick Park, with Montreal taking both games by scores of 3-1 and 2-1. Game #1800 is scheduled to take place during the NL slate of games on September 4th.

• My friend and SP78 managerial foe Steve P, who had previously managed all but one of the major league teams in my SP78 season since 1986, finally made it a complete 26 out of 26 when he piloted the Mariners against the Orioles on August 27th, leading the M’s to a 4-0 win.

• Royals starter Steve Busby, a recent call-up from AAA Omaha, became the first American League pitcher to record a base hit during an SP78 regular season game, doing so August 25th against the Rangers. Busby’s hit, a single, came in his first at-bat in the third inning, off Texas starter Jon Matlack. Busby was batting in place of the designated hitter in that game, and went 1-for-2 on the night; his last AL at-bat came in 1975, and his last hit in 1972. Tigers starter Bob Sykes actually collected the first AL hit by a pitcher, but it was during an exhibition contest, the Hall of Fame Game in Cooperstown on August 7th.

• Pitcher Rick Waits of the Indians earned his 17th win of the season on August 26th, a close 3-2 victory over the struggling White Sox at Comiskey Park in Chicago. The win eclipsed his 12-year career high of 16, which he would achieve a season later for the Tribe, in 1979. With only three more wins needed to reach 20, he would become the first Cleveland pitcher to win 20 games since Gaylord Perry went 21-13 in 1974.

• In their August 27th game against the Twins, the Blue Jays slugged five home runs – all solo shots by Roy Howell, Dave McKay, Bob Bailor, John Mayberry, and Al Woods – to tie an SP78 record and help Toronto to a 5-4 win. Geoff Zahn, the starter for Minnesota, allowed four of those HRs, also tying an SP78 record.

• Yankees rookie right-hander Bob Kammeyer, making his eighth relief appearance of the season after his call-up from Tacoma of the PCL, won his first career game on August 27th, earning the win in relief as New York topped Oakland 4-3 in ten innings. Kammeyer pitched one frame, the tenth, allowing no runs and one hit; his ERA now stands at 0.56.

• Expos second baseman Dave Cash, already leading both leagues with 14 HBPs on the season, was hit twice more on August 27th, one in each game of a twinbill against the Giants. With a little over one month remaining in the season, he still has 34 to go to reach former Expo Ron Hunt’s record of 50, set in 1971.

• Al Oliver of the Rangers extended his hitting streak to 18 games on August 27th, with a fifth-inning single off Royals starter Dennis Leonard at Arlington Stadium. He’s now just two shy of the SP78 AL record of 20, held by Brewers catcher Charlie Moore.

Hey Fans! Tickets are still available for the final
Guidry-Palmer match-up at Memorial Stadium on August 31!

TWISP Notes #78

July 13, 2022

• Rangers outfielder Johnny Grubb hit his second grand slam of the season—and third of his career—in the third inning of the August 26th Texas-KC game at Arlington Stadium. The clout came at the expense of Royals starter Rich Gale, and lifted the Rangers to a 4-3 win.

• The Dodgers placed starting pitcher Doug Rau on the 15-day disabled list yesterday, retroactive to August 20th. Rau suffered a shoulder injury while pitching in the second inning of the August 19th game against the Mets. With no pitchers available in AAA, the Dodgers will shift to a 4-man starting rotation, and will call up outfielder Myron White from Albuquerque of the Pacific Coast League to serve as a pinch-hitter, and a backup outfielder during the absence of a Dusty Baker.

• The Padres have also converted to a 4-man starting rotation, returning John D’Acquisto to the bullpen, switching Bob Shirley into a spot-starter role, and keeping Gaylord Perry, Randy Jones, Bob Owchinko, and Eric Rasmussen as their starting quartet.

• Cardinals rookie speedster Todd Benefiel stole second, third, and home in the the eighth inning of the Cards’ 12-3 rout of the Braves yesterday, becoming the tenth SP78 player this season to steal home, and just the second this year to steal three bases in one inning. Mike Edwards of the A’s was the first, doing so July 27th against the White Sox.

• Roger Moret made his pitching debut for the Rangers on August 26th, allowing just two runs on six hits over six innings to earn the win in a 4-3 victory over the Royals. During the 1978 season (his last in the majors), Moret went 0-1 in seven appearances, earning one save while posting a 4.91 ERA.

• Braves reliever Dave Campbell, who’s had his share of run-ins with opposing batters this season, has been suspended by the National League office for ten games, after involving himself in another beanball incident, on August 26th. For more on this story, click here.

• The second game of the Expos-Giants doubleheader at Candlestick Park on August 27th will be Game #1700 of the SP78 Replay season.

• Phillies veteran Jim Kaat, currently 8-4 with a 2.94 ERA in 20 appearances as a starter and reliever, will be moved from the bullpen to the starting rotation for the September stretch run, while Randy Lerch (10-8, 3.04) will shift to a relief role, joining Tug McGraw as the second southpaw in the pen.

• Boston’s win on August 26th—a rain-shortened 3-0 shutout of the Angels at Fenway Park—snapped their 8-game losing streak, and was their first victory since 2017.

• Indians pitcher Wayne Garland, recently called up from the Portland Beavers of the PCL, will make his first appearance with the parent club on August 27th, against the White Sox at Comiskey Park. Garland had six starts in 1978, all in April, before missing the rest of the season following surgery for a torn rotator cuff.

• There are just five calendar days and 57 games remaining for the month of August.

Hey Fans! August 29th is Half-Price Tuesday at Candlestick Park!

TWISP Notes #77

March 4, 2022

• Mets pitcher Jerry Koosman, who’s been struggling as a starter with a record of 5-19 and a 4.18 ERA, will be moved to the bullpen in hopes a change of scenery will turn his luck around. During the actual 1978 season, Koosman made six relief appearances to go along with his 32 starts.

• Also for the Mets, starter Nino Espinosa, who’s been hampered by nagging shoulder pain, was sent to the Tidewater Tides of the International League on a rehabilitation assignment. Right-hander Tom Hausman, who is currently 5-2 with a 1.22 ERA in ten starts with the Tides, was called up to take Espinosa’s spot in the starting rotation.

• The Padres returned pitcher Mark Wiley to their AAA farm club in Hawaii, and called up rookie outfielder Don Reynolds for late-inning defense and pinch-hitting purposes. Wiley was 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA during his short stint with the parent club.

• Reds slugger George Foster clubbed his 30th home run of the season on August 24th, off St Louis starter Bob Forsch in an 8-3 loss at Riverfront. It was the second time in his career he’s reached the 30-HR mark, after connecting for 52 the previous season to lead the major leagues.

• San Diego outfielder Dave Winfield collected his second 2-HR game of the season on August 25th, good for four RBI and a 5-1 Padres win. The pair of homers gives Winfield a total of 28 for the season, already a career high.

• Willie Wilson of the Royals became the ninth SP78 player this season to steal home, doing so off Jon Matlack and the Rangers on August 25th. It was Wilson’s first career home theft.

• Pitcher Rick Honeycutt of the Mariners suffered a pulled groin muscle during the fifth inning of the M’s-Orioles match-up on August 25th, and left the game immediately, down 4-0 in what would eventually become a 7-0 M’s loss. He will likely miss his next 2-3 starts.

• In their meeting with the Red Sox on August 25th, the Angels collected five home runs – from Rick Miller, Don Baylor, Carney Lansford, and Ron Jackson twice – to tie an SP78 record, shared by four other teams. The circuit clouts helped the Halos to a 12-3 win.

• While I’ve been housesitting for my friend Julie in Tucson over the past few months, her AZ21 home has has seen 15 SP78 games played, and has jumped from 106th place – with one game played in 2020 – to 23rd on the all-time games hosted list.

• After establishing himself as the team’s best power hitter over the course of the SP78 season, Braves first baseman Dale Murphy has finally been moved up in the batting order, from the eighth spot to cleanup. His teammate, catcher Biff Pocoroba, is hitting .375 for August, and has been bumped up to fifth.

• It was announced today by the Tigers organization that second baseman Steve Dillard suffered a concussion when he collided with teammate Ron LeFlore in Game 1 of a doubleheader against the Blue Jays on August 23rd, which resulted in his immediate departure from the game. Dillard was placed on the 30-day disabled list the following day, while LeFlore – who left the game with an elbow contusion – will be out for at least a week.

Attention Fans! August 27th is Beer Case Stacking Day at Comiskey Park!

TWISP Notes #76

December 13, 2021

• There are seven days and 82 games remaining in the August schedule.

• Tigers second baseman Steve Dillard was placed on the 30-day disabled list after he collided with outfielder Ron LeFlore in Game 1 of a twinbill between Toronto and Detroit at Tiger Stadium. LeFlore was also injured on the play, and will be out for at least a week.

• The Reds will experiment with a new lineup on August 25th, when they’ll revert back to one that was used during their 4-game sweep of the Yankees in the 1976 World Series. Dan Driessen will now bat clean-up, George Foster will be bumped down to fifth, and Johnny Bench will bat sixth, with Cesar Geronimo returning to center field on an everyday basis. If the experiment is a success, the lineup will continue to be used for the remainder of August, and possibly into and through September.

• The stage has been set for the final Guidry-Palmer match-up of the season, on August 31st at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. It will the fourth time the two have squared off against each other this season, with New York winning two of the three contests.

• Phillies outfielder Garry Maddox became the second player in the NL – and the eighth overall – to steal home this season, doing so against Rick Rhoden of the Dodgers on August 24th.

• While managing in a game during a recent visit to Arizona, my friend Steve P created his ‘Legends of Statis Pro’ list of his most memorable players from my SP78 season. On the list were Steve Ontiveros (CHI-N), Julio Cruz (SEA), Reggie Smith (LA), Sixto Lezcano (MIL), Ron Guidry (NY-A), Mike Caldwell (MIL), and Lou Whitaker (DET).

• Rangers outfielder Al Oliver extended his current SP78-leading hitting streak to 16 games.

• Outfielder Charlie Spikes of the Evansville Triplets was called up by the Tigers to fill the roster spot left vacant by the month-long injury to second baseman Steve Dillard. He’ll platoon with Tim Corcoran in center field until Ron LeFlore returns from injury at the end of the month.

• Dave Chalk of the Angels was suspended one game by the AL office for using an illegal bat during the NY-CAL game of August 23rd, and will serve the suspension on August 25th. He’s the fourth Angels player to be charged with illegal bat use this season, but only the first to be suspended.

• The Cardinals swept their 3-game series with the Reds this week, and by doing so have taken sole possession of fifth place in the NL East, dropping the Mets a game back after their extra-inning loss on Sunday. The Cards have now set their sights on the fourth-place Expos (five games ahead) and third-place Cubs (six games ahead).

Hey Fans! August 26th is Hardee’s Backpack Nite at Memorial Stadium!