Monday, 7 January 2008

Friday, June 6, 1952

W L Pct. GB
Victoria ..... 29 14 .674 —
Spokane ...... 28 19 .596 3
Vancouver .... 20 18 .528 6½
Lewiston ..... 23 22 .511 7
Salem ........ 23 24 .489 8
Wenatchee .... 20 26 .435 10½
Tri-City ..... 20 27 .426 11
Yakima ....... 17 30 .362 14

VICTORIA, June 6 — The Victoria Tyees regained their three game lead in the Western International League Friday night as Eric Gard shaded Bob Schulte in a southpaw pitching duel which ended with the Lewiston Broncs on the short end of a 3-2 score.
The result evened the series at 1-1 and, combined with Spokane's defeat at Vancouver, gained a game for the Tyees.
Lewiston ..... 000 020 000—2 5 4
Victoria ...... 000 200 01x—3 4 1
Schulte and Lundberg; Gard and Marcucci.

VANCOUVER, [Keith Matthews, News Herald, June 7]—The Capilanos gathered at the Stadium Friday morning at 11 o’clock for an emergency session designed to cure those batting ills.
Last night, they reaped a few dividends from their earnest toil by slaughtering Spokane 13-5 behind a 16-hit attack.
It was their largest run-and-hit output of the 1952 baseball season, and something the writers, at least, had been praying for. Their many, many words ofn praise directed at the Caps had been backfiring all season, and it was only Thursday that one of them suggested all the writing brotherhood take to the hills.
Fortunately, this won’t have to be for now.
During the morning workout, two things were stressed—keep your eye on the ball, and swing easier. If necessary, in fact, it was pointed out that if wouldn’t hurt a few of the sluggers to hit to their off field in order to rectify their slump. The advice, every bit of it, hit dead centre on target.
In the first inning Spokane went out and scored three runs on Eddie Locke’s wildness and umpire Russ Kimpel’s blindness, It was difficult to say who was more at fault, but the umpire got the verdict from the “jury” of 2600.
In the second, with one out, Jim Wert singled to his off field and Brunswick walked.
Then Bob Duretto dynamited a line drive to his off field and when Mel Wasley came up with a fine one-handed grab, everyone leaned back and said, “oh, well, here we go again!” It was plainly looked as if the Caps were about to leave another army of runners stranded.
However, Ray Tran kept it alive with a run-scoring single and Locke blasted a 415-foot triple for two more and scored later himself on an error.
That was the sign the Caps had been waiting for. They went on a batting rampage which rocked three Spokane pitchers, the last of which was identified as Don Osborn. Don got his lumps, too—though most of them came after Mr. Kimpel had “guessed” incorrectly on some balls and strikes.
DIAMOND DUST—Eddie Murphy and John Conant, the latter as a pinch-hitter, hit Spokane homers … Locke’s was his fifth win … The same clubs meet twice today, 2:30 in the afternoon and 8:15 at night … Bob Snyder (0-2) faces John Conant (6-2) in the day game and Paul Jones (0-4) meets Mike [sic] Palm in the evening.
Spokane ....... 300 000 110— 5 6 3
Vancouver .... 042 013 30x—13 16 2
Chase, Roberts (3), Osborn (7) and Sheets, Simmons (8); Locke and Ritchey.

SALEM, June 6 — Salem defeated Tri-City 5-2 in the opening game Friday night of a Western International League series here.
Ed Satalich, Tri-City hurler, had a no-hitter until the sixth inning. But then he gave up three consecutive singles which were conrerted into runs when John Kovenz failed to field a long fly.
Braves note: Olney Patterson, released by the club, has signed with a semi-pro team in Walla Walla.
Tri-City ...... 000 200 000—2 4 2
Salem ........ 000 003 02x—5 8 1
Satalich, Michelson (8) and Pesut; DeGeorge and Nelson.

YAKIMA, June 6—The Wenatchee Chiefs staged a six-run uprising the first half of the 10th inning to break up a the Western International League baseball game and down the Yakima Bears 15-9 Friday night.
A crowd of 1,803 came out for the game, billed as player-manager Dario Lodigiani's birthday party. The Yakima players presented their 36-year-old skipper with a gift, while ther wives served ice cream and cake to the crowd.
The big blow of the tenth frame was a bases-loaded triple by Bob Garrett, a pitcher who had been installed at first base after manager Dick Adams was bounced in the ninth inning for protesting that Jack Thompson of the Bears had not been nicked by a pitched ball.
Wenatchee ... 004 002 003 6—15 14 1
Yakima ......... 001 107 000 0— 9 18 3
Dasso, Bauhofer (7) and Pocekay; Del Sarto, Albini (7) Thompson (9), Monahan (10), Donley (10) and Donahue.

[Vancouver Province, June 7, 1952]
Caps Are Snarling
When you visit the well-barricaded Caps dugout at the Stadium these nights, it is like walking into a lion’s den. These guys, who can’t get a winning streak started for sour apples, are snarling mad at (1) the umpires, (2) themselves and (3) the weather.
Their feud with the umps is a digestive disorder normal to all ballplayers. It is extra prevalent in this W.I.L., which clings to low-salaried blind men, and has one of the poorest officiating corps in the business. One Cap, who obviously must not be unnamed here, said to me: “How can you play percentage ball when you don’t known what these unpredictable guys are going to call?”
In an angry ball club, miracles invariably pop up. One such is long, lean Jim Wert, “the Silent One,” has begun to break out of his veil of silence.
He did for me the other night, and it was he who put his finger on the early season cockiness which hurt the club.
● ● ●
“We looked so ------ good on paper (still do, Jim),” he snarled, working himself into a consuming rage at the conspicuous absence of his batting average from the leaders’ list, “that we got cocky. Well, now is the time to get it kicked out of us, not later.
“It was tough psychologically on the club to be called a front-runner right from the start; you try to live up to your name, so you tighten up and ping! That does it.”
I thought Edo Vanni diagnosed one of the major reasons for the Cap’s [sic] early season flounder. He blamed the weather. The more-than-usual enforced idleness, he said, didn’t let the old men, as they must, play into shape.
“In this league,” he said, “you just don’t get into shape at spring training. Look (patting a flattened tummy), I’ve lost 17 pounds since we starting playing! Only now are my legs filling out with the strength they need.
● ● ●
“It is bad to be an idle ballplayer, because your reflexes go bad. This is exactly what has hit our club this year. We just haven’t the sharpness yet.
“I’d rather be a tired ballplayer, in there working every day; that’s when you start winning ball games—with a club like this one.”
I am happy to report the Caps are not a beaten club. In their concrete pit under the boxes, they are polishing their claws and rumbling in their throats. Don’t cash in your season tickets yet.

Sports Scribes Give Schuster Lineup Tips

[News Herald, June 7, 1952]

Possibly, it will be explained along about September that a poor, broken down sports writer assisted into the “lifting of the Capilanos” into a dangerous WIL contender.
It happened on the afternoon of Friday, June 6, shortly after the Caps had completed a morning workout and just as manager Bill Schuster walked from the stadium for his car. He walked right into “the” sports writer and immediately waved his hands in the air in despair and cried “how can I get some runs for this club?”
One word led to another, and soon the two men were deep into a long baseball discussion.
It was suggested by the sports writer that Len Tran wasn’t being utilized for the good of the team in his eighth position in the batting order.
“Len is way off his hitting,” Schuster explained. “One night he’s overswinging, the next he takes his eye off the ball. He’s improving gradually, but he got off on the wrong track somehow.”
It was then pointed out that all this may be true, but Tran was still the club’s leading hitter with a .314 average.
“No kidding!” Schuster exclaimed. “Why, I thought he was down around .250 somewhere. I’ll be doggoned!”
It is true that Lenny has tailed off badly the past two weeks in his production, but at the time he had a .347 mark and his 33-point drop still left him at .314 and six points above his nearest competitor, Bob Duretto.
“I’m really glad to know that,” Schuster admitted. “Right now I’m willing to try anything to snap the club out of its slump. I’m still convinced this team is good enough to win, but how to get them started is another thing.”
Then, the sports writer got back on his original suggestion, the question of Tran batting eighth. Would it not be better to move him up in the batting order where his base hits might prove more damaging? Why not in the third spot, for instance?
”It’s a good point,” Schuster thought. “Maybe with Williams leading off, Vanni second and then Tran, Ritchey, Wert, Duretto, Ray Tran and the pitcher—yes, it might work out.”
Now the sports writer began picturing himself as a Casey Stengel or a 1951 Leo Durocher—a real miracle man!
“Wert is your best run producer,” the Boswell said, “why not try him in the fourth spot to clean up?”
Schuster laughed, because his is a point he had thought of long himself.
“I’d love to,” he explained, “but Jim has tried No. 4 before and it didn’t go so well with him. He figures the spot is a jinx, and you know ball players and their superstitions. No, I’m certain Jim wouldn’t be the answer there because of the mental picture he has painted for himself. However, there is nothing wrong with the batting order we just outlined. I think I’ll try it and see what happens.”
Now we can only wait and see. Will the Caps break out of their run-scoring slump with their “new” attack? Will a poor, broken down sports writer play an important role in the winning of a pennant? And if so, who is this sports writer?
All interesting points, to be sure. Don’t miss a day of this series, Next week, we may bring you “Twenty Questions.”

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