Thursday, June 4, 2009

#106 -- Brewers Team

Milwaukee Brewers

(Apologies to Matt. I was out of town when this posted and didn't realize I hadn't uploaded scans of the cards.)

The first thing that jumps out at you are the records on the back of the card. This team only had 3 years to compile records, so they're not going to be terribly impressive. For one thing, you can tell that Tommy Harper had a good year in 1970. Of the 11 club records, Tommy set 8 of them in 1970. The only batting record that fell in 1972 was that George Scott knocked in 88 runs to take the club record.

On the pitching side, Marty Pattin had a pretty good 1971, but things were a little more spread around. No pitching records fell in 1972, but Jim Lonborg tied Pattin's 14 wins in 1970 and 1971. Interesting that Pattin and Harper (and others) were traded to the Red Sox for Scott and Lonborg (and others) and they're all over the leader board on this franchise as of 1972.

The Brewers still sucked in 1972. They were last in the AL in attendance with 600,000. That's right. The Yankees or Dodgers can pull that in on a long homestand now. It didn't matter whether Dave Bristol or Del Crandall was managing, they still lost. Heck, you could have Whitey Herzog, Billy Martin, Tommy Lasorda and Earl Weaver on the bench and this team wasn't going to win. George Scott was 4th in the league in RBI and 9th in hits and Johnny Briggs was 9th in homers and slugging percentage and that was it for Brewers on the hitting leaderboards. Oh, Rick Auerbach was 4th in outs made. The pitching side was even leaner with Ken Sanders being 4th in saves and 5th in games pitched, unless you want to consider Billy Parsons being 3rd in earned runs allowed.

George Scott won a Gold Glove at first base. I would have thought he would be the Brewer All-Star, but that honor went to Ellie Rodriguez, who had 2 homers, 16 RBI and hitting .281 at the break. Boomer was only hitting .238 at the break and there are usually a lot of deserving first basemen.

I do like the guy wearing the letterman's jacket on the left side of the picture.

1972 Feature
Being a Sunday, June 4, 1972 was a big day for doubleheaders. The A's swept the Orioles in identical 2-0 games. The White Sox came back from yesterday's 13-inning loss to sweep the Yankees, including a 3-run walk-0ff homer by 1972 MVP Dick Allen in the 2nd game. The Pirates swept the Giants. The Red Sox and Royals split. The 2nd game of the Yankees-White Sox doubleheader would have to be the Game of the Day. The Yanks took a 4-2 lead into the bottom of the 9th. Wife Swapper Mike Kekich was cruising along, having allowed 2 runs on 3 hits, but had walked 6. Rick Reichardt flied out, but after Bill Melton walked and Mike Andrews singled, Sparky Lyle came in. Lyle was a stud, but he went 5 innings the day before. Weak hitting Rich Morales was due up, but Chuck Tanner sent up Dick Allen, who'd had the day off. As Ralph Cramden would say, "Bang Zoom" and the game was over.

Cy Acosta made his major league debut in this game (no doubt because of the way the Sox bullpen had been shredded), pitched a scoreless 9th and got the win.


  1. I liked reading those team card backs. I wish Topps would have kept doing them. They could have at least done it every five years or something like that.

  2. I was at that (Bat Day) DH for my 10th birthday party, alas, my dad was wiped out after two games watching 7 kids, so we left in the 8th inning. we heard the crowd going nuts and heard the recap of the great Dick Allen's walkoff HR in the car...

  3. Now that's amazing, that I would write about a 37 year old game that wasn't any kind of no-hitter, etc., and find someone who was there!

  4. MMayes, I LOVE this blog
    1972 was also my first year of baseball cards,
    so of course it's my favorite and I look forward to each entry.
    I linked here from white sox cards, cause I'm a (suprise) white sox fan, That game is SO stuck in my memory because it was EPIC, we were bummed that Dick Allen wasn't playing the 2nd game, I wore a T-shirt with the white sock over the red circle logo on front, and a hand drawn '15' on the back -'cause they didn't have gift shops back then...
    my other EPIC birthday game was from 1988(?) when Gary Redus hit a walkoff grand slam, but there were a LOT of beers involved in that one....

  5. Thanks to your link to the Baseball Reference site, I was able to confirm that it was June 4, 1972 when I witnessed my first in-person grand slam when Paul Schaal of the Royals launched one over the left-center field wall at old Municipal Stadium off Ray Culp of the Red Sox. Before that day, I was unfamiliar with the term "grand slam"--I turned eight a week later--and wondered why the crowd got infinitely more excited than they did over a solo home run.

    Schaal was hardly known as a power hitter, but if you hit one out at Municipal, you earned it! He was a mainstay at third base until George Brett arrived here in K.C., and here's some info for you when you get to Schaal's card--he became a doctor after his playing days and opened a successful chiropractic clinic in Overland Park, KS.

  6. Brian, I remember Schaal and for some reason I'd thought he'd not only played 3rd base, but also worn #5 for the Royals. That's something else I'll be looking to confirm when I get there. Thanks for the heads-up on his post-baseball career. If I pull up wikipedia on some of these ballplayers it'll show what they're doing now, which I usually find interesting.

  7. I checked my '72 Royals yearbook, and Paul Schaal wore #10. There weren't very many #5's before Brett--the only one I know of for sure was Richie Scheinblum before he was sent to Cincinnati in the Hal McRae trade. I liked Richie, and was highly peeved they traded him, but as we all know, that deal seemed to work out pretty good...