Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Monday, August 23, 1954

                W  L  Pct GB
Lewiston ..... 33 22 .600 —
Salem ........ 27 19 .587 1½
Yakima ....... 31 22 .585 1
Vancouver .... 26 19 .578 2
Edmonton ..... 28 24 .520 4½
Tri-City ..... 19 31 .380 11½
Wenatchee .... 18 25 .340 14½

LEWISTON, Aug. 23—Yakima moved within one game of league-leading Lewiston in the Western International League Monday night but failed to get out of third place in doing it. The Bears topped the Broncs, 8-4, in their series opener at Lewiston.
But percentage-wise Yakima till trails Salem by .002 points, though the Senators are 1½ games behind Lewiston. Salem was idle Monday night.
Yakima, trailing 2-0, tied the count in the top of the sixth when John Albini homered with Len Noren aboard. The Bears added the clincher in the eighth when they scored five times. The runs came on five singles and two walks. Yakima added its final tally in the ninth inning when Albini romped home on Dick Briskey's double.
Lewiston opened the scoring in the third frame with two runs off one hit and two Yaklma errors. The Broncs added single tallies in the sixth and eighth innings.
John Carmichael, who held the league leaders to seven hits, was the winning pitcher.
Yakima ....... 000 002 051—8 15 2
Lewiston ..... 002 001 010—4 7 2
Carmichael,Edmunds (8) and Summers; Fletcher, Derganc (8), Martin (9) and Garay.

VANCOUVER [Clancy Loranger, Province, Aug. 23]—If you think this is going to be a eulogy for Bill Brenner, you’re right.
It’s possible that Brenner has received a pretty good press this season—by why should we apologize? As the politicians say: Look at the record.
Brenner, as you should know by now, if the triple threat of the Vancouver Capilanos baseball team. He’s general manager, field manager and pitcher, and he hasn’t had to apologize for any of those roles, either.
As g.m. he’s gathered possibly the best team ever to wear a Vancouver uniform in the WIL. As field boss, he’s earned the respect—and the final tribute, hustle, of and from a bunch of fellows who’ve played a lot of baseball under a lot of men.
As a pitcher, well, Bill’s been his own ace. Monday, he became the first hurler in the league to hit the hallowed 20 victory mark, as he turned back Edmonton Eskimos 4-2 on six hits. It was the third straight year that Brenner, who turned to pitching seriously just three seasons ago afer more than 10 years as a catcher, has achieved this goal.
As far as can be ascertained by a quick check of the records, no other WIL pitcher has had three 20-game seasons, consecutively or otherwise.
And Brenner, who has fashioned the league’s best earned run average, most complete games and most innings pitched in turning in his 20-7 season’s mark, added one more dramatic touch to last night’s winning effort.
With the score tied 2-2 in the seventh, thanks to Neil Sheridan’s two-run double in the sixth, Brenner won his own ball game with a 350-foot [two-run] homer off Ken Kimball. It was Bill’s third home run of the season and two of them have been here, in the league’s biggest park.
The win was a big one for the Caps, who won the league’s first half championship and are now within striking distance of the second-half leaders, Lewiston.
Wet grounds have caused postponement of tonight’s game, with a doubleheader now scheduled for Wednesday.
PROVINCE STARS—Brenner, of course, and Neil Sheridan, who had his best night here in an Vancouver suit, with three-for-four … And Andy Skurski for Edmonton, whose home run with nobody on in the fourth was the lone earned run off Brenner.
Edmonton ....... 010 100 000—2 6 1
Vancouver ...... 000 002 20x—4 8 0
Kimball, Manier (8) and Prentice; Brenner and Pesut.

Sports Notes

[Tri-City Herald, August 24, 1954]
For the first time in many moons the much-beaten Tri-City Braves are winning more games than they are losing.
True the four wins in the last six games are merely a drop in the bucket, considering they are rolling some 12-13 games off the pace. But for awhile, it looked as if they were going to lose ‘em all.
Why this sudden late season splurge?
Well, without putting too much stock on jinxes and other superstition, some have a sneaking hunch that the death of “Fearless” may have been responsible.
Technically, “Fearless” is not dead, for in reality he was never alive. For “Fearless” is a dummy who once joined the Braves. There are probably those, even among the players who will contend that it wasn’t the only dummy to join the Braves but we won't go into that.
Actually, Fearless never joined the Braves in the sense that he was bought, traded for, or signed as a free agent.
The confounded pile of sawdust, wood and papier-mache was “captured” when Tri-City played at Salem. That was about the time they were riding high with 15 wins in 20 games.
The Braves brought it back to Sanders Field, dressed it in a uniform, and packed it out to the dugout for games.
Then came the reckoning. Losses began to mount, Vic Buccola found himself talking to Fearless one day, and later, when he was carrying it to the clubhouse, he slipped and fell and the blame dummy spiked him.
There were more losses, and without saying much, the Braves began to look askance at the dummy. Gradually, they began forgetting to carry it out to the dugout and during the games, Fearless spent his time in the clubhouse with only Doc Hoyt for company, and he ignored it.
Although by this time a good many began to have sneaking suspicions about Fearless, it wasn’t until Bob Moniz spoke up that the suspicions came out in the open:
“I know what’s wrong with this team. It’s that dummy. Ever since we got the thing we have been losing games.”
To which playing manager Edo Vanni gave a halfhearted, “Nonsense, there’s things wrong with this team that dummy didn’t have anything to do with.”
But, after a few more losses, Fearless disappeared.
When asked what happened to him, Vanni said, “we had Doc burn it.” That night Tri-City broke its 10-game losing streak by beating Lewiston.

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