Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Second Playoff, Thursday, Sept. 9, 1954

Cap Gang Say Farewell To City Fans Tonight


[Vancouver Province, Sept. 10, 1954]
They play their last pro ball game for 1954 at Capilano Stadium tonight, and if the game is anything like Thursday’s, the fans will get to see nearly everybody on the Vancouver roster.
The Caps had to use five pitchers, who gave up nine hits and 12 walks, before they scraped through with an 8-7 victory over the Lewiston Broncs.
The Broncs used 13 men before they were through, too, but umpire Don Fisher must get an assist for that. Fisher tossed Lewiston’s Al Heist, and later Manager Larry Barton, out of the game when they disagreed with a call at home plate in the eighth. The ump called Heist out at the dish and it was an important decision for it cut short a rally and cost the visitors what would have been the tying runs.
But the Broncs never did get to tie the game, although they kept nibbling away at an early Vancouver lead. They gave it the old pro try in the ninth, again, but they finished one short when Pete Hernandez, the Caps’ fifth pitcher, came in to get the last two men out with the bases loaded.
Before Pete, George Nicholas, Keith Bowman, John Cordell and Bill Brenner had taken their turn, with varying success. Cordell looked the best of the lot, leaving finally for a pinch hitter, and was credited with the win.
Fortunately, the Caps were hitting again, and running, too. They stole six bases and teed off for 12 hits off Joe Orrell and Guy Fletcher, including a home run by Bob Wellman and two doubles by K Chorlton. The latter had 3-for-5 to make it 7-for-111 so far in the series.
The victory gave the Caps a big edge in the best-of-seven championship series between the winners of the first and second half. It’s now 2-0 for Brenner’s boys, and they’ll try for three straight tonight. Fourth game goes in Lewiston Sunday, and any more games, if they’re needed, will be in the Idaho city, too.
Brenner will do the pitching for the Caps, with Al Yaylian, whom the fans love to hate, in for Lewiston.
Lewiston ........ 002 030 011—7 9 0
Vancouver ....... 204 000 11x—8 12 2
Orrell, Fletcher (8) and Cameron, Garay (8); Nicholas, Bowman (5), Cordell (5), Brenner (9), Hernandez (9) and Duretto.

Caps Have A Walkathon, Still Beat Broncs Despite Wildness
Last Call For Baseball In Third Game Tonight


[Vancouver News-Herald, Sept. 10, 1954]
Four Vancouver pitchers did their best to revive the walkathon Thursday night, issuing 12 free passes to Lewiston Broncs as the Caps scored a wild 8-7 victory in the second playoff game of the Western International League playoff.
The Broncs, 17-0 losers in the opening game of the best-of-seven series, left 15 runners stranded as Caps poured five pitchers into the pray against the second half champions.
Vancouver will be going for the stranglehold game tonight at Capilano Stadium when the clubs meet for the third time. It will also be the final game of the local season, as the remainder of the series switches to Lewiston starting Sunday.
Manager Bill Brenner, who also saw a spot of action last night will be facing Lewiston’s slow-working southpaw, Al Yaylian, this evening. Brenner has a 21-9 record this season and Yaylian, 15-7.
Pistol Pete Hernandez who waxed the Broncs with a six-hitter Wednesday was the only Capilano hurler not to issue a walk, as he was rushed into the game to quell a ninth-inning uprising by the visitors.
George Nicholas started for Vancouver, and he was relieved, it turn, by Keith Bowman, John Cordell, Brenner, and finally Hernandez.
With the bases loaded in the ninth, Brenner gave up his third walk of the inning to Guy Fletcher, forcing Mel Wasley from third. Bill wheeled two more ball past Clint Cameron before calling for help from Hernandez.
Pete promptly forced Cameron to foul out to catcher Bob Duretto, and then finished up by inducing Harvey Storey to fly deep to Eddie Murphy in centre.
The Caps, again led at the plate by K. Chorlton, went ahead 2-0 in the first frame, and increased the margin to 6-2 off Joe Orrell after three. The Broncs routed Nicholas, and then Bowman in the fifth, as they parlayed Eddie Bockman’s single and five walks into three runs.
Bob Wellman’s home run in the seventh upped the count to 7-5, and Duretto crossed with the winner in the eighth on an error, two wild pitches by Fletcher, and Murphy’s single.

Game Wasn’t Much But Caps Won It
Brenner’s Boys Did Best To Lose But Couldn’t

[Vancouver Sun, Sept. 10, 1954]
Rumors circulated among Cap Stadium clientele Thursday night that Seattle Suds and baseball magnate Emil Sick had sold his Pacific Coast League Seattle Rainiers plus their WIL affiliate Vancouver Caps to a Seattle syndicate.
If Mr. Sick, currently en route to New York, could have watched the Lewiston Broncs and aforementioned Caps in action last night, he probably would have been tempted to sell both clubs plus the three umpires to the Pacific National Exhibition as next year’s circus attraction.
As it turned out the rumor of the Seattle sale was exactly that—a rumor.
Rainier General Manager Dewey Soriano, last year with Caps and now a vice-president of Caps, told The Sun today there was a possibility Mr. Sick would surrender sole ownership to his baseball empire to a syndicate headed by himself and made up of Seattle associates and friends.
As for Caps and Broncs, they will resume their series for the WIL championship at Cap Stadium tonight in the season’s last pro game in Vancouver.
After tonight the two clubs—and the umpires—will move to Lewiston to finish the series. Caps had won the first half and Lewiston the second to qualify for the final.
Last night’s game, which started off as a brisk affair between two smoothly operating ball clubs, ended in a nightmare for the official scorer, the Lewiston manager, one Larry Barton, who also played first base.
The walk-happy Cap pitching corps fielded no less than five men with Keith Bowman and Bill Brenner, who also doubles as the Cap general manager, seeing a minimum of service.
Young Bowman, a recent Cap acquisition, entered the game in the fifth inning, ostensibly to relieve George Nicholas. Bowman stayed around just long enough to walk two men with the bases loaded.
He was relieved by left-hander John Cordell, who stuck around capably until lifted for a pinch hitter in the eighth. Brenner took over in the ninth. Three walks, one error, one run, two bases on balls and only one out, big Bill yanked himself and sadly turned over the chore to Pete Hernandez.
Pete threw exactly three pitches and Vancouver was ahead 2-0 in the series.
Caps had won 8-7 and in doing so received able assistance from plate umpire Ron Fisher in the eighth inning.
At that stage Broncs were trailing 6-8 [sic] and had Al Heist at third and pinch runner Leland Smith at second with one away. Clint Cameron topped one of Cordell’s soft curves toward first with Heist racing for the plate.
Cap first baseman Bob Wellman hesitated for a moment and finally threw to catcher Bob Duretto. But the throw was obviously too late as Heist slid across the plate before Bob could tag him.
Fisher called Heist out.
That started the first rhubarb. Heist received his marching papers.
In the next inning Barton, who obviously hadn’t cooled off, got his from Fisher, too.
Apart from the two rhubarbs there were all sorts of idiocyncracies on display not usually associated with good baseball.
In the first inning Lewiston elected to pitch to Ken Richardson, Vancouver’s clean-up hitter, with men on second and third, two away and first base open. Ken, the most feared clutch hitter in the WIL, promptly singled both runs home. The next batter struck out.
In the fifth inning Broncs permitted ancient Joe Orrell, their starting pitcher, to bat for himself with the bases loaded and the score 6-5 for Vancouver. Orrell is a noteably weakhitter. There were two out.
And so it went all night.
But don’t kid yourself, the fans had fun—we won didn’t we?

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