Monday, 4 August 2008

Wednesday, May 12, 1954

               W  L  Pct  GB
Vancouver .... 9  5 .643  —
Yakima ....... 9  6 .609  ½
Spokane ...... 8  6 .571  1
Lewiston ..... 8  6 .571  1
Victoria ..... 7  6 .538  1½
Salem ........ 8  7 .533  1½
Edmonton ..... 6  6 .500  2
Wenatchee .... 6  8 .429  3
Calgary ...... 4  8 .333  4
Tri-City ..... 4 11 .267  5½

WENATCHEE, May 12 — Vancouver trounced Wenatchee, 10-5, in a baseball game Wednesday night although it was outhit by the Chiefs, 16-13, in a tedious exhibition of base circling.
K Chorlton starred at the plate for Vancouver, with four hits in five trips including two doubles and a homer. Chorlton was credited with five runs batted in.
Manager Bill Brenner pitched Vancouver to its ninth win of the year.
Pumpsie Green had four hits for Wenatchee, including a triple, while Joe Unfried and Don Stanford stroked three safeties for the home club.
Vancouver ........ 002 200 420—10 13 3
Wenatchee ....... 000 103 010— 5 16 1
Brenner, Roberts (7) and Duretto; Thompson, De Carolis (7) and Jenney.

YAKIMA [Victoria Colonist, May 13]—Victoria Tyees, who rolled to the top of the Western International Baseball League standings last week with solid and timely hitting making up for mound failures, last night wasted good pitching for the second game in a row as they lost another one to Yakima Bears, 5-1.
Bill Prior turned in a fine pitching job as he held the Bears to one run in the first six innings but the Tyees, three-hitted for the second time in the series, couldn’t give the lank right-hander any support. They did manage to tie the score in their half of the seventh—on three bases on balls [to Tommy Perez, Steve Mesner and Eddie Lake] and a sacrifice fly [to Dain Clay]—but Prior weakened in the Yakima seventh and the Bears put it away with a three-run rally.
Hard-hitting Len Noren proved to be the most bothersome of the hitters, getting three singles in four trips. Tom Perez, Eddie Lake and Joe Joshua were the only Tyees to his safely as the Victorians dropped into fourth place, a game and a half behind the leading Capilanos.
Victoria ........ 000 000 010—1 3 0
Yakima ........ 010 000 31x—5 10 1
Prior and Martin; Young, Machado (8) and Summers.

KENNEWICK, May 12 — Tri-City won its fourth Western International League baseball game of the season Wednesday night with a freak, 9-7, win over the Spokane Indians.
Young Dale Bloom got Spokane off to a good start, although he was Tri-City’s starting hurler. He hit a batter and then put one across that Will Hafey removed from the park.
(It was Bloom's first hit batter of the evening; he got three more, everyone of whom scored).
The Indians added single counters in the second and third before Tri-City woke up to score twice in the third. Spokane added another in the fourth and Tri-City went ahead with four in the fifth.
Again, the Indians forged ahead with two runs in the sixth but the Braves iced the tilt with three in the eighth.
Three of Spokane’s runs were counted as unearned, two by Tri-City, even with a generous scorekeeper.
Bob McGuire batted in four runs for the winners, including the last one in the eighth-inning rally.
- - -
KENNEWICK [Tri-City Herald, May 13]—The Tri-City Braves didn’t improve their lowly celler-dwelling status much Wednesday night by beating Spokane 0-7 but at least had the personal satisfaction of knocking the Indians out of first place.
The victory, which represented one-quarter of Tri-City’s total this season, permitted the power-packed Vancouver Caps, who had waxed fat on the Braves earlier, to move to the league top.
Tonight Tri-City and Spokane play the third and final game of the series. Playing manager Edo Vanni has named righthander Bud Guldborg to start for the Braves.
In the win Wednesday night, Tri-City pitchers ganged up on the Indians after teammates left the hurlers in a precarious state through errors. Don Robertson eventually was creditted with the win—his third of the season.
Tri-City trailed, 7-8 going into the bottom of thc eighth but cut loose for three runs when Vic Buccola walked, was sacrificed to second and scored on Len Tran’s single. A double by Des Charouhas moved Tran to third and both scored on Bob McGuire’s single.
In the top of the ninth, playing manager Edo Vanni used the leftie-and-leftie, righty-against-righty strategy. After getting one away, Robertson gave up two singles. This brought Will Hafey, the power-hitter who poled one out of the park with one on in the first inning, up to bat. Vanni lifted Robertson and ran in rookie Earl Lemieux, a lefthander to face the left-handed batting Hafey.
The trick worked. Hafey, who had hit into a double play the night before when confronted with Lemieux, popped out this time. Then Lemieux, his job done for the evening, went to the showers and Jess Dobernic took over.
Dobernic, a righthander facing the righthanded-hitting Bob Donkersley, got the batter to fly out and end the game.
With the exception of Tri-City’s eighth inning runs and Spokane’s two runs in the first, the rest of the scoring was largely the result of fluke hits, errors, passed balls or hit batters.
Spokane scored once in the second when Mike Durock doubled and came home on an error, another in the third when Chuck Ruddock singled, moved to second on a steal and scored on Hafey’s single, and one in the fourth when Durock was hit by a pitch and scored on Elsworth Dean’s triple.
The runs gave Spokane a 5-2 lead — Tri-City having scored twice in the third on two walks, an error and a pass ball [sic]. The Braves went one run ahead with a four-run outburst in the fifth which saw McGuire drive in his first two runs.
Spokane ...... 211 100 200—7 9 2
Tri-City ....... 002 040 03x—9 12 4
Lawson, Aubertin (5), Giovannoni (8) and Dean; Bloom, Robertson (7), Lemieux (9), Dobernic (9) and Warren.

SALEM, May 12 — Lewiston rapped three Salem pitchers for 11 hits here Wednesday night and a 5-2 Western International League victory.
Nick Canulli singled in the third inning and was doubled home by Mel Wasley for the first Lewiston score. The Broncs added three runs in the fourth on singles by Russ Rossburg, Ed Garay, Jose Bache and Martin. Rossburg homered for the final Lewiston tally in the fifth.
Lewiston’s Jack Martin spaced six hits for the win.
Lewiston ...... 001 310 000—5 11 2
Salem .......... 000 001 010—2 6 0
Martin and Garay; Rayle, McFarlane (4) Briggs (8) and Ogden.

Calgary and Edmonton unscheduled

Sports Notes
[from Tri-City Herald, May 13, 1954]
Among the strange things that happened on the dismal road trip just concluded by our Tri-City Braves were the two cases of Jack (Beanie) Warren waltzling [sic] along one base unaided by a putout, fielder's choice, error, fly ball, sacrifice or pass ball.
In other words, Beanie up and did what should be impossible. He stole two bases. They weren't the tail–end-of–a-double-steal variety but full-fledged on–your-own-make–or-break steals.
Naturally, such a feat calls for some explanation since Warren just doesn’t go around stealing bases. But as Beanie puts it, “Off those pitchers, anyone could steal.”
“They would go into their windup like this,” Warren said giving a slow motion imitation of a pitcher winding up. “Heck, about the time they reached here,” he said, rearing back as if to pitch, “I was halfway to second.”
“Even Nick Pesut could stolen off them.”
Which brings up the comment from Jim Grant [former Tri-City Herald columnist] that “if that isn’t the pot calling the kettle black.”
Maybe, though, Beanie was inspired to the base-stealing effort (plus that slick double-play the other night) by the prospect of having eight more mouths to feed. The Warren family, just counting the human members alone, is already the largest one eating from a Tri-City ballplayers’ pay check.
But in addition, the Warrens have a dog which some the players contend has more rights around the house than the kids. Anyhow, the dog, a pound-of-hamburger-everyday boxer, gave birth to eight pups the morning before the Spokane opener.
Beanie had to rout out of bed at 6 a.m. to play the role of midwife.
The Pups Are On Sale
The player doesn’t intend to keep that raft of dogs, naturally, because a ballplayer could hardly afford to feed nine boxers even on Dick Greco’s salary. As of now, Warren is in the dog-selling market.
Cash customers can pick one put but they can’t pick the dog up right away. Beanie says it will take six weeks before they are weaned.
The Warren dog pup re-population story naturally had to be told the re-told by the master until Jack had just about talked the legs off half the Tri-City players.
Now when Jack mentions the dogs, and his 6 a.m. awakening, the rest of his teammates groan.
* * *
This Shouldn’t Happen To A Manager

Somehow it would seem a man should be able to make a cartoon out of this story. The way it goes as told by Tri-City playing manager Edo Vanni is this:
“When I was at Vancouver, I had to stop at the hospital to get some medical treatment. (Edo, you remember, was laid low by a blow in the back just before leaving here.) Anyhow, I got out to the park late and was listening to the game on the car radio as I drove out.
“Just as I pulled up along side the park, the radio announcer said Dick Greco was at bat. Then came one of those Back! Back1 Back! It’s a home run!
“I looked up and saw the ball sail over the fence. It landed about 50 feet from my car.”

The Sports Herald
[Vancouver News-Herald, May 13, 1954]
Somewhat like Dizzy Dean, the Great One, the Capilanos have a pitcher named John Cordell who was born in West Plains, Missouri on December 6, 1915, January 14, 1911 or March 5, 1909.
In talks about age, and things like that, John stands upon his constitutional right to be bewilderingly mysterious. Fact of the matter is that John admits to being 38, has been accused of being 46, but either way you take it, he throws a baseball mightily hard and possesses one of the league’s better optical illusion. For an old gaffer, that is.
Despite the accusations that he is about ready for a pine box, Cordell remains quite spry—and immensely proud of his ability to do what most any young athlete can. Recently, it was suggested that Cordell’s job with the Capilanos consisted of “mopping up”—pitching the last couple of innings for other pitchers who can’t quite make the route.
Cordell is quite definite that this is no so.
“Why, just a year ago I pitched both ends of a doubleheader for Spokane,” he boasted. “I won both of ‘em and was saying for more work after that, too.”
However, it remains a fact that John will do most of his labor this year saving ball games for his comrades.
Too much will power, no fun
That he will eventually earn his money a hundred percent has been proven in baseball`s history of relief pitchers, like Johnny Murphy, Hugh Casey, Joe Page and Joe Black.
As a matter of fact, the Bill Brenner-John Cordell relations are not at all unlike the old Lefty Gomez-Murphy arrangement. Brenner allowed that he will probably win 20 games for himself this year, just as long as Cordell`s arm stays healthy.
In spring training, we found john a most interesting fellow. He has been most everywhere on this continent, and he has done most everything in the time as a means of obtaining the three squares a day for the missus and himself. Once, he was saying, he owned a night club. Another time, it was a tavern. And still later, a liquor store, because in Missouri, vendors operate under private enterprise.
The liquor store was his best, a veritable gold mine.
He might be operating that store yet, except for one thing.
“A guy had to have will power in that business,” Cordell winked. “Well, the day I found my will power getting too doggone strong, I decided it was time to quit and have a little fun.”
Slight mistake in addition
One story goes that out of all these deals, Cordell became a very wealthy man. When he had sold out his last business interest, John counted his pennies and announced to his wife, “Honey, we got it made. We’ll tour the world and live the life of ease from now on.”
The tour lasted until he reached Yakima, which is a little apple village in Washington and which owned a franchise in the Western International baseball league. The year was 1951.
There Cordell ran into one of his old baseball cronies, Harlond Clift, and being how Clift was managing the Bears and Cordell had over-estimated his pennies a little, in no time at all, John was back at his favorite hobby of throwing baseballs.
Cordell will never forget that ball club, because, he maintains, it was probably the worst club in organized baseball.
“We were so far behind everybody else,” John remembered, “that we weren’t even a good second in the California State League.”
The press, mind you, had a delightful time needling “Mr. Clift and his aborigines. John was staying that the day that Yakima announced his signing, the papers came out with headlines saying:
“Yakima signs John Cordell—next week Abner Doubleday makes a comeback.”
Really, John, who is from Missouri now?

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