Thursday, November 22, 2007

Monday, June 25, 1951

Vancouver ... 47 20 .701 —
Spokane ..... 42 25 .627 5
Salem ....... 33 33 .500 13½
Tri-City .... 31 34 .477 15
Wenatchee ... 31 36 .463 16
Tacoma ...... 30 37 .448 17
Victoria .... 27 40 .403 20
Yaikma ...... 24 40 .375 21½

VICTORIA [Colonist, June 26, 1951]—Jim Hedgecock last night made Bob Sturgeon’s managerial debut a success by spacing six hits over as many innings to blank Tri-City Braves, 2-0, in the opener of a four-game series and a nine-game home stand for the Victoria Athletics.
A crowd of approximately 1,000 fans turned out to see the season’s fastest game—one hour, 32 minutes—and one of the best played.
Beaten, 1-0, in 10 innings last Thursday, Hedgecock didn’t have much trouble with the injury-riddled Braves. And when he did run into what might have been the start of trouble, his teammates pulled him out with a steady, alert defensive performance.
Sturgeon made few line-up changes but he did come up with what looks as if it might be the best infield the A’s have presented all season. He returned Bill Dunn to shortstop, left Don Pries at third and installed himself at second base. The new combination clicked off two double plays, although Sturgeon and Dunn each made an error, it looked solid.
Sturgeon installed Bob White, who has been hitting well, in left field, keeping Hal Jackson at first base despite the presense of a southpaw on the opposing mound. He also dropped himself to eighth place in the batting order with Bill Dunn taking over the lead-off spot and Bob White batting third, just ahead of brother Bill. Milt Martin, who has compensated for the loss of Lilio Marcucci with a hitting splurge, was moved up to sixth place. He batted in the winning run and made two hits.
In gaining his seventh win and second shutout, Hedgecock was in hot water only in the sixth inning, when he led off by walking Cy Greenlaw and Al Spaeter followed with a single. He helped himself out of the jam by picking Spaeter off first with Vic Buccola set to bunt the runners along, then struck out Buccola. Dunn booted Neil Bryant’s ground ball but the dangerous Clint Cameron lined sharply to Jackson.
Martin helped in the first inning when he flagged Spaeter trying to steal after a lead-off base on balls. In the fourth, it was Marv Diercks with a fine leaping catch against the fence on Bryant’s bid for extra bases. The Jackson-Dunn double play, with the tag necessary at second, in the seventh was also smartly executed.
The clubs will meet in the second game of the series which will be played tonight with John Tierney of the A’s opposing Joe Nicholas on the mound.
Tri-City ..... 000 000 000—0 6 1
Victoria ..... 010 000 10x—2 8 2
Greenlaw and Pesut; Hedgecock and Martin.

VANCOUVER [Dan Ekman, Sun, June 26]—Poise and ability to get the ball across being requisites of good pitching, young Billy Whyte should be a cinch for a worthwhile baseball career.
The stocky hometown boy showed both those qualities in an important five-minute performance at Capilano Stadium, and they were enough to salt away another Western International League win for the Capilanos.
Whyte came on in relief for another hometown boy, Sandy Robertson, in the ninth inning of the Caps’ series opener against Yakima. At the time, Sandy still had a two-run working margin, but he looked like a poor bet to keep it.
The visiting Bears had scored four runs off Robertson in the eighth, and their leadoff man in the ninth, Bill Andering, had just drawn a walk. Up came Dick Briskey, who had already homered and doubled in three previous trips. When Robertson got behind a two-and-nothing count, manager Schuster got him out of there.
Any incoming pitcher would be excused a few fluttering nerve ends, but Whyte behaved for all the world like a 10-year veteran.
He forced the dangerous Briskey to pop up, then wrapped it up with help from a smoothly functioning infield as pinch hitter Gene Gaviglio hit into a double play. After two hours and 15 minutes, it was all over as simply as that.
The win went to Robertson, of course, and once again Sandy had to scramble for it. He walked eight, saw five extra-base hits disappear up against or over the fence, and in fact had an easy evening only against Bill Brenner, of all people.
The Cap alumnus who is currently trying to manage Yakima out of the WIL cellar went hitless in five tries. And his personal failure was matched by that of his pitching nominees, Rick Ericson and Larry Powell. Between them, they gave up 12 hits and seven walks, most of them in damaging clusters.
Ericson left in the midst of the Caps’ big third inning, during which 10 men batted. He had allowed three hits, and walked two.
Powell came on to stop the nonsense, but proceeded to issue three more walks. By the time John Ritchey flied out in his second appearance of the inning, Vancouver had four runs. They added another here and there as the game progressed, and until Robertson fell among heavy shellfire in the eighth, it looked like a routine win.
RECAPPING—Jimmy Moore made his first appearance in the local lineup, and after last night, he’ll be hard to get out of there. He batted a perfect three-for-three and covered well at third base—an unfamiliar position. To make room for Jim in the lineup, pinch-playing Gordy Brunswick shared right field duties with Charlie Mead. And to make room for him on the roster, pitcher Don Tisnerat was placed on the disabled list. But somebody will have to go soon. . . . Dick Briskey’s home run cleared the left field wall roughly about 340 feet away. . . That’s the favorite territory for base-cleaners so far at the new stadium. . . .With Moore back, Reno Cheso should get a little of the catching experience Seattle wants him to pick up. . . Jimmy was raised as a second baseman.
Yakima ........ 001 010 040—6-11-1
Vancouver ... 004 011 20x—8-12-0
Ericson, Powell (3) and Brenner; Robertson, Whyte (9) and Ritchey.

Vancouver Pilot Out For Season
VANCOUVER, B. C. , June 26—Manager Bill Schuster of Vancouver Capilanos said last night that he probably is through as an active player this season.
The skipper of the Western International club has been hobbling around for three weeks since he collided at the plate with catcher Nick Pesut of Tri-City Braves in a game here.
He has a gimpy knee and said he thought he would have to undergo an operation for removal of the cartilage.
However, Schuster, who played at third, is fairly well fixed with reserves and his absence should not seriously cripple the W.I.L. leaders.

Spokane Plans More Seating
SPOKANE, June 25—The Spokane Indians baseball club today announced plans for a new concrete and steel grandstand that will increase the capacity of its Western International League park to around 8,000. Slightly more than 6,000 can get in now.
Owner Roy Hotchkiss said he’ll call for bids on the project as soon as government restrictions permit. Part of the proposed grandstand will be covered.

$10,000 Ball Drive Is Started
[Tri-City Herald, June 26, 1951]
The Tri-City Athletic association launched a campaign to raise $10,000 last night to “wipe the slate clean” of the indebtedness incurred in building Sanders Field, the Western International League baseball park.
The association's board of directors and principal stockholders met last night at the Tri-City Country club.
Fred Huber, president, said that “while our financial condition is sound it's time we clear the books of the debts we acquired in building the park.”
The $10,000 mark is the amount of stock which was not sold during the stock selling campaign prior to the opening of the park for professional baseball.
The association is incorporated for $100,000 but only $90,000 was sold. However, construction of the park and it's facilities cost the association $100,000. “We have delayed this matter long enough,” Huber said. “It's time to wipe the slate clean.”
Stockholders pledged to raise the money in $1,000 units with the drive to start immediately.”

TACOMA, June 26 — Vancouver's Dick Sinovic remains the big man with the stick in the Western International league, it was revealed in batting averages released today from the office of Robert B. Abel, W-I president.
Sinovic's willow mark in games through Sunday was .381, off two points from 3 week ago, but still comfortably ahead of the runner-up figure posted by teammate, John Ritchey, who climbed 22 poinfs to .361 by means of a l3-for-26 performance in eight games.
In third place was Len Neal of Wenatchee, up eight points to .358.
Sinovic added nine runs-batted-in during the week to retain the league lead in that department with 62, as against the runner-up total of 55 posted by Spokane's Ken Richardson, who moved past Reno Cheso of Vancouver. Cheso was a close third with 54.
Will Hafey, reportedly due to rejoin the Wenatchee Chiefs shortly after taking time out to bring his family north from California, has been out of action for more than a week but is still the home run leader with 9. Tied for second place, each with seven, are Vic Buccola for Tri-City, Bill White of Victoria and Richardson.
The leaders:
Sinovic, Van. ... 65 260 99 62 5 .381
Ritchey, Van. ... 62 194 70 35 5 .361
Neal, Wen. ...... 61 221 79 28 3 .358
Vanni, Spo. ..... 67 295 104 34 1 .353
Moran, Tac. ..... 67 268 94 50 1 .351
Pries, Vic. ..... 65 245 85 26 3 .347
Kovenz, Tac. .... 62 232 79 31 4 .341
Peterson, T-C ... 57 210 71 45 3 .338
Chorlton, Tac. .. 28 107 38 17 1 .336
Buccola, T-C .... 64 240 79 41 7 .325
Mesner, Spo. .... 56 213 70 40 3 .329
Palmer, Wen. .... 53 189 61 31 0 .323

Sinovic Slaps Down a Lot of Theories

By DAN EKMAN [Vancouver Sun, June 26, 1951]
When you’re batting .381 and fielding like a frightened gazelle, it’s tough to find fault with the baseball way of life. But since somebody asked him, there ARE a couple of things Dick Sinovic would like to out straight:
1. He doesn’t feel he got a poor deal with Seattle;
2. He wasn’t mad at anyone but himself last season; and
3. He’d love a try at the Coast League—with Seattle or any other club.
The clever Capilano centre-fielder has suddenly come up with his best year in baseball, and of course the second-guessers won’t take the performance on its merits.
Before the 1951 season was a month old, they had Dick doing better because he was at last free from the toils of that old ogre, Bill Brenner, or because he wanted to make Seattle look foolish, or because he was resigned to a career in Class B baseball.
But you’ve got Sinovic’s word that it just isn’t so—any of it. “I’ve got no beefs,” he insists. “All I want to do is keep on hitting. And, of course, I hope we win the pennant, if only because I’ve never played on a pennant winner in my life.”
Those theories on the reasons for his comeback from a so-so 1950 season are quickly destroyed by cold logic.
On his trials with Seattle, Dick says, “Paul Richards gave me a good shot last year. But I wasn’t hitting, and when I hurt my arm at Hollywood. I cost the club a game. This year, I had a bad ankle when I reported; I knew Hornsby wouldn’t keep me, so I wasn’t disappointed.”
Of his “feud” with former manager Brenner: “That’s plain silly. Bill’s one of my best friends and I played just as hard for him as I’m playing this year for Bill Schuster.
“The difference is that last year I was sort of disgusted with myself for not making it at Seattle and I just couldn’t get going. This year I came back happy and luckily started going good right away.”
And of course, he’d love another shot at the Coast League. “If you can’t go to the majors, that’s the league to play in,” he says. “The pay is good, the parks are nice, and the weather’s a whole lot cooler than it is in the east.”
Dick’s an almost certain cinch to get his wish. The Caps now own him outright, and as the potential WIL batting champion, he’s worth several players, not to mention a neat parcel of banknotes.
Whatever happens, though, he’s still convinced that the baseball life is hard to neat. “You can advance so far so fast in this game,” he points out. “Look at Gil McDougall [sic]—two years ago he was with Victoria, now he’s with the Yankees.
“That’s the thing you hardly ever see except in the movies. But it CAN happen in baseball, and I want to give it every chance to happen to me.”

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