Al Keefer – Jim Bunning made it a repeat performance as he tossed his 2nd no hitter of the season both vs. the Mexicali Mallards. Jim was heard to say, "I sure like this place. I think I may ask my manager to trade me to Mexicali."
After that comment a big laugh was heard from owner, Dan Warren.
Bunning faced only 28 batters in his quest for his 2nd no-no of the season, that a walk to the light hitting Billy Cowan, while striking out 9 Mallards. The Pilots won easily behind Bunning, 7-0.
Don Mahley – Fortney’s Jim Merritt pitched a perfect game against Cleveland.
Jim McEneaney – For the 4th time in the post season LI has tottered on the brink of elimination but somehow managed to hang on. Frank Robinson (15 RBI, 5HR) was named post season MVP, edging Matty Alou (.370; 13 hits vs. FG, 20 overall) and Gaylord Perry (3 wins). Sincere congratulations to both Don Mahley and Bob Wood for truly exceptional series matchups. And to all TCBA-Y members, thanks for a super season! What a great addition AIM has been to our games.
Craig Shifflett – Righthander Stan Williams of the Wilderness Wraiths etched his name forever in the TCBA record books tossing a complete game no hitter against the Cleveland Spiders this afternoon. Stan faced 30 Spiders walking only three, striking out 6. Even the red-hot Maury Wills took an 0-4 with 2 strikeouts. Congrats Stan on becoming a legend.
Hyde Park, NY - The excitement began at an early hour outside Miller-Wells Park today, as a pivotal series between the Vita-Men and the Bergen Barflies was about to begin. Although the first pitch for tonight's doubleheader wasn't scheduled until 8:05 pm, young fans were dancing around on Crum Elbow Road by 10 in the morning, hoping to catch a lucky glimpse of their Vita favorite. Seventeen year old Duane Kuiper was there, holding the hand of his 2 year old cousin, Tommy Hinzo.
"I play ball for the high school team," said Kuiper, "but I skipped school and practice today. I'm hoping I get a chance to talk with Glenn Beckert. I'm a secondbaseman, and he's my favorite."
"Me, too!" said little Tommy.
The buzz on the street among the more astute fans, however, had to do with the news that Hyde Park centerfielder, and the league's leading hitter at .373, would not start in either of tonight's games. The story regarding Kaline was originally written by a beat reporter from South Starrucca. This reporter spoke with Kaline last night on the train ride back from Newmarket.
"I'm tired," said Kaline. "I suppose I could play if I had to, but there's a real chance that I would get hurt and be out for an extended period. That would be a bad scenario. I told Red that I can pinch hit, if he needs me, but I really have to rest my legs if I'm gonna make it through the season."
Red Braun was concerned, but understanding. "Al's our main weapon. We are a different team when he's not in there, but I gotta go with what he says. If he says he's tired, then he's tired."
So the Vita-Men will try to win without their star, at least in the first two games. Braun would not reveal who would start in place of Kaline, but it is almost surely to be a platoon of Len Gabrielson and Ron Davis.
As concerned as everyone was about Kaline, stories swirled all over the radio about Boomer Scott and Willie Stargell also asking to sit. While neither player would deny the story, Red Braun made his intentions very plain.
"We absolutely can NOT have three of our stars sitting out at the same time. Might as well just forfeit if that's the case. Pops and Boomer will be in the line-up come game time. You can bank on that."
The visiting Barflies have seemingly come out of nowhere to re-enter the pennant chase, winning 13 in a row at one point. An early season pick as a contender, Bergen started slowly, traded off pitcher Jim Merritt, and seemed destined for also-ran status. But winning becomes contagious, and the Barflies are riding high and surging ever-upward toward the division leading Long Islanders.
"Our fans have been so focused on Long Island that I think they forgot about Bergen," said Hyde Park Marketing Director, Brainze Braun. "Believe me, no one in the VitaMen organization has forgotten about the Barflies."
Although the first half has been a very successful one for Hyde Park, front office personnel privately admit that they didn't really expect to be deep in a pennant race this season. No one will talk about it publicly, but the general expectation still had the VitaMen two years away from a serious run.
“The second half schedule really favors Long Island. For every tough series we have lined up, they've got an easy one. And this Bergen squad is on such a roll, we could very easily end up well back in third place," continued Braun, as she shuffled through ticket requests for tonight's game. "However it turns out, the excitement has been great. Our fans are really getting into it. Tonight's been sold out for weeks, and I'm still getting requests by the dozens."
Outside the park, little Tommy Hinzo ran around in circles, whooping like an Indian. "Me, too!" he shouted. "Me, too!"