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Old 12-03-2019, 10:37 PM   #781
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Jamison Bash... perfect name for a member of the 300-club.
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:07 PM   #782
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pauwoo View Post
Jamison Bash... perfect name for a member of the 300-club.
Exactly!
Not one of my favorite players in the WPK (although he did help the Brewers to their best regular season record in 1971- though couldn't help them get the championship that year), but certainly one of my favorite names. A more apt name in the WPK I cannot think of.
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Old 12-04-2019, 12:14 AM   #783
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Spencer Wilson to miss the rest of 1975 season

Former Brewer Spencer Wilson has been having a fine season as the starting catcher for the El Paso Dawgs. But that all ended today when it was announced that he would have to sit out the rest of the season after having suffered torn ankle ligaments in a home plate collision in a loss against the Washington Night Train.
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On the very same day the most recent tallies of the voting for the All-Star game showed Wilson in a solid second place at catcher for the SJL. But now, even if the hard working backstop should get named to his first All-Star squad, he will not see action in the mid-summer spectacle.
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Old 12-05-2019, 09:49 PM   #784
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Week 11, June 22-28, 1975

Brewers record: 6-1 (week), 47-24, 1st place, MGL (season).

The final full week of June was a good one for the Brewers.

June 22-23, versus Charlotte: 13-4, 8-6.
The Brewers get the 3-game sweep of Charlotte. In the middle game of the series, Joe McPhillips once again shines, going 2 for 4 with 2 runs and 4 RBI and hit his 7th HR of the season. A good start for Harry Lyerly (4-3, 3.12), who gave up 4 runs (1 earned) on 7 hits over 8 innings.
The Brewers nearly blew an 8-0 lead in the final game of the series but were able to hold on for the 8-6 win. Guess who the Player of the Game was? Yup, that's right. Joe McPhillips- who went 2 for 4 with 2 runs and 3 RBI, hitting his 10th double and 8th HR. Cheol-han Lee (9-2, 3.30) got the win, giving up 3 runs (2 earned) on 9 hits over 7 2/3rds. Tim Shore came in to get the final 2 outs for his 4th save as a Brewer. Zacarias Martell (.347/.418/.520) continues his fine season, hitting his 5th HR of 1975 and driving in 3 runs.

June 24-26, at Baltimore: 5-1, 2-4, 5-0.

The first game against the Lords in Baltimore is another great start from team captain, Matt Helm. Helm (6-1, 2.44) didn't give up any runs in his 8 innings pitched, allowing just 6 hits, striking out 5 and walking 1. The two big hitting stars for the Brewers in this one were RodRod (.365/.412/.506), who went 2 for 5, hitting his 3rd HR and driving in 4 runs, and Chad Brown (.294/.329/.362), who was 4 for 4 and hit his 8th double.
In the middle game of the series the Brewers suffered their only loss of the week. Erik Sloan (4-3, 3.48) wasn't horrible- he gave up 4 runs (3 earned) on 8 hits in 7 innings pitched. But he didn't get much run support and was saddled with the loss. Sepi Koller, recently called up from AAA Chester, picked up his first hit as a big leaguer and then followed it up with his second, which was also his first double.
The Brewers got a shutout in the third game of the series, Steve Green (7-2, 3.59) combining with two relievers Jeremy Walker and Tim Shore to keep the Lords off the board. Green gave up just 4 hits in 7 2/3rds innings pitched, striking out 7 and walking 2. Sepi Koller hit his first WPK homer as a pinch-hitter in the 9th inning. And Joe Willemse (.308/.333/.406) hit his first homer of the year and went 2 for 5 in the game.

June 27-28, at Phoenix: 5-3, 10-4.

Brewer slugger (no, just kidding, he's really mostly a singles hitter) Joe Willemse was the big star in game 1 at Phoenix. Willemse came into the game as a pinch-hitter in the 8th inning with the bases loaded and 2 outs. The hope was that the slap-hitting contact specialist Willemse might sneak a grounder through the infield to score at least 1 run. The Brewers were trailing 3-1 at the time and were just looking to get things back to even. Instead Willemse watched the first pitch pass by for ball 1 and then liked what he saw with the next pitch. He sent it sailing into left-center stands, some 442 feet away, for a Grand Slam, giving the Brewers a lead they would not relinquish. His big clutch hit helped give Sadahige Kawasaki (9-3, 2.71) another victory. Sadahige gave up 3 runs on 6 hits in 7 2/3rds IP. Jeremy Walker pitched the final inning and a third for his 4th save.
In the second game of the series, the last game of the week, Joe McPhillilps (.326/.420/.637) was at it again, going 3 for 5 with 2 runs, 2 RBI, and hit his 9th HR and 11th double. Harry Lyerly (5-3, 3.11) picked up another win, giving up 2 runs on 5 hits in 6 IP. And Sepi Koller (.462/.579/.846), after a bit of a slow start, has been hitting well, and went 3 for 4 with 3 runs scored and hit his 2nd double in the win. And how about Zacarias Martell? Martell (.342/.415/.522) was 3 for 5 in this one, drove in 3 runs, hit his 12th double and 1st triple of 1975.

And I didn't even mention Andrew Kennedy and barely mentioned Rodrigo "RodRod" Rodriguez, who both had very good weeks and remain probably the best pure hitters on the team.

Notes from around the league: The Columbus Whalers cooled off just a bit but still have an impressive 51-20 record, leading the SJL over 2nd place Boston (45-26) by 6 games. The reigning SJL champs, Jacksonville, sit in 3rd place but with an uninspiring 39-31 record, 11 1/2 games off the pace. What about the two expansion clubs? The Chicago Fire sit in 10th place (out of 12) with a 30-40 record that isn't really that bad for a first year club. But the woeful Houston Cavaliers have now lost 10 straight and have a WPK worst 18-53 record.
The Brewers have won 8 of their last 10 but unfortunately for them the same is true of the Brooklyn Aces (44-27), who remain just 3 games back in 2nd place. Baltimore is 38-32, in 3rd place, 8 1/2 back. And the L.A. Spinners, at 38-33, are 9 out.
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Old 12-05-2019, 11:39 PM   #785
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Vargas suffers another injury during rehab stint

Oscar Vargas, Denver's longtime utility infielder and defensive specialist, has a reputation for great durability.
But after having to go on the IL earlier this season with a concussion, he once again got injured while getting back into game shape on a rehab assignment down at AAA Chester. He returns to the IL with a strained back and expected to be out another 2 weeks.
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There is a big debate raging in the Denver front office about whether to try to keep Vargas at the end of the year, when is eligible for free agency. He is a sentimental favorite in many corners of the organization, and not just for his terrific glove or his aw,shucks humility, or for his many clutch hits over the years, or even because he has so faithfully served the team for so long (he joined the team mid-season 1968) in such an important but unheralded role. Well, I guess he is a favorite for all of those reasons combined, really.
And the feeling is that his defense has seen very little decline, if any, over the years. And while he has never been a very good contact hitter, when he does connect he can do damage and he also is good at drawing walks at the most opportune of times. But there is this competing concern that his foot speed seems much diminished after years where he was clearly an above average runner and base stealer. And there are those in the front office who hint that this is just a pre-curser to some likely steep declines across the board soon.
Plus, with the emergence of Joe Willemse these past few years, Vargas is expendable. Nobody wants to use that word, but it's the undeniable truth.

And this latest injury is certainly not helping those in the keep Vargas camp.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:13 AM   #786
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June's Batters of the Month

The Pittsburgh Roadrunners 24-year old left fielder Matt Santoro had a fine rookie season in 1974, in spite of leading the league in strikeouts.
But his sophomore season is looking even better so far and he good results brought him the June Batter of the Month honors in the SJL.
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And though he started the month on the IL and didn't return to the Brewers lineup until the 10th of June, reigning MGL MVP Joe McPhillips was today named the MGL Batter of the Month.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:22 AM   #787
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June Pitchers of the Month

What's another Pitcher of the Month award when you are on your way to the Hall of Fame? (This is Jamel McNeil's 5th Pitcher of the Month honor of his career, to go with 6 Reliever of the Year awards, 10 All-Star selections, and 2 championship rings.)
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Interestingly, both of June's Pitcher of the Month award recipients are relievers as San Francisco's 25-year old rookie closer, Mike Ryan, got the honors in the MGL.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:27 AM   #788
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June's Rookies of the Month

For the second time this season (he also won in May), Philadelphia's 28-year old Taiwanese import, second baseman Xiao-mei Mah, wins the SJL Rookie of the Month honors.
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And in the MGL, the Pitcher of the Month is also the Rookie of the Month.
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Old Yesterday, 04:07 PM   #789
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Week 12, June 29-July 5, 1975

Brewers record: 2-2 (week), 49-26, 1st place, MGL (season)

NOTE: The All-Star break began on Friday, July 4th, with the All-Star game to be played tomorrow (July 5th).

June 29, 1975, at Phoenix: 4-2.
The Brewers wrap up a 3-game sweep of the Speed Devils on the road and get their 4th win in a row. This also means they finish the month of June with an impressive 20-8 record.
Another excellent start from Matt Helm (7-1, 2.45) in this one: he gives up 2 runs on 4 hits with 6 K and 2 BB in his 7 innings pitched. The bullpen is unusually solid and Tim Shore gets his 5th save as a Brewer. This offense is led, as it so often has been lately, by Rodrigo Rodriguez. RodRod (.367/.421/.531) went 2 for 3 with 2 runs scored and 1 RBI, hitting his 18th double and 4th HR of the season.

July 1-3, 1975, versus Brooklyn: 5-9, 6-8, 6-5.

The Brewers return home to take on the second place Brooklyn Aces. And the Aces came with a message for the Brewers and their fans. And that message was, don't even think about taking us lightly. We aim to win the MGL this season. And the message was delivered, loud and clear, as the Brewers barely managed to avoid being swept.

Game 1:
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This game featured a match-up between the best current pitcher in the game- Aaron McNally- and perhaps the best in the short history of the WPK thus far- Cheol-han Lee. And although McNally came into the game with a 10-1 record (though winless in his last 3 starts) and a 1.49 ERA, through 7 innings it appeared that Cheol-han and the Brewers had stepped up to the challenge, as they held a 5-0 advantage. And then things fell apart. Cheol-han gave up 4 runs in the 8th and then the bullpen came in and doused the fire with kerosene, giving up 5 9th inning runs. Tim Shore took the loss, dropping to 0-3 as a Brewer, blowing his 2nd save, and seeing his ERA rise to 11.25.

Game 2:
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The Brewers led 6-2 going into the 7th inning so naturally the Aces scored 5 runs in the 7th, all charged to starter Sadahige Kawasaki (9-4, 3.14.) The bullpen wasn't horrible but the Aces 'pen was better. Although RodRod went 4 for 4 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI and hit his 5th HR of the season, he also committed 2 costly errors in the game and was caught stealing for the 3rd time this season (in 6 tries.) Jonathan Koch also hit his 5th HR.

Game 3:
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In a back and forth game the Brewers allowed the Aces to tie things up at 5-5 in the 8th inning. (You ever have one of those moments where your instincts are telling you what you should do but you choose to ignore them? That's what happened to me here. When power-hitting left-handed hitting second baseman Greg Alwardt came up against starter Steve Green, who was just starting to tire a bit, with one out and a one run lead, I knew I should go to the 'pen. But with no fresh left-handers available and my complete lack of faith in our bullpen, I left Green in to face Alwardt. And naturally, Alwardt slammed the third pitch he saw into the left-center stands, some 444 feet away, to tie the game.) Fortunately, Ben Flynn, who is emerging as one of our more reliable bullpen arms, got out of a bit of a jam in the 9th (okay, he got some huge help from Joe McPhillilps, who threw out a runner at the plate) and then provided the walk-off infield single that won the game for the Brewers in the bottom of the frame. Flynn improves to 2-0 with a 4.05 ERA. Joe McPhillips also made a highlight reel catch at a key point earlier in the game and went 2 for 4 with a pair of doubles (13) in the game. Andrew Kennedy (.391/.419/.473) was 2 for 3 and hit his 2nd HR of the season. And backup catcher Kirk Patnode (.361/.427/.454) stayed hot, going 3 for 3 with a walk in the game.


Notes from around the league: As we enter the All-Star break, the Columbus Whalers are showing some signs of coming back to the pack but still lead the SJL with a 52-23 record, 4 games ahead of Boston (48-27.) The surging Milwaukee Cadets move into a tie with Jacksonville for 3rd place with a 41-33 record, trailing Columbus by 10 1/2 games.
After dropping 2 of 3 to Brooklyn, the Brewers now lead the Aces by just 2 games. The 3rd place Baltimore Lords are 7 1/2 games back and L.A. trails by 8 games as the only other team not trailing by double digits.
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Old Yesterday, 05:40 PM   #790
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Possible long-term extension for Joe McPhillips?

Inside sources with the Denver Brewers are hinting that big news might be announced soon regarding Joe McPhilips and the indications are that it might be regarding a long-term contract extension that could keep the MVP center fielder in Brewers purple for the rest of his career.

The rumor is that the Brewers approached the 26-year old All-Star with the intention of getting an early start on getting him inked for the 1976 season, given that he will be arbitration eligible at the end of this season. But apparently the young outfielder, who was the Brewers first round pick in the 1967 draft, #5 overall, had already made it clear to his agent that he wanted to look much farther into the future and was willing to bypass his next few years of arbitration eligibility for the security of a long-term deal.

If reports are to be trusted, the Brewers front office was very amenable to this idea and mostly were willing to meet McPhillips contract demands, though they did counter with at least one more team option towards the end of the proposed deal.
Nothing has been made official yet, but it sounds like Brewers fans will have reason to celebrate soon.
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Old Yesterday, 09:11 PM   #791
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1975 All-Star final voting and roster, SJL

Later today is the annual mid-season spectacular, the All-Star game matching the best of the Shoeless Joe League against the best of the Moonlight Graham League.

Let's take a look first at the final standings in the voting for the SJL and the All-Star game roster for that league.

The final tallies:
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It's not a surprise that Boston right fielder was the top vote getter. The 1971 SJL MVP is on pace to put up the best season of his career at age 27. It is a bit of surprise that two catchers finished higher than Erik Buonopane but this is partly a reflection of some slippage in the 28-year old San Antonio superstar's game but also the emergence of several other catchers in the game. There were some very close races here- second base for instance, where veteran star Jared Hancock barely held off a challenge from first year WPK player Xiao-mei Mah, and both left field and center field, where the simple reality is that there just really weren't any standout players. But then there was shortstop, where 24-year old Bud Lindsay blew away the competition, as could be expected from the San Antonio team captain, when he can stay healthy, which sadly is all too rare thus far in his career.

And here is the final roster for the SJL:

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Columbus and Boston, the two teams atop the SJL standings, predictably also have the most All-Stars at 6 apiece. Philadelphia and Jacksonville follow with 4 each. The expansion Chicago Fire send as their lone representative 32-year old starting pitcher Dennis Daniel. The aging and fragile knuckleballer gets his second career All-Star selection with the other one coming a decade ago (1965). And while he hasn't been bad this year, he likely only made it because someone needed to be named from his team. The same can probably be said of the hard throwing, control deficient, Chris Mazzola of the Houston Cavaliers. It is also Mazzola's second All-Star game.
Veteran closer Jamel McNeil is named to his 11th All-Star squad, the most of anyone chosen this year. A couple of other heralded veterans- starting pitcher Jake Harris and first baseman Nate Bennett, get their 9th AS nod. McNeil and Harris are pretty much sure Hall-of-Famers and Bennett, as the greatest power hitter of the early years of the WPK and a lifetime .309 hitter, is also a solid candidate. Jesus Casiano and Trevor Leach, a pair of veteran third basemen, head to their 8th All-Star game. Casiano is a sure HOF'er and Leach is still building a case at age 31. Brad Tesh is an All-Star for the 7th time and might be quietly building his own case for the Hall with 75 WAR at age 32 and still going strong. Erik Buonopane and Curtis Horah are now 6-time All-Stars, with 39-year old Jaime Schardein going to his 5th, as are Jared Hancock and Justin Vargas, two superstars in their prime.
Nine SJL All-Stars are first timers, including former Brewers Justin Bismark and Spencer Wilson (who is out with an injury) and Taiwanese import Xiao-mei Mah, who will surely see many more selections in his career.
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Old Yesterday, 09:37 PM   #792
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1975 All-Star final voting and roster, MGL

And now the final tallies in the voting for the MGL All-Star team:
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Brewer catcher Zacarias Martell got a late push from the Denver voters to overtake Lupe Ramirez as the AS starter at his position. The injured Bobby Erbakan finished third at first base. Rodrigo Rodriguez nearly caught up with Brooklyn's Greg Alwardt to be named the third base starter but fell a bit short. But Andrew Kennedy is not only going to his first All-Star game but was named as the left field starter. Josh Schaeffer has been slumping for the past few weeks and while he likely wouldn't have been named the right field starter anyway, as you will see below, this likely cost him his first All-Star appearance. Cheol-han Lee is the only Brewer who finished in the top five as a pitcher (but, as you will see below, he is not heading to the game.)

Not a surprise that Aaron McNally, the greatest WPK starting pitcher the past season and a half, was the top MGL vote getter.

And here is the squad:
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The Brooklyn Aces get the most selections with 6. Your Denver Brewers tie with the Portland Wild Things (a bit of shocker) with 5 picks. The only teams with just a single player selected were Oklahoma City and Charlotte, though the Sting representative, Jose Gutierrez is completely deserving, and the Diamond Kings lone send, Danny Denison, did finish third in the voting at shortstop and is headed to his 3rd All-Star game.

Although the significance of this fact is entirely clear, the MGL is sending fewer veterans with a great many AS games under their belts and far more first-timers (14) to the game. The player with the most AS games to his name is Brooklyn center fielder Felix Lopez, a sure HOF'er who is going to his 9th mid-season classic. San Francisco Velocity center fielder Antonio Sosa, at age 39, is headed to his 7th, as is Phoenix slugging right fielder Ju-ao Ju. (Neither, if you are wondering, is a likely HOF'er.) After that are middle infielders Chris Tobin and David Alvarez, named for the 5th time. Two starting pitchers get their 4th nod- Jesse Hartong and Mike Stagner- as does Phoenix first baseman Devin Schwisow.
Among the first timers are Denver starting pitcher Sadahige Kawasaki (the lone pitcher we are sending), third baseman Rodrigo "RodRod" Rodriguez, and, as mentioned above, Andrew Kennedy. In spite of not finishing in the top three in the voting for center field, largely due to missing quite a bit of time with an injury early in the season, Joe McPhillips is named to his 2nd straight All-Star game, and it is also Zacarias Martell's 2nd, and 2nd straight, selection.
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Old Yesterday, 10:12 PM   #793
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SJL wins 1975 WPK All-Star game

It was close early but then the SJL took over and ended up with an easy 10-3 victory in front of the partisan fans at Sunoco Field at the Old City in Philadelphia.
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As far as Brewers contributions went, the biggest impression was made by 24-year old catcher Zacarias Martell, who went 2 for 2, scored twice, hit a double, and threw out the only runner who challenged him on the base paths. He was named the #3 star of the game for his efforts.
Sadahige Kawasaki, unfortunately, was not as impressive, giving up the first 2 SJL runs in his one inning pitched.
Andrew Kennedy played the entire game and did collect 1 hit, which scored teammate Martell, but he also stranded 4 runners in the game, including hitting into a double play to end the game.
Joe McPhillips was hitless in 2 at-bats with one ending in a swinging strikeout, and RodRod was also 0 for 2.
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Old Yesterday, 11:48 PM   #794
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Velocity extend veteran left fielder Danny Sanchez

The San Francisco Velocity today announced that they had reached an agreement with their 34-year old left fielder Danny Sanchez to keep him in a Velocity uniform through the 1977 season.
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Sanchez joined the Velocity in 1969 as a Free Agent after playing his first four seasons for the Portland Wild Things. He was coming off an MVP season at the time and while he has had some fine seasons for the Velocity he has never again reached the heights of that season. He is a 6-time All-Star, but the last time he earned that distinction was 1971.
Although there are concerns about Sanchez durability, the fact is that he hasn't missed any time with injury since spending three separate stints on the IL with back stiffness during the 1972 season. Sanchez remains a decent hitter and an adequate fielder and although he has lost some foot speed over the years he remains a very savvy base-stealer and base-runner.
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There are questions about how wise an investment this is for a team struggling to rise out of the second division in the MGL even though Sanchez did agree to a drop in annual salary from his current 356K, which is 12th highest in the WPK.
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Old Today, 12:30 AM   #795
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End of the road for legendary pitcher?

Chris Hernandez was the 1971 SJL Pitcher of the Year, is a 6-time All-Star, has a WPK career record of 152-101 with an ERA of 2.93, and is 3rd in career WAR for a pitcher after only future HOF'ers Cheol-han Lee and Jake Harris.

He has been one of the most beloved players among the fans for his entire career. But at age 39 he has found himself trying to fight his way back to big leagues after signing a minor league contract with the expansion Houston Cavaliers this past off-season. And it hasn't gone well. And now even worse, he has suffered a torn UCL and is expected to be out of action for 9-10 months. But realistically, he is more likely to be out of action for eternity as a big league ballplayer.
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This almost surely means the end of Chris Hernandez distinguished career, and that is sad news for WPK fans everywhere.
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Old Today, 12:37 AM   #796
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20 game hitting streak for Jorge Gonzalez

Brewers top prospect Jorge Gonzalez continues to build a case for inclusion on the team in the 1976 season.

After doing a fine job filling in for the injured Joe McPhillips earlier in the season, Gonzalez returned to AAA Chester where he just keeps putting up great numbers.

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Old Today, 01:04 AM   #797
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McPhillips inks 10-year extension!

And there it is.
The Denver Brewers and their MVP center fielder Joe McPhillips have agreed to a deal that could keep the spark plug player in a Brewers uniform for the rest of his career, or at least close to it.
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Denver fans are ecstatic. The 26-year old is now rich. And Brewers management is pleased. Though whenever you make that long a commitment to a player there is also some apprehension. The hope is that McPhillips, having come into his own as a super star in the league the past 2 seasons, with his strong work ethic and good all around skills will be a good investment for the future. But with his all-out style of play and having shown some propensity for injury, there is also worry that they may have bit off a bit more than they will wish to chew in the future.

Still, overall, a good day to be a Denver Brewers fan. And a good day to be Joe McPhillips.
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Old Today, 01:14 AM   #798
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Pittsburgh trades Pennington to L.A.

Former Brewer starting pitcher and team captain, Abel Pennington, today returned to his original organization when he was traded by the Pittsburgh Roadrunners to the L.A. Spinners for an undistinguished minor league first baseman (a slugger, but not much else).
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Although Pennington never pitched at the big league level for L.A. it was the Spinners who originally drafted him in the 1965 Inaugural draft. He was traded by L.A. as a minor league prospect, along with starting pitcher Steve Alonso, to Denver in the summer of 1966 in exchange for veteran slugger Mark Compton and two other players.

At age 33 and with a recent history of injury issues, Pennington might not have much value left, but he is a great clubhouse influence and with a good infield behind him should have at least the occasional successful outing left in him. (And the Spinners do generally have a very good infield defensively.)

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