My plan was for us to get to Philly as soon as possible, because I had a good hunch Sherman, Little Me, and our former, faster car would be there for the big showdown with his Dodgers, but Sheila had other ideas. She’s suddenly become a nervous nellie about the Pirates, realizing they had some meaning in her buried past, and taking in their Sunday doubleheader with the Cards was her way of “facing her fears” or some junk. So go ahead, babe, knock yourself out…
DR. GROSSINGER’S GAME REPORT:
Perhaps it is due to recent failure against Ray Burris and the win-challenged Cubs, but the Pirates and their attentive throng of fans appear less confident today than is often reported. I will have to pay special attention to this.
1:18 p.m. Second baseman Stennett twists ankle running out grounder, will be in recovery for eight days. All fears realized.
1:37 p.m. John Urrea, St. Louis right-thrower who has defeated them twice already this season, faces James Rooker in first game, takes early advantage with 2-run Templeton single and 3-run parabola of a home run by Hernandez. 5-0 Cardinals top of 3rd.
1:45 p.m. David Parker, he of the “Cobra” moniker, re-galvanizes locals with his own 3-run missle. 5-3 Cardinals, after three.
2:33 p.m. Oliver produces solitary 4-bagger leading off 6th, 5-4 Cardinals and crowd decibel level rising.
3:11 p.m. Reitz double, Tyson (reaching base fourth straight time) single add insurance digit in 9th, sink gathering into further depression. Beer sales increase. 6-4 Cardinals.
3:21 p.m. Urrea vanquishes Taveras and Parker with two subjects aboard to complete contest. I locate cold 16-ounce cup of Rolling Rock for further study.
* * *
3:45 p.m. Second game commences. Pitching duties assigned to notable mediocrities Dierker and Forster. Dierker issues home run to Stennett replacement Fregosi to begin Pirate 1st. Scoring ground out produces 2-0 lead for them. Elation.
4:16 p.m. In succession, Cruz triple, Brock double, Reitz and Tyson singles tie game up in 3rd, Templeton single puts Forster behind 3-2. Shock and dismay.
4:32 p.m. Doubles by Moreno, Parker and Oliver and 2-base gaffe by Reitz put Pirates back up 5-3. Guarded joy.
4:40 p.m. Consecutive home runs from Hernandez and Simmons begin the 4th, tie game 5-5. Widespread anger and guttural language, some panic.
4:47 p.m. Omar Moreno solo home run puts Pirates back ahead. Just plain shock.
5:10 p.m. Forster expunged from mound in flurry of walks, doubles and Oliver field mistake. Grant Jackson takes over but it is 9-6 Cardinals when wreckage cleared.
5:22 p.m. Parker single and Oliver homer off new pitcher Metzger tighten gap to 9-8. I locate another cold cup of beer for more intensive study.
6:17 p.m. Following two remarkably scoreless innings, Robinson single and Ott home run put Pirates in front 10-9 after seven. Success!
6:40 p.m. Jackson replaced by Gossage after one-out single in top of 8th. Goose inexplicably awful, throws wild pitch, allows two singles and Brock double and Cardinals go back up 11-10. YOU SUC—excuse me, what I mean is that misery is rampant.
6:48 p.m. Three straight fly outs to Cruz comprise Pirate 8th. Tekulve slinks up to pitching hill for us.
7:14 p.m. After “Teke” throws scoreless top of 9th, Robinson turns about Metzger fastball and blasts it into upper deck for tie game. BOH-YEAH!!!!
7:35 p.m. Humiliation, ghastly and unexpected, pervades the emptying stadium. Teke walks two, gives Reitz a single and Reitz a 3-run home run in the top of the 10th. Schultz finishes us off, and it is incomprehensible that five different Pirates swatting homers cannot produce victory. All feels lost, and I dread facing my peers. I gather that good sleep and ample coffee tomorrow will be my only remedy.
—Dr. Sheila H. Grossinger
STL 005 000 001 – 6 7 1
PIT 003 001 000 – 4 7 1
W-Urrea L-Rooker, HRS: Hernandez, Parker, Oliver GWRBI-Templeton
STL 032 400 020 4 -15 17 1
PIT 231 200 201 0 – 11 17 1
W-Schultz L-Tekulve HRS: Hernandez, Simmons, Reitz, Fregosi, Moreno, Oliver, Ott, Robinson GWRBI-Brock
The Buzz Line
at PHILLIES 4-10-1, DODGERS 1-6-1
In a sweet ace-off, Carlton outpitches Hooton and the Phils take over first place again despite Schmidt going out for the series in his first at bat and Bob Boone getting hurt for 12 games later. Bull Luzinski takes control with two singles and a homer, knocking home three of the four Phillie runs. If any team can withstand injuries, it’s them.
CUBS 6-12-1, at REDS 3-9-0
at REDS 6-13-1, CUBS 5-11-2 (12 innings)
Little’s been going right for the Reds lately, and the day gets off to a yucky start as Ray Knight, filling in for injured Morgan, gets knocked out himself for eight days and forces the immortal Rick Auerbach to take over at second. Naturally, despite a homer and double by Foster in Game One, the Cubs pull out another shocking win. Gary Nolan gets a spot start in the nightcap against Lamp, falls behind early 3-0 but gets yanked for Soto, who holds the fort until five straight single Cincy runs put them back in the game. Foster homers yet again (36 now), but it’s Geronimo’s clutch double in the 12th that scores the winner off Paul Reuschel.
ASTROS 5-13-0, at EXPOS 2-6-3
ASTROS 8-11-1, at EXPOS 5-9-0 (10 innings)
Houston gets off the mat with a Richard CG and exciting extra inning tilt, won with seven straight base runners and five runs off the suddenly mortal Kerrigan in the 10th.
at INDIANS 4-9-0, ROYALS 1-3-1
at INDIANS 15-15-0, ROYALS 5-5-1
Believe it or else, K.C. was 10-2 against the Tribe before today. First Eckersley gets revenge for his missed no-hitter by mowing down the Royals (and Leonard) in the opener. Then Thornton and Carty go batistic off Doug Bird and Mingori in the nightcap, and K.C. is knocked out of first.
at YANKEES 7-10-0, WHITE SOX 2-6-0
at YANKEES 7-11-0, WHITE SOX 1-5-0
Uh-oh. Guess who’s arrived at dinner? Strong outings from Gullett and Gil Patterson (!), incredible relief work by Ken Clay and three taters in each game put the Yanks half a game out, the closest they’ve been since opening week.
RANGERS 7-17-1, at RED SOX 1-9-1
at RED SOX 6-9-0, RANGERS 5-10-2
If not for a Campaneris error leading to a Boomer Scott 3-run blast and four unearned runs in the 6th inning of the nightcap, New York would be in first place. Alexander throws the CG in the opener as Wise, Stanley and Willoughby get bombed. Winning at Fenway is suddenly a struggle for Boston.
at ORIOLES 4-8-0, TWINS 3-9-0
TWINS 8-10-2, at ORIOLES 5-10-1
A sister-kisser in Birdland, as McGregor pitches his team off a cliff in Game Two after Palmer bests Goltz in the opener. The talented Mr. Goltz, by the way, has lost six of his last seven as the Twins continue their free-fall into the valley of resurrected Indians.
American League through Sunday, July 13
National League through Sunday, July 13