Poor Mr. Flanagan…

KANSAS CITY—Hi again, it’s Carlton. I’m glad I got a baseball team to root for, but I wish it wasn’t the Orioles because they don’t hit enough and I like to watch hitting, which is why I rooted for the Red Sox before Uncle Buzz said they were his. I don’t care how much he looks like me, sometimes Uncle Buzz just isn’t nice. At least Aunt Sheila buys me toys when she isn’t asking me weird questions.

I sure had fun with Uncle Lester at the Orioles and Royals game tonight, though. This is the place with the big fountains, and it was real hot out again but they told me I couldn’t go swimming in it which I thought was stupid.

At least the Orioles looked good for a while this time. Mr. Bumbry got a walk and Mr. Kelly hit a home run off the big pole in right field, and this happened against Mr. Leonard, who is a real good pitcher. Uncle Lester got me the biggest blue cotton candy I ever had, and I was so busy eating it I missed that nothing happened in the game for four innings. Mr. Flanagan, who seems to have the worstest luck of anybody on the Orioles, was making every Royals batter look dumb. What was bad was that Mr. Leonard stopped giving up anything after the 1st inning, so the Orioles couldn’t make the score get bigger.

Then it was the 6th inning, which was when Uncle Lester got me a popcorn box that was so delicious it didn’t even need butter on top. It was also when the sleepy Royals got up from their nap. Mr. Cowens and Mr. Brett got loud singles, and Mr. McRae walked. This brought up their extra catcher Mr. Wathan, who Lester told me had a batting number of .376 and had 48 runs which he batted over the plate in only 197 times that he hit, which I think is pretty good. Just like I thought he would, he hit the ball super far over Mr. Bumbry’s head for a big triple and now the dumb Orioles were losing.

Uncle Lester tired to make me feel better by getting me a big soda but I just was kind of sick then and thought maybe I would even go pukie. But then the baseball came to the rescue like it does a lot. A Mr. Dauer double and Mr. Kiko Garcia single started the 8th inning, and Mr. Bumbry hit a far enough fly ball to tie the game 3-3.

The Royals REALLY wanted to win, though, because the Red Sox were winning against the White Sox, and Mr. McRae took care of that with a scary triple with two outs. The little Orioles manager with grey hair whose name I always forget then walked Mr. Wathan on purpose to let Mr. Joe Zdeb hit, but Mr. Flanagan must have pooped in his pants because he bounced a pitch past the catcher right then and the winning run scored.

I don’t think I want to see any more Orioles games until they’re winning more. I don’t even care how much snacks or toys I get. Somebody is going to have to stay on the bus with me. Bye.

BAL 200 000 010 – 3 7 0
K.C. 000 003 01x – 4 8 0

W-Leonard L-Flanagan SV-Littell HR: Kelly

The Buzz Line

RED SOX 5-15-0, at WHITE SOX 0-6-2
Like the little man said, Fergie Jenkins puts the White Sox to sleep and all of a sudden has a 12-3 record, by far the best on the team. Boston hits into two killer DPs, leaves 17 men on base against Wood, Dal Canton, Hamilton, LaGrow and Johnson—and still wins easy. Which is what happens when you have your Thang back.

at RANGERS 6-11-0, YANKEES 5-8-0
And when you totally lose your Thang, like Don Gullett has, nothing can help you win. In his last two starts he gave up nine runs of a 12-run inning to K.C., then a 5-run inning and 3-run inning to the White Sox. Today the Rangers start the day with a walk, two singles, double and John Ellis homer, good for five instant runs for Blyleven. Naturally, Gullett settles down after that, but the Yanks’ game-long struggle to get even falls short.

INDIANS 4-8-1, at TWINS 3-9-1 (10 innings)
Gotta hand it to the Tribe. Missing four regulars, they pull out an extra inning win on the road with singles by Pruitt and Blanks and keep from falling back into last.

at CUBS 5-11-1, PIRATES 2-7-1
What the what? Rick Reuschel gives the Bucs nothing but two solo shots to Bill Robinson, while the Cubbies jump all over Rooker and shock the first-placers. Have to say the Friendly Confiners have been rather pesky of late.

at CARDS 8-11-1, REDS 5-7-0
While St. Louis has been looking like the team that won 12 in a row in June. Foster cranks out homers 45 and 46 off John Denny, but Cincy is basically helpless until scoring four in the 9th. Paul Moskau runs for cover in the 4th, when the Cards shellack him for all eight of their runs.

PHILLIES 2-6-0, at ASTROS 0-4-2
Star Wars flops at the box office, Arabs dance with Israelis, and Larry Christenson pitches a shutout. I suppose it being in the Astrodome has a lot to do with it, but Houston has had trouble swatting flies lately. The real tragedy is that two singles and three walks in the 1st is how J. R. Richard loses. He whiffs 12 the rest of the way.

at DODGERS 4-8-0, EXPOS 3-8-0
Sweaty win for L.A. Tommy John is given an early 3-0 lead, but you all know how lefties fare against them Expos. Two in the 5th, a Carter homer in the 6th, and after a go-ahead double by Smith, righty Sosa has to come on to get the last eight Expos, all in a row.

American League through Friday, August 1

Boston 60 44 .577
New York 58 46 .558 2
Kansas City 59 47 .557 2
Texas 56 50 .528 5
Baltimore 51 53 .490 9
Chicago 47 58 .448 13.5
Cleveland 45 60 .429 15.5
Minnesota 43 61 .413 17

National League through Friday, August 1

Pittsburgh 62 45 .579
Philadelphia 60 45 .571 1
Cincinnati 60 47 .561 2
Los Angeles 57 46 .553 3
St. Louis 55 48 .534 5
Houston 46 60 .434 15.5
Montreal 43 61 .413 17.5
Chicago 36 67 .350 24


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6 responses to “Poor Mr. Flanagan…

  1. I’ve had three Blue Moon beers and one deli sandwich: roast beef with baby swiss cheese. Somehow, life doesn’t seem so bad anymore. Let’s go Cub-a-roos, let’s finish with a flourish gents!!! Mush!!

  2. Surprised I haven’t been fired yet. Please, take me out of my misery.

    • Dear Mr. Franks:

      You are not to blame for the generally rank play of the Cubs. Forced to play in a yard friendly enough to make any hurler cry, and facing nothing but the best clubs in the National League, you have been burdened with a managing assignment that even John McGraw would chunk. I understand your unquenchable desire to be terminated, but like your cohorts, like the thin cardboard athletes you are placing your faith in, and like the eccentric characters populating this narrative, we are all imprisoned in this twilight baseball zone until the October leaves of 1977 begin to fall.

      In the meantime, Hermie, you’ve won six out of your last nine, so buck up!

      • I’m guessing The Talented Mr. Franks has been frantically searching his stack for cards with the names “McCovey” or “Mays” on them, only to find an endless series of “Mitterwald” and “Cardenal” littering his desk. Hey, I’d be clinically depressed in that case, too.

        • Though the aforementioned “Cardenal” is rarely let near the tabletop field. Hmm. How cocksure is the farmer whose prize hens rule the league roost!

  3. I’m wondering if Rooks walked home after that loss to the North Siders.

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