Storming Norman Cash; and a Tigers sweep

It’s 1961 in the American League. Ah, yes the year of Roger Maris and his 61 homers. And teammate Mickey Mantle hit 54 long balls. But let’s head to the upper Midwest for this tale. The poor Detroit Tigers. They won 101 games that season and went nowhere. No Wild Card to save them as they were buried by the Yankees machine.

Also lost in this disappointment was the special campaign of Tigers first baseman, Norman Cash. Let’s go to the second game of doubleheader on July 23 between the Tigers and Royals. It ended with the Tigers winning 17-14. Yes, a football score.

Cash made himself known in the third inning when he doubled in a run. He batted again in the next inning and singled in another run. In the fifth, he raked another double good for 2 more RBIs. Cash finished his day with 5 RBIs. He scored 4 runs and had 4 hits.

The number 61 was key in his best season in the Majors. He hit .361 that season to obviously win the batting title. Put it this way, this guy played 17 years in the big leagues and never again hit .300. He scored 119 runs and yes never scored 100 runs again. Cash hit 41 homers and drove in 132 runs. Neither of those great stats led the league. Cash also added 8 triples. He also stole a career-high 11 bases. One of the great baseball seasons lost because of the stinking Yankees.

And what a disaster of a Tigers series for our Orioles. One loss was particularly hurtful. That came on Tuesday night. Ubaldo Jimenez had spun a gem at the Tigers. And our offense did almost nothing to help him secure a win. All we had was one Adam Jones homer to brag about.

That worked until two outs in the ninth inning. Heck, I’ve put it on twitter that Tommy Hunter is not the answer as the closer. He’s a heck of an eighth-inning pitcher (like Pedro Strop was). And then he implodes and gives up back to back homers. Yes, I understand that Miguel Cabrera is a magical hitter but it’s the closer’s job to get him out.

I still think Zach Britton would make a good closer. His control isn’t super but that 94 miles per hour sinker is tough to hit.

I didn’t even notice it but we also dropped the first game of the series by the same score of 4-1. We were in the game until the 8th when Ian Kinsler homered. Bud Norris pitched well. Steve Clevenger, subbing for the injured Matt Wieters,  had 3 hits.

The final game of the series saw the Orioles show some heart. Got home to see them being blown out by the score of 6-0. And then out of nowhere, with the great Justin Verlander pitching, the Birds mounted a comeback. Sure prospect Kevin Gausman was knocked around. But he didn’t give up any doubles, triples and homers. And then in the fifth, we scored 5 runs. The big blow was Nellie Cruz’s three-run blast. We got swept away by the score of 7-5.


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Brian Hradsky

The owner of MSB, I created this website while in college and it has never died.

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