1972 September

1st  Rod Carew swipes home with 2 out in the 10th inning to give the Twins a 5–4 victory over the visiting Indians. Carew will swipe home 17 times in his career, seven times stealing alone. The Twins score their first 4 runs as Darwin drives them all in on 4 hits, including 2 homers.

Mel Stottlemyre hurls a 4-hitter to stop the White Sox, 4–0.  Rookie Charlie Spikes has two hits in his ML debut, drives in a run and saves a run with a sparkling catch in right field.

The Reds edge the Expos, 1–0, in 12 innings on Johnny Bench’s single. Ross Grimsley and Clay Carroll combine on the shutout.

The Braves and Phils split a twinbill, with the Phillies taking the opener, 11-1 and the Braves answering with an 11-5 win. Larry Bowa and Tommy Hutton each have 4 hits in game 1 and Joe Lis homers in each game. Darrell Evans hits a grand slam in game 2 and Dusty Baker has a 3-run homer and 4 RBIs.

2nd  Milt Pappas of the Cubs hurls a no-hit game in beating the Padres 8–0. Pappas has a perfect game until PH Larry Stahl walks with 2 outs in the 9th inning. Pappas and C Randy Hundley both said of the pitches to Stahl, “They were so close I don’t know how Stahl could take them, but they were balls.” Pappas later commented on the plate umpire Bruce Froemming, “he had a chance to become famous as the umpire in the twelfth perfect game in baseball history, but he blew it” [Froemming will call Dennis Martinez’s perfect game in 1991]. Pappas retires former Cub Gary Jestadt to finish the game.

Rookie Dave Downs of the Phils stops the Braves, 3–0, in his first ML start.


3rd Steve Carlton shuts out the Braves 8–0 for his 8th whitewash of the season. This is the most for a Phillies’ pitcher since Alexander in 1917.

Hal McRae’s 2-run pinch homer in the 9th gives the Reds a 4–3 win over the visiting Expos.

4th  The Yankees split with the Orioles, losing 43 before winning 5–2. The split leaves the Yankees (69-61) in 4th place, just one-half game out of first place.  The Orioles (69-60) are tied with Detroit for the lead.  Andy Etchebarren’s 3-run homer in the first game, off Fritz Peterson, is the big blow while the Yankees take the nightcap behind the three hits, including a homer, of Bobby Murcer.

The Cubs top the Mets, 2–0, as Fergie Jenkins posts his 19th win.  The Cubs then drop the second game, 7–2, to Gary Gentry, who strikes out 8.

Luis Tiant (10–4) pitches his 4th straight shutout, beating the Brewers, 2–0, in the opener. Yaz’s 2-run HR accounts for the scoring. The Red Sox lose the nightcap, 6–2, as 4 former Hubmen do the damage. O’Brien and Lahoud homer, Boomer Scott has 3 hits and Brett is the winner.

5th  Felix Milan is 5-for-5 in the Braves’ 5–3 win over the Astros.

6th  Behind Mickey Lolich’s 20th win, Detroit beats the Orioles in Baltimore 4–3 in the tight pennant race. Lolich had failed in 5 previous outings to win his 20th.

7th  Tommy Harper and Rico Petrocelli club 3-run homers to poser the Red Sox to a 10–4 win over the Yankees and move into first place in the AL East ahead of the Tigers. Siebert adds a homer as he wins his 12th game.

The Astros score 4 times in the 13th, on homers by Watson and Metzger, to defeat the Giants, 5–1. Don Wilson goes all the way for the win.

San Diego sweeps a pair from the first-place Reds, winning 2-0 behind Mike Caldwell, then 5-1 as Nate Colbert hits a grand slam. Nate leads the NL in homers with 37.

8thIn the first game of a doubleheader with the Cardinals, the Mets win 8–2 as John Milner collects a homer, double, and three singles in five at-bats.  Milner had another HR in the 1st inning of game 2, but the Cards turn around, using a pair of homers in the 13th to win, 9–4.

Beating the Phils 4–3, Fergie Jenkins wins his 20th, the 6th consecutive year he’s reached the mark. This ties the Cubs club record set by Three Finger Brown, 1906-11. Billy Williams 2-run HR in the 6th ties it at 3–3, and a pair of doubles in the 8th wins it.

After 4 straight shutouts, Luis Tiant is finally scored upon, but the Red Sox ace still beats the Yankees, 4–2. Tiant completed 40 straight shutout innings before the Yanks scored in the 5th.

Mickey Lolich wins his 20th game of the year as Detroit tips the Orioles, 4–3. The Tigers jump on Jim Palmer (18-8) for 3 runs in the 1st inning. Seelbach pitches the last 3 1/3 innings of shutout ball for the save.

9th  Gaylord Perry, who twice won 20+ games with the Giants, becomes the first pitcher in 48 years to win 20 in both leagues as he defeats the Red Sox, 2–1, in 10 innings. Cleveland 3B Nettles homers with one out in the 10th off Gary Peters.  The last hurler to win 20 in each league was Carl Mays, who did it with the Yankees, in 1921, and the Reds, in 1924.

10th  A round-robin tournament, replacing the Junior WS, begins, with Hawaii defeating a team of Caribbean all-stars 6–2. The series proves to be a financial and artistic failure.

11th  Dick Allen’s club record 34th HR gives the White Sox their only 2 runs as they beat KC, 2–1. Hovely’s HR in the 9th is the Royals only score.

12th  Johnny Bench hits a 1st inning grand slam off rookie Jimmy Freeman and drives in 5 runs in the Reds 7-5 decision over the Braves.  Denny McLain gives up 3 runs in the 9th to take the loss, his last appearance in the majors. The Reds now lead the NL West by 7.5 games.

13th  Frank Howard, who is not playing regularly for the Tigers, hits a 3-run homer off Dave McNally of the Orioles for a Detroit victory. It is his 13th career fourbagger off his favorite pitcher. He had hit one with the Rangers on July 18th, and 11 with the Senators 1965-1971. Boog Powell has a grand slam for the O’s, 6-5 losers in the tight AL East race. Boston leads with a Detroit a game behind, with the Orioles and Yankees a game and a half back.

The Reds Johnny Bench hits a 2-run homer in the bottom of the 10th to beat the Braves, 8–6. He hit a grand slam yesterday in a 7–5 win over Atlanta, and he’ll have 11 homers and 33 ribbies for September.

14th  The Padres stake Steve Arlin to a 5–0 lead in the 3rd, but the Astros score 6 in their half of the frame and go on to win, 10–6. For Arlin it is his 20th loss of the year, topping his ML high 19 losses in 1971.

15th  Steve Carlton beats the Expos 5–3, raising his record to 24-9. The rest of the Phillies pitchers have a combined record of 26-80. Carlton scatters 10 hits while striking out 4.

In a record-setting effort, the Reds and Padres combine for 28 strikeouts for a 9 inning game, the Padres winning 1–0, on Cito Gaston’s 4th inning homer. Winning P Fred Norman strikes out 15, while Don Gullett fans 11 Pads.  Pedro Borbon notches the other 2. Norman (9-9) notches his last win of the season and will finish as the only pitcher in history with fewer than 10 wins in a season with 6 shutouts (Ewell Blackwell was close in 1946 with 5 shutouts in 9 wins; in one win, he was ahead 2-0 when he was relieved after 8 1/3 IP).

Reggie Smith has a homer and an RBI double in the 9th as the Red Sox edge the visiting Indians, 4-3. The loss drops New York to 4th place, 2 1/2 games behind 1st-place Boston.

At Wrigley, Jose Cardenal clubs a 2-run HR in the 1st, Billy Williams adds his 30th homer of the year and Jim Hick hits a grand slam as the Cubs maul the Mets, 9-3.

16th  Expo P Balor Moore extends his scoreless-inning streak to 25 before serving up a 7th-inning 3-run HR to lose to the Phillies 3–1. The HR is the first for Phils rookie Mike Schmidt.

At Wrigley, Glenn Beckert sets a dubious since tied (by Todd Helton in 1998) ML and NL record by stranding 12 base runners but his Cubs beat the Mets, 18–5. The Cubs jump first, knocking out Tom Seaver in just 2 1/3 innings. After Seaver loads the bases on walks in the 3rd, pitcher Burt Hooton hits a grand slam. Chicago garners 15 walks, with Elrod Hendricks walking 5 straight times, a NL record.

Joe Coleman wins his 17th game and Dick McAuliffe clouts 2 HRs and drives in 4 to lead Detroit to a 6–2 win in Milwaukee. This is Detroit’s 5th win in a row and keeps them a percentage point behind Boston.

Following the Reds-Padres game at Riverfront Stadium, “This is your Life” host Ralph Edwards surprises Johnny Bench as the catcher is the featured guest on the program. With cameras rolling, Bench’s family and friends appear as Edwards narrates the show.

19th  In a 15-inning contest with Chicago, the A’s set an extra-inning record by using 30 players, including 6 second baseman and 10 pinch hitters. Together the two clubs use 51 players, another record.  Oakland still loses, 8–7.

The Twins Cesar Tovar hits for the cycle as Minnesota beats Texas, 5–3.

20th  The Braves score all their runs in the 2nd inning in routing the Astros 13–6. Dusty Baker has a good day at the office, doubling twice and hitting a 3-run HR. Felix Millan chips in with a single and  triple and 5 RBIs. The 13 runs in the 2nd inning ties a NL record (set in 1877, tied in 1890) and ties the AL record (1956). It also ties the NL mark of most runs in the 2nd inning by two teams.

At Anaheim, Royals pitcher Steve Busby loses a grand slam when 1B ump John Rice signals that he had called time before the gopher pitch.  John Mayberry had already hit a grand slam in the inning. Busby (2-0) wins, 9-2, pitching his second complete game following his debut win on September 8. Leo Cardenas tallies one of the two Angels runs, giving him 25 for the year. The 25 runs scored in 150 games is a ML record. The NL low is 32 runs scored by Mike Doolin in 1913 (151 games).

At Wrigley, Cubs pitcher Milt Pappas (15-7) wins his 200th career game, beating the Expos, 6-2. Pappas is the first pitcher to win 200 games without having a 20-win season. After the game, Expos manager Gene Mauch challenges Jose Cardenal to fight him, claiming the Cubs infielder called him a “bad name.” Nothing ensues. (as noted by historian John Snyder).

In Boston, the Red Sox sweep a pair from the Orioles, 9-1 and 4-0. Marty Pattin tops 20-game winner Jim Palmer in the opener and Luis Tiant twirls the shutout in game 2. It is his 6th shutout in his last 8 starts, all wins. The Sox lead the Tigers by a game.

Oh of the Yomiuri Giants hits a HR to set a new Japanese record of 7 HRs in 7 consecutive games. Dale Long in 1956 hit in 8 straight, and several players have hit in 6.

21st  The Pirates clinch the NL East title with a 6–2 victory over the Mets.

The AL East is a virtual tie as Detroit’s Joe Coleman posts his 18th win, a critical 10–3 defeat of first-place Boston. Coleman strikes out 10 and knocks in 3 runs.

22nd  The Reds clinch the NL West crown with a 4–3 win over the Astros in Houston. Jerry Reuss, relieving Dierker in the 1st, allows only two hits in 7 1/3 innings, but both are homers. Rose and Bench do the dinging.

23rd  Steve Yeager has a 3-run HR and drives in 4 runs as the Dodgers down the visiting Giants, 7-4.  Chris Speier provides the Giants scoring with a grand slam.

24th  In the nightcap of a twinbill sweep over the Indians, Sparky Lyle sets an AL record and tying the ML mark by saving his 35th game. The Yanks win, 8–3, after gaining a 5–4 win in the opener when they score 2 unearned runs on 5 Indian errors in the 11th. Munson steals 2B by kicking the ball out of Frank Duffy’s glove and going to 3B on the error. Duffy then boots a grounder and throws wildly for two more E’s. Catcher Gerry Moses then picks up a squibber and fires over 1B and RF Del Unser’s throw to the plate is over Moses’ head for error 5.

     At Fenway, the Red Sox whip division rival Detroit, 7-2, behind Luis Tiant’s 10th win in a row. Reggie Smith and Rico Petrocelli each club homers for Boston, now leading Detroit by a game with New York and Baltimore close behind.

Tom Seaver wins his 19th, beating the Phils and Steve Carlton, 2–1 on an unearned run. Tommie Agee for the Mets and Robinson for the Quakers both homer.

26th  The Pirates Steve Blass wins his 19th, defeating the Phillies, 5–1. Billy Champion, relieving in the 2nd, takes his 11th straight defeat.

At Fenway, Boston takes a 4-0 lead after 2 innings, but loses to the Brewers, 6-4. The loss leaves the Bosox in first by a half game over Detroit.

27th  A’s relief star Darold Knowles breaks his thumb, costing him a chance to pitch in the WS. Knowles finishes the season with a 5-1 record, 11 saves, and a 1.36 ERA.

Trailing 5–1, the Tigers score 3 in the 8th and 2 in the 9th to beat the Yankees and Sparky Lyle.

The Dodgers Don Sutton shuts out San Diego, 2–0, handing Steve Arlin his NL-high 21st loss of the year. Arlin also led the NL in losses last year with 19. It’s Sutton’s 9th shutout of the year to tie Nolan Ryan for the most in the ML, and his 3rd whitewash in a row.

Detroit scores 3 in the 8th and 2 in the 9th to edge the visiting Yankees, 6-5, Detroit stays a half game in back of Boston in the AL east with New York and Baltimore 3.5 games back.

Rich Reuschel scatters 4 hits and Billy Williams hits a grand slam in the Cubs 6-run 5th as visiting Chicago beats the Expos, 8-0.

28th  Steve Carlton becomes the second pitcher in NL history to top 300 strikeouts in a season as he K’s 11 in a 2–1 win over the Pirates. Carlton gives up an unearned run and drives in the tying run.

At Tiger Stadium, Yankees reliever Lindy McDaniel hits a go-ahead homer in the 9thinning off Detroit starter Mickey Lolich, but then gives up the tying run in the bottom of the frame. Lolich goes 12 innings before losing to Sparky Lyle, 3-2.  For McDaniel, it is his third career homer, spacing them out over three decades: he homered in 1957 for the Cardinals, and for the Cubs in 1963.  No Yankee pitcher will homer the rest of the century.

29th  Tom Seaver allows 2 singles to win his 20th as the Mets edge the Pirates, 1–0. The Mets score in the 9th off starter Nels Briles.

At Baltimore, Luis Tiant wins his 11th straight as Boston tops the Orioles, 4-2. Jim Palmer (21-10) takes the loss. Boston leads the AL East by 1.5 games over Detroit.

30th  During a 5–0 win over the Mets, the Pirates’ Roberto Clemente doubles off Jon Matlack in the 4th inning for his 3,000th—and final—career hit in regular-season play. Dock Ellis allows 1 hit in 6 innings for the win.

The Tigers take their third in a row from Milwaukee as John Hiller throws a 5-hitter. Aurelio Rodriguez’s 3-run HR is the margin in the 5–1 win. The Tigers now return home to face the Red Sox in a 3-game series that will determine which team wins the East.