THE MCHIGN DALY
Thursday, August 1, 1974
Late rally tips Wheels
By ROGER ROSSITER Wheels at Rynearson Stadium
Special To The Daily last night.
YPSILANTI-Rookie quarter- THE AMERICANS marched
backs are not supposed to win 67 yards to score the game win-
professional football games. It ning touchdown with just 2:12
seems, however, that no une left on the scoreboard clock.
told that overused cliche to the Reed completed three passes
Birmingham Americans' fresh- in the five-play drive, tossing to
man signalcaller. Al Jenkins for 14, Ted Powell
Matt Reed, who was substi- for 32, and Dennis Homan for
tuting for the injured George 12 in setting up his scaring
Mira, took command when the gIllp.
going got tough and rolled 11 Trailing 11-7 entering the fi-
yards around right end to give nal quarter, the Wheels put 11
the Birmingham Americans a points on the board, Jue ex-
21-18 victory over the Detroit clsively to the loping stride of
Major League Standings
AMERICAN LEAGUE NATIONAL LEAGUE
W Pct. W L Pct. OGB
w I Pet, Gn Philadelphia 53 50 .513 -
SCleveland 52 4 5 15 2' Ptsbugh 054.81 3f
llaltimore 52 50 .5 0 3 Montreal 49 53 .40 3y/.
Milwankee 51 52 .495 4! New York 45 56 .446 7
Newroirk 51 .485 6, Chicago West42 59 .416 10
west Los Angeles 67 37 .644 -
Oakland 61 43 .587 - Cincinnati 63 43 .594 5
Kansas City 51 50 .505 $ " I Houston 55 50 .524 12
Texas 53 52 .505 8', Atlanta 54 51 .514 13'
Chicago 51 51 .500 9 san Francisco 48 58 .453 20
Mlinnesota 50 54 .481 11 San Diego 44 62 .415 24
California 41, 64 .390 20I Yesterday's Results
Yesterday's Results Montreal 7, Chicago 4, 1st
Kansas City 3, Minnesota 2kMonteal 4, Chicago 0, 2nd
Texs' 7, Oakland 6 Ptishnergh 8, New York 3
Balimnore 7. Cleveland 4 Atlanta 9, San Francisco 0
Boston 5, Detroit 4 Cincinnati 4, Hoauston I
New acrk 4, Milwaukee : St. Louis 9, Philadelphia 8
Caitornia 14, Chicago 4 Los Angeles at San Diego, inc.
Today's Games Chicago (Stone 3-3 and LaRoche
Detroit (Fryman 4-6) at Milwau- 1-3) at New York (Apodaca 3-5 and
kee (Slaton 8-11), night. Sadecki 4-4), 2, twi-night,
New York (Pagan 1-2) at Cleve- Montreal (MeAnally 6-12) at
a land (J. Perry 10-8), night. Philadelphia (Twitchell 5-3), night.
Baltimore (Garland 3-4) at Bos- St. Louis (MeGlothen 12-7) at
ton (Lee 11-9), night. Pittsburgh (Brett 12-7), night.
Texas (Brown 8-8) at Kansas San Diego (Spilner 5-6) at Los
City (Dal Canton 5-4), night. Angeles (Downing 3-5 or Zahn 1-1),
California (Figueroa 1-2) at Min- night.
neslota (Corbin 6-3), night. Cincinnati (C. Carroll 5-3) at San
Oakland (Holtzman 1l-11) at Francisco (Caldweli 9-3), night.
Chicago (Bahnsen 8-12), night. Only games scheduled.
running back Jesse Mimms.
Mimms' electrifying 55 - yard
gallop down the west sideline
gave the Wheels a 15-14 ad-
On Detroit's next possession,
he raced around right end down
the opposite sideline ill the
way from the Detroit 1') so
Birmingham's 26. The 64-yard
jaunt set up Eric G'ithrie's
knuckleballing 29- yard f i e 1 d
goal. But the 18-14 advantage
and the Wheels' first win were
pitt asunder by Reed's heroics.
DETROIT scored the game's
first touchdown in the second
quarter when quarterback Bub-
ha Wyche found tight end Brii-e
Cullen all alone in the middle
of the Americans' secondary
with a 10-yard scoring strike.
Earl Sark got Birmingham on
the board at the half with a
27-yard field goal 14 seconds
before the gun.
Birmingham took its first lead,
11-7, in the third quarter when
Carl Bartles plunged for a one-
vard score and Reed hit Paul
Robinson for the action point.
The strike was set up by two
Reed completions and a 15-yard
penalty on the Wheels' Clyde
Glossen for clotheslining Homan
when he was out-of-bounds.
"OUR GUYS just never gate
un," said victorious coach Jack
Gotta. "What more can you say
Despite his team's inability to
stop Birmingham's w i n . i n g
drive, Wheels' coach Dan Bais-
ture announced, "We played
good defense." Good compared
to past performances, perhaps,
but failures in the secondary
led Boisture to moan, 'We're
still I o o k i n g for defensive
DENNIS MACHOLTZ (80), tight end for the Detroit Wheels,
is wrestled down after a short gain by Cecil Leonard and
AT LONG LAST, almost everyone
agrees that the time has come to
overhaul the Detroit Tigers. Even Jim
Campbell and Ralph Houk - who sac-
rificed what little was left of their vet-
erans' market value to shoot for a divi-
sion title this year - have admitted as
So, even if the Bengals pull a New
York Mets trick and run off a long win-
ning streak to take it all, you can bet a
lot of Detroit ballplayers will be either
on other clubs or in Sun City by this
time next summer.
Almost everyone is aware of the
brilliant possibilities such a change-
over offers. The Evansville farm club
has some kids who look like they
might become bona-fide m a j o r
leaguers. Some of them are in line to
replace still-valuable players, who can
be peddled to other clubs in exchange
for talent which the farm system
doesn't have - pitchers.
But the latter opportunity is chancy.
Ever since the Denny McLain ripoff,
other clubs have been hesitant to deal
with Jim Campbell. Even when one
points out that Texas would be much
better off if it had kept Elliott Maddox
(now hitting about .320 for New York)
there's no doubt that trade kept the Ben-
gals above .500 for 3 years.
Tiger trades haven't always worked
out, though. In fact, a pretty respectable
list containing some good players can
be worked up, showing players the
Tigers dealt for who didn't come
Only two of these players had gen-
uinely awful records in Detroit. One
was clearly a victim of circumstances
he could not control. The only thing.
they have in common is that they
didn't perform the role the Tigers ex-
Tiger deals flop
pected of them when the deal for them
Needless to say, if next winter's swaps
bring similar players to Tigerland, dis-
aster will follow.
AARON ROBINSON came from the
White Sox, in exchange for Billy Pierce,
to fill a hole the late-1940s Tigers created
in their lineup when they foolishly sent
Birdie Tebbetts to Boston. He came
billed as a lefthander with good power
(ideal for Briggs Stadium) who could do
the job behind the plate.
Today's he's remembered mainly be-
cause Billy Pierce became great, and
made the Tigers look like fools. He's
also remembered for a defensive lapse
that might have cost the 1950 club a
But, more to the point, he didn't reach
the fences the way a left-handed slugger
is supposed to in Detroit - 22 HR in 2
years - and when he started 1951 at a
.207 clip, the Tigers let him go.
WALT DROPO was a key to the in-
famous 1952 George Kell deal. A big
right-handed slugger, he had a fantastic
rookie year in 1950, batting .322 with 34
home runs in friendly Fenway Park.
After a slump in 1951, the BoSox were
willing to deal, and because the Bengals
needed a power hitter, the move was
Dropo hit close to his lifetime-aver-
age .270 in Detroit, but except for 1952,
he couldn't reach the seats consistent-
ly. Defensively, he made some cynics
harken to the glory years of Dale Alex-
JOHNNY PESKY had been a star
with the Red Sox. A good defensive
player, he was also invaluable at getting
on base ahead of Ted Williams and Vern
Stephens, who drove him home con-
Unfortunately, things just didn't work
that way when he came over in the Kell
deal. Pesky batted .254 in 1952 - well
below his .307 lifetime average - and
even though he hit .292 the next year, the
Bengals didn't have the sticks to bring
BILLY MARTIN came from Kansas
City in 1958 to offer the "inspirational
leadership" the Tigers thought they
needed for a pennant run, and proved for
all time that a leader is worthless with-
out some capable troops to command.
The Bengals dealt him away the follow-
AURELIO RODRIGUEZ. Yes, Aurelio
Rodriguez. When the Tigers got him in
the McLain deal, they expected him to
develop as a hitter with good power.
The only power he shows much of
is that which kills rallies. He lacks bat
control, and can't lay off bad pitches.
In Eddie Brinkman, Detroit has all the
good-field-no-hit players it needs. Minor-
league batting phenom Danny Meyer has
converted to third this year, and you
can guess which popular Mexican ball-
player is going on the trading block next
AL SIMMONS, DON DEMETER and
LARRY DOBY probably wouldn't have
made a bad combination.
Doby - the first black player in the
American -League - had great years
with Cleveland, but he went over the
hill during the winter of 1958-59. The
Tigers acquired him for - you guessed
it - the 1959 season, and it took him less.
than a month to prove he was through.
Demeter was a competant enough
outfielder in the mid-60s, but the Tig-
ers made the mistake of thinking he'd
be as valuable as Jim Bunning, who
ran off 4 consecutive 19-game win
seasons for Philadelphia.
Al Simmons' is probably the strangest
case of all. His stats for the 1936 Tigers
were excellent - .327, 13 HR and 112
RBI. But he didn't do was he was sup-
posed to do: guarantee Detroit a pen-
No way could you consider it his fault.
As the Tigers knew when they got Sim-
mons from the White Sox, the Yankees
were going to bring up Joe Dimaggio,
who proved to be as good as the West
Coast scouts claimed.
Hank Greenberg missed all but 12
games in 1936 with a broken wrist.
- Pitchers Alvin Crowder and Eldon
Auker, who accounted for 34 wins in
1935, won half that number in 1936.
Mickey Cochrane went into semi-retire-
No wonder the Yanks won the pennant
by 19 games that year. Al Simmons
spent 1937 in Washington.
RAY NARLESKI - who else? A con-
sistent winner in Cleveland, he went 4-12
with a 5.78 ERA for the '59 Bengals.
The Tigers won games for good pitch-
ers that year - Frank Lary, Don Mossi
and Bunning all garnered 17 triumphs
-but they still finished below .500. Na'
leski was the main reason they didn't
These men all were good players. The
Tigers needed them at the time they
were acquired. None of them worked out.
Jim Campbell would do well to keep
their names in mind when he picks up
his phone this fall.