Monday, 17 March 2008

Friday, June 19, 1953

Lewiston .... 31 16 .660 —
Vancouver ... 30 20 .600 2½
Salem ....... 26 21 .553 5
Edmonton .... 30 25 .545 5
Victoria .... 24 27 .471 9
Spokane ..... 23 26 .469 9
Wenatchee ... 23 28 .451 10
Tri-City .... 21 27 .433 10½
Calgary ..... 22 29 .431 11
Yakima ...... 22 34 .393 13½

VANCOUVER — Vancouver Capilanos had a shutout going until the ninth inning Friday night as they defeated Calgary Stampeders 3-1 in the second game of a Western International League baseball doubleheader.
Caps edged the Calgarians 3-2 in the opener, the third time in as many nights that they won in extra innings. They've now won four straight, three in a row over the Stamps.
Carl Gunnarson's hopes of a shutout were ended in the ninth when pinch-hitter Don Bricker singled to centre and Bob Bonebrake followed up with a triple.
First Game
Calgary ............ 000 200 00—2 4 1
Vancouver ........ 000 110 01—3 8 1
Stites and Lillard; Roberts and Lundberg.
Second Game
Calgary ............... 000 000 001—1 5 1
Vancouver .......... 000 210 00x—3 5 0
Hittner and Lillard; Gunnarson and Lundberg.

VICTORIA — Bill Prior cooled off Edmonton Eskimos here Friday night as he pitched Victoria Tyees to a 2-1 Western International League triumph and handed rookie Pat Utley his first defeat in WIL play.
Utley struck out 10 men in the first four innings and allowed but four hits in the six innings he pitched. However, the 19-year-old righthander, who had scored shutout victories in both his previous starts, got away to a rocky start as he yielded a base on balls and three singles after two were out in the first inning to give Tyees both their tallies.
Edmonton threatened again in the ninth with two men on but Prior whiffed Whitey Thompson for the fourth time to end the game.
After the game, Eskimos manager Bob Sturgeon launched a protest against Umpire John Luksik.
First, he protested the decision of Luksik for not allowing pinch hitter Bob Aprea sufficient time to get in the batter's box in the seventh inning.
He also complained that the umpire failed to inform the official scorekeeper that the remainder of the game was being played under protest.
Prior threw two strikes before Aprea got in the box.
Edmonton .... 010 000 000—1 7 0
Victoria ....... 200 000 00x—2 6 1
Utley, Tisnerat (7) and Morgan; Prior and Martin.

KENNEWICK — Jess Dobernic struck out 11 men, four of them in the seventh inning, and limited Yakima to five hits as Tri-City won a Western International League baseball game, 5-2.
Dobernic's four strikeouts in one inning were necessary when Nick Pesut, Tri-City catcher, dropped the ball on the third strike, slipped on the grass in attempting to recover it and never got the toss away.
Yakima .......... 000 010 001—2 5 1
Tri-City ......... 000 020 21x—5 9 2
Flinn, Schaening (7), Young (8) and Weatherwax; Dobernic and Pesut.

Wenatchee at Spokane, postponed, rain.
Salem at Lewiston, postponed, rain.

Stampeders Around $12,000 in Hole
CALGARY, June 19— Harold Cundal, vice-president of Calgary Stampeders, said Thursday the Western International League baseball club is "in the neighborhood of $12,000 in the hole on operating costs."
Cundal blamed inclement weather for the majority of the club's difficulties in its first WIL season and said the team could finish the season in the black with any kind of break.

today’s fanfare
It’s a Lonesome Old Town When Joe Phan’s Not Around

By Eric Whitehead
[Vancouver Province, June 20, 1953]
The local firm of Soriano, Storey and Company, Baseball Retailers, est. 1953, is having a rough ride.
This was to have been a banner opening year for the firm that replaced R.P. Brown, Inc., just this spring. Soriano, the senior partner, had gone so far as to predict a modest dividend for the shareholders.
So on Thursday, the staggering total of 204 paid customers huddled forlornly in the vast solitude of the stadium to register the last ultimate thud in the steady skid down the attendance ladder. Never before had the peanut and hot dog vendors and assorted park hirelings felt such a dangerous sense of power; for the first time in local ball history, they almost out-numbered the fans.
One careless snarl from a customer biting into a cold hot dog (?) might have resulted in a bloody massacre.
What’s wrong here? Who threw the overalls in Mr. Soriano’s chowder?
As one self-appointed seer now employed by a local publishing house put it the other night, following the 12-0 debacle against Edmonton: “Yah. It’s a lousy ball club.”
A large gentleman within earshot of this inspired analysis reddened visibly around the collar and gently addressed the critic.
But Who Stays Up There?
”You, sir,” murmured Mr. Soriano, with all the polite restraint of a gentleman who is well-versed in the importance of press relations, “are a front-runner.”
And Mr. S. had a point.
On two occasions, Opening Day, (Now known as T—for Tragic—Day) and that recent Edmonton affair, the Caps have looked horrendous. On either of those two nights, a quiz-master would have been hard to describe them as either animal, vegetable or mineral.
But in between—the lads have served up an efficient, oft-brilliant brand of ball at least good enough to keep them consistently in the top three of a ten-team league.
A Case of Stage Fright
As the fates would have it, the locals have played of their finest games in front of their smallest audiences. The minute a fair-and-warmer crowd ambles in off Little Mountain, somebody tilts the Storey machine and errors light up all over the landscape. This of course is an exaggeration of fact, but the point is that most of the hard-luck losses have come before the biggest crowds.
One thing we notice and like about the Caps front office. Never any alibis. Soriano is frankly hoping to improve his ball club. At the same time, we can name about five other teams in the league that would very much like to improve their outfits to the current Capilanos level.
Manager Storey, who runs the club afield, and Soriano, who runs it from the front office, have been twin victims of that annual springtime imponderable: What’ll he hit this year, I hope?
The ‘he’ of course applies to any and every ballplayer who is supposed to hit for a living.
Hot Days Our Happy Days
On past record, which is the only semi-reliable gauge of a ballplayer’s talents, fellows like Jim Wert, K Chorlton and Don Lundberg should be clicking merrily along at a combined net of about 300 points above their current marks.
That difference alone would probably be enough to shoot our club to the top of the WIL.
But as it is—we’re just three and a half games behind Bill Brenner’s front-running Lewiston, which in itself is a pretty solid indication of the soundness of the local club, despite the absence of consistent clutch hitting.
If this club is “lousy” as quoth the seer of this poor man’s Fleet Street, then whither, prithee, shall we go for adjectives to describe the eight bottom-most members of the circuit?
We’ll still go along with the Caps as 1953 pennant-winners who will, like the crowds, improve with the weather, which is the real culprit in the Strange Case of the Forsaken Box Office.
Even the Yankees can’t beat the weatherman.

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