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The
NEVADA DUSTERS
The Story of a Major League Baseball Franchise
Oklahoma City 89ers (HOU) @ Bakersfield Bullets (NEV)
May 4-6, 1963
Evangeline Park (Bakersfield)
It was good to be back home after our disappointing (2-4) roadtrip, and good to see Juliette Baxter again, as well, even though she put me in a pretty bad spot by asking --  in front of some of the guys -- if we could do another interview/dinner. She wanted this interview to be about me and my years in baseball, considering that my birthday was coming up. This occurred before the first game of our series with the 89ers, and in the dugout prior to the second game Bob Bailey -- one of the club's chief jokesters -- showed up with a cane, saying that he and some of the others had pitched in to buy it for me as a present, since I was getting on in years. "But we can see now that you don't have any trouble getting around, Skip," said Bailey, "especially where that lady reporter is concerned." I asked Bob if he owned a pair of tweezers; he was going to need them, I said, since he'd be spending the rest of his baseball career riding the bench.


DL: Denis Menke (2b), ruptured knee ligament, 34 days. Roger Repoz (of), strained elbow ligament, 3 days.

Oklahoma City 89ers: Joe Morgan (2b), Mike White (lf), Jimmy Wynn (cf), Rusty Staub (rf), Aaron Pointer (1b), John Bateman (c), Glenn Vaughn (ss), Ernie Fazio (3b), Chris Zachary (sp)

Bakersfield 17-10     Oklahoma City 14-13

Game 1, May 3
I gave Tony Perez the nod at third base and Wes Parker at first -- both need more playing time -- and both of them came through, with Perez going 2-for-4 and Parker 2-for-5. Paul Blair performed well at the plate, too, finishing 2-for-4 with a pair of runs. We got eight hits off OC starter Chris Zachary; the problem was that we left fifteen baserunners stranded. We just couldn't get the clutch hits. The 89ers didn't have much trouble driving in runs, unfortunately. In the 2nd, with the game tied 1-1, Marcelino Lopez served up a three-run homer to Joe Morgan. Trailing 5-1 in the 4th, Lopez hit a batsman, issued a walk, and threw a wild pitch, which, along with a single by Ernie Fazio and a double by Jimmy Wynn, added three more runs to the 89ers' total. They juiced the bases in the 6th but I left Jim Roland in to see how he would handle the pressure, and he struck out Aaron Pointer to end the inning. In the 8th they loaded the bases against Clay Carroll, and Pointer singled in a pair to make it 10-2 Oklahoma City. We got a run in the 8th and another in the 9th, but that was all, and we suffered our fifth loss in seven games. Their ten runs came on nine hits, we got four runs on fourteen hits. That tells you all you need to know about why we lost this one -- poor pitching performances and no clutch hitting. Lopez has an ERA of 7.88 now -- I don't know how much longer I can justify keeping him in the rotation. He took the loss and is 0-3.
Lineup: Cardenal, Alley, Perez, Rojas, Grote, Jones, Parker, Blair, Lopez
Record: 17-11
89ers 10, Bullets 4

Game 2, May 4
The shoe was definitely on the other foot in this game. Don Pavletich clubbed a three-run homer in the 1st and our starter, Steve Hargan, made that lead stand up by allowing just three hits in his five innings of work. Jesus Alou (3-for-5 with three RBI), got an RBI single in the 5th, and Donn Clendenon (2-for-5, 2 runs, 2 RBI) hit a 6th-inning solo homer over the left field fence, while Paul Blair (2-for-5) contributed a two-run single in the same frame to make it 7-0. They made it interesting in the 7th when, trailing 7-1, Joe Morgan hit a three-run homer -- deja vu all over again -- at the expense of reliever Jim Roland. But then we blew it wide open after the 7th inning stretch with five runs on five hits. Pavletich, Blair and Rojas loaded the bases on singles and Alou knocked in a pair; then Wes Parker reached on an error to load them up again before OC reliever Don Bradey walked in not one but two runs. Finally, Clendenon singled in another run and we were up 12-4. Clay Carroll held the 89ers scoreless in the 8th and Dick Kelley did the same in the 9th. Hargan (3-2) got the win and we tallied seventeen hits in all. Clendenon logged in his 6th home run to lead the team while Pavletich collected his fourth dinger of the season. I hope to see more of this kind of hitting in the days ahead.
Lineup: Cardenal, Alley, Clendenon, Bailey, Pavletich, Blair, Rojas, Alou, Hargan
Record: 18-11
Bullets 13, 89ers 4

Game 3, May 5
Every game has a character of its own, and this was one of the most unique I'd seen in a while. I had hopes we could win the series behind the pitching of Ray Culp (3-0). Joe Morgan hit his third homer in as many games to give the 89ers a 1-0 lead in the 1st, but while Culp allowed seven more hits in his seven innings, he didn't give up another run, and struck out five in the process. We took the lead 2-1 in the bottom of the 1st thanks to RBI singles by Don Pavletich and Tony Perez, and the score did not change until the 7th. The 89ers got just one man in scoring position while Ray stood on the hill, and in the 7th we made life miserable for OC starter Conrad Cardinal. Mack Jones started it off with a solo home run. Clendenon and Bailey hit RBI singles. A fielding error by Jimmy Wynn out in center field allowed another run to score. Gene Alley hit an RBI single and Clendenon hit one over the left field fence with the bases loaded for a grand slam that gave us eleven runs on seven hits in the frame. Clay Carroll closed it out for us in the 8th and 9th. Culp got the win and enjoys a .064 ERA; Clendenon finished 3-for-3 with three runs scored, five RBI, and his seventh long ball of the year, and we'd finally won another series -- best of all, at home. Ar 19-11 we're 1.5 games ahead of the Arkansas Travelers (19-14), who've won five straight, and two games in front of the Tacoma Giants (17-13).
Lineup: Cardenal, Alley, Clendenon, Pavletich, Perez, Rojas, Alou, Blair, Culp
Record: 19-11
Bullets 13, 89ers 1

Player Stats as of May 6
1963 Batting             Team    G   AVG    AB    H  2B  3B  HR   BB    K   SB  CS    R  RBI   SLG   OBP
Alley, Gene               BAK   29  .250   104   26   2   0   1   16   18    1   0    9   17  .298  .352
Alou, Jesus               BAK   17  .212    52   11   1   0   0    1    5    0   0    4    7  .231  .226
Bailey, Bob               BAK   25  .292    89   26   4   1   2    5   17    1   0   15   16  .427  .337
Blair, Paul               BAK   13  .208    48   10   3   0   0    1    8    1   0    6    2  .271  .224
Blasingame, Wade          BAK    5  .375     8    3   1   0   0    0    2    0   0    1    1  .500  .375
Cardenal, Jose            BAK   28  .290   107   31   5   0   2   15   18    8   1   21   14  .393  .384
Carroll, Clay             BAK    0 1.000     1    1   0   0   0    0    0    0   0    0    0 1.000 1.000
Clendenon, Donn           BAK   29  .284    88   25   3   2   7    7   24    1   0   22   22  .602  .333
Culp, Ray                 BAK    7  .300    10    3   0   0   0    2    3    0   1    2    1  .300  .417
Fischer, Hank             BAK    0 1.000     1    1   0   0   0    0    0    0   0    1    0 1.000 1.000
Grote, Jerry              BAK   11  .324    37   12   1   0   0    3    8    0   1    4    5  .351  .375
Hargan, Steve             BAK    6  .111     9    1   0   0   0    0    5    0   0    0    1  .111  .111
Herbel, Ron               BAK    0 1.000     1    1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0    1    0 1.000 1.000
Howard, Bruce             BAK    6  .222     9    2   1   0   0    0    2    0   0    1    0  .333  .222
Jones, Mack               BAK   26  .263    57   15   3   0   2    5   18    0   0   10    5  .421  .317
Kelley, Dick              BAK    0  .333     3    1   0   0   0    1    1    0   0    0    0  .333  .500
Lopez, Marcelino          BAK    6  .286     7    2   0   0   0    0    2    0   0    1    0  .286  .286
Menke, Denis              BAK   20  .260    50   13   5   0   0    6    4    0   0    7    6  .360  .333
Oliva, Tony               BAK   16  .289    45   13   2   0   1    1    8    1   0    5    9  .400  .306
Parker, Wes               BAK   13  .182    33    6   1   0   0    8    2    1   0    6    3  .212  .357
Pavletich, Don            BAK   28  .326    86   28   6   1   4    6   12    0   0   17   15  .558  .376
Perez, Tony               BAK   15  .286    42   12   1   0   1    7    9    0   0    3    7  .381  .380
Reed, Ron                 BAK    0  .000     1    0   0   0   0    0    0    0   0    1    0  .000  .000
Repoz, Roger              BAK   21  .254    71   18   5   1   3   15   19    2   0   12   16  .479  .371
Rojas, Cookie             BAK   22  .280    82   23   3   0   1    6    8    0   1   10    4  .354  .337
Roland, Jim               BAK    0  .167     6    1   0   0   0    0    1    0   0    0    0  .167  .167

1963 Pitching            Team     IP   ERA    G  GS   W   L  SV    K   BB   R/9
Blasingame, Wade          BAK   23.1  2.70    5   5   2   1   0   17   12 11.96
Carroll, Clay             BAK   22.1  2.82   16   0   0   0   0    9    8 12.90
Culp, Ray                 BAK   42.1  0.64    7   7   4   0   0   38   15  8.93
Fischer, Hank             BAK   23.2  2.28   13   0   2   0   0   14   13 12.55
Hargan, Steve             BAK   28.0  5.14    6   6   3   2   0   14   14 14.14
Herbel, Ron               BAK   23.0  2.35   16   0   2   1   2   12    8  8.61
Howard, Bruce             BAK   26.2  7.76    6   6   2   3   0   21   14 14.85
Kelley, Dick              BAK   23.0  3.52   14   0   3   1   1   13    7 12.91
Lopez, Marcelino          BAK   24.0  7.88    6   6   0   3   0   24   22 17.63
Reed, Ron                 BAK   11.0  1.64   10   0   1   0   4    7    4  9.82
Roland, Jim               BAK   18.1  7.36   11   0   0   0   0   10   17 20.1