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The
NEVADA DUSTERS
The Story of a Major League Baseball Franchise
Colt .45's @ Dusters
August 10-12, 1962
Interview with Ben Naylor
Al Childress, Las Vegas Sun

Q: The big topic of discussion recently is the Steve Barber trade. Some are saying that since you didn't make the trade with the Cardinals for Ernie Broglio, who could have helped the team this season, opting instead for Ray Culp, who may help the team in the future, that you're basically saying you'll be satisfied finishing in the first division -- that you don't think you have a realistic shot at the pennant this year. Any comments?
A: For one thing, I don't think the word "satisfied" has any business being used in baseball. You should never be satisfied with what you've accomplished. There's always room for improvement. You can always get better. That applies to teams and individual players. I think we've done pretty well this season. Better than most expected us to do. But satisfied with being in the first division? No. We made the Barber trade because it didn't look like we could negotiate an extension with him for next year. So that left us with two choices. Release him at the end of the year or get something for him in a trade before the deadline. And we went with Ray Culp instead of Broglio because I told Conn I thought we would be fine with the pitching staff we had this year.
Q: Your pitching staff is certainly coming around. The staff ERA is at 3.36, down from over 4.00 at one point early in the season. You've chosen to stay with a five-man starting rotation, which means bringing Pete Richert out of the bullpen. Are there scenarios where you would go to a four-man rotation, or will you stick to five and, if need be, call up someone like Jim Bouton?
A: At this point we don't want to call anyone else up. If one of our starters gets hurt we'll probably go to a four-man rotation.
Q: While the team ERA has improved, the team average has declined. Nearly everyone's numbers have slipped over the past two months. Does that concern you?
A: Not much. The hitters started out like gangbusters. I expected them to cool off some. A few of the guys may be struggling at the plate, but what carries us now is the slugging -- Billy [Williams], Hector [Lopez] and Johnny [Blanchard] are still hitting those downtowners, and Vic [Power] has really come on in that department lately.
Q: How would you rate your chances of climbing past the Pirates and the Giants to win the pennant?
A: You'll have to check with the bookmakers if you want odds. I don't look at it that way. If we're right there in the thick of a pennant race come September 1, anything can happen.
Q: How do you get along with Conn Hudson? He was a former player of yours, and now he's your boss.
A: We get along fine. Right from the get-go he told me I didn't have to call him "sir" and I promised not to call him "rook."
Q: How does this compare to your other managing jobs?
A: It's more fun. Because I was there for Day One. I get to watch it grow, from the ground up. I get a kick out of that.
Q: Any idea how long you might want to be the skipper around here? You refused to sign on for more than one season at a time.
A: Because of my health. If I don't feel I can do the job then I should step aside. I owe that to the franchise. So I'm going to play it by ear.

Ben Naylor as the White Sox
player-manager, 1939

Houston Colt .45's (37-74) @ Nevada Dusters (63-45)
August 10-12, 1962
Horizon Field, Las Vegas, NV

DL: Bill Dailey (RP), dislocated shoulder, fifteen days. Roger Repoz (CF-Montana Wolves), broken ankle, three months. Tommie Aaron (1B-Tucson Stingers), strained chest, four days. Clay Carroll (P-Tucson Stingers, mild shoulder separation, two days. Sandy Alomar (2B-Montana Wolves), stretched hamstring, two days.

MOVES
Bill Dailey (RP) put on Disabled List. Jim Roland (RP) called up from AAA Bakersfield.

Houston Colt .45's Game 1 starting lineup:
Al Heist (RF), Don Buddin (SS), Don Taussig (LF), Dick Gernert (1B), Bob Aspromonte (3B), Jim Busby (CF), Merritt Ranew (C), Bob Lillis (2B), Hal Woodeshick (P)

[August 10, Game 1]
With back-to-back series with the first-place Pirates looming on the horizon, the Dusters hoped to take advantage of the fact that the Houston expansion team was struggling. Pete Richert (5-3) made his fifth start for the Dusters, and allowed two runs on two hits in four innings, striking out four. An RBI double by Hector Lopez in the 1st and an RBI triple by Lee Maye in the 3rd made it a tie game going into the 5th. With one on and two out in the Nevada half of the inning, a fielding error by Houston center fielder Jim Busby allowed Billy Williams to reach -- right before Hector Lopez homered for three RBIs and a 5-2 Nevada lead. Another Houston error led to another Nevada run in the home 8th. Reliever Jim Roland, fresh off the bus from AAA Bakersfield, pitched three innings for the Dusters, and the Houston batters could not handle his 96+ mph fastball. Roland got the win in his first Major League appearance, while Bob Duliba, who held the visitors scoreless in the 8th and 9th, earned his fourth save. Lopez was 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a team-leading .329 batting average.
Lineup: Power, Maye, Williams, Lopez, Boyer, Blanchard, Adair, Schaive, Richert
Record: 64-45
Dusters 6, Colt .45's 2
[August 11, Game 2]
For the second game Ben Naylor rested Hector Lopez by starting Bubba Morton in right, and moved Jerry Adair to short so that Ken Hubbs could start at second base. Joe Horlen (11-6) went up against Houston's Ken Johnson (6-16), and while Johnson pitched well, allowing two runs on seven hits through seven innings, Horlen pitched better, allowing no hits at all until the Houston 5th, when Bob Aspromonte doubled, went to third on a Walt Williams single, and scored on a sac fly by catcher Merritt Ranew. That tied the game at 1, but Lee Maye's RBI single in the bottom of the 5th put the Dusters back on top, where they stayed. Jerry Adair iced the game with a three-run homer -- his eighth long ball of the year -- in the 8th, and the final score was 5-1. Horlen got his 12th win and Lee Maye went 3-for-4 on the day. The victory put the Dusters 20 games over .500 for the first time. But spirits were dampened by news that Adair would join closer Bill Dailey on the DL  with a mild shoulder separation and was expected to be out for two weeks.
Lineup: Power, Maye, Williams, Boyer, Adair, Blanchard, Morton, Hubbs, Horlen
Record: 65-45
Dusters 5, Colt .45's 1
[August 12, Game 3]
"I'm beginning to wonder if Bob Shaw will ever have a bad day on the mound," joked Conn Hudson as the Nevada ace got his 24th start of the season with a 15-2 record. The combination of Shaw (7.0ip, 5h, 0bb, 0r, 0er, 5k) and reliever Jim Roland was simply too much for the Houston hitters to handle. Early on, though, it was a game of missed opportunities for the Dusters; Lee Maye tripled in the 1st with one out but was left stranded, and in the 2nd Johnny Blanchard doubled and was thrown out trying to score on a Mack Jones single up the middle. Blanchard came through in the 4th, though, with a two-run homer, and his RBI single in the 6th made it 3-0 Dusters. Nevada added one more run in the 7th, but it wasn't necessary, as Jim Roland held the Colt .45's scoreless in the last two frames, striking out the side in the 8th. Maye had his second good outing in a row, going 2-for-4, while Blanchard finished 3-for-4 with three RBIs. Horlen notched his 16th win, putting him one behind Juan Marichal, the NL leader in wins. With their second sweep in three series the Dusters put some distance between themselves and fourth-place Los Angeles, but the Pirates swept the Giants and remained in first place, 3.5 games ahead of San Francisco and four in front of Nevada.
Lineup: Power, Maye, Lopez, Boyer, Blanchard, Schaive, Jones, Hubbs, Shaw
Record: 66-45
Dusters 4, Colt .45's 0

Bob Aspromonte (HOU)

Nevada Dusters financial update:
Average Attendance: 13,335 ..... Revenue: $29.2M ..... Profit: $9.2M ..... Cash: $12.8M ..... Team Payroll: $21.2M

Series stats
2Bs: Power, Lopez, Schaive, Williams (2), Hubbs, Blanchard
3Bs: Maye (2)
HRs: Lopez, Adair, Blanchard
SBs: Maye (2)
Runs: Power (3), Williams (3), Tresh, Lopez (2), Boyer, Adair, Hubbs (2), Maye, Blanchard
RBIs: Maye (2), Lopez (4), Williams, Adair (3), Power, Blanchard (3)

Around the leagues:
NYM--Danny O'Connell (3B), wrist stress fracture, three weeks.
MIN released Georges Maranda (P).

FEATURED GAME
Houston Colt .45's at Nevada Dusters
August 11, 1962

TOP OF THE FIRST
Joe Horlen takes the mound for the Dusters.
Al Heist grounded to short. <--->
Joey Amalfitano grounded to the third baseman. <--->
Don Taussig flied out to center. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the first, the game is tied at 0.

BOTTOM OF THE FIRST
Ken Johnson takes the mound for the Colt .45's.
Vic Power singled to right. <--1>
Lee Maye singled down the first base line, advancing the runner to third. <3-1>
Billy Williams grounded to third, scoring a run. <--1>
Clete Boyer struck out. <--1>
Jerry Adair grounded to third. <--1>
1 run, 2 hits, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the first, Nevada leads 1 to 0.

TOP OF THE SECOND
Norm Larker grounded to second. <--->
Bob Aspromonte grounded to second. <--->
Don Buddin struck out. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the second, Houston trails 1 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE SECOND
Johnny Blanchard flied out to center. <--->
Bubba Morton grounded to first. <--->
Ken Hubbs grounded to the shortstop. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the second, Nevada leads 1 to 0.

TOP OF THE THIRD
Walt Williams flied out to center. <--->
Merritt Ranew reached first on a throwing error by the third baseman. <--1>
Ken Johnson laid down a sacrifice bunt to the catcher. <-2->
Al Heist grounded to second. <-2->
0 runs, 0 hits, 1 error, and 1 left on base.
In the middle of the third, Houston trails 1 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE THIRD
Joe Horlen grounded to the third baseman. <--->
Vic Power grounded to third. <--->
Lee Maye singled to right. <--1>
Billy Williams walked. <-21>
Clete Boyer popped up to second. <-21>
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 2 left on base.
At the end of the third, Nevada leads 1 to 0.

TOP OF THE FOURTH
Joey Amalfitano flied out to left. <--->
Don Taussig lined out to short. <--->
Norm Larker grounded to second. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the fourth, Houston trails 1 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE FOURTH
Jerry Adair popped up foul down the first base line. <--->
Johnny Blanchard reached first on a throwing error by the third baseman. <--1>
Bubba Morton grounded to second for a double play (4-6-1). <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 1 error, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the fourth, Nevada leads 1 to 0.

TOP OF THE FIFTH
Bob Aspromonte doubled in the right field gap. <-2->
Don Buddin flied out to center. <-2->
Walt Williams singled to right. <3-1>
Merritt Ranew flied out to right field. <3-1>
Bob Aspromonte tagged up and reached home, scoring a run. <--1>
Ken Johnson singled to right, advancing the runner to third. <3-1>
Al Heist grounded to the third baseman. <3-1>
1 run, 3 hits, 0 errors, and 2 left on base.
In the middle of the fifth, the game is tied at 1.

BOTTOM OF THE FIFTH
Ken Hubbs doubled over the third baseman. <-2->
Joe Horlen grounded to the third baseman. <-2->
Vic Power singled through the left side. <3-1>
Lee Maye singled to center, scoring a run. <-21>
Billy Williams grounded to short, forcing the runner at third. <-21>
Clete Boyer grounded to second. <-21>
1 run, 3 hits, 0 errors, and 2 left on base.
At the end of the fifth, Nevada leads 2 to 1.

TOP OF THE SIXTH
Joey Amalfitano grounded to second. <--->
Don Taussig singled to right. <--1>
Don Taussig was caught stealing second. <--->
Norm Larker singled in the right field gap. <--1>
Norm Larker went for an extra base and reached second. <-2->
Bob Aspromonte flied out to right. <-2->
0 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
In the middle of the sixth, Houston trails 2 to 1.

BOTTOM OF THE SIXTH
Jerry Adair singled to left field. <--1>
Johnny Blanchard grounded to third. <-2->
Bubba Morton grounded to short. <-2->
Ken Hubbs struck out. <-2->
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the sixth, Nevada leads 2 to 1.

TOP OF THE SEVENTH
Johnny Schaive came in to play Second Base. <--->
Tom Tresh came in to play Right Field. <--->
Don Buddin grounded to the pitcher. <--->
Walt Williams grounded to the pitcher. <--->
Merritt Ranew flied out to left field. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the seventh, Houston trails 2 to 1.

BOTTOM OF THE SEVENTH
Joe Horlen grounded to the third baseman. <--->
Vic Power flied out to center. <--->
Lee Maye lined out to left. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the seventh, Nevada leads 2 to 1.

TOP OF THE EIGHTH
Dick Gernert pinch hit for Ken Johnson. <--->
Dick Gernert popped up to second. <--->
Al Heist grounded to short. <--->
Joey Amalfitano lined out to left field. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the eighth, Houston trails 2 to 1.

BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH
Bobby Tiefenauer came in to pitch for the Colt .45's. <--->
Billy Williams doubled down the third base line. <-2->
Clete Boyer singled through the hole. <3-1>
Jerry Adair homered over the right field fence for three RBIs. <--->
Johnny Blanchard lined out to short. <--->
Tom Tresh walked. <--1>
Johnny Schaive doubled to left-center. <32->
Gordy Coleman pinch hit for Joe Horlen. <32->
Gordy Coleman struck out. <32->
Vic Power grounded to second. <32->
3 runs, 4 hits, 0 errors, and 2 left on base.
At the end of the eighth, Nevada leads 5 to 1.

TOP OF THE NINTH
Claude Raymond came in to pitch for the Dusters. <--->
Don Taussig grounded to first. <--->
Norm Larker grounded to third. <--->
Bob Aspromonte flied out to center. <--->

DUSTERS WIN: 5-1
 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 +  R  H  E
    Colt .45's (HOU) 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0    1  5  1
       Dusters (NEV) 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 3 x    5 11  1

HOUSTON              ab  h bb  r hr bi  k sb     avg
A. Heist (CF)         4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .197
J. Amalfitano (2B)    4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .284
D. Taussig (LF)       4  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .245
N. Larker (1B)        4  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .252
B. Aspromonte (3B)    4  1  0  1  0  0  0  0    .229
D. Buddin (SS)        3  0  0  0  0  0  1  0    .241
W. Williams (RF)      3  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .232
M. Ranew (C)          2  0  0  0  0  1  0  0    .258
K. Johnson (P)        1  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .130
 D. Gernert (PH)      1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .251
 B. Tiefenauer (P)    0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .000
TOTALS               30  5  0  1  0  1  1  0

   2B:  N. Larker (22), B. Aspromonte (9)

         HOUSTON   ip  h bb hr  r er  k pit    ERA
      K. Johnson  7.0  7  1  0  2  2  2  84   3.78
   B. Tiefenauer  1.0  4  1  1  3  3  1  23   6.62
          TOTALS  8.0 11  2  1  5  5  3 107

NEVADA               ab  h bb  r hr bi  k sb     avg
V. Power (1B)         5  2  0  1  0  0  0  0    .302
L. Maye (CF)          4  3  0  0  0  1  0  0    .275
B. Williams (LF)      3  1  1  1  0  1  0  0    .310
C. Boyer (3B)         4  1  0  1  0  0  1  0    .271
J. Adair (SS)         4  2  0  1  1  3  0  0    .278
J. Blanchard (C)      4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .226
B. Morton (RF)        3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .250
 T. Tresh (RF)        0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0    .218
K. Hubbs (2B)         3  1  0  1  0  0  1  0    .209
 J. Schaive (2B)      1  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .247
J. Horlen (P)         3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .131
 G. Coleman (PH)      1  0  0  0  0  0  1  0    .295
 C. Raymond (P)       0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0   1.000
TOTALS               35 11  2  5  1  5  3  0

   2B:  J. Schaive (10), B. Williams (27), K. Hubbs (4)
   HR:  J. Adair (8)

          NEVADA   ip  h bb hr  r er  k pit    ERA
       J. Horlen  8.0  5  0  0  1  1  1  85   2.29
      C. Raymond  1.0  0  0  0  0  0  0   8   5.22
          TOTALS  9.0  5  0  0  1  1  1  93

     WP: J. Horlen (12-6)
     LP: K. Johnson (6-17)

     Attendance: 10,242
     Time: 2:15