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The
NEVADA DUSTERS
The Story of a Major League Baseball Franchise
Pirates @ Dusters
August 17-19, 1962
Unwanted Attention
With success on the diamond came plenty of media attention for the Nevada Dusters ballclub -- and other kinds of attention as well, some of it unwanted. The Las Vegas Sun broke the story that at least one player had been approached by gamblers who thought odds were good that the Dusters would be in the thick of the pennant race come September, and who were testing the waters with respect to a fix in some future pivotal game. Instead of trying to sweep the dirt under a rug, Conn Hudson held a press conference and confirmed that the report was essentially true, that the player had immediately notified him of the contact, and that he had notified the authorities. The player, said Hudson, was Billy Williams, who was "as straight an arrow as you'll find in the game," and, when the police promptly made several arrests, the story died. Still, Hudson was troubled, knowing that Commissioner Ford Frick had early on expressed concern about the possibility of the club's proximity to the "wrong element" in Vegas.

The Standings (as of 8.19)
(including team batting average, games back, and ERA)
NATIONAL LEAGUE
PIT   72-45   --  .271  .318
SFG   72-48   1.5  .260  3.08
NEV   70-47   2.0  .262  3.38
LAD   64-53   8.0  .253  3.77
CIN   58-59   14.0  .248  3.44
CHC   58-61   16.0  .249  4.03
STL   55-62   17.0  .250  3.90
PHI   51-66   21.0  .246  3.88
NYM   50-67   22.0  .240  4.42
HOU   40-80   33.5  .239  4.27
AMERICAN LEAGUE
BAL   74-46   --  .258  2.89
MIN   67-50   5.5  .247  4.03
NYY   67-50   5.5  .270  3.46
DET   59-61   15.0   .271  3.82
CHW   58-62   16.0  .244  3.72
BOS   57-63   17.0  .255  3.61
WSA   55-62   17.5  .239  3.76
CLE   56-64   18.0  .239  3.58
KCA   55-65   19.0  .244  3.90
LAA   46-71   26.5  .238  4.18


Pittsburgh Pirates (71-43) @ Nevada Dusters (68-46)
August 17-19, 1962
Horizon Field, Las Vegas, NV

DL: Bill Dailey (RP), dislocated shoulder, nine days. Dave McNally (SP), shoulder tendonitis, seven days. Joe Horlen (SP), elbow inflammation, two days. Jerry Adair (2B), mild shoulder separation, eleven days. Roger Repoz (CF-Montana Wolves), broken ankle, 81 days.

Pittsburgh Pirates Game 1 starting lineup:
Bob Skinner (LF), Dick Groat (SS), Roberto Clemente (RF), Joe Torre (C), Larry Elliot (CF), Bob Oliver (1B), Bill Mazeroski (2B), Dick Schofield (3B), Bob Friend (SP)

[August 17, Game 1]
The Dusters suffered another blow as, on the off day between the back-to-back series with the Pirates, Dave McNally was placed on the DL -- along with Joe Horlen, Bill Dailey and Jerry Adair -- with shoulder tendonitis. That didn't prevent them from taking the first game of the series, however. Trailing 1-0 through five innings, the Dusters went on a hitting spree in the 6th, as Maye, Williams, Lopez, Blanchard and Tresh singled and Clete Boyer doubled to produce four runs at the expense of Bucs starter Bob Friend. But Pittsburgh came right back with four runs in the 7th against reliever Jim Roland, regaining the lead 5-4. It was Blanchard who came through yet again for Nevada, this time with a two-run homer in the 8th to put the Dusters back on top. The Pirates loaded the bases in the top of the 9th with just one out but Claude Raymond fanned Dick Schofield and pinch hitter Granny Hamner popped up to end the game. Raymond collected his ninth save and Blanchard had his twenty-eighth home run of the season in the 6-5 victory.
Lineup: Power, Maye, Williams, Lopez, Blanchard, Boyer, Tresh, Hubbs, Shaw
Record: 69-46
Dusters 6, Pirates 5
[August 18, Game 2]
"This was one of the most amazing games I've witnessed firsthand," said Ben Naylor, after the fact. With Tony Cloninger (7-7) taking on Joe Gibbon (10-4), Nails expected a pitching duel. After giving up a two-run homer to Joe Torre in the 1st, Cloninger pitched superbly. "He was never really in trouble from the 2nd on," said Naylor. Problem was, Gibbon pitched superbly, too, allowing just three hits in the first seven frames. Billy Williams got two of them, and in the 4th got as far as third base, only to be stranded. It looked like Gibbon had the game well in hand -- until the 8th. Pinch-hitter Mack Jones drew a two-out walk. Vic Power singled and Lee Maye was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Williams singled to drive in a pair. Hector Lopez reached on an error by Roberto Clemente and another run scored. Then Clete Boyer added two more with a single and it was 5-2 Nevada. Claude Raymond took the hill in the 9th and retired the side in order. The Dusters found themselves one game behind the Pirates -- and in second place for the first time with a winning percentage of .603 besting the .600 of the 72-48 Giants. "We've had some big innings before," crowed Boyer after the game, "but none bigger than the 8th today."
Lineup: Power, Maye, Williams, Lopez, Boyer, Tresh, Schaive, Camilli, Cloninger
Record: 70-46
Dusters 5, Pirates 2
[August 19, Game 3]
To say it was the biggest game of the season thusfar was not overstating the case, as the Dusters took the field with the opportunity to take first place in the NL away from the visiting Pittsburgh Pirates. Back from the DL, Joe Horlen (12-6) took the mound for the Dusters, facing Vern Law (12-13). Billy Williams (4-for-5 on the day with two runs and two RBIs) struck first, a solo homer in the opening frame. Pittsburgh's Joe Torre answered with his own solo shot in the 2nd. Johnny Blanchard put the Dusters back in front with his 29th dinger in the bottom of the 2nd. The Bucs got two runs and the lead in the 3rd. In the 6th Williams singled and went to third on a Hector Lopez one-bagger. Blanchard hit into a double play but Williams scored to tie the game at 3. In the 7th pinch-hitter Willie Stargell's two-run shot to straightaway center put the Pirates back on top 5-3. The Dusters battled back to tie it up in the bottom of the inning. In the top of the 8th a successful suicide squeeze, a two-run shot by Bob Oliver and a solo homer by Bill Mazeroski, all at the expense of reliever Bob Duliba, made it 9-5 Pittsburgh. But the Dusters weren't quite done. Vic Power, Lee Maye, Williams and Lopez all singled to score two runs. But with two on and two out Gordy Coleman grounded out and the Pirates had held on to win 9-7. With the Giants winning, Nevada fell back into third place, two games out of first and a half-game behind second-place San Francisco. Conn Hudson put a positive spin on things. "We won both series against the Pirates and we gained some ground. I can't tell you how proud I am of this team."
Lineup: Power, Maye, Williams, Lopez, Blanchard, Boyer, Hubbs, Schaive, Horlen
Record: 70-47
Pirates 9, Dusters 7

Bill Mazeroski (PIT)

Nevada Dusters financial update:
Average Attendance: 13,788 ..... Revenue: $32.1M ..... Profit: $11.0M ..... Cash: $14.7M ..... Team Payroll: $21.2M

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

Around the leagues:
NYM--Sherman Jones (P), ankle stress fracture, three weeks.
DET--Don Mossi (P), wrist stress fracture, four weeks.
NYM--Larry Foss (P), broken ankle, three months.
NYY--Bill Stafford (P), ruptured cervical disc, two months.
STL--Whitey Herzog (RF), stretched ankle ligament, two weeks.
CHC--Don Bryant (C), broken foot, seven weeks.
LAD--Al Ferrara (LF), ruptured knee ligaments, five weeks.
BOS--Dick Radatz (P), severe elbow tendonitis, four months.
MIN--Jim Kaat (P), broken hip, four months.

WSA released Gene Woodling (RF).
NYM released Danny O'Connell (3B).
NYM released Ken Mackenzie (P).
CHC released Mike Krsnich (LF).

FEATURED GAME
Pittsburgh Pirates at Nevada Dusters
August 18, 1962

TOP OF THE FIRST
Tony Cloninger takes the mound for the Dusters.
Bob Skinner flied out to left. <--->
Dick Groat doubled into the left field corner. <-2->
Roberto Clemente grounded to short. <-2->
Joe Torre homered to deep left-center for two RBIs. <--->
Larry Elliot grounded to the second baseman. <--->
2 runs, 2 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the first, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE FIRST
Joe Gibbon takes the mound for the Pirates.
Vic Power lined out to center. <--->
Lee Maye grounded to second. <--->
Billy Williams singled down the first base line. <--1>
Hector Lopez grounded to short. <--1>
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the first, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE SECOND
Bob Oliver grounded to second. <--->
Bill Mazeroski popped up to short. <--->
Dick Schofield struck out. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the second, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE SECOND
Clete Boyer singled in the left field gap. <--1>
Tom Tresh grounded to second, forcing the runner at second. <--1>
Johnny Schaive grounded to the second baseman for a double play (4-6-1). <--->
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the second, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE THIRD
Joe Gibbon flied out to center. <--->
Bob Skinner grounded to third. <--->
Dick Groat reached second on a fielding error by the left fielder. <-2->
Roberto Clemente struck out. <-2->
0 runs, 0 hits, 1 error, and 1 left on base.
In the middle of the third, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE THIRD
Doug Camilli flied out to left. <--->
Tony Cloninger grounded to short. <--->
Vic Power flied out to left. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the third, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE FOURTH
Joe Torre singled through the left side. <--1>
Larry Elliot lined out to left field. <--1>
Bob Oliver lined out to right. <--1>
Bill Mazeroski lined out to right. <--1>
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
In the middle of the fourth, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE FOURTH
Lee Maye grounded to first. <--->
Billy Williams doubled in the left field gap. <-2->
Hector Lopez grounded to first. <3-->
Clete Boyer lined out to left field. <3-->
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the fourth, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE FIFTH
Dick Schofield popped up behind home plate. <--->
Joe Gibbon grounded to third. <--->
Bob Skinner grounded to second. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the fifth, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE FIFTH
Tom Tresh popped up to short. <--->
Johnny Schaive popped up to second. <--->
Doug Camilli struck out. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the fifth, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE SIXTH
Dick Groat flied out to left. <--->
Roberto Clemente struck out. <--->
Joe Torre singled back through the middle. <--1>
Larry Elliot grounded to first base. <--1>
0 runs, 1 hit, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
In the middle of the sixth, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE SIXTH
Tony Cloninger popped up to first. <--->
Vic Power grounded to first. <--->
Lee Maye grounded to second. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
At the end of the sixth, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE SEVENTH
Bob Oliver grounded to first. <--->
Bill Mazeroski popped up to the catcher in foul ground. <--->
Dick Schofield grounded to second. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the seventh, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE SEVENTH
Billy Williams grounded to third. <--->
Hector Lopez grounded to third. <--->
Clete Boyer walked. <--1>
Tom Tresh grounded to short. <--1>
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the seventh, Nevada trails 2 to 0.

TOP OF THE EIGHTH
Joe Gibbon struck out. <--->
Bob Skinner popped up to second. <--->
Dick Groat flied out to right. <--->
0 runs, 0 hits, 0 errors, and 0 left on base.
In the middle of the eighth, Pittsburgh leads 2 to 0.

BOTTOM OF THE EIGHTH
Johnny Schaive singled down the third base line. <--1>
Doug Camilli grounded to second for a double play (4-6-3). <--->
Mack Jones pinch hit for Tony Cloninger. <--->
Mack Jones walked. <--1>
Vic Power singled to right. <-21>
Lee Maye was hit by a pitch. <321>
Billy Williams singled to center for two RBIs. <3-1>
Hector Lopez reached second on a fielding error by the right fielder - a run scored. <32->
Clete Boyer singled to left field for two RBIs. <--1>
Al McBean came in to pitch for the Pirates. <--1>
Tom Tresh grounded to second. <--1>
5 runs, 4 hits, 1 error, and 1 left on base.
At the end of the eighth, Nevada leads 5 to 2.

TOP OF THE NINTH
Claude Raymond came in to pitch for the Dusters. <--->
Johnny Blanchard came in to play Catcher. <--->
Roberto Clemente popped up to second. <--->
Joe Torre popped up to second. <--->
Larry Elliot lined out to right field. <--->

DUSTERS WIN: 5-2
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 +  R  H  E
       Pirates (PIT) 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0    2  4  1
       Dusters (NEV) 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 x    5  7  1

PITTSBURGH           ab  h bb  r hr bi  k sb     avg
B. Skinner (LF)       4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .249
D. Groat (SS)         4  1  0  1  0  0  0  0    .293
R. Clemente (RF)      4  0  0  0  0  0  2  0    .317
J. Torre (C)          4  3  0  1  1  2  0  0    .331
L. Elliot (CF)        4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .277
B. Oliver (1B)        3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .227
B. Mazeroski (2B)     3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .216
D. Schofield (3B)     3  0  0  0  0  0  1  0    .276
J. Gibbon (P)         3  0  0  0  0  0  1  0    .188
 A. McBean (P)        0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .000
TOTALS               32  4  0  2  1  2  4  0

   2B:  D. Groat (19)
   HR:  J. Torre (9)

      PITTSBURGH   ip  h bb hr  r er  k pit    ERA
       J. Gibbon  7.2  7  2  0  5  3  1 106   2.53
       A. McBean  0.1  0  0  0  0  0  0   2   2.62
          TOTALS  8.0  7  2  0  5  3  1 108

NEVADA               ab  h bb  r hr bi  k sb     avg
V. Power (1B)         4  1  0  1  0  0  0  0    .298
L. Maye (CF)          3  0  0  1  0  0  0  0    .277
B. Williams (LF)      4  3  0  1  0  2  0  0    .321
H. Lopez (RF)         4  0  0  1  0  0  0  0    .320
C. Boyer (3B)         3  2  1  0  0  2  0  0    .273
T. Tresh (SS)         4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .218
J. Schaive (2B)       3  1  0  0  0  0  0  0    .248
D. Camilli (C)        3  0  0  0  0  0  1  0    .177
 J. Blanchard (C)     0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .238
T. Cloninger (P)      2  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .095
 M. Jones (PH)        0  0  1  1  0  0  0  0    .217
 C. Raymond (P)       0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    .500
TOTALS               30  7  2  5  0  4  1  0

   2B:  B. Williams (29)

          NEVADA   ip  h bb hr  r er  k pit    ERA
    T. Cloninger  8.0  4  0  1  2  2  4  99   3.94
      C. Raymond  1.0  0  0  0  0  0  0  10   4.91
          TOTALS  9.0  4  0  1  2  2  4 109

     WP: T. Cloninger (8-7)
     LP: J. Gibbon (10-5)
     SV: C. Raymond (10)

     Attendance: 18,078
     Time: 2:03