Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Rupert, Witt Shine in 85' CAL Debut!

Rupert Jones' 1988 Fleer Baseball Card.
Anytime I purchase a new APBA team, I like to have an exhibition game played with my new purchased team. I recently just purchased the 1985 California Angels, a team featuring notable veteran stars with a few Hall of Famers.

In this match-up, I decided they would host the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates, meaning it's in Anaheim and the DH rule will be in effect for this game. The Pirates normally have Bill Virdon leading off and playing center, instead the backup Gino Cimoli will play center, bumping up the the top 2 hitters, and Clemente moving from his normal #5 spot in that 1960 lineup to #3, Dick Stuart gets the nod at first over Rocky Nelson, and Joe Christopher will play DH.

Normally the Pirates lineup looks like this:
1. Bill Virdon -CF
2. Dick Groat - SS
3. Bob Skinner - LF
4. Dick Stuart /
    Rocky Nelson - 1B
5. Roberto Clemente - RF
6. Smoky Burgess /
    Hal Smith - C
7. Don Hoak - 3B
8. Bill Mazeroski - 2B
9. (Pitcher)

Usually Hoak bats 6th if Burgess is in lineup, with Burgess 7th.
Today it was this:

1. Dick Groat - SS
2. Bob Skinner - LF
3. Roberto Clemente - RF
4. Dick Stuart - 1B
5. Don Hoak - 3B
6. Smoky Burgess - C
7. Bill Mazeroski - 2B
8. Joe Christopher - DH
9. Gino Cimoli - CF

at 85' California Angels

1. Gary Pettis - CF
2. Rod Carew - 1B
3. Brian Downing - LF
4. Reggie Jackson - RF
5. Doug DeCinces - 3B
6. Ruppert Jones - DH
7. Bobby Grich - 2B
8. Bob Boone - C
9. Dick Schofield - SS

A interesting note, before going over the brief action. The Angels' Dick Schofield's father Dick Schofield plays for these 1960 Pirates, he happened to not have played this game. Plus Dick Schofield (Angels) also happens to be Jayson Werth's uncle. Jayson Werth's stepfather played in the Majors as well, in Dennis Werth. So yeah baseball is really linked in that family tree!

The Pirates had Vern Law (B-Z) on the mound against Mike Witt (B-Y).

Bottom of the 2nd, with Reggie Jackson on first from a single, Ruppert Jones hits a 2-run HR, to make it 2-0.

Bottom of the 4th, Ruppert Jones tags another HR off Law, 3-0 after 4 innings.

Bottom of the 6th, with 2 outs... Ruppert Jones steps up to the plate, the Pirates manager yanks Law out for Freddie Green, Green ends up walking Jones.

Bottom of the 7th, Gary Pettis gets a 2-out single, I decide to hit & run with Carew, Pettis steals second. Now a man on second, and Rod Carew singles in Pettis, 4-0.

Bottom of the 8th, with Roy Face on the mound for the Pirates, Doug DeCinces gets a one-out single, which brings up Ruppert Jones, 2-for-2, 2 HR's & a walk drawn... Face delivers....

Are you kidding me?! Rolled a 11... 5.... another 2-run HR!

Ruppert Jones makes it a 3-for-3 game, 3 HR's & 5 RBI as Mike Witt shuts out the Pirates, allowing only 5 hits, striking out six batters!

Ruppert Jones did have 21 HR's in 1985, in only 389 at-bats, he played primarily DH at this point in his career, over the next season & half, he would get his last 25 HR's for his career. He had 147 career HR's, .250 hitter & .746 OPS. Also had 143 career steals during his 11 seasons, including a career high 33 in 1979 for Seattle.

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