The season has been a good one, although I am missing tossing the dice for the Minnesota Twins, my favorite team. I realize Washington's American League team is the precursor for the Twins, but it's not all the same. After playing the 1981 season, and compiling the horrible season for the Twins, I embarked upon 1942 and now 1950. It'll be a good long while since I've rolled a Twins game before I tackle 1991 next.
That said, 1950 has some drama and it keeps me returning to the boards, cards and dice.
Here's the standings at the split, which coincided with all games finished on July 5, 1950:
W L GB
New York 51 25 -
Boston 49 30 3.5
Detroit 45 31 6
Cleveland 46 33 6.5
Washington 31 46 20.5
Chicago 31 47 21
St. Louis 31 47 21
Philadelphia 26 51 25.5
New York is trying to pull away, but Boston hangs close. Earlier, the top four teams jockeyed for the lead, but the Yankees won seven of their last 10 games to edge into first. The pack is close, too. Chicago and St. Louis, while mired in the cellar, exchange places daily, it seems.
As for stats, well, I quit keeping them closely. I have less time and, sadly, I am lazy about that. I logged them in the computer, but there's something about doing them by hand that always appealed to me before. So, I keep the bare necessities of stats still: Home runs, pitching wins, loses and saves and occasional things like a player hitting three home runs in a game, or hitting for the cycle. I keep all the game box scores, so someday, someday, I may compile better stats.
However, I did run all the at bats for Joe DiMaggio just to see how he stood. He's batting .325 with 20 home runs and 70 RBIs. In the real season, the Yankee Clipper had 17 home runs by July 5, 1950.
Ted Williams leads the American League in batting with a .385 average (I did his season by hand, too). He's also got 20 home runs and 66 RBIs.
I'm also tracking George Kell's doubles. So far, he's hit 21 of them. In the real season, he has 22 at this point.
The National League is a dogfight. Here are the standings
W L GB
New York 45 34 -
St. Louis 43 33 .5
Brooklyn 43 34 1
Pittsburgh 41 34 2
Boston 41 35 2.5
Philadelphia 36 44 9.5
Chicago 33 41 9.5
Cincinnati 24 51 19
Stan Musial leads the Cardinals with his .383 batting average, along with 16 home runs and 66 RBIs.
New York doesn't seem to have any real statistical standouts. Bobby Thomson leads the Giants with 15 home runs and Sal Maglie is 10-3 on the mound. They just finds ways to win.
On the inverse, Philadelphia, which won the real 1950 National League pennant, can't seem to get it together. Delmer Ennis has 21 home runs and two Phillies' pitchers have won nine games each. But they've lost close contests by a run or two and their bullpen has blown some games. Their relievers are 5-12 so far.
Brooklyn really looks like the team to win this. Don Newcombe is 13-2 at the break and has tossed a no-hitter against Pittsburgh. Duke Snider has 19 home runs and Roy Campenella has belted 17 dingers. Ralph Branca, who served up that fateful home run to Bobby Thomson a year after this replay, has five home runs.
As I turn the corner of the replay and continue rolling on, the pace has picked up some. The games are interesting and the pennant race in the National League keeps me glued to the replay. Will it be an all-New York Series at the end? Will the Whiz Kids of Philadelphia finally put it together and play to their real potential? Will I survive more than two years without rolling a game for the Twins?