Go to end of page
Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.
It's a good thing that situations like that 1910 batting race are no longer part of the game. Closest I can think of are these:
Johnson admitted that the New York chapter of the BBWAA “insisted that I must accept the official score, because if I didn’t, the entire foundation upon which official scoring rests would be shattered.” Johnson found this logic “mystifying and extremely peculiar,” citing that it was an established fact that official scorers often showed up late for games, left early, and sometimes didn’t show up for “several games in a row,” and relied on “hearsay” in the scoring of contests.
and there was this in 1976. Got a lot of play at the time
Looking at the box scores from that time, neither Brett nor McRae played in game 161, but Carew did, and went 3 for 4, bringing his average to .329, within striking distance of Brett and Mac at .331. I wonder if Carew goes say 1 for 4, do the other 2 play the last game?
Not sure why McRae would sit out the last game.
To make sure his teammate Brett won the batting title.
Why would McRae want Brett to win the batting title over McRae?
Also the news story (its linked here somewhere) had Gene Mauch (manager of Brye's team the Twins) saying that "this is the worst thing that happened to me in 35 years of basebal." Ha ha funny!
Let me clarify. McRae wasn't filling out the lineup card. Herzog wanted Brett to win the batting title.
Brett was leading in the race at the time, right?
But saying that Mauch wanted to make sure that Brett won, and that his motivation was racism, isn't? Recall who finished third, what team he played for, and what color his skin was.
Also why did anyone give Hal McRae a manager job. I liked McRae but he obviously had a short fuse.
Kansas City’s George Brett won the American League batting championship by half a point over teammate Hal McRae and by three points over four-time defending champion Rod Carew of the Twins Sunday as Minnesota beat the Royals 5-3 in the last game of the regular season.
Afterward McRae, who is black, strongly implied that for racial reasons the Twins allowed Brett to collect the inside-the-park home run that won the title on his last at-bat. Brett is white.
The home run occurred in the ninth inning as Brett came to bat trailing McRae by four-tenths of a point in the batting race. Brett lofted a short fly to left field. Outfielder Steve Brye hesitated, came in slowly and stopped. The ball hit 10 feet in front of him and caromed crazily, high over his head, rolling to the left field corner. Brett beat shortstop Luis Gomez’s relay to the plate.
McRae, the next batter, was jammed on an 0-2 pitch from the Twins’ Jim Hughes and bumped an easy grounder to shortstop. That gave Brett the batting title, .33333 to McRae’s .33270. Carew finished at .33058.
As McRae ran past first base and turned toward the Royals’ first base dugout he looked toward the Twins dugout and raised his folded arm in an obscene gesture, presumably intended for Twins Manager Gene Mauch. He pointed at the dugout, gestured again and pointed two more times.
Mauch, 50, charged out of the dugout and got past the first-base batting circle before he was restrained by Kansas City players. He eluded them, as both dugouts emptied, and had to be restrained by two umpires and then by three as he churned to get to McRae.
McRae, meanwhile was forcibly restrained by three of his own teammates and Manager Whitey Herzog as he struggled repeatedly to break away.
An out later the Twins won the game, 5-3, and McRae was sitting on his stool in the Kansas City locker room sobbing and blowing his nose into a towel. Beside him Royals owner Ewing M. Kauffman was on one knee, his hand on McRae’s shoulder. “You won it… That’s all right,” he was heard to say as Royals officials shooed reporters away.
Things have been like this for a long time,” McRae said later after regaining his composure. “It’s changing gradually. But I know how things are, so I can accept them. … It’s too bad things like that have to happen in 1976.. …
“If the shoe was on the other foot, I’m sure they wouldn’t let the ball drop for me. I know what happened, but I don’t think everybody else is going to find out.”
McRae, surrounded by a huge gathering of reporters, said repeatedly that he didn’t want to get specific because “it wouldn’t do any good.”
Many of Kansas City’s other black players also were resentful over the home-run play but refused public comment.
“I don’t think he lost it in the sun. You can say that,” said Dave Nelson seated next to Amos Otis, who expressed similar skepticism.
Brett also wondered if the Twins had given him the title-clinching hit.
“I didn’t think anything about it until I hit the dugout,” he said. “Then I thought about it and I thought he (Brye) could have given it a little bit better effort. I know Gene Mauch likes me and the Twins players seem to like me.”
Mauch was still boiling mad over the incident after the game.
“I would protect the integrity of this game at any cost,” he said angrily, yanking off his uniform. “This game has taken me out of the dust storms of western Kansas and made it possible to live in Palm Springs (Calif.) and play golf for the rest of my life if I want. Oh, man, that hurts. That hurts. …
“I told Steve Brye right before the game to play Brett shallow the whole game. Oh, God. To go home and sit on that instead of a beautiful summer.” Mauch sat in his office chair and stared into the distance for a moment.
Brye was told later, at the airport, that McRae had inferred that the play was racially motivated.
“Whew,” he said, exhaling slowly and sadly. “No way. … If any error was involved it was mine. Gene Mauch had nothing to do with it. Gene told me to play in shallow. The last couple of innings I played deep not to allow a ball to get over my head and keep alive the possibility of a double play if a man got on base.
“I was indecisive. I didn’t get a good jump on the ball. All during the series balls I thought would fall in front of me were going over my head. Cookie Rojas was jammed and hit one over my head once. It’s tough to pick up the ball here because there’s a gray background, plus you don’t hear the ball off the bat that well. It’s a very dead sound. When I play center field, which I usually do, I follow the pitch and the sound of the bat has a lot to do with the way I react. Then after I ran in I stopped because I didn’t think I could get to the ball.”
Carew and Larry Hisle of the Twins, who also are black, said racism was not involved in the incident.
“Gene would never doing anything like that,” Carew said. “That’s a bunch of crap when they talk about racial stuff. Gene said he wanted me to win the championship. He was ticked off when the ball fell in.
“I was really disappointed that McRae did the type of stuff he did. He didn’t finish the season like the type of player he is. I can’t have respect for that type of person.”
“I know no one told me to drop it,” said Hisle. “If it had been hit to me in center field I would have done everything possible to catch it, and the same if McRae had hit it.”
You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.
Login to Join (9 members)
Page rendered in 0.3369 seconds, 58 querie(s) executed