- 1972 American League Championship Series
alcs = yes
year = 1972
champion_games = 93-62, .600, GA: 5½
runnerup_games = 86-70, .551, GA: ½
October 7– October 12
Curt Gowdyand Tony Kubek(Game 1-2)
Jim Simpson and
Sandy Koufax(Game 3-5)
Red Flaherty, Nestor Chylak, Johnny Rice, Don Denkinger, Larry Barnett, Art FrantzThe by|1972 American League Championship Seriestook place between October 7and October 12of by|1972. The Oakland Athletics(93-62 on the season) played the Detroit Tigers(86-70 on the season) for the right to go to the 1972 World Series, with the Athletics coming out on top in the 5-game series, 3-2. Games 1 and 2 took place at the Oakland Coliseum, and 3 through 5 took place at Tiger Stadium. The Athletics would go on to beat the Cincinnati Redsin the World Series in 7 games. The two teams would meet again in the 2006 American League Championship Series.
The Athletics won the first two games of the series at home. One of the Series' most memorable moments came in the 7th inning of Game 2.
Bert Campaneriscame to bat, having had 3 hits, 2 runs scored, and 2 stolen bases in his first 3 at bats in the game. Lerrin LaGrow's first pitch hit Campaneris in the ankle. Campaneris staggered for a moment, glared at LaGrow and then flung his bat toward the mound. The bat spiraled at LaGrow five feet off the ground, but LaGrow ducked, and the bat narrowly missed LaGrow, landing a few feet behind the mound. A bench-clearing brawl ensued, and Tigers manager Billy Martinhad to be restrained by umpires and teammates to prevent him from going after Campaneris. Both LaGrow and Campaneris were suspended for the rest of the ALCS. [http://www.baseballlibrary.com/ballplayers/player.php?name=Lerrin_LaGrow_1948&page=chronology] [http://www.baseball-reference.com/bullpen/Lerrin_LaGrow]
After Game 2, the Series moved to Detroit, where the Tigers would fight back, winning the next two. Game 4 was one of the most historic playoff games of all time, going 10 innings, with the Tigers pulling out the victory. After it was 1-1 at the end of 9 innings, the Athletics scored 2 runs in the top of the 10th, and it looked as if the series was over. But amazingly the Tigers scored three in the bottom of the 10th to win it after Jim Northrup singled off
Game 5 was set where
Blue Moon Odomfor the A's would be facing Woodie Frymanof the Tigers. After 2 innings, the game was 1-1. But by the 4th, it was clear runs wouldn't come easy, so when George Hendrickscored on a Gene TenaceRBI single, the Tigers knew they were in trouble. By the 9th inning, Odom and Vida Bluehad combined to pitch 7 scoreless innings. With the A's up 2-1, it all came down to the Tigers 9th where they would still face Vida Blue. Norm Cashwould single, but that would be it as Tony Taylorwould fly to center for the final out. Odom got the win, Blue got the save, and the A's were a World Series team for the first of three straight years.
Oakland Athletics vs. Detroit Tigers
Oakland wins the series, 3-2
October 7, 1972at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, CaliforniaLinescore
Rollie Fingers(1-0)|LP= Mickey Lolich(0-1)|SV=
Al Kaline(1), Norm Cash(1)|HomeHR=|
Game 1 pitted ace pitchers
Catfish Hunterfor the A's and Mickey Lolichfor the Tigers, and, as expected, both were brilliant. Norm Cashgave the Tigers a 1-0 lead in the second inning, and the A's tied it in the third on a Joe Rudisacrifice fly.
The score remained at 1-1 until the 11th, although the Tigers threatened in their half of the ninth.
Duke Simsled off with a double off Hunter. Vida Bluecame on in relief to pitch to left-handed hitting Norm Cash. Cash laid down a sacrifice bunt, but reached first when second baseman Ted Kubiak, covering first, dropped Sal Bando's throw. Sims reached third. Rollie Fingersthen came in to face pinch hitter Gates Brownand got him on a foul pop fly. Jim Northrupthen bounced into a 4-6-3 double playto end the threat. Al Kalinegave the Tigers a 2-1 lead in the 11th with a solo homer off Fingers and looked like a hero at that point. In the bottom of the 11th, Lolich gave up back-to-back singles to Sal Bandoand Mike Epstein. Chuck Seelbachrelieved Lolich. Gene Tenaceattempted a sacrifice bunt, but third baseman Aurelio Rodriguezpounced on it and forced Blue Moon Odom, running for Bando, at third. Gonzalo Marquezpinch hit for Dal Maxvilland grounded a base hit to right, scoring Mike Hegan, running for Epstein, and tying the game. Tenace attempted to advance to third, and Kaline's throw from right field sailed past Rodriguez, allowing Tenace to score and win the game for the A's.
October 8, 1972at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, CaliforniaLinescore
Blue Moon Odom(1-0)|LP= Woodie Fryman(0-1)|SV=| Bert Campaneriswas a sparkplug from the start. He led off the game for the A's with a single off Woodie Frymanand promptly stole second and third. Joe Rudithen batted him in with a one-out single.
The A's plated four more runs in the fifth when
George Hendrickpinch-hit a single and went to second on a Blue Moon Odomsacrifice. Campaneris singled Hendrick to third and Matty Alousingled him in. Chris Zacharyrelieved Lolich and threw two wild pitches, scoring Campaneris and sending Alou to third. After Rudi walked, Reggie Jacksonblasted a two-run double to make it 5-0.
Odom got the win for the A's, who now had a 2-0 lead, but would be without Campaneris for the remainder of the playoffs due to the bat-throwing incident described above.
October 10, 1972at Tiger Stadium in Detroit, MichiganLinescore
WP=Joe Coleman (1-0)|LP=
Bill Freehan(1)| Joe Colemanput the Tigers back into the series by throwing a complete-game, seven-hit shutout. Coleman was aided by a two-run single in the fourth by Ike Brownand a solo homer by Bill Freehanin the eighth.
October 11, 1972at Tiger Stadium in Detroit, MichiganLinescore
John Hiller(1-0)|LP= Bob Locker(0-1)|SV=
Mike Epstein(1)|HomeHR= Dick McAuliffe(1)|
Game 4 was the most exciting of the series. For eight innings it was a tight pitching duel between Game 1 duelists
Catfish Hunterand Mickey Lolich. The only runs across were a Dick McAuliffesolo homer for the Tigers in the third and a Mike Epsteinsolo homer for the A's in the seventh.
The Tigers threatened in both the eighth and ninth innings. In the eighth, McAuliffe walked and was sacrificed to second by
Al Kaline. Mickey Stanleyreached on an infield hit, sending McAuliffe to third. Rollie Fingersrelieved Hunter and Billy Martinhad McAuliffe attempt to steal home, but Fingers gunned him down and struck out Bill Freehanfor the final out. In the ninth, with two outs, Tony Taylordoubled and Vida Blueintentionally walked Aurelio Rodriguez. Blue then retired pinch-hitter Willie Horton on a fly to center.
In the 10th, the A's took a two-run lead when
Gonzalo Marquezcontinued his pinch-hitting heroics with a one-out single. Matty Aloudoubled home Marquez and went to third on the throw home. Ted Kubiakthen hit a bloop single to right that Kaline overran, and Kubiak reached third with Alou scoring for a 3-1 lead. After Joe Rudiwas retired for out #2, Reggie Jacksonlifted another blooper that fell for a hit, but Kubiak strangely stayed at third and tagged, not realizing there were two outs. Sal Bandomade the last out of the inning, and Kubiak's running mistake would come back to haunt the A's.
The Tigers rallied in the bottom of the 10th, starting with singles by McAuliffe and Kaline. A's reliever
Joe Horlenwild-pitched the runners to second and third and then walked Gates Brownto load the bases with no outs. Bill Freehanthen grounded an apparent double play ball to third, but Sal Bando's throw to second pulled Kubiak off the bag. McAuliffe scored and everybody was safe. Dave Hamilton then relieved Horlen and promptly walked Norm Cashto tie the game, and then gave up a game-ending single to Jim Northrup, scoring Brown with the winning run.
October 12, 1972at Tiger Stadium in Detroit, MichiganLinescore
Blue Moon Odom(2-0)|LP= Woodie Fryman(0-2)|SV= Vida Blue(1)|
The Tigers struck in their half of the first off
Blue Moon Odomwhen Dick McAuliffeled off with a single. After a one-out walk to Duke Sims, a passed ball by Gene Tenaceput the runners on second and third. McAuliffe scored when Bill Freehangrounded out.
In the second,
Reggie Jacksonled off for the A's with a walk and stole second. Sal Bando's fly to right sent Jackson to third. After a walk to Mike Epstein, Dick Williamsordered a double steal. Jackson collided with Freehan and scored, but, the bad news was, Jackson tore his left hamstring and would be out for the World Seriesif Oakland won.
The A's got the winning tally in the fourth when
George Hendrick, Jackson's replacement, reached on an error by shortstop McAuliffe. Bando sacrificed Hendrick to second, and Gene Tenace, making amends for his earlier passed ball, singled Hendrick home.
Odom got the win and
Vida Bluethe save in four innings of relief as the A's, minus Jackson, moved on to the 1972 World Series.
As an odd precursor to what would become an explosive relationship years later,
Billy Martinvisited the A's locker room and consoled Jackson, expressing regret that he would miss the Series.
1972 ALCS (3-2):
Oakland Athleticsover Detroit TigersLinescore
| Total Attendance: 189,681 Average Attendance: 37,936
* [http://www.baseball-reference.com/postseason/1972_ALCS.shtml 1972 ALCS at Baseball-Reference]
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