Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Vintage Fridays: Elrod Hendricks, 1970 Topps #528

I hope nobody minds another Vintage Friday post on Elrod Hendricks just two weeks after the last one. I have an excellent excuse: I went searching for interesting box scores from today's date, and found one from Monday, July 20, 1970. The Orioles wrapped up a three-game series in Chicago in grand fashion, trouncing the White Sox 14-5 in the rubber match. The visitors got a big boost from catcher Hendricks, who doubled, homered, and walked twice to drive in a career-high six runs. Not bad for a seventh-place hitter.

Elrod gave the O's the lead with a two-run double in the second inning, and they never trailed after that. It was just one of three two-RBI hits in the frame, with Paul Blair and Boog Powell also doing the honors. Powell's double chased overmatched ChiSox starter Gary Janeski, who surrendered four hits and a walk and hit two batters in the six-run outburst. The damage may have been worse if Baltimore pitcher Mike Cuellar hadn't popped up a bunt attempt for the second out.

Cuellar wasn't exactly on his game in the field, either. Because he earned the complete-game win (making him 13-5 for the year), I'm legally obligated to say that he "scattered" 11 hits and a pair of walks, allowing 5 runs total. That's why Hendricks' seventh-inning grand slam off of Barry Moore was crucial, turning a 7-4 seesaw battle into a rout. The Pale Hose were once again undone by a pitcher's wildness, as Moore had followed a Frank Robinson double by issuing walks to Brooks Robinson and Davey Johnson to load the bases for Elrod. Overall, Chicago hurlers issued nine walks and two wild pitches and plunked three batters. As a result, the Orioles totaled 14 runs with only 11 hits.

Looking a little deeper into Elrod Hendricks' big performance, the grand slam was the first of two in his career. He wouldn't hit another one until July 18, 1975, when he took Dave Goltz deep to give the O's a 5-1 fourth-inning lead en route to an eventual 9-6 victory over the Twins. The 1970 salami was also his second homer off of Barry Moore in as many days, though the previous day's longball was just a solo shot for a bit of insurance in an 8-2 Birds triumph.

With their series win in the Windy City, the Orioles boosted their record to 57-36 and maintained a 4-game lead over the second-place Tigers.

1 comment:

Commishbob said...

Elrod Hendricks posts are always cool, Kevin.