50 Years in 50 Days: 1970
Fifty years ago, Appleton Professional Baseball joined the Midwest League. As part of 50 Years in 50 Days, Rattler Radio is counting down to April 5 with a look back at each season of Appleton Professional Baseball team since 1962 (with a lot of help from MWLGuide.com and baseball-reference.com). The countdown to Opening Day, 2012 has reached 42.
42 Years Ago:
The Foxes look to defend their 1969 Midwest League Championship.
Team Name: Appleton Foxes
MLB Affiliate: Chicago White Sox
Manager: Ira Hutchinson (1st Year)
1st Half: 32-30 (4th)
2nd Half: 32-30 (4th)
Future MLB Players:
Shortstop Bucky Dent hit .258 with three homers in 39 games at the age of 18
Pitcher Terry Forster (6-1, 1.33) 10 games – 9 starts – over 54 innings pitched at the age of 18
Pitcher Rich Gossage (0-3, 5.91) 10 games – 5 starts – over 35 innings pitched at the age of 18
Outfielder Ken Hottman hit .312 with 14 homers in 82 games in his third season with the Foxes
First baseman Lamar Johnson hit .231 with no homers in seven games
Catcher Bruce Kimm hit .125 with no homers in three games
Shortstop Jim Mahoney hit .400 with no homers in three games
Pitcher Stan Perzanowski (9-8, 2.14) 22 games – 16 starts – in 139 innings pitched
Shortstop Hugh Yancy hit .284 with no homers in 28 games
Pythagorean Stat: The Foxes were outscored 475-451 in 124 games during the 1970 season. According to the Pythagorean system, the Foxes should have gone 59-65 during the season. They over performed their expected record by five wins.
Goo Stat: Terry Forster on David Letterman from July, 1985
Goose Stat: In 1970, Richard Gossage was drafted by the White Sox in June and pitched three times in the Gulf Coast League before joining the Foxes later in the season. There will be more on Gossage tomorrow.
Hit the Deck Stat: Dennis Deck was the 4th round pick of the White Sox in the 1968 draft. He had pitched for the Foxes in 1968 and spent 1969 with the Duluth-Superior Dukes in the Northern League. Deck pitched six seasons in the minor leagues. He was 8-9 with the Foxes in 1970. He had one season that was a bit better, the 1972 season in AA with Knoxville when he went 10-8.
Player/Coach Stat: Jim Mahoney was 36 and a coach for the Foxes, but played in a few games during the 1970 season.
Mahoney played in the big leagues for Boston, Washington, Cleveland, and Houston and would go on to manage in the minors, too.
All About Ira: Ira Hutchinson was no stranger to Goodland Field.
He had previous managed from the visiting dugout. He was the manager of the Wisconsin Rapids White Sox in 1951 and 1952 in the old Wisconsin State League, the manager of the Davenport Davsox in 1958 and the Lincoln Chiefs in 1959 & 1960 in the old Three-I League, and the manager of the Clinton C-Sox in 1962 and 1965. Hutchinson won over 1,100 games in 18 years as a minor league manager.
Before becoming a minor league manager, Hutchinson was a major league pitcher for parts of six seasons between 1933 and 1946. Hutchinson was 34-33 in 209 games for the White Sox, Boston Braves, Brooklyn Dodgers, & St. Louis Cardinals.
FUTURE MAJOR LEAGUE COACH/MANAGER: Bruce Kimm
Kimm spent more time with the Foxes in 1971, but his brief 1970 stay allows a look at Kimm in this post. The former major league catcher went back and forth between managing in the minor leagues and coaching in the big leagues. He managed against the Foxes in 1983 when he was in charge of the Cedar Rapids Reds. Kimm was the Iowa Cubs manager in 2002 when Don Baylor was fired as the manager of the Chicago Cubs. Kimm was called up to take over for Baylor and went 33-45 with the Cubs. He was replaced by Dusty Baker for the 2003 season. From there, Kimm went to the White Sox as their third base coach.
1970 Midwest League:
Appleton Foxes, Burlington Bees, Cedar Rapids Cardinals, Clinton Pilots, Danville, Warriors, Decatur Commodores, Quad Cities Angels, Quincy Cubs, Waterloo Hawks, Wisconsin Rapids Twins.
Welcome to the Midwest League, Danville, Illinois!
1970 MWL Postseason:
The Quincy Cubs swept the Quad Cities Angels in a best-of-three Championship Series
1970 MWL ALUMNI OF NOTE:
Cooper was the leadoff batter for the MWL All-Stars in the 1970 All-Star Game. Why not? He didn’t hit for a lot of power as a 20 year old in his third season as a pro. Plus, he was in an interesting spot for 1970. Danville was a co-op team which meant that they were not affiliated with any one Major League team. According to MWLGuide.com, at least nine MLB teams had players in Danville during the 1970 season. Again…at least NINE MLB teams had players in Danville during the 1970 season. Cooper was the only player from the ’70 team in Danville to reach the major leagues.
Cooper was an All-Star five times, led the American League in RBI twice, and hit .352 in 1980 with the Brewers yet finished second to George Brett’s .390 average. He was also responsible for the top moment in the first 40 years of Milwaukee Brewers history!
Opening Day, 2012 is April 5. Get Here soon.