1972 Season News

On May 12th, the Milwaukee Brewers and Minnesota Twins went head-to-head for twenty-one innings before the one A.M. curfew halted play with the score 3-3. Both teams combined to tie the Major League record for intentional walks during an extra-inning game with seven and the Twins went a step further and tied their own club record by stranding twenty-three men on base. The following day play resumed as the Brewers scored in the top of the twenty-second to win 4-3, but the Twins prevailed with a 4-3 victory of their own in the second outing after fifteen innings. At the end of the day, both games tallied nine hours and twenty-three minutes setting an American League record for the most consecutive innings ever played in a two-day span.

California Angels' ace Nolan Ryan sat down sixteen batters for a 3-0 victory and an American League record with eight K's in a row on nine pitches. Carl Yastrzemski of the Boston Red Sox, managed a one-out single in the first for the team's only hit, but Ryan responded by retiring the last twenty-six consecutive batters. In doing so, the future Hall of Famer became only the third pitcher in Major League history to twice fan the side on nine pitches.

Giants' giant Willie McCovey tied both Gil Hodges and Hank Aaron for the National League grand-slam record with fourteen of his own as San Francisco beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 9-3.

On September 30th, Roberto Clemente doubled to left-center off of the New York Mets' John Matlack at Three Rivers Stadium for his final at-bat and career hit number three-thousand. The Pittsburgh Pirates went on to win 5-0 and "The Great One" went on the list with Ty Cobb, Stan Musial, Tris Speaker, Honus Wagner, Hank Aaron, Eddie Collins, Napoleon Lajoie, Willie Mays, Paul Waner, and Adrian Anson as the newest member of the "3,000 hit club".

Unfortunately, Clemente was killed in a plane crash while on a humanitarian mission that was taking supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. The DC-7 aircraft he was flying in went down off the coast of Puerto Rico one-mile from San Juan with no survivors. The four time National League batting champion was only thirty-eight years old and had just won a World Series championship in 1971. As a tribute, he was elected on a special consideration to the National Baseball Hall of Fame with a 93% vote becoming the first Latin American to be inducted into Cooperstown.

Eighty-six games were cancelled due to the first general players' strike, which was eventually resolved on April 13th. Concessions came after both the owners and players agreed on a $500,000 increase in pension fund payments. In an effort to prevent paying the players for the work stoppage, the league decided not to make up the missed contests. As a result, some teams only played one-hundred fifty-three total games.
1972 American League East
Team Record GB
Detroit Tigers 86-70 -
Boston Red Sox 85-70 0.5
Baltimore Orioles 80-74 5.0
New York Yankees 79-76 6.5
Cleveland Indians 72-84 14.0
Milwaukee Brewers 65-91 21.0
1972 American League West
Team Record GB
Oakland Athletics 93-62 -
Chicago White Sox 87-67 5.5
Minnesota Twins 77-77 15.5
Kansas City Royals 76-78 16.5
California Angels 75-80 18.0
Texas Rangers 54-100 38.5
1972 National League East
Team Record GB
Pittsburgh Pirates 96-59 -
Chicago Cubs 85-70 11.0
New York Mets 83-73 13.5
St. Louis Cardinals 75-81 21.5
Montreal Expos 70-86 26.5
Philadelphia Phillies 59-97 37.5
1972 National League West
Team Record GB
Cincinnati Reds 95-59 -
Los Angeles Dodgers 85-70 10.5
Huston Astros 84-69 10.5
Atlanta Braves 70-84 25.0
San Francisco Giants 69-86 26.5
San Diego Padres 58-95 36.5
American League Team Stats
Team W L PCT RS RS/G RA RA/G HR HRA AVG OBP SLG ERA BBA SOA FPCT DP
Oakland Athletics 93 62 0.600 604 3.90 457 2.95 134 96 0.240 0.302 0.366 2.58 418 862 0.979 146
Chicago White Sox 87 67 0.565 566 3.68 538 3.49 108 94 0.238 0.307 0.346 3.12 431 936 0.977 136
Detroit Tigers 86 70 0.551 558 3.58 514 3.29 122 101 0.237 0.303 0.356 2.96 465 952 0.984 137
Boston Red Sox 85 70 0.548 640 4.13 620 4.00 124 101 0.248 0.316 0.376 3.47 512 918 0.978 141
Baltimore Orioles 80 74 0.519 519 3.37 430 2.79 100 85 0.229 0.300 0.339 2.53 395 788 0.983 150
New York Yankees 79 76 0.510 557 3.59 527 3.40 103 87 0.249 0.314 0.357 3.05 419 625 0.978 179
Minnesota Twins 77 77 0.500 537 3.49 535 3.47 93 105 0.244 0.307 0.344 2.84 444 838 0.974 133
Kansas City Royals 76 78 0.494 580 3.77 545 3.54 78 85 0.255 0.325 0.353 3.24 405 801 0.981 164
California Angels 75 80 0.484 454 2.93 533 3.44 78 90 0.242 0.291 0.330 3.06 620 1000 0.981 135
Cleveland Indians 72 84 0.462 472 3.03 519 3.33 91 123 0.234 0.291 0.330 2.92 534 846 0.982 157
Milwaukee Brewers 65 91 0.417 493 3.16 595 3.81 88 116 0.235 0.299 0.328 3.45 486 740 0.977 145
Texas Rangers 54 100 0.351 461 2.99 628 4.08 56 92 0.217 0.288 0.290 3.53 613 868 0.972 147
National League Team Stats
Team W L PCT RS RS/G RA RA/G HR HRA AVG OBP SLG ERA BBA SOA FPCT DP
Pittsburgh Pirates 96 59 0.619 691 4.46 512 3.30 110 90 0.274 0.324 0.397 2.81 433 838 0.978 171
Cincinnati Reds 95 59 0.617 707 4.59 557 3.62 124 129 0.251 0.329 0.380 3.21 435 806 0.982 143
Los Angeles Dodgers 85 70 0.548 584 3.77 527 3.40 98 83 0.256 0.318 0.360 2.78 429 856 0.974 145
Chicago Cubs 85 70 0.548 685 4.42 567 3.66 133 112 0.257 0.329 0.387 3.22 421 824 0.979 148
Houston Astros 84 69 0.549 708 4.63 636 4.16 134 114 0.258 0.325 0.393 3.77 498 971 0.981 151
New York Mets 83 73 0.532 528 3.38 578 3.71 105 118 0.225 0.332 0.332 3.26 486 1059 0.98 122
St. Louis Cardinals 75 81 0.481 568 3.64 600 3.85 70 87 0.260 0.355 0.355 3.42 531 912 0.976 146
Atlanta Braves 70 84 0.455 628 4.08 730 4.74 144 155 0.258 0.382 0.382 4.27 512 732 0.974 130
Montreal Expos 70 86 0.449 513 3.29 609 3.90 91 103 0.234 0.325 0.325 3.59 579 888 0.978 141
San Francisco Giants 69 86 0.445 662 4.27 649 4.19 150 130 0.244 0.384 0.384 3.69 507 771 0.974 121
San Diego Padres 58 95 0.379 488 3.19 665 4.35 102 121 0.227 0.332 0.332 3.78 618 960 0.976 146
Philadelphia Phillies 59 97 0.378 503 3.22 635 4.07 98 117 0.236 0.344 0.344 3.66 536 927 0.981 142