Kennedys 10-9, Homestead 12-7
Pitcher use: B. Gibson, R. Brown need 3 games; Carlton needs two games; Bell and Wickware need one. Niekro worked two innings in finale; Koufax 2.6 in the two games; Salmon pitched 1.3 in the two games.
Game 1: Homestead 10, Kennedys 9 (11 innings)
WP: W Bell (1-0)
LP: Fingers (0-1)
HR: Aaron (6), Bench (3), Brett (2)
Game 2: Homestead 9, Kennedys 8
WP: R. Brown (3-2)
LP: B Gibson (4-1)
HR: W. Brown (6), Bench (4)
Save: Salmon (1)
A slugfest series went Homestead's way, as the team designer intended.
The Kennedys jumped out to a big lead early in the first game. George Brett and Hank Aaron hit three-run homers in the first two innings, and the Kennedys held an 8-1 lead into the sixth inning. It didn't help Homestead that star slugger Josh Gibson was sidelined in the first inning when hit by a Steve Carlton pitch.
Homestead put up three runs in the sixth, then knocked Carlton out of the box in the eighth. Sand Koufax came on with one out, two on and an 8-5 lead. He induced Chino smith to hit a fly ball to right, but Aaron muffed it. One out later, pinch-hitter Hurley McNair tripled; Mule Suttles singled; and Homestead led 9-8.
That lead lasted only one batter into the bottom of the eighth, when Johnny Bench greeted William Bell with a homer. The two teams matched zeros in the ninth and tenth before Homestead punched a run in off Rollie Fingers and a weary Bell pitched around a leadoff single in the 11th.
Each team used a pitcher to pinch run, and Homestead even had Ray Brown pinch hit.
Bob Gibson had a miserable time in the second game, yielding nine runs and 15 hits in six innings. Ray Brown, staked to an early lead, absorbed a pounding in the last three innings (six runs in 2.6 IP) before finally giving way to Harry Salmon, who retired Bench with two on to end it.
Tubby Scales was 5-for-9 with three walks in the two game series with five runs scored. Brett was also 5-for-9 with five RBI. Bench has now homered in three straight games.