No-no November continues this week on Flashback Friday. This week, we go back to June 15, 1972. R. Wayne McCauley drew the starting assignment for the Appleton Foxes in the first game of a doubleheader against the Quincy Cubs at Goodland Field. The right-hander did not start the game well, but - as Dan VanderPas reports in the June 16 edition of The Post-Crescent - everything worked out very well by the end of the seven inning game.
No-Hitter Helps Foxes Sweep Doubleheader
Lamar Johnson Homers
McCauley, a native of Old Fort, North Carolina, thrilled 1,817 "Dairy Night"
fans by firing a no-hitter as the Foxes downed Quincy, 2-0, in the first game of
a doubleheader Thursday at Goodland Field.
Lamar Johnson blasted a 360-foot homer with one man aboard in the nightcap to spark Appleton to a 7-3 triumph.
McCauley, who whiffed 10 Cubs during his 7-inning performance, got off to a shaky start in the first inning as he walked [the first two batters before picking] Julio Gonzalez off of first base, and with the help of the flawless fielding of his teammates, he retired the rest of the Quincy batsmen in order.
First in Pro Ball
"After I walked the first two batters, I figured that I just didn't have it. I was wild," the 22-year-old fastballer said. "I used mostly fastballs, but I relied on some changeups early in the game. This is the first time I ever pitched a no-hitter in pro ball," McCauley went on, "I haven't had any since high school.
McCauley (2-5) fanned 20 Waterloo batsmen during his last outing only to be on the short end of a 2-1 extra-inning decision.
The Cubs hurler, lefthander Len York, also had a no-hitter going until Lamar Johnson singled to deep short in the fourth inning.
Appleton broke the scoring drought in the fifth when Mike Reynolds lashed a double to center after two men were out, and McCauley drove him across with another double to center.
"I just hit a fast ball," the jubilant McCauley recalled after the game. "It felt really good."
The Foxes added an insurance run in the sixth. Mike Buskey led off with a bunt single along third and hotcornerman Jorge Aranzamendi threw wildly to first to send him to second. Buskey then swiped third before being plated by Bobby Bridges' sacrifice fly to right.
The Foxes jumped to a 3-0 lead in the second inning of the nightcap. Fred Norton started the rally by working losing pitcher John Anderson for a walk. Bart Johnson followed with his first of three safeties, a single to right that sent Norton to third. Reynolds then slapped a double into the left field corner to drive Norton home.
After Appleton starter Woody Eppinette fanned, Dan Rourk socked a 3-bagger to left to account for the other two markers.
Quincy sliced the margin to 3-2 in the fifth on singles by Aranzamendi and Max Stewart...a fielding error and a walk.
After Boskey led off the fifth with a walk, Lamar put the Foxes on top permanently with his towering shot over the left field wall.
The Cubs run in the sixth occurred when Bob Watson reached second on an error and scored on Bob White's single through short.
Bart Johnson greeted reliever Gary Junge with a long double to center to lead off the sixth, and after Reynolds was issued free transportation, Bridges plated a pair of runs with a 1-bagger to left.
Paul Sands, who worked two and one-third innings in relief was credited with the win.
The Foxes will play Quincy in a single game tonight (7:30pm) at Goodland Field.
See the boxscore of the game (as best as it could be reconstructed) at this Rattler Radio post. There is also a link to the 1970's All-Decade post that has a picture of McCauley (which has been cropped out of a larger team photogrpah) at Rattler Radio. There should be a link to it right here, but for some reason, the web editor will not recognize that link today.
McCauley went 6-8 for the Foxes in 1972 and was promoted to Knoxville later in the season. He came back to Appleton in 1973 and went 5-6 before being promoted to Knoxville again. McCauley wrapped up his professional career with Knoxville in 1974 with an 0-2 record.
The Bob Watson of the Quincy Cubs referred to up in the article is not this Bob Watson.
According to MWL Guide, Quincy started as a Midwest League expansion team in 1960. They were an affiliate of the Chicago Cubs from 1965-1973. Then, the franchise moved to Dubuque. The Dubuque Packers folded in 1976 and was not replaced.
The only player in the Quincy lineup in this game to make it to the big leagues was Julio Gonzalez.
Three Foxes mentioned in the story above went on to the big leagues: Mike Buskey, Bart Johnson, and Lamar Johnson.
The Appleton Foxes finished the 1972 season with a 76-51 record. That was the best record in the Midwest League for the season. Appleton got into the playoffs by winning the second half Northern Division title with a record of 40-23. Appleton beat Wisconsin Rapids in a one game divisional playoff to make it to the MWL Championship Series.
However, the Foxes were swept in the best-of-three finals by Danville.
The 1972 Danville Warriors were the Midwest League affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. Charlie Moore, Sixto Lezcano, Eduardo Rodriguez, Bill Castro, and a few other names you may recognize were on that team.
Dan VanderPas is now the Assistant Sports Editor at the Post-Crescent. I wonder if one of the current writers could get hotcornerman by him today.
There are a few problems with the layout of the original article and that makes for some tough deciphering. I added the words in the brackets up in paragraph three because that made the most sense. Also the ellipsis in the second paragraph after Rourke doubles means that there were no words there.
Final note: Yes. Pitchers still hit in the minors in 1972. The records are not complete at baseball-reference, but McCauley hit .172 (5-for-29) with a homer at some point in the season to go along with the double from the no-hitter. The stats do not include his RBI for the year.
October 8: In fair territory (1994)
October 15: Fans flock to see Foxes (1987)
October 22: New Park (1995)