PCL Redux

Update: 7/21/1941


While the season is just a little past the halfway point, San Diego’s (50-40) six-game series at Los Angeles (54-36) that ended on Thursday had a bit of a now-or-never feel to it. After all, the Angels’ six-game lead over the second-place Padres had barely budged for three weeks, and the Friars and Halos won’t meet again until late September. If San Diego wanted to start decreasing the distance between themselves and first place, this was the time to do it.

The Padres responded to the challenge, taking four out of six. San Diego now trails Los Angeles by only four games. Seattle (48-43) is 6½ games back, Portland and San Francisco (both 45-45) are nine games back, Oakland (45-46) is 9½ games back, and Hollywood and Sacramento (both 37-53) are 17 games back.

Seattle’s Roy Campanella is the Player of the Week. The 19-year-old backstop hit an eye-popping .632 (12-for-18) to raise his season’s average to .322. Campanella has five homers and 55 runs batted in this year.

Update: 7/14/1941


Ted Williams of San Diego and George Scales of Los Angeles have been alternating as the Player of the Week almost exclusively this season, taking eight of the thirteen awards distributed thus far. This week it was Williams’ turn again, as The Kid picked up his fifth trophy of the year after hitting .435 (10-for-23) with four home runs, ten runs batted in, and ten runs scored. Williams leads the loop in batting; his average now at .400, and he is tied with Scales for the league lead in homers with 12.

Not surprisingly, the Angels (52-32) and Padres (46-38) occupy the top two spots in the league standings. The Halos hold a six-game lead over the Friars. In third place is Seattle (45-40), who trail Los Angeles by 7½ games. Portland (43-41) is in fourth place, nine games out, Oakland (42-43) is in fifth, 10½ games out, San Francisco (41-43) is in sixth, 11 games out, Sacramento (35-49) is in seventh, 17 games out, and Hollywood (33-51) is in eighth, 19 games out.

Update: 7/7/1941


Oakland’s Joe Gordon went on a tear this week, picking up hits in 13 of his 29 at-bats for a .448 average while the Oaks (39-39) won five of seven games. The sudden surge brought the Acorns’ record back to .500, lifted them past San Francisco (37-40) and into fifth place in the standings, and brought them within 2½ games of a playoff spot. Not a bad week in the East Bay. Gordon is hitting just .269 but is leading the Oaks in home runs with 8.

There haven’t been many highlights for Hollywood (30-47) this season, so Stars fans certainly must have enjoyed Bill Fleming’s no-hitter against the arch-rival Angels at Gilmore Field on Sunday. Fleming walked two and struck out three in the 3-0 victory.

Los Angeles (47-30) remains six games ahead of second-place San Diego (41-36). Just hair behind the Padres is Seattle (41-37), followed by Portland (40-37). The Oaks and Seals are 8½ and 10 games out of first, respectively, while Sacramento (34-43) trails by 13 and the Stars trail by 17.

Update: 6/30/1941


Ever heard of a player having his greatest season at age 40? Anyone who has heard of George Scales has. Los Angeles’ manager-second baseman hit .560 (14-for-25) with three home runs and eight runs batted in this week to earn his third Player of the Week award of the season. Scales is now first in the P.C.L. in home runs (11), first in doubles (29), second in batting (.395), third in runs scored (55), and tied for fourth in RBI (43). He’s not doing a bad job making decisions, either; the Angels (43-27) have a six-game lead over their closest pursuers.

The race for second place remains super-tight. San Diego (37-33) has a half-game edge over Seattle (37-34), and a one-game lead over Portland and San Francisco (both 36-34). Oakland (34-37) is also hanging in there, nine games out of first but only three out of second. Sacramento (30-40) and Hollywood (28-42) have struggled for much of the season.

Update: 6/23/1941


Ted Williams of San Diego (34-29) continued his onslaught on the collective pitching staffs of the Pacific Coast League this week, hitting .565 (13-for-23) with three home runs. Williams is now flirting with a .400 season, having raised his season average to .397. The Padres picked up a half-game on Los Angeles (38-26) to pull within 3½ games out.

The Angels lead third-place San Francisco (34-30) by four games, fourth-place Seattle (34-31) by 4½, fifth-place Portland (32-32) by six, sixth-place Oakland (31-34) by 7½, seventh-place Sacramento (29-35) by nine, and last-place Hollywood (24-39) by 13½.

The Halo’s George Scales’ hitting streak ended at 38 games, halted by four Oakland pitchers in the Oaks’ 11-10 victory on June 17th.

Update: 6/16/1941


Willard Brown got Oakland (28-30) off the mat and led them to five straight victories over last-place Hollywood (22-35) this week. Brown, a 25-year-old center fielder who hails from Shreveport, Louisiana, hit a blistering .593 (16-for-27) to give Player of the Week award voters an easy choice. Brown is hitting .302 for the season and the Oaks are suddenly just 3½ games removed from a playoff spot.

Los Angeles (35-22) has opened up a four-game lead over San Diego (31-26) after defeating San Francisco (30-27) five times in six tries, dropping the Seals into third place, five games out. Seattle (30-28) is in fourth place, 5½ games back, Portland (28-29) is in fifth, seven games back, Oakland is in sixth, 7½ games back, Sacramento (25-32) is in seventh, ten games back, and the Stars are 13 games back.

Update: 6/9/1941


San Diego’s Ted Williams is having a spectacular season. The 22-year-old right fielder hit .583 (14-for-24) over the last seven days, earning his third Player of the Week award of the season, while the Padres (29-22) were locked in mortal combat with one of their chief rivals for a postseason berth, San Francisco (also 29-22). The two combatants split the six-game series. Williams leads the P.C.L. with a .374 average.

Just behind Williams in the batting derby is Los Angeles’ George Scales, who is hitting .372 and is the owner of what has now become a 32-game hitting streak. The longest hitting streak in league history belongs to Smead Jolley, now one of Scales’ teammates. Jolley hit safely in 41 consecutive games in 1934 while a member of the Portland Beavers.

The Angels (30-21) have taken over sole possession of first place. They lead the Padres and Seals by a game, Seattle (26-26) by 4½, Portland (24-27) by six, Sacramento (23-28) by seven, Oakland (23-29) by 7½, and Hollywood (21-30) by nine.

Update: 6/2/1941


Los Angeles player/manager George Scales seems to have discovered the Fountain of Youth. At 40 years young (he’ll turn 41 in August) the 19-year veteran is having perhaps his finest season, leading the league in batting average at .373, doubles with 23, and extra base hits with 31. This week he picked up his second Player of the Week award, hitting .478 with a pair of homers and six runs batted in.

Scales’ team is rolling, too, as the Angels (26-19) have won nine of their last ten games, earning them a share of the top spot in the league standings. San Diego and San Francisco (also both 26-19) round out the three-way tie for first place. The rest of the league is under .500; Portland (22-23) trails the leaders by four games, Sacramento (21-24) trails by five, Seattle (21-25) trails by 5½, Hollywood (20-25) by six and Oakland (19-27) by 7½.

Update: 5/26/1941


The 1941 Coast League race is shaping up to be another fiercely competitive one. San Francisco (22-16) retains the top spot this week but the Seals’ lead over San Diego (21-17) is down to a game. Los Angeles (21-18) picked up two games in the standings; the Angels are now in third place and just a game and a half out of first. Sacramento (19-19) and Seattle (20-20) are three back, Hollywood and Portland (both 18-21) are just 4½ back, and Oakland (16-23) is 6½ back. A lot of baseball left to be played, and everyone is still very much in it.

Sacramento’s Willie Wells is the Player of the Week. Wells hit a blistering .522 (12-for-23) and drove in eight runs. He also hit his first home run of the year. The 35-year-old star battled injuries the last two seasons while playing for Seattle but seems to have a new lease on life as a Solon. He’s hitting .325.

Update: 5/19/1941


Martín Dihigo of Hollywood hit .423 (11-for-26) and knocked in eight runs, adding a pair of homers, as the Stars (15-18) took four of seven games. It wasn’t enough to get Hollywood out of seventh place but this year’s race remains fairly tight from top to bottom. Hollywood is 4½ games out of first. Dihigo, the Player of the Week, is hitting .342.

San Francisco (19-13) dropped its first game this week but won its next five, so the Seals have taken over the top spot, leading San Diego (17-15) by two games. Portland (17-16) is now in third place, 2½ games out, and Sacramento (16-16) and Seattle (17-17) are tied for fourth, three games out. Los Angeles is 3½ out, and last-place Oakland is still just 5½ out.

Update: 5/12/1941


Los Angeles (14-12) made its way into a crowded field of teams at or near the top of the standings thanks to the exemplary play of player/manager George Scales this week. The ageless Scales—he’ll be 41 in August—collected 16 hits in 33 at-bats for a .485 average, adding a homer, seven runs batted in, and ten runs scored. The Angels won four of six and are now a game out of first.

While only a game back they are still just in third place, and they’ve got lots of company. San Diego and Sacramento (both 15-11) are leading the field, and Los Angeles, Portland, and San Francisco (all 14-12) are in a three-way tie for second. Seattle (12-15) is 3½ games back, Hollywood (11-15) is four back and Oakland (10-17) has dropped into the cellar, 5½ games back.

Update: 5/5/1941


Ted Williams of the first-place San Diego Padres (13-7) is the Player of the Week for the second time this season. The 22-year-old Williams hit .478 (11-for-23) with a pair of home runs, seven runs scored, and seven runs batted in as the Friars took four of seven games to secure sole position of the top spot. Williams is hitting .390 and the Padres are a game ahead of their closest competitors.

Sacramento (12-8) is in second place, San Francisco (11-8) is a game and a half behind in third place, Portland (10-10) trails by three games, Los Angeles (9-10) trails by 3½, Seattle (9-12) trails by 4½, Oakland (8-12) trails by five, and Hollywood (7-12) trails by 5½.

Update: 4/28/1941


It was a perfect week for San Diego (9-4), as the Padres traveled north and swept Hollywood (4-9) in a five-game set and won the first two games of a five-game showdown at Los Angeles (5-8). The Friars are the undisputed kings of Southern California right now but they have company atop the Coast League standings, with San Francisco also sitting at 9-4.

Portland shortstop Sam Bankhead is the Player of the Week. Although known more for his glove than for his bat, the 30-year-old veteran wore out opposing pitchers, collecting 14 hits in 30 at-bats for a .467 average, adding runs batted in and six runs scored. The Beavers (6-7) went 4-3.

San Diego and San Francisco lead Sacramento (8-5) by a game. Portland is three games back, Oakland and Seattle (both 6-8) are 3½ games back, the Angels trail by four and the Stars trail by five.

Update: 4/21/1941


The first week of the 1941 season separated the league into teams with winning records and teams with losing records, as each six-game series concluded with one team defeating the other four times.

San Diego (2-4) was not one of the teams that emerged victorious from the majority of their games this week, but the week’s standout player wears a Padres uniform. That man is 22-year-old right fielder Ted Williams. Williams collected 13 hits in 28 at bats for a .464 average, scoring seven runs and driving in a pair. The San Diego native is already in his sixth big league season, with a career batting average sitting just below .300, at .297.

Hollywood, Sacramento, San Francisco, and Seattle are all 4-2; Los Angeles, Oakland, Portland, and San Diego are 2-4.