Game 17: Ron Reed continues his strong start, throwing a complete game at the Hells Angels, as the Riders win their first home divisional contest, 5-1. Catcher Jerry May hits a two-run homer and Richie Hebner has two RBI as well. Big effort for Reed as the bullpen was in poor shape and needed a day of rest.
Game 18: Jim Maloney is finally rewarded for a good performance, picking up his first win with 6.2 four-hit innings. Terry Harmon reaches base four times and Larry Hisle drives home two runs, one on his sixth double of the season. Ted Abernathy allows only one run in his inning and a third of work, dropping his ERA below 10.00 for the first time this season.
Game 19: The offense rolls, as Ted Sizemore and Richie Hebner pace a 14-hit attack with three hits each, and Nate Colbert hits his second home run and drives home four as the Riders take another division series with an 11-9 win over Anaheim. Don Cardwell throws 6.1 scoreless innings. The Hells Angels rally late against the Riders' mopup men, but Duane Josephson and Curt Blefary pop out with the bases loaded in the ninth to end it.
Game 20: The finale is a thriller. Anaheim takes a 2-0 lead in the first. Milwaukee gets one back in the first, then ties it on Larry Hisle's homer in the fourth. Despite an unsuccessful steal attempt in the eigth, Milwaukee takes the lead after two walks are followed by Al Ferrara's single. Bob Humphreys, however, cannot hold the lead. Anaheim gets a two-run double from Andy Kosco in the ninth and takes a 4-3 lead. Nate Colbert's pinch hit single in the bottom half ties the score and puts runners at the corners with no outs. Ted Sizemore is intentionally walked to load the bases, bringing up Wayne Comer. Comer works a walk! and the Riders win, 5-4. It's their first sweep in club history. Ted Abernathy, who got the last two outs in the ninth, picks up his first win.
At 11-9, the Riders would appear to be in the wild card race, as none of the second place teams in the PL have a better record. However, the pitching staff has already started to show some signs of fatigue and most of their productive hitters (Colbert, Hisle, Hebner) will need substantial rest as the season goes on.
We have two interleague series next before completing this round of divisional play. Montreal is up first.