Salt Lake City Angels

From BR Bullpen


After one year of reviving the old Salt Lake City Bees name, the PCL team in Salt Lake City became the Salt Lake City Angels in 1971 on becoming a California affiliate. Managed by Del Rice their first season, they won the southern division of the PCL at 78-68, then beat the Tacoma Twins three games to one to claim the league pennant. They outscored opponents 784-719. Tacoma had a slightly better regular-season record at 78-65. Salt Lake City drew 152,160 fans, 4th in the league. All-Stars were manager Rice, 2B Billy Parker (.306/~.393/.539, 27 HR, 115 RBI, 95 R, 14 SB in 17 tries, 147 K) and C Art Kusnyer (.316/~.363/.454). Parker was 7th in the league in home runs and third in RBI, behind only Ron Cey and Adrian Garrett and Kusnyer led with 11 wsacrifice flies. Archie Reynolds went 13-6 with a 2.85 ERA as their ace, while Andy Hassler (5-1, 4.59) went on to the best MLB career from the staff. Outfielders Tommie Reynolds (.355/~.397/.523), Mickey Rivers (.322/~.355/.545, 11 triples, 10 HR) and Tom Silverio (.339/~.423/.421, 5th in average) all hit well, as did 1B Chuck Vinson (.327/~.430/.588, 22 HR, 9th in average).

In 1972, another manager with two one-syllable names, Les Moss, was appointed. The Angels wre second in attendance (191,577) and finished third in the eastern division at 80-68; their record would have led the western division. They outscored the other teams they played, 762-701. All-Stars were utility man Jim Hutto (a third baseman and catcher, Hutto hit .326/~.411/.534 and tied for fourth in average) and pitcher Dick Lange (11-11, 4 Sv, a league-leading 2.97 ERA). Rivers (.336/.387/.456, 16 SB) performed well in 59 games, while Parker had another fine year (.298/~.365/.503, 18 HR) and Salt Lake City native Doug Howard, an OF-3B-1B, was 5th in the PCL with 24 homers and batted .301/~.363/.515. He led the Coast League in RBI (109) and tied for the most sacrifice flies (12).

The 1973 Salt Lake City season saw Del Wilber manage the Angels to a 79-65-1 season, second in the east. They drew 162,581 supporters, third in the PCL. The PCL had both eastern and western All-Star teams - Salt Lake City's representatives on the east were familiar names - 1B Howard (.297/~.371/.495, 18 HR), 2B Parker (.298/~.380/.571, 25 HR, fourth in the league in homers) and OF Rivers (.336/~.401/.468, 47 SB in 55 tries, 14 triples, 187 runs, 113 runs, third in the league in average and the leader in steals, hits and outfield put-outs [327]). The run difference was 763 for the Angels, 695 for the opposition. Lange (7-6, 2.83) had another good year, while Richard Young (12-9, 3.11) was third in the PCL in ERA. Dave Leonhard (6-6, 4.08) also was part of the rotation, while Ed Figueroa (6-8, 2 Sv, 4.14) split the year with the Phoenix Giants.

In 1974, Norm Sherry was the manager of a 69-73 team that finished third in the eastern division. The only All-Star was OF Bruce Bochte, who batted .355/~.437/.494 but was a handful of AB shy of qualifying for the batting title, or else he would have won it. Morris Nettles led the league's outfielders with 15 errors but was also 8th in batting average, hitting .328/~.421/.414 with 26 steals. 2B Jerry Remy hit .292/~.367/.374 before embarking on a long big-league career. Figueroa was 3-0 with a 2.40 ERA and Ken Sanders 3-1 with 2 saves and a 3.44 ERA. Hassler had his worst of his four seasons with the club, going 5-7 with a 5.92 ERA.

Sources: 1972-1975 Baseball Guides

Year-by-Year Record[edit]

Year Record Finish Manager Playoffs
1971 78-68 2nd Del Rice League Champs
1972 80-68 3rd Les Moss
1973 79-65 3rd Les Moss
1974 69-73 5th Norm Sherry