Carpenter’s Defensive Play Already Among Most Memorable

By Unknown author
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What’s The Situation: The Orioles returned to the World Series in 1970 on the strength of the second of three consecutive 100-win seasons. This time they were facing the infant stages of what would become The Big Red Machine in Cincinnati.

What Happened: Robinson was a machine in the 1970 post-season. He hit .583 in the 1970 ALCS against the Minnesota Twins. In the subsequent World Series against the Reds, Brooks hit .429 with 2 home runs, however, it was his defensive prowess at third base that stood out, making several impressive plays during the series that robbed the Reds, and notably Johnny Bench of apparent base hits. He didn’t discriminate direction, either. On two notable robberies, Robinson sprung to his right and corralled a Tony Perez hopper heading into foul territory (above left), stepped on third and fired to first for a perfect double play. Later he would snag another Johnny Bench line drive (above right) while diving to his left.

What It Meant: Having already won a World Title in 1966, the 1970 Orioles cemented themselves as the American League’s newest dynasty. The 1970 championship would be their only title in the three-year stretch of repeat A.L. pennants. After the 1970 World Series, effervescent Cincinnati Reds manager Sparky Anderson quipped, “I’m beginning to see Brooks in my sleep. If I dropped this paper plate, he’d pick it up on one hop and throw me out at first.”