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1979 Angels Week 13: Nolan Ryan in control

Career bests this season in walk rate and strikeout-to-walk ratio for the Angels right-hander

California Angels

The Angels had an up-and-down week back in 1979, getting swept out of first place in Texas, but then regained their form and a share atop the division by sweeping the Royals in Kansas City.

Nolan Ryan typified the week for the Angels. He suffered the loss Wednesday in Texas, allowing four runs in eight innings, then struck out 10 Royals while going the distance in Sunday, his 10th complete game this season.

Nolan Ryan’s control with Angels

Year BB rate K/BB
Year BB rate K/BB
1972 13.60% 2.10
1973 11.96% 2.36
1974 14.51% 1.82
1975 15.28% 1.41
1976 15.30% 1.79
1977 16.04% 1.67
1978 14.68% 1.76
1979* 10.65% 2.63
*through Sunday, July 1

The loss saw Ryan walk six batters (one intentionally), snapping a trend of control for the right-hander. That snapped a string of 10 starts with no more than three walks for Ryan, who issued 18 total walks during that time. Ryan has been far stingier with free passes this year, after leading the majors in walks in six of his first seven years with the Angels.

Ryan this year has career bests in walk rate (10.6 percent through Sunday) and strikeout-to-walk ratio (2.63).

Carney Lansford was the hitting star of the week, scoring six runs and driving in five while hitting .440 (11-for-25) with two home runs and two doubles.

Don Baylor has been a consistent run producer for the Angels all season, but he went without a home run for 14 games before the dam burst last week. He homered in the series finale in Texas, the series opener in Kansas City, then hit two home runs to beat the Royals on Sunday. Baylor drove in seven runs for the week, and has a major league-best 66 RBI in 80 games this season.

1979 MLB RBI leaders

Player Team RBI
Player Team RBI
Don Baylor Angels 66
George Foster Reds 65
Dave Kingman Cubs 65
Fred Lynn Red Sox 64
through July 1, 1979

Dan Ford also homered twice in Sunday’s route of Kansas City, in which the Angels scored a season-high 14 runs on 16 hits to back Ryan in his 10th win of the season.

With Bert Campaneris on the shelf, rookie Jim Anderson started every inning at shortstop last week. Anderson homered for the Halos’ only run Tuesday, then exploded for a four-hit game in Sunday’s drubbing of the Royals, tying an Angels record with three doubles.

Joe Rudi, injured for the better part of a month, settled back into the lineup this week. After just one hit in his previous 27 at-bats dating back to May 22, the Angels left fielder had four hits, including a double, and drove in four runs in the weekend series in Kansas City.

Weekly summary

3-3 record
35 runs scored (5.83 per game)
32 runs allowed (5.33 per game)
.541 pythagorean record

Year-to-date summary

45-35 record
444 runs scored (5.55 per game)
375 runs allowed (4.69 per game)
.577 pythagorean record (46-34)

AL West standing: 1st place, tied with Texas

Game results

Up next

The Angels don’t have another road game until after the All-Star break, returning home to face Oakland and Baltimore as part of a 13-game homestand.