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Jim Clark writes book about 1974 Cleveland Indians


As a New York Yankees fan, I recall the 1974 baseball season very well.  It was one of the few times, since I started rooting for the once perennial champions, that they were in a pennant race.  And among the combatants they were battling were the 1974 Cleveland Indians.  Therefore, I was delighted when I found out that Eastern League broadcast colleague Jim Clark, the "Voice of the Akron RubberDucks," wrote a book about that 1974 season, "Rally 'Round Cleveland: The Story of the 1974 Franchise-Saving Cleveland Indians."

Jim Clark
I watched many a Yankees game from Cleveland's Municipal Stadium, but when I started to follow the Bombers, they seemed to regularly lose to the Indians.  First baseman Fred Whitfield was especially a Yankees' killer, hitting numerous home runs in key spots for Cleveland in those Yankees-Indians match ups of the mid to late 1960s.  Heck, even the "Voice of the Yankees," Mel Allen, broadcast Indians games on television for a season (1968), after being dumped by the Yankees after the 1964 season.  And didn't George Steinbrenner come from Cleveland?  In other words, there was this symbiotic relationship between the Yankees and the Indians.

What I also remember about Municipal Stadium was how vast and empty it was.  The Indians did not draw many fans and there was chatter the franchise would leave Cleveland.  Then the 1974 season came along.  In the book, Jim makes a compelling case why that Indians' team probably saved the franchise for the city and in the process he illuminates a period that had slid into the dark recesses of my mind.  We talk about all of this in the interview.

Coincidentally, as I upload the podcast, it is the birthday of Ken Aspromonte, who turned 88 on Sept. 22.  "Aspro" was the manager of those 1974 Indians.  As it turned out, the Indians would be the only major league club he managed.
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