Thanksgiving in Vietnam; Angels’ new general manager, November 29, 1968


Above, Thanksgiving with the 199th Light Infantry Brigade, southwest of Saigon. The Brookings Institution warns President Nixon: "he will be powerless to do much good for America if the Vietnam War drags on through his administration." The war in Vietnam ended April 30, 1975, six years and five months later, during the Gerald Ford administration.


Los Angeles Times, May 1, 1975.

1968_1129_hall_2 The Angels almost got in the way of a landmark legal case.

Dick Walsh had big plans for the Angels when he was hired as their general manager. The longtime Dodger executive told Times columnist John Hall exactly what he wanted to do.

"Here’s what I have in mind. I want Richie Allen, I want him badly," Walsh said. "It looks good. Rick Reichardt will be in on it. So will several others, it could be a 10-man trade. I’m serious about it."

Allen wouldn’t be the only new face in Anaheim. Hall shared the potential Angels starting lineup in 1969:

Orlando Cepeda, first base; Cookie Rojas, second base; Dal Maxvill, shortstop; Aurelio Rodriguez, third base; Allen, left field; Vic Davalillo, center field; Johnny Callison, right field, and Tom Satriano, catcher.

Wrote Hall: "In a word, wow. … Walsh may just be having a little fun in a move to shake the Angels out of their somewhat strange complacency, but he insists he means what he says."

Allen, of course, did not become an Angel. Instead, the Phillies traded him to St. Louis after the 1969 season in a package that included outfielder Curt Flood, who refused to report to his new team.

Flood sued baseball and Commissioner Bowie Kuhn, seeking to become a free agent.  He appealed his case all the way to the Supreme Court. He lost and ultimately ended his career with the Washington Senators, but his case was a key point in baseball’s battle over free agency.

Allen’s trade to the Angels would not have prevented the Cardinals from trying to trade Flood in another deal. But who knows how things might have changed.

And what about the other potential Angel slugger, Cepeda? That trade might have changed baseball history too. Walsh told Hall he thought he could obtain Cepeda and Maxvill for longtime Angel shortstop Jim Fregosi, who eventually was traded to the Mets in a deal that brought Nolan Ryan to Anaheim. Ryan might have pitched those four no-hitters for someone else.

–Keith Thursby

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in @news, Dodgers, Front Pages, Sports. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Thanksgiving in Vietnam; Angels’ new general manager, November 29, 1968

  1. Bob Timmermann says:

    Walsh would end up acquiring Alex Johnson. That had “mixed results.”
    He also picked up Tony Conigliaro.
    That didn’t work out too well.
    The trauma around the 1971 Angels was so great that my older brothers would never tell me the whole details until I read about them in high school.


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