Thanks to Triv, I’ve also added radio host Matt Patrick to Planner Project 2021!

During his June 14th radio show on Cleveland, Ohio-based WTAM AM/1100, host Mike Trivisonno was joined in studio by Paula Ryan, wife of highly regarded area radio personality Matt Patrick who died in 2017 from mucosal melanoma cancer. With Paula was her son Jake. (Read The Plain Dealer’s story upon Matt’s passing here.)

As Paula described how the Matt Patrick Memorial Foundation has been created in Matt’s memory to help people in need, Triv noted, “What I loved about your husband so much is that he got it. When we got done arguing or something, different things we did on the air, we’d just look at each other and laugh. Matt Patrick was truly a professional in the radio business.”

Highlighting the foundation’s goals, Paula noted, “We exist to provide assistance to other families or individuals who are experiencing the challenges that are associated with cancer. We’re looking for families and individuals that demonstrate the same things in life that Matt Patrick so passionately supported and believed in in his own life.” (Hear the interview here!)

At the end, Triv would add, “He was so fun to listen to on the radio. I miss him. He was a good person and a phenomenal radio talk show host.” (Follow the Matt Patrick Foundation on Facebook). Here’s a great video from the Foundation website titled The Matt Patrick Show.

Graduating from St. Ignatius High School, Matt, a two-time Radio and Television Broadcasters Hall of Fame inductee, spent over 30 years on the radio in Northeast Ohio, most of that time at Akron’s top-rated WKDD. He also enjoyed stints at Akron’s WHLO AM/640 and WTAM AM/1100 in Cleveland. In 2011, Matt and family moved to Houston where he hosted a morning news show on KTRH-AM.

In the Planner Project’s May 18th text block you’ll find: “Cruising in the A. M. with Matt Patrick & Co. on Akron’s WKDD-FM, tickets are $12.50 for ‘Operation Welcome Home’ at the Coliseum June 6th to see Lee Greenwood sing ‘God Bless the U. S. A.,’ Mark Price & Lifeline, Michael Stanley,  the Cleveland Interfaith Choir and the U. S. Navy band Country Current, 1991.”

I hope Paula understands why I chose this date to honor Matt’s work.

At that time in 1991, led by Matt’s top-rated morning show, WKDD-AM ranked No. 1 overall in the Akron area. (See Bob Dyer’s story on the Spring Arbitron ratings in the Akron Beacon Journal here – p. B1  p. B2). Matt is also featured in Bob Dyer’s February 9, 1986 story on morning radio (see here – p. E1 – p. E4 – p. E5!)

See the August 13, 1979 lineup as Matt began his radio career on WCUE (WKDD) here!

When Jani Lane of the rock group Warrant died in 2011 (see earlier post), Plain Dealer reporter John Soeder reached out to Matt who knew Jani well. (See story here.) At the time, Matt was heard every Saturday on WTAM AM/1100.

As a former public relations director for the Franklin County Unit of the American Cancer Society in Columbus, Ohio, I wish Paula the best success with the foundation. Hopefully, I can not only raise awareness for such a worthy cause, but also a few donations as well!

ST. IGNATIUS FANS! Here are two St. Ignatius High-related items found in Planner Project in 2016 from 1966 and 2001 /

Text date: 2/19 – New OSU head coach Jim Tressel is the guest speaker, as the Cleveland Touchdown Club’s annual awards banquet honors Solon High head coach Byron Morgan with the Dr. Lee Tressel Memorial Coach’s Award; Solon All-Ohio back Scott Greenberg with the Lou Groza Award; and Dan O’Leary of Notre Dame/St. Ignatius High with the Chuck Heaton Hometown College Award (Browns coach Butch Davis speaks), 2001

Text date: 9/23 -After cruising tonight in a burgundy ‘65 Dodge 440 2-dr. hardtop w/383. 4-spd., whitewalls ($1,995-Jackshaw), to see the Midnighters at the Blue Light in S. Euclid, before watching ‘Terror in the Haunted House’ on Ghoulardi; tomorrow, the Vectors rock the Hideout, Kicks, Inc. plays Rocky River Memorial Hall, the Outcasts (Sole, Schade, Beach, Grau, Lesher), rock the Sunken Bar in Geneva-on-the-Lake, WHK’s Ken Scott hosts a Euclid High record hop, & the Lost Souls rock St. Ignatius High, 1966

HERE’S A SMALL SAMPLE of items found on Matt’s page- Week 21 (May 15-21) of Planner Project 2016: Judy Garland plays Music Hall (1961 – $2-$6); James Brown plays Cleveland Arena (1966 – $3-$4); the Mamas & the Papas miss their Music Hall gig (1966 – Cass was ill); 1,500 gathered at Municipal Stadium by dawn for tickets to the August 14th Beatles concert (1966); the movie on Ghoulardi’s Shock Theater in 1966 was ‘Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein; and in 1971, after dining on a 15-piece Kentucky Fried Chicken basket ($3.50), the Osmonds played Public Hall one night ($3-$5), Chicago the next ($5.50).

Here’s even more items!  Indians hurler Len Barker pitches a perfect game to beat the Toronto Blue Jays (1981 – photo story); The Cleveland Cavaliers’ ‘miracle’ season ends with a playoff loss to the Boston Celtics (1976); Santana plays the Coliseum (1976); Bob Dylan plays Nautica Stage (1996 – 27.50-$52); Pearl Jam rocks the Q with My Morning Jacket (2006 – $53); and in 2016, Boston rocks Jacobs Pavilion ($27-$85); Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo play the Hard Rock Rocksino ($39.50-$65); Dave Matthews plays Blossom ($40-$85); and veteran weathercaster Dick Goddard announces his retirement.

You’ll also find nationally known artists listed including Kenny Wayne Shepherd; Depeche Mode; Dick Dale; Mary Wells; T. Rex; the O’Jays; the Temptations; the Famous Flames; Steve Marriott’s All-Stars; Carrie Underwood; Eddie Rabbit; Sylvia; and Gladys Knight & the Pips!

And you’ll find local artists featured including Rich Spina; Odd Girl Out; the Bleedin’ Hearts; Becky Boyd and Dan Hrdlicka; Michael Bey; and Oroboros.

All in just one week!

Matt, I hope you enjoy the company on your page. I was blessed to include you!

George


Don’t Knock the Rock…. He hit four-in-a-row!

On Tuesday, June 9, 1959, 46,601 watched the Baltimore Orioles beat the visiting Cleveland Indians, 7-3, at “spacious” Memorial Stadium as Orioles reliever Billy Loes got the win over Tribe starter Jim ‘Mudcat’ Grant. That night, while Gene Woodling and Chico Carresquel hit home runs, Indians right fielder Rocky Colavito, batting fourth, went 0-3 for the 3rd-place Indians as the Orioles moved into a first-place tie with the Chicago White Sox.

The next night however, was a night for the history books thanks to 25-year-old Rocco Domenico (Rocky) Colavito. (See newspaper coverage HERE front page – p. 33 – p. 34 – p. 36)

“Honest. I was just trying to meet the ball,” Colavito would later tell reporters after becoming only the eighth player in major league baseball history to hit four home runs in a game, and only the third hitting four consecutive homers, leading the Indians to an 11-8 win over the host Orioles before 15,833 who gave Rocky a standing ovation after the fourth blast.

Hitting homers in the third (off Jerry Walker), fifth (off Arnold Portocarrero), sixth (off Portocarrero), and ninth innings (off Ernie Johnson), when asked if he felt pressure in the ninth inning, Plain Dealer reporter Harry Jones noted Rocky told the reporters, “No, I wasn’t going for a fourth. I thought I had a pretty good night already, hitting three.”

Left fielder Minnie Minoso and 2nd baseman Billy Martin also homered for Cleveland with starter Gary Bell (5-5), who struck out three, getting the win over Walker. The win moved the Indians to within a game and a half of the first place White Sox.

The next night, Cleveland moved into second place when Colavito’s 8th-inning double scored Woody Held from 1st base to give the Indians a 2-1 win. Striking out four, Don Ferrarese (5-3), pitched a seven-hit complete game for the victory, while the Orioles’ Milt Pappas took the loss. Center fielder Tito Francona (2-4) also doubled in the game.

Prior to Rocky’s impressive feat, on Friday, June 3, 1932, 5,000 saw Lou Gehrig become the second player in modern major league history to hit four straight as the first-place N. Y. Yankees beat the Philadelphia Athletics, 20-13, at Shibe Park. Babe Ruth (No. 15), Tony Lazzeri, and Earle Combs also homered to help starter Lefty Gomez get the win. In Detroit, the visiting Cleveland Indians moved into 4th place after beating the 3rd-place Tigers twice with Wes Ferrell and Mel Harder getting the wins. (See newspaper article HERE!)

On May 30, 1894, 8,000 watched the third-place Boston Beaneaters score nine 8th-inning runs to beat the visiting Cincinnati Reds, 13-10, in the first game of a doubleheader. In the second contest, Reds starter Ice Box Chamberlain was rocked for nineteen hits, including four consecutive home runs by Beaneaters second baseman Bobby Low who became the first modern major league player to hit four straight, as starter Kid Nichols, helped by nine third-inning runs, cruised to a 20-11 win.

The second-place Cleveland Spiders split a doubleheader that day with the host New York Giants at the Polo Grounds. Eight thousand watched the sixth-place Giants capture the first Decoration Day contest, 2-1, as Giants starter Amos Rusie pitched an 11-inning, 3-hitter. Breaking attendance records that day, 24,500 saw Spiders right-hander John Clarkson pitch a four-hitter to win the afternoon contest, 3-2. (See newspaper article HERE!)

Following ‘The Rock,” only five more major league players, Mike Schmidt (April 17, 1976); Mike Cameron (May 2, 2002); Carlos Delgado (September 25, 2003); Scooter Gennett (June 6, 2017); and J. D. Martinez (September 4, 2017), have hit four consecutive Major League home runs.


FEATURING ROCKY IN MY MEMORIES BOOKS /

Below are pages from Municipal Stadium Memories on the Lakefront, (panels 1-4), and Memories of a Lifetime Vol. 1 (panels 5-6) featuring images of Rocky in uniform.

The first two panels below highlight GM Frank Lane’s controversial trade of Rocky to the Detroit Tigers for Harvey Kuenn just before the 1960 Season Opener at Municipal Stadium, and Rocky hitting a home run against the Indians in a Tigers uniform the following day. The third panel features Rocky upon his return to Indians in 1965 holding a fruit basket with Frank Lane at Municipal Stadium before the Home Opener.

The first panel below shows Rocky on September 25, 1956 shaking hands with Tribe starter Early Wynn after hitting his 20th home run that season to help Wynn win his 20th game of the year. The middle panel shows Rocky with Roger Maris, and Gene Woodling during spring training in 1958; and Rocky in 1960 on the “Tribe Train” in Arizona with fellow teammates Jimmy Piersall, Bubba Phillips, Johnny Temple, Tito Francona, Vic Power, Woody Held, Russ Nixon, Gary Bell, and manager Joe Gordon shortly before the memorable trade.

The final panel above right shows Rocky on Picture Day at Municipal Stadium in 1967, a classic photograph shot by former Cleveland Press photographer Paul Tepley.

As a 66-year-old who watched Rocky play at Municipal Stadium, I’d love to see the next Indians “statue” depict Rocky sitting on a bench while holding a Rocky Colavito signed Louisville Slugger between his legs as he waited to bat.

The bench would have enough room on either side for fans to join ‘The Rock” on the bench as friends captured the classic scene. What do you think? See a how to get your own Rocky autographed Louisville Slugger in 1960 HERE!

Thanks, Rocky, George Cormack