Wednesday, January 9, 2019

There are NO Ties in Baseball! Well, Yes there Are.

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TRIVIA QUESTION:   No fewer than three of the players in the game told about below became successful Major League Managers. Who were they?

ANSWER TO TRIVIA QUESTION IN THE PREVIOUS COLUMN: The pitcher with the most career home runs in the big leagues is American Leaguer, Wes Ferrell, who not only won 20 games or more in six different seasons (25 twice), he smashed 38 homers in his 15 year career. In 1931, while pitching for the Cleveland Indians he won 22 games, belted 9 homers and batted .319. In his career he hit .280.   

 The 1960 New York Yankees were known for scoring runs in bunches. With the likes of Maris, Mantle and the rest, they produced big time. Over the course of the season they scored in double figures 13 times and in the World Series in each of their three wins over Pittsburgh, they scored in double digits. However, it was in a mid-summer rainstorm the Yankees proved no match for mother nature; and the Kansas City Athletics.

Rain was in the forecast from the start on the night of June 15, 1960 at Kansas City's Municipal Stadium. And with a 28 mile per hour wind blowing and a light rain falling off and one and more promised, it is a wonder why the umpiring crew and home plate ump Joe Paparella chose to let this game go on. But go on it did.


Yankee ace Ralph Terry squared off against Dick Hall. Terry was his masterful self toiling more than eight innings and giving up four runs, only one earned. That coming on a Jerry Lumpe solo shot in the fourth. The unearned runs scored when relievers couldn't hold men on base after Manager Casey Stengel replaced Terry with one out in the eight.

The Yanks had scored on power as usual. In the first Yogi Berra blasted a two run shot and after Bill Skowron drove home a run with a single in the eighth,  Clete Boyer took Marty Kutyna deep in the ninth. New York had a 4-1 lead going into the bottom of the eighth when Terry gave way to Bobby Shantz with the bases loaded.
Norm Siebern hit a Sac Fly to drive in a run and Dick Williams drew a walk to load them up again. Shantz then walked Harry Chiti sending Russ Snyder home making it 4-3. Johnny James came in to relieve and couldn't find the plate either, walking Danny Kravitz in his final year in the big leagues, to bring home Whitey Herzog to tie the game at four-all. Andy Carey struck out to end the threat and with no one scoring in the ninth and the rain coming down, the game entered extra innings.

With only 14, 418 people in attendance few were left at this point. Neither team scored in the 10th or 11th, but come the 12th, New York broke out. Ken Johnson started the inning by walking lead-off man Kent Hadley. Mantle came up to pinch hit and drew a walk pushing pinch runner Gil McDougald to second base. When Tony Kubek tried to sacrafice them over and beat out the bunt for a single it looked like curtains for the A's.

Yogi Berra hit into a force play driving in the go ahead run making it 5-4 and Maris finished it off with a single, plating two more, before Skowron hit into an inning ending double play. Still New York had gone ahead 7-4 and the rain kept coming. The umpires looked to calling it but the A's had a final at bat. 

Ryne Duren took the mound for the Yanks and gave up a one out walk to Ken Hamlin. Pete Daley hammered a shot over the outfield wall and the A's were in business down a run 7-6. Duke Maas was brought into face Bill Tuttle and got him on a nearly game tying out to deep right. Lumpe singled to left and advanced to second when Berra's throw was off line.
The A's had the tying run in scoring position with two out in the bottom of the 12th in a game which had by now run 3:24 and with few fans in the stands, were probably wondering "what is the point?" as the rains came down. It was a wet and tired Russ Snyder who worked Maas at this point and he didn't disappoint, smacking a triple to drive in Lumpe. The A's could win it with a hit or an error.

Herzog drew a walk and Siebern was intentionally walked before Williams flied out to end the game. It was 7-7 and the umps had had enough. The game was called a tie and that was that. The Yankees would win the pennant by eight games so the tie did not matter. 

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