Dodgers Wallop Cubs 10-2; Koufax Whiffs 18

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball

(April 24, 1962) Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Sandy Koufax today tied a major league record by striking out 18 batters in a nine-inning game.

The Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 10-2 at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

When Sandy Koufax struck out 18 Chicago Cubs in 1962, it marked the second time in his career that he had achieved that feat, and only the third time in the major leagues since 1901. Eighteen or more strikeouts in a nine-inning game have been reached or exceeded 19 times since (most recently by Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals, who fanned 20 in 2016).

In his complete game victory, Koufax allowed two runs on six hits and walked four batters. The victory raised his season record to 3-1.

The losing pitcher for the Cubs was starter Don Cardwell (0-4).

The hitting stars for the Dodgers were outfielders Duke Snider and Tommy Davis. Snider drove in three runs on a triple and a home run. Davis drove in four runs with a single off Cardwell in the second inning and a three-run homer in the fifth. Andy Carey also homered for the Dodgers, hitting a solo shot off Cardwell in the fourth inning.

Chicago’s runs were scored on a fourth-inning single by Lou Brock and a bases-empty home run in the bottom of the ninth by left fielder Billy Williams.

Bob Feller was the first pitcher in the Twentieth Century to strike out 18 batters in a nine-inning game. He set that record on October 2, 1938, but lost the game 4-1 to the Detroit Tigers.

In posting 18 strikeouts in a single game, Koufax — for the second time — tied the record set in 1938 when Cleveland Indians right-hander Bob Feller fanned 18 Detroit Tigers. Koufax first struck out 18 batters in a game on August 31, 1959 when he beat the San Francisco Giants 5-2.

Koufax would finish the 1962 season at 14-7. That season he would be limited to only 28 appearances due to arm problems. But Koufax pitched enough innings to claim the National League ERA title … the first of five consecutive ERA crowns he would win.

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

Colts Unbeatable?

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball

(April 10, 1962) At Colt Stadium in Houston, the Colt .45s, in their first ever major league game, today defeated the Chicago Cubs, 11-2.

Left-hander Bobby Shantz throws the first pitch in the first game for the Houston Colt .45s. Shantz pitched a five-hit complete game as the Colts beat the Chicago Cubs 11-2.

 

Right fielder Roman Mejias was the hitting star for the Colts. Mejias got three hits, including a pair of three-run home runs. Catcher Hal Smith doubled and hit a solo home run.

Third baseman Bob Aspromonte recorded the first hit in the Houston franchise’s history with a single to left field to lead off the game. Aspromonte scored the Colts’ first run on Al Spangler’s triple.

Aspromonte also had three hits. He recorded another franchise first when he stole second base in the eighth inning.

Former Yankee hurler Bobby Shantz (1-0) got the win. Shantz pitched a five-hit complete games, striking out four and walking one. The Cubs scored on Ernie Banks’ solo home run in the seventh inning and added another run in the eighth inning on a Lou Brock sacrifice fly.

Outfielder Roman Mejias hit a pair of three-run home runs for the Colts

The losing pitcher was Cubs starter Don Cardwell (0-1).

The Colts would sweep their three-game season-opening series with the Cubs. They would finish their inaugural month in fifth place at 7-8. The Colts would finish the 1962 season at 64-96, in eighth place ahead of the Cubs and the New York Mets.

How Lou Flew to St. Loo

 

Swap Shop: Lou Brock for Ernie Broglio

It was probably the most lopsided trade of the 1960s. (After all, Milt Pappas was 30-29 in two-plus seasons for the Cincinnati Reds.)

At first, it looked like a “steal” for the Chicago Cubs. It turned out that the St. Louis Cardinals added a base thief who would be pivotal in helping them steal the 1964 National League pennant.

Ernie Broglio was the key player the Chicago Cubs coveted in the Lou Brock deal. Coming off an 18-8 season with the Cardinals in 1963, Broglio would win only seven games for the Cubs before retiring in 1966.

Ernie Broglio was the key player the Chicago Cubs coveted in the Lou Brock deal. Coming off an 18-8 season with the Cardinals in 1963, Broglio would win only seven games for the Cubs before retiring in 1966.

The Cardinals sent two former 20-game winners, Ernie Broglio and Bobby Shantz, along with outfielder Doug Clemens, to the Cubs for pitchers Jack Spring and Paul Toth, and an outfielder named Lou Brock.

From the Cubs’ perspective, Broglio was the key player in the deal. He was a proven winner, notching 21 victories in 1960 and leading the Cardinals in 1963 with an 18-8 record and a 2.99 ERA. From 1960-1963, Broglio averaged 15 wins and 218 innings per season, with a combined ERA of 3.15.

But that wasn’t the Ernie Broglio that the Cubs received in exchange for Brock.

In 11 starts for the Cardinals in 1964, Broglio was 3-5 with a 3.50 ERA. A change of scenery didn’t help. Over the rest of the 1964 campaign, Broglio was 4-7 with a 4.04 ERA for the Cubs.

And the other players acquired by the Cubs didn’t help to compensate for Broglio’s slide. In 20 relief appearances with the Cubs, Shantz was 0-1 with a 5.56 ERA and a single save. And Clemens batted .279 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 54 games.

(In August, the Cubs sold Shantz to the Philadelphia Phillies. He retired at the end of the 1964 season.)

For Brock, the move to St. Louis launched him on his Hall of Fame career as he led the Cardinals to the World Series. In 103 games, he hit .348 and scored 84 runs, with nine triples, 12 home runs, 44 RBIs and 33 stolen bases.

Lou Brock was a speedy outfield prospect when he was acquired by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1964. Sixteen seasons later – all with the Cardinals – he would retire with seven stolen base titles, more than 3,000 hits, and a place reserved in Cooperstown.

Lou Brock was a speedy outfield prospect when he was acquired by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1964. Sixteen seasons later – all with the Cardinals – he would retire with seven stolen base titles, more than 3,000 hits, and a place reserved in Cooperstown.

In the World Series against the New York Yankees, Brock was instrumental in helping St. Louis take the championship, batting .300 with 5 RBIs and nine hits in seven games, including two doubles and a home run.

Brock would be a standout performer for the Cardinals for the next decade and a half, batting a combined .297 (while batting .300 or better seven times), leading the league in stolen bases seven times and collecting over 2,700 hits (on his way to 3,023 hits for his career).

It was a trade that neither team – or its fans – would ever forget. (Or, in the case of Cubs’ fans, forgive.)

 

top_ten_cardinals_cover

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

Wills Breaks NL Steals Record

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball

(September 7, 1962) With four steals in a 10-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates, Maury Wills today broke the modern National League record for stolen bases in a season with his 82nd swipe.

He broke the previous record set by outfielder Bob Bescher in 1911 as a member of the Cincinnati Reds. In his 11-year major league career, Bescher stole 428 bases, which still ties him for 59th place all-time on the major league list.

Wills remains nineteenth on the all-time list with 586 stolen bases in 14 big league seasons. During his epic 1962 season, Wills finished with 104 stolen bases, eclipsing Ty Cobb’s major league mark of 96 stolen bases. Wills’ 1962 total of 104 still ranks as the seventh highest single-season total since 1901.

The major league single-season record holder is Rickey Henderson with 130 in 1982. Lou Brock still holds the National League single-season record for steals with 118 in 1974.

Wills capped his record-setting 1962 season by winning the National League Most Valuable Player award.

 

Top_10_Dodgers_Cover

 

 

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

 

 

World’s Fastest Catcher?

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball

(September 1, 1966) St. Louis Cardinals catcher Tim McCarver hit his thirteenth triple of the season in helping the Redbirds beat the Atlanta Braves at Busch Stadium, 7-4.

Tim McCarver is still the only catcher to lead the National League in triples.

Tim McCarver is still the only catcher to lead the National League in triples.

It was the last triple McCarver would hit for the 1966 season, but it would be enough to lead the league, as McCarver edged out teammate Lou Brock, who finished the season with 12 triples.

The Memphis native became the first catcher to lead a league in three-baggers.

McCarver’s last triple came with two outs in the bottom of the third, scoring Orlando Cepeda. It was his second RBI of the game. McCarver had already driven in a run in the second inning with a single that scored Mike Shannon from second base.

Winning pitcher for the Cardinals was Steve Carlton (3-2). The losing pitcher was Dick Kelley (4-3).

McCarver, an All-Star in 1966, would finish the season batting .274 with 12 home runs and 68 RBIs. His triples crown that year would mark the only time he led the league in any hitting category.

top_ten_cardinals_cover

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

Eight for Eight … Just Great

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball

(May 20, 1962) Always known more for his prowess with his glove than his bat, Chicago Cubs rookie second baseman Ken Hubbs today was baseball’s single best hitter.

Ken Hubbs won both a Gold Glove and the National League Rookie of the Year award for 1962.

In a double header against the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs second baseman Ken Hubbs stroked eight singles on the day, raising his season’s batting average to .307.

During the Cubs’ double header sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies, Hubbs stroked eight singles in 10 trips to the plate at Connie Mack Stadium. Hubbs scored twice and drove in two runs as the Cubs won both ends of the twin bill, 6-4 and 11-2.

In the first game, the Phillies lost despite getting home runs from the bats of Tony Taylor, Johnny Callison and Clay Dalrymple. Cubs left fielder Lou Brock drove in four runs for winning pitcher Cal Koonce (2-0).

In the nightcap, home runs by Billy Williams, Ernie Banks and George Altman – in addition to Hubbs’ five for five hitting performance – spurred the Cubs to an 11-2 victory. Bob Buhl (2-2) pitched a complete game for the win.

At the end of this doubleheader, Hubbs was batting .307. He would finish the season – his first full season in the big leagues – batting .260 and winning the Gold Glove for his play at second base.

Ken Hubbs won both a Gold Glove and the National League Rookie of the Year award for 1962.

Ken Hubbs won both a Gold Glove and the National League Rookie of the Year award for 1962.

He would also be named Rookie of the Year for 1962.

Speed Wins

 

Glancing Back, and Remembering Lou Brock

The most famous – and most productive – trade in St. Louis Cardinals history was made on June 15, 1964. The Cardinals sent a pair of former 20-game winners, Ernie Broglio and Bobby Shantz, along with outfielder Doug Clemens, to the Chicago Cubs for three players: Pitchers Jack Spring and Paul Toth, and an outfielder named Lou Brock.

Lou Brock twice led the National League in runs scored, with 113 in 1967 and 126 in 1971.

Lou Brock twice led the National League in runs scored, with 113 in 1967 and 126 in 1971.

Lou Brock had a fabulous second half for the Cardinals in 1964. In 103 games, he hit .348 and scored 84 runs, with nine triples, 12 home runs, 44 RBIs and 33 stolen bases. He was the offensive spark plug for a Cardinal team that won its first pennant since 1946. In the World Series against the New York Yankees, Brock was instrumental in helping St. Louis take the championship, batting .300 with five RBIs and nine hits in seven games, including two doubles and a home run.

Brock’s performance was no fluke. He led the league in stolen bases each year from 1966 to 1969. His best year offensively was during the Cardinals’ pennant-winning season of 1967. Brock had career highs in hits (206), triples (12), home runs (21), RBIs (76) and batted .299. He led the majors with 113 runs scored.

In the 1967 World Series against the Boston Red Sox, Brock hit .414 with 12 hits and three stolen bases as the Cardinals took the Series four games to three. In 1968, Brock capped another strong regular season – when he led the major leagues in doubles (46), triples (14), and stolen bases (62) – by elevating his performance again in the Fall Classic. Against the Detroit Tigers, Brock hit .464 with 13 hits in seven games. His hits included three doubles, a triple and two home runs. Brock also drove in five runs and stole seven bases. His performance probably would have made him a strong candidate for World Series Most Valuable Player had the Cardinals been able to hold on and win the Series’ seventh game.

Brock finished his career with the Cardinals, retiring in 1979 with 3,023 hits and, at the time, the career record for stolen bases with 938. He eventually broke Maury Wills’ single-season record for stolen bases with 118 in 1974.

Lou Brock was baseball’s most prolific base stealer during the 1960s. He led the National League in steals from 1966-1969.

Lou Brock was baseball’s most prolific base stealer during the 1960s. He led the National League in steals from 1966-1969.

He was the most prolific base stealer during the 1960s, with 430 (Luis Aparicio was tops in the American League with 342 stolen bases during the decade).  And though Brock recorded over 3,000 hits during his career, he never led the league in that category.

Brock was an All-Star six times. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985.

 

 

 

 

 

top_ten_cardinals_cover

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

Rock Around the Brock

 

Glancing Back, and Remembering Ernie Broglio

The short career of pitcher Ernie Broglio was really the sum of two careers. For five seasons, he was one of the best right-handers in the National League as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals’ starting rotation. Then in three seasons with the Chicago Cubs, he was a heartbreaking disaster, pitching against impossible expectations with an arm that was out of juice.

Ernie Broglio led the National League in wins in 1960 with a 21-9 record. He won 18 games for the Cardinals in 1963.

Ernie Broglio led the National League in wins in 1960 with a 21-9 record. He won 18 games for the Cardinals in 1963.

Broglio was signed by the independent Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League in 1954 and was acquired by the New York Giants two years later. He won 16 minor league games in each of the next tw0 seasons, and was dealt to the Cardinals in October of 1958.

Broglio was 7-12 in his rookie season with the Cardinals, but led the National League in wins in 1960 with a 21-9 record, posting a 2.74 ERA (second in the league to Mike McCormick’s 2.70). He slipped to 9-12 in 1961 and flipped his record to 12-9 in 1962, finishing third on the team in wins and in innings pitched (222.1).

In 1963, Broglio’s 18-8 record tied him for the team lead in victories (with Bob Gibson). Working almost entirely as a starter, he was second on the team in earned run average (2.99), innings pitched (250), shutouts (5) and complete games (11).

In 1964, Broglio pitched effectively but had only a 3-5 record (with a 3.50 ERA) when the Cardnals traded him with Doug Clemens and Bobby Shantz to the Chicago Cubs for Lou Brock, Jack Spring and Paul Toth. It turned out to be one of the most-lopsided deals of the decade, as Broglio won only seven games for the Cubs over the next three seasons while Brock led the Cardinals to the 1964 National League pennant in 1964 en route to a Hall of Fame career.

Ernie Broglio was 3-5 for the Cardinals in 1964 when he was traded to the Chicago Cubs for <a rel=

Ernie Broglio was 3-5 for the Cardinals in 1964 when he was traded to the Chicago Cubs for Lou Brock. He would win only seven games for the Cubs over the next three seasons.

The fact was, Broglio’s had little left after pitching 218 innings per season during the previous four yearswith the Cardinals.  He was 4-7 for the Cubs over the remainder of the 1964 season. That was more games than he would win for Chicago over the next two years combined. He retired, at age 30, after going 2-6 in 1966.

Broglio posted a 77-74 career record with a 3.74 ERA.

 

 

 

Free Report

Click Here for Instant Download

Maybe He Should’ve Struck Out a Couple More

 

Lights Out: Steve Carlton Strikes Out 19 New York Mets in a Losing Effort

When: September 15, 1969

Where:  Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri

Game Time: 2:23

Attendance: 13.086

 

The hallmark of a championship team is that it knows how to find a way to win even when it isn’t at its best. Or when its opponent is.

Left-hander Steve Carlton should have sued the 1969 St. Louis Cardinals for lack of support. After dropping two September decisions when the Cardinals scored only two runs total, Carlton struck out 19 New York Mets, but still lost 4-3.

Left-hander Steve Carlton should have sued the 1969 St. Louis Cardinals for lack of support. After dropping two September decisions when the Cardinals scored only two runs total, Carlton struck out 19 New York Mets, but still lost 4-3.

That was the case on September 15, 1969, when the New York Mets faced the St. Louis Cardinals and a flame-throwing future Hall of Famer who was nearly unhittable, but not unbeatable.

The Cardinals’ starting pitcher, Steve Carlton, was having a breakout season in 1969. The 24-year-old Carlton had won 14 games in 1967 and 13 games in 1968, but was becoming more dominant as he matured. He was averaging eight strikeouts per nine innings and entered the game with a 1.92 earned run average. He was also on a two-game losing streak due to lack of support from a Cardinals’ lineup that had produced only two runs in his last pair of starts.

The Mets’ starter was Gary Gentry, who was 11-11 and coming off a six-hit shutout of the Montreal Expos in his previous start. Gentry and Carlton matched scoreless innings in the game’s first two frames, then the Cardinals scored in the third inning when Lou Brock walked and Curt Flood singled. Brock tried to score but was thrown out at the plate, allowing Flood to advance to second base and then score on Vada Pinson’s single.

Carlton allowed three singles in the first three innings, but also struck out seven Mets batters. In the fourth inning, Carlton walked Donn Clendenon to lead off the inning and then gave up a home run to Ron Swoboda. But he struck out three more Mets batters that inning, and had 10 strikeouts through the first four innings though the Cardinals now trailed 2-1.

Carlton finished the 1969 season at 17-11 with a 2.17 ERA, second lowest in the National League.

Carlton finished the 1969 season at 17-11 with a 2.17 ERA, second lowest in the National League.

The Cardinals regained the lead in the fifth inning. With two outs, Brock singled and stole second. Flood singled to center field, scoring Brock to tie the game. Pinson singled to right field, moving Flood to second base. Flood scored the third run on Joe Torre’s single to center. The inning ended with no further scoring when Tim McCarver flied out to left field.

Meanwhile, Carlton continued to be a strikeout machine. He fanned Amos Otis and Tommie Agee in the fifth inning. He struck out Swoboda in the sixth inning. He struck out Otis again in the seventh inning with two runners on base.

That gave Carlton 14 strikeouts for the game.

In the bottom of the seventh inning, Tug McGraw took over for Gentry and pitched a scoreless inning despite an error and a walk. In the top of the eighth inning, Agee led off with a single and then Carlton struck out Clendenon looking, Carlton’s fifteenth of the game. But Ron Swoboda launched his second home run of the game and ninth of the season to put the Mets back on top 4-3. Carlton got his sixteenth strikeout to end the eighth inning.

McGraw retired the Cardinals in order in the bottom of the eighth, and Carlton fanned the side in the ninth inning, giving him 19 strikeouts for the game. But it wouldn’t be enough. Despite an error and a Brock single, the Cardinals couldn’t score against McGraw in the ninth.

Carlton would finish the 1969 season at 17-11 with a 2.17 ERA, second lowest in the National League behind Juan Marichal. He topped 200 strikeouts for the first time in his career, something he would do seven more times. But he would never again strike out as many as 19 batters in a single nine-inning game. In fact, only one left-hander (Randy Johnson) has matched that performance.

 

Lights Out!

 

 

Steve Carlton’s heartbreaking 19-strikeout loss is one of the performances featured in Lights Out! Unforgettable Performances from Baseball’s Real Golden Age.

Available in paperback and Kindle editions from Amazon.

Birds Survive Mantle’s Bomb

 

This Week in 1960s Baseball …

(October 15, 1964) — In what would be his final postseason game, Mickey Mantle today hit a three-run homer, but it wouldn’t be enough as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the New York Yankees 7-5 to take the seventh game of the 1964 World Series.

In his last World Series appearance, Mickey Mantle hit his 18th World Series home run, the most in major league history.

In his last World Series appearance, Mickey Mantle hit his 18th World Series home run, the most in major league history.

Mantle’s home run was his third of this World Series and the eighteenth World Series home run of his career, the most in major league history.

The game’s two starting pitchers – Bob Gibson for the Cardinals and Mel Stottlemyre for the Yankees – spun shutout innings until the bottom of the fourth. The Cardinals scored first when Ken Boyer singled to lead off the inning and eventually scored on a throwing error by shortstop Phil Linz. Cardinals catcher Tim McCarver stole home for the Cards’ second run, and Dal Maxvill singled to drive in the inning’s third run.

The Cardinals added 3 more runs in the fifth inning on Lou Brock’s solo home run and RBIs from Dick Groat and McCarver.

Mantle’s blast came off Gibson in the sixth inning. Bobby Richardson and Roger Maris were on base and scored on Mantle’s home run.

Ken Boyer (left) and Clete Boyer both hit solo home runs in the Cardinals’ 7-5 seventh-game triumph in the 1964 World Series. It marked the first time 2 brothers on opposing teams homered in the same World Series game.

Ken Boyer (left) and Clete Boyer both hit solo home runs in the Cardinals’ 7-5 seventh-game triumph in the 1964 World Series. It marked the first time 2 brothers on opposing teams homered in the same World Series game.

The Cardinals added another run in the seventh inning on Ken Boyer’s solo home run, his second of the Series. The Yankees’ final two runs came on ninth-inning home runs from Linz and Clete Boyer. (This was the only World Series game ever to feature home runs by brothers on opposing teams.)

Gibson went the distance for the Cardinals to win his second game and the Series’ MVP award. Gibson struck out nine Yankees batters.