BASEBALL—There were signs that things were going to be different this season: Sandy Koufax lost a game; the NEW YORK YANKEES (1-3) failed to hit a home run and got off to their worst start since 1930; the NEW YORK METS had their best start ever, losing only four games before getting their first win. The Mets and their new park, Shea Stadium, attracted an astonishing average attendance of 37,000 persons for three home games. And last year's pennant winners—the Dodgers and Yankees—sank to last place.
This is an article from the April 27, 1964 issue
In first place in the National League was PHILADELPHIA (4-1). The Phillies won three games on homers and hit eight for the week, three by rookie Richie Allen. Leading the majors with six home runs was the incomparable Willie Mays (see page 22) of SAN FRANCISCO (4-2). In all, the Giants hit 11 homers and overcame spotty pitching by scoring 10 runs in one inning and nine in another. ST. LOUIS (4-2), however, won on good pitching, the best of which Curt Simmons threw at the Giants to shut them out on three hits. Only a two-out infield single in the ninth by Frank Howard kept Jim Maloney and John Tsitouris of CINCINNATI (3-2) from pitching a combined no-hitter against the Dodgers. Also jockeying for position in the early going were PITTSBURGH (3-2), MILWAUKEE (3-3), CHICAGO (2-3 despite belting 11 homers, four of them by Billy Williams) and HOUSTON (2-3, both wins by Ken Johnson on homers by Jim Wynn). Koufax pitched a shutout in the first game, but then LOS ANGELES dropped five in a row.
Superb relief pitching by Stu Miller (two wins and a save) and Wes Stock (one win) enabled BALTIMORE (4-1) to grab the lead in the American League. MINNESOTA (4-2) capitalized on eight home runs, three by another Allen—Bernie, in this case. DETROIT (3-2), CHICAGO (2-3), WASHINGTON (2-4) and KANSAS CITY (1-2) struggled to stay in the running. Ken McBride, with help from Julio Navarro, pitched a one-hitter on opening day as LOS ANGELES (2-2) beat the Senators.
BASKETBALL—Wilt Chamberlain was the hero with 39 points as SAN FRANCISCO defeated St. Louis 105-95 to win the Western Division playoffs, four games to three, and make the NBA finals for the first time since 1956. (The champion Warriors of that year, of course, played out of Philadelphia.) Defending Champion BOSTON, far from rusty despite nine days of idleness, rolled over the Warriors 108-96 in the first game of the final series.
BOWLING—WAYNE ZAHN of Atlanta defeated Billy Hardwick 196-179 in the final match to win the $26,000 PBA Lodi (Calif.) Open.
BOXING—EDDIE PERKINS of Chicago successfully defended his world junior welterweight title by winning a 15-round decision over Bunny Grant, British Empire lightweight champion, in Kingston, Jamaica.
Middleweight Champion JOEY GIARDELLO got a scare from Rocky Rivero of Argentina but escaped with a split decision in a Cleveland nontitle bout.
In Honolulu, World Welterweight Champion EMILE GRIFFITH knocked out Welterweight Stan Harrington of Honolulu in the fourth round of a nontitle match.
Third-ranked Heavyweight ZORA FOLLEY of Chandler, Ariz. and Germany's Heavyweight KARL MILDENBERGER, rated eighth, fought to a 10-round draw in Frankfurt, Germany.
FLYING—Piloting Spirit of Columbus, a single-engine Cessna, 38-year-old JERRIE MOCK, a Columbus, Ohio housewife, became the first woman to make a solo flight around the world. She took 29 days to complete the 22,858.8-mile journey, stopping 21 times to refuel.
GOLF—Surprising MIKE SOUCHAK of Berwick, Pa. shot a six-under-par 278 for four rounds to win the $50,000 Houston Golf Classic by one stroke over favored Jack Nicklaus. It was Souchak's first PGA victory in three years.
Mickey Wright of Dallas, recovered from a tendon injury, took the second-round lead with a three-under-par 69 and went on to win the 54-hole Betsy Rawls-Peach Blossom Open in Spartanburg, S.C. with 215 strokes.
HARNESS RACING—EXPRESS RODNEY ($15.80), driven by Jimmy Cruise, took the lead in the stretch and won the $25,000 Trader Horn Trot by half a length over Darn Dandy at Roosevelt Raceway. Favored Su Mac Lad, assigned the outside post, was fourth in the five-horse field, and Driver Stanley Dancer declared he would not again permit Sumie to be so handicapped but would insist on a draw for positions.
HOCKEY—Detroit and Toronto fought to a two-games-apiece tie in the Stanley Cup finals. After losing the first game, the Red Wings evened things up by snatching the second, 4-3, on a goal by Larry Jeffrey in sudden-death overtime. Next the Leafs rallied from an 0-3 score to make it 3 all but again were defeated 4-3 as Alex Delvecchio hit for Detroit with just 17 seconds remaining. Then, to tie the series, Toronto won 4-2. The Leafs tied the game score 2-2 on a goal by Dave Keon, took the lead on a spectacular 35-foot slap shot by Andy Bathgate and got an additional goal from Frank Mahovlich.
HORSE RACING—The field for the 90th Kentucky Derby began taking shape after last week's important preparatory races. At Aqueduct, Rokeby Stables' QUADRANGLE ($14.40), ridden by Bill Hartack, won the 1‚⅛-mile $89,250 Wood Memorial (see page 66) to earn a trip to Churchill Downs. Second- and third-place Mr. Brick and Roman Brother will be going along, too.
In the 1‚⅛-mile, $59,900 California Derby at Golden Gate Fields, William Radkovich and Wilbur Clark saw Derby possibilities in their Wil Rad, second by¾ length to winner REAL GOOD DEAL, and will have Ismael Valenzuela aboard him in Kentucky.
Meanwhile at Keeneland, Ky., El Peco Ranch's HILL RISE galloped off with the seven-furlong Forerunner Purse, a betless exhibition race, with Willie Shoemaker in the saddle.
Crompton Smith Jr. rode JAY TRUMP to first place by half a length in the 19-jump Grand National point-to-point race at Butler, Md. for his second straight victory on the Maryland timber circuit. In Middleburg, Va., Mrs. T.A. Randolph's WALRUS, with Mike Smithwick in the saddle, finished the three-mile, 17-fence Glenwood timber course with 10 lengths to spare in the Middleburg Hunt Invitational.
MOTOR SPORTS—Australia's JACK BRABHAM averaged 93.43 mph to win the 201-mile Aintree, England, Grand Prix in one of his own Brabham cars. Britain's Graham Hill was runner-up in a BRM. Jim Clark's Lotus crashed during the race, but the 1963 world driving champion jumped clear.
A. J. Foyt of Houston broke his own record for the 100-mile USAC big-car race in Trenton, N.J., averaging 104.529 mph. Jim Hurtubise was second and Bob Marshman third in this last major warmup for the Indianapolis "500" (see page 14).
SWIMMING—California girls dominated the National AAU Senior Women's Indoor Championships in Pittsburgh. The star was versatile DONNA DE VARONA, 16, of the Santa Clara Swim Club who successfully defended her 1963 titles in the 200- and 400-yard individual medleys, then took the 200-yard butterfly race and anchored both the winning 400-yard freestyle and the medley relay teams.
TENNIS—Top-seeded ROY EMERSON of Australia crushed Yugoslavia's left-handed Nicola Pilic 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 in the River Oaks tournament at Houston. Pilic, the first unseeded player in 10 years to reach the River Oaks finals, had upset third-seeded Rafael Osuna of Mexico 7-5, 0-6, 1-6, 6-2, 6-2 in an exhausting semifinal match.
In Los Angeles, PANCHO GONZALES, 35, a world pro champion before his retirement in November 1961, announced that he will make a comeback on the 1964 summer circuit opening in Washington next month.
TRACK & FIELD—At a meet in Orangeburg, S.C., Florida A&M's BOB HAYES equaled his own world record of 9.1 in the 100-yard dash, then went on to win the 220 in 21.5.
Paul Wilson, 16, of Downey, Calif., raised the U.S. outdoor high school pole vault record to 15 feet 7 inches at a Walnut, Calif. invitational meet.
MILEPOSTS—INJURED: Powerboat Driver LEE TAYLOR, 29, of Downey, Calif., during a run in pursuit of Donald Campbell's 260.35-mph water speed record, on Lake Havasu near Parker, Ariz. Unable to brake his jet-propelled aluminum hull after a trial at more than 200 mph, he was forced to leap off into shallow water, suffering multiple fractures in the fall.
SOLD: The New York Mets' left-handed power hitter DUKE SNIDER, 37, who spent 16 seasons in the Dodger outfield before joining the Mets last year, to the San Francisco Giants for an estimated $30,000.