"It's about time I got some breaks," said Sammy Ellis of CINCINNATI (2-3) after he beat the Dodgers 3-1 with the aid of the wind and his right shoe. A strong breeze turned what normally would have been a Dodger homer into an out, and Ellis' shoe deflected a line drive right to Second Baseman Pete Rose for an easy out. That kind of good fortune gave Ellis, who had lost 11 of his first 13 games, his third straight win. And Tommy Harper's .377 hitting during a 17-game home stand helped the Reds win 12 times. Rookie Woody Fryman of PITTS-BURGH (5-1) came within one bad hop of pitching a perfect game: Ron Hunt of the Mets led off the first inning with a single over the mound. Hunt was caught stealing, and Fryman retired the next 26 batters in order. Al McBean pitched 6‚Öî innings in relief but the win went to Billy O'Dell. who threw just one pitch and then sat back and watched as the Pirate hitters won the game for him in the last of the ninth. The four top hitters in the league were all Pirates—Matty Alou (.332), Willie Stargell (.329), Manny Mota (.327) and Roberto Clemente (.324). When Bob Bolin of SAN FRANCISCO (4-2) got Orlando Cepeda of ST LOUIS (2-3) to hit a foul pop-up to Third Baseman Jim Hart he moved to within seven outs of a no-hitter. The umpire, however, ruled that Hart had stepped into the Giant dugout to make the catch. Given another chance, Cepeda broke up the no-hitter with a single. During the Giant-Cardinal series, Cepeda invited old friend Juan Marichal to his home for dinner. Cepeda's wife prepared some pastelillos (meat pies), flan (a custard-type dish), Spanish pot roast, rice and beans and other such delights. The following night Cepeda came up with what he considered to be a fitting dessert—a game-winning homer off the well-fed Juan. Not content with beating Marichal, the Cards completed an impressive parlay by knocking off Sandy Koufax 2-0 behind Al Jackson. LOS ANGE-LES (2-3) had a bad week, but there were 38,410 fans on hand in St. Louis to see Koufax pitch, which raised the average attendance at games in which Sandy has appeared to more than 34,000. ATLANTA (2-4) blew two victories when the Cubs scored seven times in the ninth and when the Giants, with the help of two errors, pushed across five runs in the eighth. HOUSTON (3-4) ended a four-game losing streak when Bob Lillis doubled in the winning run in the 13th against the Reds. Leo Durocher of CHICAGO (2-3) publicly berated his players and also came up with his longest kick of the season, a 60-foot boot of a water bucket, NEW VORK (1-4) batters had trouble hitting the ball that far. In four games the Mets hit .130, scored just two runs. Jim Bunning and Chris Short of PHILADELPHIA (5-0) each had a 1-0 win over the Mets. Club officials have long been after Short, who now weighs 212 pounds, to keep his weight down. "You get paid for how much you win," said Short after his ninth victory, "not how much you weigh."
Standings: SF 49-29, Pitt 44-30, LA 42-33, Phil 42-34, Hou 42-36, Cin 36-39, Stl 35-39, Atl 36-45, NY 30-42, Chi 23-51
July 10, 1966
Tiger batters got 20 hits in a 15-3 win against CALIFORNIA (1-4). Finally, Manager Bill Rigney could stand it no longer. He asked an umpire, "Are you sure they're using the same ball we are?" Of league-leading BALTIMORE (7-1), Rigney said. "If that lady ever stops smiling at them, look out. Everything they hit falls in." The Orioles, in taking three of four games from the Angels, had 50 base hits "fall in" for them. Manager Hank Bauer decided to go with a five-man rotation, though he was skeptical about bringing up Billy Short from Rochester to be the fifth starter. That is, he was skeptical until Short won his first start 2-0. Mickey Mantle (below) went on a sensational hitting streak, but shoddy fielding and pitching dropped NEW YORK (2-3) dangerously close to eighth place. KANSAS CITY (2-4) wasted its best home-run spurt of the year—five in four games—and it took good relief work by Jim Duckworth and Jack Aker to salvage one win in that span. After his club had won four in a row, Sam Mele of MINNESOTA (2-6) said that his appetite was returning. Then along came Fred Whitfield of CLEVELAND (4-2) and away went both the Minnesota win streak and Mele's gusto. Whitfield helped beat the Twins twice and raised his season's batting average against them to .477. Sam McDowell pitched a two-hit shutout for his first complete-game win in two months, and he struck out 13. Mike McCormick of WASHINGTON (2-2) wore his glasses while pitching, took them off when batting. The tactic seemed to work, for McCormick hit a homer with the glasses off and with them on became the first Senator this season to pitch two complete-game wins in one week. Four home runs by Al Kaline bolstered DETROIT (4-2), but CHICAGO (3-1) had to resort to devious means to make up for its lack of punch, beating BOSTON (2-3) on a passed ball in the 13th inning. Trying to make the best of their team's latest slump—Boston was 10-21 during June—local fans decided to look upon the Red Sox as the newest form of camp. One rooter referred to the Boston brand of baseball as "glop art."
Standings: Balt 54-25, Det 46-28, Clev 45-29, Cal 39-37, Chi 35-38, Minn 35-42, NY 32-40, KC 32-44, Wash 32-45. Bos 27-49
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Mickey Mantle came to spring training this year wearing a serpentine scar across his right shoulder, the symbol of yet another operation in a career that already stands as a monument to both modern surgical skill and his own courage. He was a pathetic figure to watch during workouts: he grimaced in pain when lie swung the bat, and he threw the ball like a palsied shotputter. The more Mantle endured, the more he talked about the family life he longed to enjoy. "My wife says she likes having me around the house," he said. Then, with a grin, he added, "At least that's what she says." When the season started Mantle was in the lineup, but his hits were infrequent, his power conspicuously absent. Going into last week he had had only seven home runs, and he was batting .253. Then he made a slight adjustment, the kind that hurts a slugger's pride: he choked up on the bat, an admission that pitchers were simply throwing the ball past him. The adjustment paid off. Three times in five days Mantle hit two homers in one game, and after doing it for the second time in a row against the Red Sox he received a standing ovation in Fenway Park. He hit seven home runs during the week, batted .625, drove in 11 runs. How long Mantle could continue his spree was questionable, for even in the midst of it he suffered yet another injury, a pulled muscle. It all seemed fitting, somehow, that Mickey Mantle went on his splurge the week that Medicare went into effect.