Kansas City (3-3) returned to friendly Municipal Stadium from a disastrous road trip and started to win a few (the A's, whose 44 homers and .233 batting average are the worst in the majors, are 27-22 at home and 18-35 on the road). Back in a spacious home field that caters to good pitching, Alvin Dark finally got his starting rotation in order and, surprisingly, the oldest in the group was 24-year-old Paul Lindblad. The others: Lew Krausse (23), Chuck Dobson (22), Jim Nash (21), Gil Blanco (20) and John (Blue Moon) Odom (19). Odom and Blanco both came up from Mobile, Ala. last week. Blue Moon stopped the Tigers 2-1—giving up only two hits in eight innings and driving in both K.C. runs with a single. But Blanco, a left-hander who was acquired from the Yankees last June, had a tough time against the Tigers. Nash, who is being brought along slowly by Dark, ran his record to 4-0, with a 2.45 ERA, after defeating the Red Sox. Jim (Catfish) Hunter, 20, an All-Star team member last month, would have helped fill out the youthful order but he underwent an emergency appendectomy last week and will be out for a few more weeks. "Never have I seen so many good, young pitchers on one team," said Dark. It was hitting, however, that kept WASHINGTON (4-3) ahead of BOSTON (3-3) in the battle for last place. Fred Valentine bashed a grand-slam home run to beat the Angels one night, then had seven hits as the Senators beat the Red Sox in a doubleheader. Bob Saverine (13 for 35 for the week) three times had three hits in one game. It was a particularly frustrating night for Red Sox Catcher Mike Ryan in one Senator game. He drove in the apparent winning run in the top of the 10th inning, but allowed a passed ball that enabled the Senators to tie the score in the bottom half. A few innings later he spiked his own pitcher. Then, in the 14th inning, he failed to touch first base on his double and was called out. The Red Sox eventually lost the game. Dave Boswell's pitching (below) and Tony Oliva's hitting (he moved to the top of the batting list) were the only bright spots for MINNESOTA (2-3), while BALTIMORE (3-2), despite the sore arms of Wally Bunker, Steve Barber and Stu Miller, increased its lead to 13 games. Mickey Mantle hit his 494th career home run for NEW YORK (2-4) and passed Lou Gehrig to become No. 6 on the list of alltime home-run hitters. Rick Reichardt of CALIFORNIA (2-3), bothered by intense headaches and dizzy spells, planned to enter Mayo Clinic for an operation to correct a congenital kidney condition. Meanwhile, CLEVELAND'S (3-3) Sam McDowell was willing to submit to hypnosis as a possible cure for his sore arm. "They tell me it's only a strained muscle," said McDowell, "but a strained muscle has crippled people." DETROIT (3-4) finally got some major league pitching, but the hitting turned minor league and the Tigers scored only three runs while losing four straight. CHICAGO'S (5-2) Eddie Stanky was so happy to get Pete Ward back (he was out for seven weeks because of a hernia operation) that he put him in the cleanup spot. Ward responded with no hits in his first nine at bats, and his average dwindled to. 158.
Standings: Balt. 69-35, Det. 55-47, Clev 54-48, Cal 54-49, Minn 51-52, Chi 51-53, NY 47-55, KC 45-57, Wash 47-61, Bos 45-61
August 7, 1966
Dick Stuart, of all players, helped LOS ANGELES (4-2) move into first place as he hit home runs in two games to stymie PHILADELPHIA (3-4) and then hit a home run, a double and a single to halt ST. LOUIS (5-1) after the Cardinals had won 12 of 13 games (page 20). One night when Stuart noticed that he was scheduled to start for the third straight game, he asked, "What does Alston think I am, a machine?" Then, when Stuart was hit on the helmet by a pitch, Dodger Trainer Bill Buhler asked him if he felt dizzy. "No more than usual," answered Stuart. Finally, he received a standing ovation in Dodger Stadium after a home run and said: "I haven't had that many times, but I've had standing boos a lot of times." Philly Manager Gene Mauch fined Johnny Callison $1,000 for loafing in the field and Richie Allen an undisclosed sum for missing a curfew. PITTSBURGH'S (2-5) Harry Walker also had personal problems with his players, and the Pirates slipped to second. After SAN FRANCISCO'S (3-4) Juan Marichal beat the Pirates last week, Manny Mota of the Bucs accidentally shut a car door on Marichal's pitching hand. So Juan, who does not like to pitch against ATLANTA (3-4) anyway, just watched while the Braves took three of four from the Giants, NEW YORK (5-1) completed its best month in history, winning 18 and losing only 14 in July. Part of the Mets' success was due to the pitching of Dennis Ribant and Bob Shaw, who beat both CHICAGO (1-5) and HOUSTON (1-6) during the week. Since Joe Morgan injured his knee, the Astros have lost 21 of 34 games to fall from fourth place to seventh, only 1½ games ahead of the Mets. Deron Johnson of CINCINNATI (6-1), who has been having trouble hitting this year, watched movies of himself in the Reds' projection room one night and evidently saw what he has been doing wrong. He hit three home runs in five days to help the Reds jump into sixth place.
Standings: LA 59-42, Pitt 60-43, SF 61-44, StL 54-48, Phil 55-49, Cin 50-53, Hou 49-54, Atl 48-56, NY 47-55, Chi 32-71
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Dave Boswell, a 21-year-old right-hander from Baltimore who pitches for the Minnesota Twins and answers to the clubhouse name of "Flakey," specializes in imitating bird, animal and insect calls (recently he had a bus driver frantically searching under the seats for a cricket). If asked, Boswell will give a dandy imitation of a Baltimore Oriole but, better yet—as far as Manager Sam Mele was concerned—Boswell pitched a one-hit shutout last week to beat league-leading Baltimore 7-0. And those Orioles were the same Birds who had averaged more than one hit an inning all year, led the major leagues in runs scored and had been shut out only three times previously. During the game Boswell struck out Frank Robinson three straight times, prompting Frank to tell a reporter: "How should I know what Boswell threw me? I didn't see the ball until the last time up." Boswell, who prefers to be called "Bullet," has been the best pitcher in the American League the last two months. On June 1 he had an 0-4 record: but now, after winning 10 of his last 11 decisions, including six in a row, he has a 10-5 record and also leads the league with 149 strikeouts. In a victory over the Yankees earlier in the week, Boswell, who had to leave the game in the eighth inning when he was hit by a pitch, once loaded the bases and another time had runners on first and third—both times with no outs—but managed to get out of trouble without giving up a run.