Friday, June 3, 2022


Certain games in any season will prove to be haunted in one way or another; that was the case for the Dodgers on June 3, 1962, when they blew an early 4-0 lead and lost their second straight game in Philadelphia. Given that they'd ultimately wind up in a tie with the Giants at the end of the regular season, this game was one of several that could have clinched the pennant for them.

The Dodgers still led 5-2 going into the bottom of the fourth, thanks in large part to three run-scoring hits from Tommy Davis (who'd regained the league lead in RBIs by doing so). But Johnny Podres came undone, plagued primarily by timely hits from left-handed batters. After Don Demeter walked to open the inning, Tony Gonzalez (lefty) slugged a homer, making it 5-4. Backup catcher Bob Oldis drew another walk, and Bobby Wine's sacrifice bunt was well-placed enough to go for a base hit. After pinch-hitter Jacke Davis struck out, Tony Taylor hit a grounder to Jim Gilliam at third, whose throw to first was wide, pulling Ron Fairly off the bag. That loaded the bases for Johnny Callison, the Phils' 23-year-old lefty-hitting right fielder, who was having a breakout season and who'd already doubled in a run off Podres earlier in the game. 

Walt Alston stuck with Podres, keeping the left-on-left matchup; Callison slapped a 1-2 pitch into center field, however, scoring Oldis and Wine and putting the Phillies ahead, 6-5. Willie Davis' throw from center came home in a fruitless attempt to get Wine, allowing both Taylor and Callison to move up, leaving runners on second and third. Podres then left the game in favor of Larry Sherry, who would give up a scoring fly ball to Roy Sievers for Philadelphia's fifth run of the inning.

In the top of the fifth, Mauch brought in Paul Brown, his failed starter from earlier in the series. Brown proceeded to throw five scoreless innings against the Dodgers to clinch the win for the Phils. Along the way there was an odd decision by Alston: in the fifth, with two on and one out, he left Sherry into bat. Larry promptly hit into a double play to end the inning. Perhaps Alston figured there was plenty of time for his offense to mount a rally; but they never did. Final score: Phillies 7, Dodgers 5.

Brown got stronger as the game went on, and was awarded a save for his five innings of work. The Philadelphia press second-guessed the game's official scorer the next day, suggesting that Brown's performance was such that he could have been awarded the win (a decision that was in the purview of the official scorer). As it turned out, Paul Brown never did win a game in the big leagues, finishing his career (as noted earlier) with an 0-8 record. For Brown as it was also for the Dodgers, 'twas a precious, elusive win that got away.

THINGS ultimately did not get away from the Giants up at the Polo Grounds, though Bob Miller took a 1-0 lead into the sixth against Juan Marichal. Miller struck out the side in the sixth, upping his total of K's to eight, but he also gave up a game-tying homer to Willie Mays. Then he simply fell apart in the seventh, and Stengel could not be roused from the bench to take him out until Miller had allowed five hits, a walk and a hit batsman: he was finally driven from the game when benchwarmer Ernie Bowman singled in the Giants' fifth run of the inning. (Bowman hit .190 in '62 and in his brief three-year career appeared in more games as a pinch-runner than he did in the Giants' starting lineup.)

Miller's record fell to 0-3, and it would extend to 0-12 as the season "progressed" for the Mets; he'd finally "get off the schneid" in the Mets' final game of 1962, beating the Cubs 2-1 for his only win of the year. (Proving again that he was no stranger to wins, Marichal went all the way for the Giants. upping his season record to 8-3.) Final score: Giants 6, Mets 1.



BA--B. Williams CHC .359, Gonzalez PHI . 347, Cepeda SFG .341, F. Alou SFG .340, Groat PIT .336, T. Davis LAD .330

OBP--Fairly LAD .457, B. Williams  CHC .432, Mays SFG .424, Dalrymple PHI .419, Gonzalez PHI .419, Kuenn SFG .395

SLG--Mays SFG .682, Pinson CIN .521, Thomas NYM . 620, B. Williams CHC .616, Cepeda SFG .605, Gonzalez PHI .580, T. Davis LAD .566

HR--Mays SFG  19, Cepeda SFG 15, Banks CHC 14, Thomas NYM 13, Pinson CIN 13, Altman CHC 12

RBI--T. Davis LAD 55, Cepeda SFG 52, Mays SFG 47, Pinson CIN 40, F. Alou SFG 39, White STL 36

Runs--Mays SFG 53, Wills LAD 46, Cepeda SFG 45, B. Williams CHC 43, Hiller SFG 40, T. Davis LAD 39

Hits--Cepeda SFG, 75, B. Williams CHC 71, T. Davis LAD 69, Flood STL 68, Groat PIT 68, Mejias HOU 65

2B--F. Robinson CIN 20, Brock CHC 13, T. Davis LAD 12, Callison PHI 12

3B--Virdon PIT 6; B. Williams CHC  5, T. Davis LAD 5, Boyer STL 4, Callison PHI 4, Brock CHC 4, Fairly LAD 4, Burright LAD 4

SB--Wills LAD 27, W. Davis LAD 12, Taylor PHI 10, Boyer STL 7, F. Robinson CIN 7, Javier STL 7