Minnesota outdid the Chicago Cubs, coming up with three managers in five hours. When Owner Cal Griffith gave Cookie Lavagetto a week's "vacation," Coach Sam Mele took charge at 3:30 p.m. of that day. Mele was thrown out of his first game, and at 8:30 p.m. Coach Eddie Lopat took command. A win over the Orioles ended the Twins' 13-game losing streak. Cleveland's Jimmy Piersall (see page 10) revealed a superstition about wearing the same shorts in every game and felt it was one reason for his league-leading batting average. Of his beloved but tattered underwear Piersall said, "I might wear 'em all season." Detroit, hitting .277 at the week's start, batted 55 points below that, scored only nine runs and lost four of six. Baltimore, too, did not break any batting records, hitting .222. The Orioles' slugging average for the week was .251—exactly 100 points under the lowest in the majors last year. Baltimore hitters, though, did break something—bats. In one inning Dave Philley and Jackie Brandt broke theirs. Then, using new ones, Philley doubled and Brandt singled. Using a new batting technique helped Kansas City's Joe Pignatano and Haywood Sullivan. Manager Joe Gordon taught them to hit down on the ball, and Pignatano and Sullivan (lifetime BAs .229 and .157) were hitting .326 and .298. Late-inning rallies enabled Washington to snap back from losses to the Indians, win three from the White Sox and move back to fifth. Those defeats dropped Chicago into last place. A base-running error by Boston's Gary Geiger in a 4-4 tie with the Athletics hurt the Sox. Geiger missed a signal to hold up at third and was out trying for an inside-the-park homer. If he had stayed at third he would have scored on Carl Yastrzemski's long fly. Unlike most teams, New York did little wrong and won seven of eight. In one five-game span Yankee pitchers gave up only seven runs. Clete Boyer's play at third base was spectacular. Coach Johnny Sain had a new gauge for evaluating third basemen. He said of Boyer, "He throws better from his knees than anybody." Boyer threw from that position repeatedly after making diving stops. Los Angeles climbed to eighth. Ron Moeller and Ted Bowsfield shut out the Orioles, and Ken Aspromonte (.382) and Leroy Thomas (.353) led the hitting.
Philadelphia's Robin Roberts won his first game, beating the Giants 3-2. With two out and two on in the ninth, Roberts missed a ground ball, but Shortstop Ruben Amaro got it for a forceout at second. Roberts' teammate Frank Sullivan said of the play, "If that ball had gone through, nobody would have scored. We were all coming off the bench to make sure." In a game with Chicago, the umpire asked Sullivan for the ball so he could inspect it. Sullivan lobbed it in and Richie Ashburn hit it—foul. "If it had been fair, I'd have run it out. I must be cracking up," Ashburn said. The Cubs hit a lot of fair balls (63) but were outscored 43-32 and lost four of five. Los Angeles got better pitching and, just as important, four home runs by Wally Moon. The Dodgers have won 11 of the 12 games in which Moon has homered. Cincinnati and Los Angeles traded the league lead four times. Heavy hitting by Vada Pinson (.423), Gordy Coleman (.409) and Don Blasingame (.360) kept the Reds going. Stan Musial also kept going for St. Louis. In an 8-6 win over the Cubs he hit two homers and two singles despite an abscessed tooth, a pulled leg muscle and a sore heel. Eddie Mathews hit two home runs in one game and six all week as Milwaukee went on a record-tying homer spree (14 in three games). Still, the Braves dropped four of six. And the unheard-of happened: Warren Spahn lost twice in two days. Odd things also happened to Pittsburgh, as the Pirates made 12 errors, were shut out for the eighth time and lost four of six. San Francisco also bungled its chance to move up, splitting six games as the pitchers were hit for 30 runs in one five-game stretch. Jim Davenport was out on a weird attempt to steal. He made a delayed steal of second, saw that the throw had him beat and headed back to first. He was safe there on an error but was thrown out when he turned and immediately tried to get to second again.
Boxed statistics through Saturday, June 10
TIMELY HITTERS were Phils' Pancho Herrera, whose three-run HR beat Giants 3-2, Senators' Willie Tasby, with two ninth-inning HRs.