Minnesota Manager Sam Mele was a benevolent liar. Mele thought he detected an abnormal quiet among his players following four straight losses. "So I told them it was my birthday and how about winning one for me," Mele explained. His 40th birthday won't come until January, but the Twins presented him with a 9-0 victory. With Harmon Killebrew hitting less than his weight (200 pounds, about .180 BA) at home this season and with Jack Kralick unable for the 19th and 20th times to complete a game, the Twins dropped four games behind the Indians. Washington, which for weeks was a good-pitch, no-hit team, got an abundance of runs but gave up even more and lost six in a row. Cleveland lost two, then won six. Dick Donovan and Jim Perry pitched shutouts, and Bill Dailey won twice in relief. Don Dillard won two games with last-inning homers, one a grand slam, and Willie Tasby and Gene Green also came through with game-winning hits. No one could match New York's Mickey Mantle (.455 BA, 10 RBIs and seven HRs) and Roger Maris (.281 BA, 14 RBIs and six HRs). In all, the Yankees hit 21 homers. more than any team in either league had hit in any previous week this year. During Mantle's five-week absence the Yanks split 30 games. Since his return they have won 12 of 18, and the team BA, which had been .248, went to .265 during that period. Better yet was Kansas City's hard-to-believe .314 BA for the week. Jerry Lumpe hit .400 and Norm Siebern .462. Still, the Athletics had to struggle to win four of seven as they dropped to ninth place. Los Angeles also fell. After climbing to first place the Angels lost two games to the Red Sox and wound up in third. Leon Wagner, who calls himself Daddy Wags, hit four home runs. One-run defeats plagued Detroit Manager Bob Scheffing. His Tigers lost four times, always in the final inning. Three of the losses were by one run. Scheffing, though, could not complain too loudly; his Tigers also won four games, each by one run. Frank Lary, his ailing shoulder apparently no better, was relegated to the bullpen. Hoyt Wilhelm of Baltimore gave up his first home run in 49‚Öì innings, and it cost the Orioles a game. Errors resulted in two other losses, the seventh and eighth times this season that the Orioles have lost a chance to win or tie because of unearned runs. More at fault, however, have been the hitters. Baltimore has had superb pitching at times, notably by the relievers, but has not been able to capitalize on it. The reason: the team's .243 BA, lowest in the American League. Boston made the most of its chances. The Red Sox got two wins from Reliever Arnold Earley and .600 hitting from Lou Clinton. This gave the Red Sox four wins in seven games and moved them into eighth place. Chicago appeared to move into the pennant fight after winning a doubleheader at the start of the week. Thereafter the White Sox hit .233 and lost six of seven.
Being head coach for Chicago, Charlie Metro has learned, is like mining coal—everything looks black. Metro, who was once a miner, tried such devices as extra practice and closed-circuit television, but his Cubs still lost five of seven. With permission from the league and opposing teams, the Cubs installed a television set in the runway behind their dugout. The purpose: to have Cub players chart each pitch, as followed by a camera mounted in the center-field bleachers. Some of the activities of Houston's Bob Cerv, recently acquired from the Yankees, would have made a good TV comedy. A pair of uniform trousers had to be ripped at the seams and restitched so they would fit Cerv's massive 48-inch thighs. On the field, Cerv slid into second base with such verve (as well as his 240 pounds) that the bag had to be replaced. Then he suffered the ignominious fate of failing to score from second on a triple because of a mix-up in signals. Not so comical was Houston's record for the week: 1-6. Philadelphia lost seven times, but did end an eight-game losing streak. Tony Taylor was sidelined after gashing the big toe on his left foot when he kicked a clubhouse stool. Even more strange was the case of Milwaukee's Carl Willey, who injured his back sneezing. Fortunately for the Braves, Eddie Mathews was healthy. Although he had only seven hits, two were game-winning homers and he drove in 11 runs. Manager Birdie Tebbetts tried to lose—weight, not games. At week's end he had dieted away 24 pounds, his appetite possibly being curbed by his club's 22 one-run losses this season. New York, exploiting bunts, home runs and infrequent good pitching, won three of eight, a sensational week for the Mets. Two of three bunts were successful in one inning against the Cardinals' usually sure-handed Bobby Shantz, and then Rod Kanehl hit a grand-slam homer. Roger Craig had the honor of picking the Dodgers' Maury Wills off first base. Larry Jackson of St. Louis did even better, getting two outs on one pickoff. He caught Kanehl off second, and then Joe Christopher, who unwisely tried to advance from first on the play, was doubled up. But poor base running hurt the Cardinals, too. Dal Maxvill failed to touch third on his way home from second, thus converting a pinch single by Red Schoendienst into a fielder's choice. Pitcher Ray Sadecki was also caught in the tomfoolery, committing a wild pitch on an intentional walk. Nothing upset Lindy McDaniel. He relieved five times and had not given up an earned run in 29‚Öì innings during his past 15 appearances. Pittsburgh got exceptional relief work from El-Roy Face, a succession of run-saving fielding plays and shutouts from Vern Law and Al McBean, parlaying all this into seven wins. San Francisco, with Willie Mays picking up 13 RBIs, averaged 8.3 runs a game and held on to the league lead. After 89 innings without an error, Los Angeles committed 10 in two losses to the Giants. The only team to advance in the standings was Cincinnati; the Reds won five of seven and pushed the fading Cardinals out of fourth place.
TWO-TIME WINNERS were Cardinals' Ray Washburn, who won twice as a starter, Yanks' Bud Daley, who earned his victories in relief.