|National League Highlights - 1957 |
Ballparks were a fun place to be during the 1950s and, any teenager worth their salt were at Wednesday and Sunday doubleheaders. An off day on Monday meant most teams were resting or shifting away to some other city.
There were just eight teams in each league, so it was easy to know every player in the majors during this era.
The following compiled from old newspaper clippings, magazines and from our veteran manager's memory.
Anyway, here's the highlights and this and that of the National League's 1957 season:
Standings as of June 28, 1957 - National League
St. Louis Cardinals 36-27 ... Milwaukee Braves 38-29 ... Cincinnati Reds 38-29 ... Philadelphia Phillies 36-28 1/2 GB ... Brooklyn Dodgers 35-31 2 1/2 GB ... New York Giants 31-35 6 1/2 GB ... Pittsburgh Pirates 25-42 13 GB ... Chicago Cubs 21-39 13 1/2 GB
3 REDLEGS REPLACED ON N.L. ALL-STAR TEAM
June 29, 1957 - Baseball Commissioner Ford Frick made the first putout of the 1957 All-Star game Friday.
In an unprecedented move Ford Frick selected Stan Musial, Willie Mays - Baseball's Superstar and Hank Aaron's Batting Power to the National League starting lineup after it appeared that an avalanche of Cincinnati votes would place eight Redlegs to the starting lineup.
Frick, a quite-speaking person noted for his intense deliberations, put Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals, Willie Mays of the New York Giants and Hank Aaron of the Milwaukee Braves ahead of Cincinnati outfielders Gus Bell and Wally Post and ahead of Reds' first baseman George Crowe.
Frick left five other Redlegs players as likely winners because they have been 'either leading or in contention' in the nationwide balloting by fans.
The eight starters, selected by the votes of the fans, normally start against the American League stars in the All-Star game, to be played at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. Pichers and other players are selected by opposing pennant winning managers. This year they will be chosen by Brooklyn's Walter Alston and Yankees' Casey Stengel.
The other five Cincinnati players named as starters are Johnny Temple at second base, Roy McMillan at shortstop, Don Hoak at third base, Frank Robinson in left-field and Ed Bailey doing the catching.
The reason for the changes were that Cincinnati accounted for more than half the total votes cast... their fans had been voting early and often - stuffing the ballot box.
National League Players:
Ed Bailey, Catcher - Bats LH, T RH, Cincinnati Reds - major league career 1953-1966... Born in Strawberry Plains, Tennessee, Bailey made his major league debut with Cincinnati in Sept of '53 and was one of the league leading slugging backstops. In 1956, he belted 28 homers, 75 RBIs, batted .300 in 118 games and complied a .551 slugging pct. In 1957, the All-Star catcher hit .261 in 122 games, with 20 HR, 48 RBIs... however after the '61 season Ed Bailey was traded to the San Francisco Giants.
Jack Sanford, Pitcher, RH, Philadelphia Phillies - major league career 1956-1967... Born in Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts, after toiling in the minors and spending almost two full years in the military, Sanford burst onto the big-league stage by capturing the 1957 NL Rookie of the Year honors... recording a 19-8 W/L mark, leading the league in strike outs with 188, led league with 12 wild pitches... posted a compelling 3.08 ERA in 33 starts, 15 completed, 94 walks and hurled 3 shutouts. After he fell to 10-13 in 1958, Sanford was traded to the Giants.
Cubs Sunk 15-5 by Pirates, 2nd Game 5-5 Tie - June 27, 1957
Newspaper Clipping - Chicago Sun-Times by Jerry Holtzman
It was nice day for a picnic, so Pittsburgh's Pirates had one Wednesday. They camped out with the Cubs for 6 1/2 hours on the Wrigley Gum Field lawn and when the frolicking ended the Chicagoans were back in the National League cellar.
Pittsburgh gorged itself in the doubleheader opener and had a 19-hit feast for a 15-5 victory. Ten of these hits were for extra bases, including two triples and three homers.
The Pirates were still stuffing themselves in the second game. They clubbed four more homers and a doubleheader sweep seemed imminent, but the Cubs and shortstop Ernie Banks Ties Record - Speed & Power stepped up to the table and came from behind to tie the game It was a full afternoon of baseball an the fellow who enjoyed himself the most of all was Dee Fondy, the ex-Cub first baseman. Dee Fondy rapped out seven hits in 11 trips, hiking his average 14 points to .365, good enough for the National League lead.
The first game was no contest. After five innings, the Pirates were ahead 11-0. Pittsburgh's first game homers, all good for two runs, were delivered by left-fielder Frank Thomas off Cubs' starter Tom Poholsky, by second baseman Bill Mazeroski off Dick Littlefield, and Rookie Roman Mejias, off Littlefield.
The Prates had eight extra base hits before the Cubs got more than a single off Pirate starter Vern Law, who went the route. Chuck Tanner's double and a triple by Ernie Banks featured the Cubs' two-run sixth. Tanner clubbed a bases-empty homer in the eight and the Cubs added their final two runs in the ninth. Catcher Cal Neeman opened with a single and came across on Bob Speake's pinch triple. Bob Speake then scored on an infield out by pinch-hitter Jim Bolger.
Joe Trimble, Pirate rookie making his first major league start, held the Cubs scoreless for the first five innings of the second game. His teammates had given him a 2-0 lead, center-fielder Bill Virdon accounting for one of these runs with a first-inning homer off Myron Moe Drabowsky.
The Cubs knocked Trimble out in the sixth. Chuck Tanner singled and Ernie Banks followed with his season's 14th homer. Pittsburgh tied the score in the sixth on Bill Mazeroski's second homer and routed starter Moe Drabowsky in the ninth when catcher Hank Foiles and pinch-hitter Bob Skinner slugged back-to-back homers.
The Cubs tied the score in their half of the ninth. Pinch-hitter Lee Walls walked, was sacrificed to second, and came home when second baseman Bobby Morgan unloaded his triple high off the left-field wall. Jim Bolger's single followed, but the rally ended when Banks hit into a double play. Don Elston worked the final two innings for the Cubs, and turned in another excellent relief job. The 5-5 tie ended after the 11th inning when the game was called because of darkness. The game will be replayed in its entirety.
Dee Fondy was 4-for-5 in the first game and 3-for-6 in the nightcap. Rookie Ramon Meijas went 4-for-6 with 3 RBIs in the opener and did not play in the second game. Mazeroski was 2-for-6 in game one and 2-for-6 in game 2.
GIANTS WHIP CARDINALS 13-6 - McCORMICK STARS
August 22, 1957 - Newspaper Clipping (AP)
Polo Grounds in N.Y. - The New York Giants dropped St. Louis 6 1/2 games behind the league leading Milwaukee Braves as they pounded five pitchers for 13 hits and defeated the Cardinals 13-6. Mike McCormick, 18-year-old bonus left-hander, who took over the Giant pitching chores in the first inning, went the rest of the way for the victory, his third without defeat. Lindy McDaniel, the Cards' $50,000 bonus pitcher, was charged with his eight defeat against 10 victories.
Six home runs were hit in the game, four by the Cardinals' players - Stan Musial, Wally Moon, Ken Boyer and Eddie Miksis. Willie Mays and Hank Sauer hit the Giants homers.
To view some originial newspaper clippings from the 1950s, type in the words - today in time - into our 'Search' located on the Home Page