Home > Baseball, Life > Hey, I Was There!

Hey, I Was There!

October 22, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

[National Baseball Hall of Fame Library, via NYT]

The NYT had an article Wednesday, the morning of this year’s opening World Series game, on the history of World Series programs. And there’s a pretty good accompanying slide show, too, with programs going back to 1911 (Giants-Athletics). But what caught my eye instantly was the program used as a graphic at the article’s head. The one above.

That’s not just any program. I have that program! It’s the program my father bought for me 51 years ago when he took my brother and me to game 3, the first Yankees home game of that famous series between the Yankees and the Pirates. You know the Series. The one where the Yankees beat up on the Pirates in three of the first six games (16-3, 10-0, 12-0), with the Pirates squeezing in three close wins (6-4, 3-2, 5-2) in-between. Add it up: that’s a 46-17 run margin over six games.

As for game 3, the one we went to, that’s the 10-0 Yankee win. Yankee second baseman Bobby Richardson hit a grand slam in the first inning that landed three rows in front of us, one of the thrills of my childhood, driving in Bill Skowron, Gil McDougald, and Elston Howard. Three innings later, he hit a single with the bases loaded that brought Skowron and McDougald in again and sent Howard to second. Six RBIs, still the world series single-game record, tied only two years ago by fellow Yankee Hideki Matsui.

Whitey Ford was on the mound that day, throwing a four-hit shutout. Richardson would go on to win the World Series MVP award. What a team! Maris in his first year as a Yankee. Mantle. Howard and Berra both available to catch, with yet another pretty darn good catcher, Johnny Blanchard, in reserve. Kubek sharing middle-infield duties with Richardson. Gosh, I worshiped them.

Well, anyway, that was that. I won’t talk about game 7. A little too much pain for a young boy. I know exactly where I was when Mazeroski hit that home run, just as I know where I was three years later when I learned that Kennedy was shot. For today, let’s just admire that program. My copy is in a box somewhere. I should go find it.

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