San-FranciscoAugust 27, 1958

For cryin’ out loud, today they had me warming up Al Worthington. Don’t know what kind of mojo magic my hand has been putting on the ball, but if the Giants keep winning there’s a good chance they’ll make up a bed for me in the clubhouse.

The poor Braves were spooked, suffering and anemic again. Carl Willey pitched his arm off, but a one-out Bressoud single in the 1st and Wagner double past Bruton was somehow enough to beat him, because Milwaukee:

• Couldn’t score with the bases loaded and one out in the 1st
• Couldn’t score with first and third and nobody out in the 4th
• Couldn’t score with first and second and nobody out in the 6th
• Couldn’t score with first and second and one out in the 8th
• Didn’t score in the 9th after pinch-hitter Warren Spahn belted a one-out, pinch-hit double that missed leaving the park when a sudden wind gust from Alcatraz forced the ball to graze the top of the fence for a double. Torre walked, but naturally Giel came on to get Mathews and Aaron with ease and end the game.

Hammerless Hank has totally stopped hitting, and the team has followed suit. They’ve now scored a grand total of two runs in four games here, with the finale against McCormick tomorrow.

I watched this surreal epic with the photo bugs again, but somewhere around the top of the 8th, Pence yelled from the Giants dugout that I had a phone call. I ducked into the clubhouse tunnel to answer it.

It was a terrible connection, choked with static, but I thought I heard a seagull cry.

Or was it my mother’s voice?

“…wanted to let you know I’m all right…”
“Mom? Is that you??”

Static. Then…

“…a lot nicer that I thought he’d be…”
“Where are you, Mom? I’ll come right away, and I’ll kill the bastard—”
“You eating okay?”
“What?? Forget about me! How are YOU? He said you were tied up.”
“…Sometimes I’m cold, but I can manage…”
“WHERE ARE YOU??”

Someone took the phone from her. A static-filled man’s voice said “she’s gotta go” and hung up.

“Hello??”

I smacked the receiver against the tunnel wall, left it dangling. Tracked down Brewster outside Stoneham’s box the second the game ended.

“My mother just called. A pay phone, near a beach.”
“How did you know that?”
“Because I heard a seagull.”
“Any idea how many phone booths are near beaches?”
“Yeah. Which is why I’m telling you now. You have an entire division, right? Get on it.”
“Certainly, Mr. Drake. Oh—and would you like us to check the entire Atlantic coast, too? Or just the Pacific.”

I said that was up to him. You have to start somewhere.

THE SKINNYS

MIL 000 000 000 – 0 3 1
S.F. 100 000 00x – 1 5 2
W-Worthington L-Willey SV-Giel GWRBI-Wagner

PHI 000 100 006 – 7 8 1
CHI 200 400 30x – 9 14 1
W-Drabowsky L-Semproch SV-Henry HRS: Sawatski, Bowman, Banks GWRBI-Moryn
One day off for the Cubs, and back to the murdering business. This would have been a total rout, had Moe Drabowsky not gotten cute and served up two three-run homers in the 9th. With Ernie B.’s 37th homer—a grand salami—he now has 101 RBIs.

CIN 200 405 100 – 12 17 0
L.A. 000 000 000 – 0 4 0
W-Lawrence D.O.A.-Podres HR: Lynch GWRBI-Lynch
Not nearly as close as the score indicates.

PIT 000 100 000 – 1 6 1
STL 000 210 00x – 3 10 1
W-Mizell L-Friend HR-Thomas GWRBI-B.G.Smith
Sssh…Be vewy vewy quiet…The Cards are back at .500…

K.C. 000 000 000 – 0 6 0
NYY 023 000 10x – 6 13 0
W-Shantz L-Garver HRS: Berra-2 GWRBI-Carey
And with this whitewash at the hands of the worst Yankee starter, the Kansas CIty Athletics are eliminated from pennant contention. Not entirely their fault, seeing they had four regulars out with injuries, including Bob Cerv, which oddly seems to happen to most teams around the time they visit New York.

CHX 100 100 001 – 3 7 0
WAS 000 001 000 – 1 8 3
W-Donovan L-Kemmerer GWRBI-Callison
With Lollar out of action, it’s a bit more of a struggle against the nothin-to-lose Nats, but Dick Donovan and a shabby Washington defense come to the rescue to keep Chicago six games back.

CLE 000 000 000 – 0 3 0
BAL 000 100 10x – 2 2 2
W-Portocarrero L-Score HR: Taylor GWRBI-Taylor
Classic Birds win, only two hits but with Arnie’s baseball-leading seventh shutout, it’s enough to blank the Tribe.

DET 010 000 220 – 5 12 0
BOS 000 100 000 – 1 4 1
W-Foytack L-Brewer GWRBI-Kuenn
Meanwhile, the Tigers have petitioned the league to have all their road games played at Fenway. Back to a game under .500 as Harvey Kuenn breaks the 1-1 tie with a big pinch double in the 7th.

National League through Wednesday, August 27

Chicago 73 56 .566
San Francisco 70 57 .551 2
Milwaukee 68 58 .540 3.5
St. Louis 63 63 .500 8.5
Cincinnati 64 65 .496 9
Philadelphia 60 64 .484 10.5
Los Angeles 55 72 .433 17
Pittsburgh 55 73 .430 17.5

American League through Wednesday, August 27

New York 79 48 .622
Chicago 73 54 .575 6
Baltimore 68 57 .544 10
Boston 67 59 .532 11.5
Cleveland 67 62 .519 13
Detroit 62 63 .496 16
Kansas City 50 76 .397 28.5
Washington 40 87 .315 39
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