1963 World Series

1963 World Series
Team (Wins) Manager(s) Season
Los Angeles Dodgers (4) Walter Alston 99–63, .611, GA: 6
New York Yankees (0) Ralph Houk 104–57, .646, GA: 10½
Dates October 2–6
MVP Sandy Koufax (Los Angeles)
Umpires Joe Paparella (AL), Tom Gorman (NL), Larry Napp (AL), Shag Crawford (NL), Johnny Rice (AL: outfield only), Tony Venzon (NL: outfield only)
Hall of Famers Dodgers: Walt Alston (mgr.), Leo Durocher (Coach), Don Drysdale, Sandy Koufax.
Yankees: Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, Mickey Mantle.
Broadcast
Television NBC
TV announcers Mel Allen and Vin Scully
Radio NBC
Radio announcers Ernie Harwell and Joe Garagiola
World Series

The 1963 World Series matched the two-time defending champion New York Yankees against the Los Angeles Dodgers, with the Dodgers sweeping the Series in four games to capture their second title in five years, and their third in franchise history. Starting pitchers Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, and Johnny Podres, and ace reliever Ron Perranoski combined to give up only four runs in four games. The dominance of the Dodgers pitchers was so complete that at no point in any of the four games did the Yankees have the lead. New York was held to a .171 team batting average, the lowest ever for the Yankees in the post-season.

This was the first time that the New York Yankees were swept in a World Series in four games (the 1922 World Series had one tie).

Of the Los Angeles Dodgers four World Series championships since the opening of Dodger Stadium, this was the only one won at Dodger Stadium. Also, of the six championships from the Dodgers franchise, it remains the only one won at home.

This series was also the first meeting between teams from New York City and Los Angeles for a major professional sports championship.[1][2] Seven more such meetings have followed with three more times each in the World Series and the NBA Finals, and the 2014 Stanley Cup Final.[2]

Background

Yankees

Despite injuries that limited Mickey Mantle to just 65 games, the Yankees went 104–57 to win their fourth straight American League pennant—this one by 10 12 games. Catcher Elston Howard (.287 BA, 28 HRs, 85 RBI) won the MVP Award, while Joe Pepitone, Roger Maris, and Tom Tresh also topped the 20 home run mark. Their pitching was anchored by Whitey Ford (24 wins, 2.74 ERA) and Jim Bouton (21 wins, 2.53 ERA).

Dodgers

The Dodgers' road to the World Series was much more challenging. After blowing a four-game lead with seven to play in 1962, the Dodgers again built a lead in 1963. On August 21, the Dodgers beat the Cardinals 2–1 in 16 innings to take a 7 12 game lead. When they went to St. Louis for a three-game series on September 16, their lead was one game over the Cardinals, who had won 19 of 20 games. Sports fans around the country were saying how the Dodgers were going to blow it again. But the Dodgers swept the three games from the Cardinals to move four games ahead with nine to play; a 4–1 win over the Mets clinched the pennant in the season's 158th game.

Summary

NL Los Angeles Dodgers (4) vs. AL New York Yankees (0)

GameDateScoreLocationTimeAttendance 
1October 2Los Angeles Dodgers – 5, New York Yankees – 2Yankee Stadium2:0969,000[3] 
2October 3Los Angeles Dodgers – 4, New York Yankees – 1Yankee Stadium2:1366,455[4] 
3October 5New York Yankees – 0, Los Angeles Dodgers – 1Dodger Stadium2:0555,912[5] 
4October 6New York Yankees – 1, Los Angeles Dodgers – 2Dodger Stadium1:5055,912[6]

Matchups

Game 1

Wednesday, October 2, 1963 1:00 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team123456789RHE
Los Angeles041000000590
New York000000020260
WP: Sandy Koufax (1–0)   LP: Whitey Ford (0–1)
Home runs:
LAD: Johnny Roseboro (1)
NYY: Tom Tresh (1)

Sandy Koufax started it off with a then record fifteen-strikeout performance in Game 1. It bested fellow Dodgers pitcher Carl Erskine's mark in 1953 by one, and would be surpassed by Bob Gibson in 1968. Koufax also tied a World Series record when he fanned the first five Yankee batters he faced in that game. Since "K" is the time-honored scoring symbol for "strikeout" (Vin Scully once remarked that "Koufax's name will always remind you of strikeouts"), some newspapers' headlines for the game coverage consisted simply of Koufax's surname prefixed by fifteen K's.

Clete Boyer was the only Yankee regular not to be struck out against Koufax. Mickey Mantle, Tom Tresh and Tony Kubek were struck out twice each, and Bobby Richardson was struck out three times—his only three-strikeout game in 1448 regular season/World Series games. (Just that regular season, Richardson had been struck out only 22 times in 630 at-bats, without even being struck out twice in one game.) Koufax also struck out three pinch-hitters, including Harry Bright to end the game.

The Dodger 4-run outburst in the second inning was highlighted by a monster double by Frank Howard into the Death Valley section of left center field in old Yankee Stadium.

Game 2

Thursday, October 3, 1963 1:00 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team123456789RHE
Los Angeles2001000104101
New York000000001170
WP: Johnny Podres (1–0)   LP: Al Downing (0–1)   Sv: Ron Perranoski (1)
Home runs:
LAD: Bill Skowron (1)
NYY: None

Willie Davis doubled in two runs in the first inning, former Yankee Bill Skowron homered, and Tommy Davis had two triples to lead the Dodger offense. Dodger manager Walt Alston went with #3 starter Johnny Podres over #2 starter Don Drysdale because he was left-handed and Yankee Stadium was favorable to left-handed pitchers. Podres delivered a six-hitter through 8 13 innings; ace reliever Ron Perranoski got the last two outs, and the Dodgers headed home with 2–0 Series lead.

Game 3

Saturday, October 5, 1963 1:00 pm (PT) at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California
Team123456789RHE
New York000000000030
Los Angeles10000000X141
WP: Don Drysdale (1–0)   LP: Jim Bouton (0–1)

Don Drysdale pitched a masterful three-hitter at Dodger Stadium in his complete-game win. Manager Walter Alston called Drysdale's performance "one of the greatest pitched games I ever saw." Jim Bouton, making his first World Series start, dueled Drysdale throughout, permitting only four hits. The lone Dodger run came in the bottom of the first on a Jim Gilliam walk, a wild pitch and a single by Tommy Davis. The final out came on Joe Pepitone's drive that backed Dodger right fielder Ron Fairly up against the bullpen gate to make the catch of a ball that would have been a home run in Yankee Stadium.

Game 4

Sunday, October 6, 1963 1:00 pm (PT) at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California
Team123456789RHE
New York000000100161
Los Angeles00001010X221
WP: Sandy Koufax (2–0)   LP: Whitey Ford (0–2)
Home runs:
NYY: Mickey Mantle (1)
LAD: Frank Howard (1)

The Dodgers scored first in the bottom of the fifth on a monumental Frank Howard home run into the upper deck at Dodger Stadium. The Yankees tied it on a Mickey Mantle home run in the top of the seventh. But in the bottom of the inning, Gilliam hit a high hopper to Yankee third baseman Clete Boyer; Boyer leaped to make the grab, and fired to first base. But first baseman Joe Pepitone lost Boyer's peg in the white-shirted crowd background; the ball struck Pepitone in the arm and rolled down the right field line, allowing Gilliam to scamper all the way to third base. He then scored a moment later on Willie Davis' sacrifice fly. Sandy Koufax went on to hold the Yankees for the final two innings for a 2–1 victory and the Dodgers' third world championship.

The World Series Most Valuable Player Award went to Sandy Koufax, who started two of the four games and had two complete game victories. To date, Game 4 is the only time the Dodgers have won the deciding game of a World Series at home.

Composite box

1963 World Series (4–0): Los Angeles Dodgers (N.L.) over New York Yankees (A.L.)

Team123456789RHE
Los Angeles Dodgers34111011012253
New York Yankees0000001214221
Total attendance: 247,279   Average attendance: 61,820
Winning player's share: $12,794   Losing player's share: $7,874[7]

Low scoring

World Series Teams With Fewer Than Ten (10) Runs Scored (Through 1963):

YearTeamLeagueRuns
1954Cleveland IndiansA.L.9
1943St. Louis CardinalsN.L.9
1938Chicago CubsN.L.9
1918Boston Red SoxA.L.9
1939Cincinnati RedsN.L.8
1920Brooklyn DodgersN.L.8
1914Philadelphia AthleticsA.L.6
1907Detroit TigersA.L.6
1950Philadelphia PhilliesN.L.5
1963New York YankeesA.L.4
1905Philadelphia AthleticsA.L.3

Trivia

  • This was longtime Yankees announcer Mel Allen's 22nd and final World Series broadcast. Allen was suffering from an attack of severe laryngitis at the time of the Series, and while doing play-by-play for NBC television during Game 4 his voice gave out completely in the bottom of the eighth inning, requiring Vin Scully to take over for the remainder of the game. (The following year—Allen's last with the Yankees—he would be passed over for the Series assignment in favor of boothmate Phil Rizzuto.)
  • Yankee pinch hitter Harry Bright was Koufax's record setting 15th strikeout for the final out in Game 1.
  • The MVP award was given to Koufax at a luncheon in New York City. He was presented with a new car. While the luncheon was taking place, a New York City police officer put a parking violation ticket on the car's windshield.[8]
  • In the 1986 novel Replay by Ken Grimwood, the protagonist bets his life savings on a Dodgers sweep, knowing they will win. His winnings total more than 12 million dollars, at the apparent odds of 100–1, with Grimwood referring to it as "one of the great upsets in baseball history".
  • This is the World Series that Jack Nicholson's character R.P. McMurphy lobbies unsuccessfully to watch on television (and subsequently "announces" by imagining the action) in Miloš Forman's 1975 film One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. He imagines quite a different scene than what occurred, however, as he describes Richardson, Tresh, and Mantle knocking Koufax out of the box. In reality, the Yankees never led at any time in the Series, and only once in the entire Series (and that only for a half-inning) were the Yankees and Dodgers tied at a score other than 0–0. A brief clip of Ernie Harwell's NBC Radio broadcast of Game 2 can be heard in the film.

Notes

  1. Branch, John (June 5, 2014). "New York vs. Los Angeles: Rivalry Revived". The New York Times. p. B11.
  2. 1 2 Barnes, Mike (June 1, 2014). "Stanley Cup Final: Kings vs. Rangers in L.A.-New York Championship Duel". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 15, 2015.
  3. "1963 World Series Game 1 – Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  4. "1963 World Series Game 2 – Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. "1963 World Series Game 3 – New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. "1963 World Series Game 4 – New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  7. "World Series Gate Receipts and Player Shares". Baseball Almanac. Archived from the original on May 2, 2009. Retrieved June 14, 2009.
  8. New York cop seeks revenge

See also

References

  • Cohen, Richard M.; Neft, David S. (1990). The World Series: Complete Play-By-Play of Every Game, 1903–1989. New York: St. Martin's Press. pp. 298–301. ISBN 0-312-03960-3. 
  • Reichler, Joseph (1982). The Baseball Encyclopedia (5th ed.). Macmillan Publishing. p. 2171. ISBN 0-02-579010-2. 
  • Forman, Sean L. "1963 World Series". Baseball-Reference.com – Major League Statistics and Information. Archived from the original on November 30, 2007. Retrieved December 9, 2007. 
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