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1961 World Series

1961 World Series

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The 1961 World Series matched the New York Yankees
New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the The Bronx, New York. They compete in Major League Baseball in the American League's East Division...

 (109–53) against the Cincinnati Reds
Cincinnati Reds
The Cincinnati Reds are a Major League Baseball team based in Cincinnati, Ohio. They are members of the National League Central Division. The club was established in 1882 as a charter member of the American Association and joined the National League in 1890....

 (93–61), with the Yankees winning in five games to earn their 19th championship in 39 seasons. This World Series was surrounded by Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 political puns pitting the "Reds
Communism
Communism is a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of a classless, moneyless, revolutionary and stateless socialist society structured upon common ownership of the means of production...

" against the "Yanks
Capitalism
Capitalism is an economic system that became dominant in the Western world following the demise of feudalism. There is no consensus on the precise definition nor on how the term should be used as a historical category...

". But the louder buzz concerned the "M&M" boys, Roger Maris
Roger Maris
Roger Eugene Maris was an American Major League Baseball right fielder. During the 1961 season, he hit a record 61 home runs for the New York Yankees, breaking Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60 home runs...

 and Mickey Mantle
Mickey Mantle
Mickey Charles Mantle was an American professional baseball player. Mantle is regarded by many to be the greatest switch hitter of all time, and one of the greatest players in baseball history. Mantle was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.Mantle was noted for his hitting...

, who spent the summer chasing the ghost of Babe Ruth
Babe Ruth
George Herman Ruth, Jr. , best known as "Babe" Ruth and nicknamed "the Bambino" and "the Sultan of Swat", was an American Major League baseball player from 1914–1935...

 and his 60 home run season of 1927. Mantle finished with 54 while Maris set the record of 61 on the last day of the season. With all the attention surrounding the home run race, the World Series proved almost anti-climactic.

The Yankees were under the leadership of first year manager Ralph Houk
Ralph Houk
Ralph George Houk , nicknamed The Major, was an American catcher, coach, manager, and front office executive in Major League Baseball...

, who succeeded Casey Stengel
Casey Stengel
Charles Dillon "Casey" Stengel , nicknamed "The Old Perfessor", was an American Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in ....

. The Yankees won the American League pennant, finishing eight games better than the Detroit Tigers
Detroit Tigers
The Detroit Tigers are a Major League Baseball team located in Detroit, Michigan. One of the American League's eight charter franchises, the club was founded in Detroit in as part of the Western League. The Tigers have won four World Series championships and have won the American League pennant...

. Along the way, the Bronx Bombers set a Major League record for most home runs in a season with 240. Along with Maris and Mantle, four other Yankees, Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career for the New York Yankees...

, Elston Howard
Elston Howard
Elston Gene Howard was an American Negro League and Major League Baseball catcher, left fielder and coach. During a 14-year baseball career, he played from 1955–1968, primarily for the New York Yankees...

, Bill Skowron, and Johnny Blanchard
Johnny Blanchard
John Edwin Blanchard was a professional baseball player who played in the Major Leagues primarily as an outfielder and catcher from 1955 and 1959-1965. A defensive liability for the New York Yankees for most of his career, Blanchard is probably best-known for his play in the 1961 World Series...

, hit more than 20 home runs. The pitching staff was led by southpaw and Cy Young Award-winner Whitey Ford
Whitey Ford
Edward Charles "Whitey" Ford is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who spent his entire 18-year career with the New York Yankees. He was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.-Early life and career:...

 (25–4, 3.21).

The underdog Reds, skippered by Fred Hutchinson
Fred Hutchinson
Frederick Charles Hutchinson was an American professional baseball player, a major league pitcher for the Detroit Tigers. He also was a manager for three major league teams...

, finished four games ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers
Los Angeles Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers are a professional baseball team based in Los Angeles, California. The Dodgers are members of Major League Baseball's National League West Division. Established in 1883, the team originated in Brooklyn, New York, where it was known by a number of nicknames before becoming...

 in the National League
National League
The National League of Professional Baseball Clubs, known simply as the National League , is the older of two leagues constituting Major League Baseball, and the world's oldest extant professional team sports league. Founded on February 2, 1876, to replace the National Association of Professional...

 and boasted four 20-plus home run hitters of their own: NL MVP Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson , is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. He played from 1956–1976, most notably for the Cincinnati Reds and the Baltimore Orioles. He is the only player to win league MVP honors in both the National and American Leagues...

, Gordy Coleman
Gordy Coleman
Gordon Calvin Coleman was a Major League first baseman with the Cleveland Indians and the Cincinnati Reds ....

, Gene Freese
Gene Freese
Eugene Lewis Freese is a former third baseman in American Major League Baseball for 12 seasons . A journeyman, he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , St. Louis Cardinals, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Astros, batting .254 with 115 home runs in 1,115 games...

 and Wally Post
Wally Post
Walter Charles Post was a right fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1949 through 1964, Post played for the Cincinnati Reds & Redlegs , Philadelphia Phillies , Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians...

. The second-base, shortstop, and catcher positions were platooned, while outfielder Vada Pinson
Vada Pinson
Vada Edward Pinson, Jr. was an American center fielder and coach in Major League Baseball. Pinson played in the major leagues for 18 years, from 1958 through 1975, and his greatest seasons were with the Cincinnati Redlegs/Reds, for whom he played from 1958–68.Pinson combined power, speed and...

 led the league in hits with 208 and finished second in batting with a .343 average. Joey Jay
Joey Jay
Joseph Richard Jay is a former starting pitcher in Major League Baseball. From 1953 through 1966, Jay played for the Milwaukee Braves , Cincinnati Reds and Atlanta Braves...

 (21–10, 3.53) led the staff, along with dependable Jim O'Toole
Jim O'Toole
James Jerome O'Toole is a former left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball during the early 1960s.-College and minor league:...

 and Bob Purkey
Bob Purkey
Robert Thomas Purkey was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball known for his use of the knuckleball. From through , Purkey played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , Cincinnati Redlegs/Reds and St. Louis Cardinals...

.

The American League added two teams, the Los Angeles Angels and the Washington Senators
Washington Senators
There have been several baseball teams that have played as the Washington Senators, including:*an American League baseball team based in Washington, D.C. from 1901 to 1960, that moved to Minneapolis-St...

, through expansion and also increased teams' respective schedules by eight games to 162. The National League was a year away from its own expansion as the Reds and the other NL teams maintained the 154-game schedule.

The Most Valuable Player Award for the series went to Whitey Ford
Whitey Ford
Edward Charles "Whitey" Ford is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who spent his entire 18-year career with the New York Yankees. He was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.-Early life and career:...

, who won two games while throwing 14 shutout innings.

Ford left the sixth inning of Game 4 due to an injured ankle. He set the record for consecutive scoreless innings during World Series play with 32, when, during the third inning he passed the previous record holder, Babe Ruth
Babe Ruth
George Herman Ruth, Jr. , best known as "Babe" Ruth and nicknamed "the Bambino" and "the Sultan of Swat", was an American Major League baseball player from 1914–1935...

, who had pitched consecutive scoreless innings for the Boston Red Sox
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox are a professional baseball team based in Boston, Massachusetts, and a member of Major League Baseball’s American League Eastern Division. Founded in as one of the American League's eight charter franchises, the Red Sox's home ballpark has been Fenway Park since . The "Red Sox"...

 in and . Ford would extend that record to in the 1962 World Series.

The 1961 five-game series was the shortest since , when the New York Giants swept the Cleveland Indians in four games.

Summary



Game 1


Wednesday, October 4, 1961 at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
At Yankee Stadium, Whitey Ford
Whitey Ford
Edward Charles "Whitey" Ford is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who spent his entire 18-year career with the New York Yankees. He was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.-Early life and career:...

 established himself as the premier post-season pitcher by tossing his third straight World Series shutout. Two home runs were all Ford would need, a fourth-inning shot into the lower right-field stands by Elston Howard
Elston Howard
Elston Gene Howard was an American Negro League and Major League Baseball catcher, left fielder and coach. During a 14-year baseball career, he played from 1955–1968, primarily for the New York Yankees...

, and a sixth-inning shot into the lower left-field stands by Moose Skowron. The two-hour, 11-minute game featured only two hits by the Reds, a first-inning bloop single to left by Eddie Kasko
Eddie Kasko
Edward Michael Kasko is a former infielder, manager, scout and front office executive in American Major League Baseball....

 and a fifth-inning single by Wally Post
Wally Post
Walter Charles Post was a right fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1949 through 1964, Post played for the Cincinnati Reds & Redlegs , Philadelphia Phillies , Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians...

. The only other Reds baserunner was Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson , is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. He played from 1956–1976, most notably for the Cincinnati Reds and the Baltimore Orioles. He is the only player to win league MVP honors in both the National and American Leagues...

, who walked in the seventh. Otherwise, "The Chairman of the Board" Ford was dominant, adding six strikeouts. Jim O'Toole
Jim O'Toole
James Jerome O'Toole is a former left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball during the early 1960s.-College and minor league:...

 pitched well for the Reds, allowing just six hits in seven innings, striking out two and walking four.

Ford was also aided by two excellent defensive plays by third baseman Clete Boyer
Clete Boyer
Cletis Leroy "Clete" Boyer was a Major League Baseball player.A third baseman who also played shortstop and second base occasionally, Boyer played for the Kansas City Athletics , New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves...

. In the second inning, Boyer backhanded a Gene Freese
Gene Freese
Eugene Lewis Freese is a former third baseman in American Major League Baseball for 12 seasons . A journeyman, he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , St. Louis Cardinals, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Astros, batting .254 with 115 home runs in 1,115 games...

 ground ball close to the bag, wheeled, and threw out his third-base counterpart from his knees. In the eighth, Boyer dove to his left onto his stomach after a Dick Gernert
Dick Gernert
Richard Edward Gernert was a first baseman and outfielder in Major League Baseball who played for the Boston Red Sox , Chicago Cubs , Detroit Tigers , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Colt .45's . He threw and batted right-handed...

 ground ball; coming up with the ball, Boyer threw Gernert out, also from his knees.

Game 2


Thursday, October 5, 1961 at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
The Reds came charging back on superb pitching by Joey Jay
Joey Jay
Joseph Richard Jay is a former starting pitcher in Major League Baseball. From 1953 through 1966, Jay played for the Milwaukee Braves , Cincinnati Reds and Atlanta Braves...

 to win Game 2 and even the series. Reds first baseman Gordy Coleman
Gordy Coleman
Gordon Calvin Coleman was a Major League first baseman with the Cleveland Indians and the Cincinnati Reds ....

 and Yankees' left-fielder Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career for the New York Yankees...

 traded two-run homers in the fourth. Coleman hit his homer into the right-center field bleachers after Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson , is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. He played from 1956–1976, most notably for the Cincinnati Reds and the Baltimore Orioles. He is the only player to win league MVP honors in both the National and American Leagues...

 reached on an error by Yankees' third-baseman Clete Boyer
Clete Boyer
Cletis Leroy "Clete" Boyer was a Major League Baseball player.A third baseman who also played shortstop and second base occasionally, Boyer played for the Kansas City Athletics , New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves...

. After Roger Maris
Roger Maris
Roger Eugene Maris was an American Major League Baseball right fielder. During the 1961 season, he hit a record 61 home runs for the New York Yankees, breaking Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60 home runs...

 led off the bottom half of the inning with a walk, Berra tied the score with a drive into the lower right-field stands.

From there, Jay would give up only two more hits, a Berra single in the sixth and a Tony Kubek
Tony Kubek
Anthony Christopher "Tony" Kubek is a retired American professional baseball player and television broadcaster....

 single to center in the eighth. The Reds continued to score with single runs in the fifth and sixth and two in the eighth. The Reds went ahead for good with two outs in the fifth when Elio Chacon
Elio Chacón
Elio Chacón Rodríguez was a Major League Baseball second baseman and shortstop who played in the National League from 1960 to 1962. He was the seventh baseball player from Venezuela to play in the majors....

 sprinted home from third on an Elston Howard
Elston Howard
Elston Gene Howard was an American Negro League and Major League Baseball catcher, left fielder and coach. During a 14-year baseball career, he played from 1955–1968, primarily for the New York Yankees...

 passed ball that didn't get much further than 15 feet away. Yankee starter Ralph Terry
Ralph Terry
Ralph Willard Terry is a former right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for the New York Yankees , Kansas City Athletics , Cleveland Indians and New York Mets...

 would give up one more run in the sixth on a Wally Post
Wally Post
Walter Charles Post was a right fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1949 through 1964, Post played for the Cincinnati Reds & Redlegs , Philadelphia Phillies , Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians...

 double and a run- scoring single by eighth-place hitter Johnny Edwards, before being lifted in the seventh for pinch-hitter Héctor López
Héctor López
Héctor Headley López Swainson is a former left fielder and third baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the Kansas City Athletics and New York Yankees from to...

.

Luis Arroyo
Luis Arroyo
Luis Enrique "Tite" Arroyo, , is a former major league baseball pitcher.-Baseball career:Luis Arroyo, from Peñuelas, Puerto Rico, made his Major League Baseball debut on April 20, 1955. A stocky left-hander, he spent one season primarily as a starter with the St. Louis Cardinals...

 took over in the eighth and walked Robinson, gave up an infield single to Coleman on a roller between third and the mound and then threw wild to first, with Robinson scoring; Coleman was thrown out trying for third. The next batter, Wally Post
Wally Post
Walter Charles Post was a right fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1949 through 1964, Post played for the Cincinnati Reds & Redlegs , Philadelphia Phillies , Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians...

, reached safely when Berra misplayed his fly for a three-base error. With Post on third, Gene Freese
Gene Freese
Eugene Lewis Freese is a former third baseman in American Major League Baseball for 12 seasons . A journeyman, he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , St. Louis Cardinals, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Astros, batting .254 with 115 home runs in 1,115 games...

 was intentionally walked for the second time in the game and Edwards followed with his second hit, a bloop double to left, scoring Post. Jay would seal the victory for the Reds by retiring six of the remaining seven batters, allowing only a walk to Clete Boyer
Clete Boyer
Cletis Leroy "Clete" Boyer was a Major League Baseball player.A third baseman who also played shortstop and second base occasionally, Boyer played for the Kansas City Athletics , New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves...

 in the ninth.

Game 3


Saturday, October 7, 1961 at Crosley Field
Crosley Field
Crosley Field was a Major League Baseball park located in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was the home field of the National League's Cincinnati Reds from 1912 through June 24, 1970, and the original Cincinnati Bengals football team, members of the second and third American Football League...

 in Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio. Cincinnati is the county seat of Hamilton County. Settled in 1788, the city is located to north of the Ohio River at the Ohio-Kentucky border, near Indiana. The population within city limits is 296,943 according to the 2010 census, making it Ohio's...


The Series moved to Crosley Field
Crosley Field
Crosley Field was a Major League Baseball park located in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was the home field of the National League's Cincinnati Reds from 1912 through June 24, 1970, and the original Cincinnati Bengals football team, members of the second and third American Football League...

 in Cincinnati which hosted its first World Series in 21 years.

Game 3 pitted Bill Stafford
Bill Stafford
William Charles Stafford was a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1960-1967. Stafford was a successful pitcher for the New York Yankees from 1961–1962, winning a combined 28 games in two seasons...

 against knuckleballer Bob Purkey
Bob Purkey
Robert Thomas Purkey was an American right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball known for his use of the knuckleball. From through , Purkey played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , Cincinnati Redlegs/Reds and St. Louis Cardinals...

. Stafford, the winning pitcher when Roger Maris
Roger Maris
Roger Eugene Maris was an American Major League Baseball right fielder. During the 1961 season, he hit a record 61 home runs for the New York Yankees, breaking Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60 home runs...

 hit 61st home run, pitched well for innings. Purkey had outstanding control throughout the game but would lose a heartbreaker on a Maris solo home run in the ninth.

Cincinnati struck first with a run in the bottom of the third when Elio Chacon
Elio Chacón
Elio Chacón Rodríguez was a Major League Baseball second baseman and shortstop who played in the National League from 1960 to 1962. He was the seventh baseball player from Venezuela to play in the majors....

 beat out a bunt and took second when Stafford threw wildly to first. Eddie Kasko
Eddie Kasko
Edward Michael Kasko is a former infielder, manager, scout and front office executive in American Major League Baseball....

 fouled out to Bill Skowron and Vada Pinson
Vada Pinson
Vada Edward Pinson, Jr. was an American center fielder and coach in Major League Baseball. Pinson played in the major leagues for 18 years, from 1958 through 1975, and his greatest seasons were with the Cincinnati Redlegs/Reds, for whom he played from 1958–68.Pinson combined power, speed and...

 grounded out to send Chacon to third before Robinson hit a double off the left-field wall to make it 1–0.

In the seventh, the Yankees got a big break to tie the game. Tony Kubek
Tony Kubek
Anthony Christopher "Tony" Kubek is a retired American professional baseball player and television broadcaster....

 led off with a single to center, then took second on a Johnny Edwards passed ball. After Mickey Mantle
Mickey Mantle
Mickey Charles Mantle was an American professional baseball player. Mantle is regarded by many to be the greatest switch hitter of all time, and one of the greatest players in baseball history. Mantle was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.Mantle was noted for his hitting...

 struck out, Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career for the New York Yankees...

 blooped a ball into short right field that neither second baseman Chacon nor right fielder Robinson called before the two collided, allowing the ball to drop as Kubek scored. The Reds regained the lead in their half of the inning when Edwards doubled into the right-field corner and eventually scored on a Kasko single to left. Bud Daley
Bud Daley
Leavitt Leo "Bud" Daley , is a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1955-1964....

 came in to relieve Stafford and retired Pinson on a flyout to right to end the inning.

The Reds' lead would be short-lived, as the Yankees tied the score in the eighth. With two outs, Johnny Blanchard
Johnny Blanchard
John Edwin Blanchard was a professional baseball player who played in the Major Leagues primarily as an outfielder and catcher from 1955 and 1959-1965. A defensive liability for the New York Yankees for most of his career, Blanchard is probably best-known for his play in the 1961 World Series...

 (pinch-hiiting for Daley), smacked a Purkey knuckler into the right-field bleachers. The Reds went quietly in the bottom of the inning, the score tied at 2–2.

In the ninth, Maris recorded what would be one of only two hits in the Series, but this one went into the right field bleachers for a go-ahead home run. With ace reliever Luis Arroyo
Luis Arroyo
Luis Enrique "Tite" Arroyo, , is a former major league baseball pitcher.-Baseball career:Luis Arroyo, from Peñuelas, Puerto Rico, made his Major League Baseball debut on April 20, 1955. A stocky left-hander, he spent one season primarily as a starter with the St. Louis Cardinals...

 on the mound for the Yankees in the ninth, the Reds had one last shot. After Gene Freese
Gene Freese
Eugene Lewis Freese is a former third baseman in American Major League Baseball for 12 seasons . A journeyman, he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates , St. Louis Cardinals, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Astros, batting .254 with 115 home runs in 1,115 games...

 struck out, Leo Cardenas
Leo Cárdenas
Leonardo Lazaro Cárdenas Alfonso was a prominent shortstop in American Major League Baseball for 16 years...

, batting for Johnny Edwards, doubled off the left-center field scoreboard. Dick Gernert
Dick Gernert
Richard Edward Gernert was a first baseman and outfielder in Major League Baseball who played for the Boston Red Sox , Chicago Cubs , Detroit Tigers , Cincinnati Reds and Houston Colt .45's . He threw and batted right-handed...

, pinch-hitting for Purkey, grounded out to short, Cardenas holding. The third pinch-hitter in the inning, Gus Bell
Gus Bell
David Russell "Gus" Bell, Jr. was an American center and right fielder in Major League Baseball who played with the Pittsburgh Pirates , Cincinnati Reds/Redlegs , New York Mets and Milwaukee Braves...

, ended the Reds' comeback attempt by grounding back to the mound, Arroyo to Skowron, to end the thriller and give the Yankees a two games to one Series lead.

Game 4


Sunday, October 8, 1961 at Crosley Field
Crosley Field
Crosley Field was a Major League Baseball park located in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was the home field of the National League's Cincinnati Reds from 1912 through June 24, 1970, and the original Cincinnati Bengals football team, members of the second and third American Football League...

 in Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio. Cincinnati is the county seat of Hamilton County. Settled in 1788, the city is located to north of the Ohio River at the Ohio-Kentucky border, near Indiana. The population within city limits is 296,943 according to the 2010 census, making it Ohio's...


Whitey Ford
Whitey Ford
Edward Charles "Whitey" Ford is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who spent his entire 18-year career with the New York Yankees. He was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.-Early life and career:...

 started Game 4 for the Yankees in an attempt to continue his post-season shutout streak, but more importantly to give the Bombers a 3–1 lead in the Series. He accomplished both. Ford retired the first nine batters of the game; when Elio Chacon
Elio Chacón
Elio Chacón Rodríguez was a Major League Baseball second baseman and shortstop who played in the National League from 1960 to 1962. He was the seventh baseball player from Venezuela to play in the majors....

 grounded out to Bobby Richardson
Bobby Richardson
Robert Clinton "Bobby" Richardson is a former second baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the New York Yankees from through . Batting and throwing right-handed, he was a superb defensive infielder, as well as something of a clutch hitter, who played no small role in the Yankee baseball...

 at second base for the final out in the third, Ford broke Babe Ruth
Babe Ruth
George Herman Ruth, Jr. , best known as "Babe" Ruth and nicknamed "the Bambino" and "the Sultan of Swat", was an American Major League baseball player from 1914–1935...

's record of consecutive scoreless innings. Ford remained in the game until the end of the fifth, when an apparent ankle injury forced him to leave, his new record at 32 consecutive shutout innings. Jim Coates
Jim Coates
James Alton Coates is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. A right-hander, Coates pitched for the New York Yankees , Washington Senators , Cincinnati Reds and California Angels ....

 entered the game in the sixth and pitched four shutout innings.

In the meantime, the Yankees had no problems scoring. In the fourth, Roger Maris
Roger Maris
Roger Eugene Maris was an American Major League Baseball right fielder. During the 1961 season, he hit a record 61 home runs for the New York Yankees, breaking Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60 home runs...

 led off with a walk, followed by Mickey Mantle
Mickey Mantle
Mickey Charles Mantle was an American professional baseball player. Mantle is regarded by many to be the greatest switch hitter of all time, and one of the greatest players in baseball history. Mantle was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.Mantle was noted for his hitting...

's single to left-center. With blood soaking his uniform due to an abscess of his right hip, Mantle left the game and was replaced by pinch-runner Héctor López
Héctor López
Héctor Headley López Swainson is a former left fielder and third baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the Kansas City Athletics and New York Yankees from to...

. Elston Howard
Elston Howard
Elston Gene Howard was an American Negro League and Major League Baseball catcher, left fielder and coach. During a 14-year baseball career, he played from 1955–1968, primarily for the New York Yankees...

 grounded into a double play, Maris scored the game's first run. The Yanks added a run in the fifth on a walk to Ford, a Bobby Richardson
Bobby Richardson
Robert Clinton "Bobby" Richardson is a former second baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the New York Yankees from through . Batting and throwing right-handed, he was a superb defensive infielder, as well as something of a clutch hitter, who played no small role in the Yankee baseball...

 single to right-center, and a run-scoring single by Tony Kubek
Tony Kubek
Anthony Christopher "Tony" Kubek is a retired American professional baseball player and television broadcaster....

.

In the sixth, right-hander Jim Brosnan
Jim Brosnan
James Patrick Brosnan was a Major League Baseball player from 1954 and 1956 through 1963. He was a pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds and Chicago White Sox...

 took over for the left-handed O'Toole and proceeded to load the bases. With one out, Howard doubled to right-center. After Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career for the New York Yankees...

 was intentionally walked, Skowron loaded the bases by beating out a slow roller to third. Clete Boyer
Clete Boyer
Cletis Leroy "Clete" Boyer was a Major League Baseball player.A third baseman who also played shortstop and second base occasionally, Boyer played for the Kansas City Athletics , New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves...

 then doubled to left to plate two runs. Ford ended the inning by grounding into a strange double-play. After Gordy Coleman
Gordy Coleman
Gordon Calvin Coleman was a Major League first baseman with the Cleveland Indians and the Cincinnati Reds ....

 touched first to put out Ford, he raced across the diamond and tagged Skowron, who was trapped between third and home, for an unassisted double play.

The Yankees would add three more runs in the seventh, capped by Skowron's third hit of the game.

Game 5


Monday, October 9, 1961 at Crosley Field
Crosley Field
Crosley Field was a Major League Baseball park located in Cincinnati, Ohio. It was the home field of the National League's Cincinnati Reds from 1912 through June 24, 1970, and the original Cincinnati Bengals football team, members of the second and third American Football League...

 in Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati, Ohio
Cincinnati is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio. Cincinnati is the county seat of Hamilton County. Settled in 1788, the city is located to north of the Ohio River at the Ohio-Kentucky border, near Indiana. The population within city limits is 296,943 according to the 2010 census, making it Ohio's...


Future Hall-of-Famers Yogi Berra
Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career for the New York Yankees...

 and Mickey Mantle
Mickey Mantle
Mickey Charles Mantle was an American professional baseball player. Mantle is regarded by many to be the greatest switch hitter of all time, and one of the greatest players in baseball history. Mantle was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974.Mantle was noted for his hitting...

 sat out Game 5, Berra with a stiff shoulder, Mantle still suffering from a hip abscess. But substitutes Héctor López
Héctor López
Héctor Headley López Swainson is a former left fielder and third baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the Kansas City Athletics and New York Yankees from to...

 and Johnny Blanchard
Johnny Blanchard
John Edwin Blanchard was a professional baseball player who played in the Major Leagues primarily as an outfielder and catcher from 1955 and 1959-1965. A defensive liability for the New York Yankees for most of his career, Blanchard is probably best-known for his play in the 1961 World Series...

 more than made up for the absence of the two stars. Lopez drove in five runs with a triple and a home run, and Blanchard's three hits included a double and a homer.

The Yankees wasted no time in manufacturing five first inning runs. Reds starter Joey Jay
Joey Jay
Joseph Richard Jay is a former starting pitcher in Major League Baseball. From 1953 through 1966, Jay played for the Milwaukee Braves , Cincinnati Reds and Atlanta Braves...

, with 14 regular-season complete games, would uncharacteristically last only a third of an inning. After Bobby Richardson
Bobby Richardson
Robert Clinton "Bobby" Richardson is a former second baseman in Major League Baseball who played for the New York Yankees from through . Batting and throwing right-handed, he was a superb defensive infielder, as well as something of a clutch hitter, who played no small role in the Yankee baseball...

 singled to start the game, Jay retired Tony Kubek
Tony Kubek
Anthony Christopher "Tony" Kubek is a retired American professional baseball player and television broadcaster....

 and Roger Maris
Roger Maris
Roger Eugene Maris was an American Major League Baseball right fielder. During the 1961 season, he hit a record 61 home runs for the New York Yankees, breaking Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60 home runs...

 on fly balls. But the flood gates opened when the next batter, Blanchard, hit a two-run homer into the right-field bleachers. Elston Howard
Elston Howard
Elston Gene Howard was an American Negro League and Major League Baseball catcher, left fielder and coach. During a 14-year baseball career, he played from 1955–1968, primarily for the New York Yankees...

, was awarded a ground-rule double when his blast went through an opening in the left-center field scoreboard. Bill Skowron followed with a long single off the left-field fence, scoring Howard. Jim Maloney
Jim Maloney
James William Maloney is a former right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball who played with the Cincinnati Reds and California Angels...

 entered the game and was greeted with a Lopez triple that scored Skowron. Clete Boyer
Clete Boyer
Cletis Leroy "Clete" Boyer was a Major League Baseball player.A third baseman who also played shortstop and second base occasionally, Boyer played for the Kansas City Athletics , New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves...

 continued the assault doubling off the scoreboard, scoring Lopez. The ninth batter of the inning, Yankee pitcher Ralph Terry
Ralph Terry
Ralph Willard Terry is a former right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for the New York Yankees , Kansas City Athletics , Cleveland Indians and New York Mets...

 mercifully struck out to end the inning but not until five Yankees had touched home plate.

New York added to its lead in the second on a Kubek single and a Maris double just inside the left-field line. The Reds cut the lead in half in the bottom of the third and chased Terry in the process. Don Blasingame
Don Blasingame
Don Lee Blasingame was a second baseman in Major League Baseball who played with the St. Louis Cardinals , San Francisco Giants , Cincinnati Reds , Washington Senators and Kansas City Athletics . Blasingame batted left-handed and threw right-handed...

 led off with a single to center, Eddie Kasko
Eddie Kasko
Edward Michael Kasko is a former infielder, manager, scout and front office executive in American Major League Baseball....

 singled to left and Vada Pinson
Vada Pinson
Vada Edward Pinson, Jr. was an American center fielder and coach in Major League Baseball. Pinson played in the major leagues for 18 years, from 1958 through 1975, and his greatest seasons were with the Cincinnati Redlegs/Reds, for whom he played from 1958–68.Pinson combined power, speed and...

 hit a fly moving Blasingame to third. Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson
Frank Robinson , is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. He played from 1956–1976, most notably for the Cincinnati Reds and the Baltimore Orioles. He is the only player to win league MVP honors in both the National and American Leagues...

 then took Terry deep with a three-run shot over the right-center field fence. Bud Daley
Bud Daley
Leavitt Leo "Bud" Daley , is a former professional baseball player who pitched in the Major Leagues from 1955-1964....

 replaced Terry and shut the door on the Reds.

The Yankee offense added to its lead with five runs in the fourth, the big blows were a two-run single by Skowron and a three-run home run to dead center by Lopez. The Reds got a little closer after scoring two runs in the bottom of the fifth (on a two-run Wally Post
Wally Post
Walter Charles Post was a right fielder in Major League Baseball. From 1949 through 1964, Post played for the Cincinnati Reds & Redlegs , Philadelphia Phillies , Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians...

 home run) to cut it to 11–5. Then Yankees finished the rout by added two more runs in the sixth on sacrifices by Lopez (on a squeeze play) and Daley (on a fly ball).

Houk became only the third skipper in history to win the World Series in his first season.

Composite box


1961 World Series (4–1): New York Yankees
New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are a professional baseball team based in the The Bronx, New York. They compete in Major League Baseball in the American League's East Division...

 (A.L.)
over Cincinnati Reds
Cincinnati Reds
The Cincinnati Reds are a Major League Baseball team based in Cincinnati, Ohio. They are members of the National League Central Division. The club was established in 1882 as a charter member of the American Association and joined the National League in 1890....

 (N.L.)

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