"What could you do?" remembers Tommy Davis, the 1962 batting champion and now a minor league hitting instructor for the Dodgers. "It was their park. They were going to get away with anything."
The Dodgers, robbed of their potent running game, stole no bases and went down to ignominious defeat 11-2. The howls of protest from the L.A. side were heard all the way back to the National League headquarters in Cincinnati. There was even talk of digging up soil samples before the next game. So out went the Schwabs, p�re et fils, before the next sunrise to remove the evidence. The next day the Dodgers looked hard for more dirty work, so to speak, but found none. What they did find was well-watered base paths, courtesy again of Jerry. So generous was the moisture content of the base paths in Game 2 that the umpires stopped the game in midcourse and invited the Schwab gang to sand things down a bit, creating a nice marshy effect.
All this, needless to say, had a less than salutary effect on the Dodgers. Concerned about what to do if they got on base, the Dodgers seemed to forget how to get on base. Wills, usually cool and collected, got himself tossed out of Game 2 by umpire Al Forman for arguing over how many times he had stepped out of the batter's box. The Dodgers lost that game 5-4 and the finale 5-1, and they left San Francisco with their lead cut to just 2� games.
Back in L.A., the local press was having a field day decrying the conditions up north. "They found two abalone under second base," wrote Los Angeles Times columnist Jim Murray. Murray also suggested that an aircraft carrier could have safely navigated some of the deep infield waters. Throughout Southern California, Dark became known as the Swamp Fox.
The Dodgers filed a complaint with the league office, just in case they should have to visit San Francisco for a playoff series after the regular season. National League president Warren Giles sent a letter to Giants president Horace Stone-ham, mentioning Matty Schwab respectfully, but by name. Stoneham passed the letter on to Matty, but conspicuously omitted any particular instructions for the future.
On the last day of the season San Francisco's Willie Mays crashed a home run to defeat Houston 2-1. Half an hour later, as the Giants sat huddled around a radio in their clubhouse, St. Louis beat the jittery Dodgers 1-0, leaving San Francisco and L.A. with identical 101-61 records for the regular season. A three-game playoff series was quickly scheduled, with the first game slated for Candlestick. The Schwabs had their cue to assemble the armada of wheelbarrows and get ready again with the Mystery Mixture.
"The only trouble was that [umpire] Jocko Conlan arrived in San Francisco before we could do anything." recalls Jerry. Indeed. Conlan took charge of the Candlestick turf before the Schwabs could lay a shovel on it. With the Dodgers due a few hours later, what were a loyal groundskeeper and his son to do?
The Schwabs decided that if the speed trap couldn't be hidden beneath the surface of the infield, they might just as well perform their antics openly. This time the Giants grounds crew started by spreading sand around generously. When the Dodgers reported for practice, the infield was, in the words of The New York Times, "like a sandy beach well above the high water mark." There was no way anyone was going to get a firm foothold in that stuff. "It's just as bad as the last time we were here, only in a different way," moaned Wills.
Conlan was none too pleased. He had prevented the Schwabs from digging, but the excessive sanding had gone on while his attention was elsewhere. "Why don't you play the game like men?" he snapped angrily to Dark. Close to game time, Conlan summoned Matty again and complained that the base paths were too dry and sandy. Schwab promised to take care of the problem right away. He summoned his waterman extraordinaire, Jerry. "Get out there," he ordered, "and make a lake."
The large San Francisco crowd came alive as soon as Jerry appeared on the field with his hose. He watered the base paths as he normally would, then he watered them some more. He turned away, dampened the pitcher's mound a bit, then returned to the base paths with a vengeance. The result: Lake Candlestick. The crowd loved it, howling their appreciation with every flourish of Jerry's hose.