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AN ANALYSIS OF THE TEAMS
Walter Bingham
October 02, 1961
In a single series, Cincinnati pitching—three good starters and two good relievers—may cancel the Yankee edge in fielding and hitting. It makes the choice tougher than the odds-setters believe
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October 02, 1961

An Analysis Of The Teams

In a single series, Cincinnati pitching—three good starters and two good relievers—may cancel the Yankee edge in fielding and hitting. It makes the choice tougher than the odds-setters believe

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With two days off for travel, both managers will need only three starters. The Reds have good ones in Joey Jay, Jim O'Toole and Bob Purkey. Jay is the Reds' big winner, but it is O'Toole, a cocky young left-hander with good breaking pitches and the ability to keep the ball low, who will probably give the Yankees the most trouble. Cincinnati's pitching coach is Jim Turner, who spent 11 years with the Yankees. His knowledge of the Yankee hitters, combined with that of ex-Yankee Catcher Johnson, should help the Reds greatly.

The Yankees have the best pitcher in baseball in Whitey Ford, the cool little left-hander. In Yankee Stadium he will be rough, but Crosley Field will be something else again. Ralph Terry, who gave up that final home run last year to Bill Mazeroski, and Bill Stafford, a swaggering young right-hander, will be the other Yankee starters.

Other pitchers may see action, of course—Bud Daley, Jim Coates and Roland Sheldon of the Yankees and Ken Johnson, Jim Maloney and Ken Hunt of the Reds. But if relief is needed in the late innings, it will be Luis Arroyo for New York and either Jim Brosnan or Bill Henry for Cincinnati. Arroyo, the chunky left-hander with the puzzling screwball, has been a marvel this year. Brosnan, author and right-hander, and Henry, a left-hander, have both been effective, if not as publicized as Arroyo.

EDGE TO REDS

THE SUM-UP

Statistically, the Yankees appear to be a shoo-in, but there are other factors to be considered. Those impressive records of the Yankees were made against an expanded—and therefore weakened—American League. Even the smallness of Crosley Field may hamper the Yankee sluggers. Wrigley Field in Los Angeles is smaller than Crosley, and in nine games there this season the Yankees, overeager, hit only 12 home runs, below their per-game average. Yankee pitching collapsed in the small park, and the lowly Angels won six of the nine games. One other danger confronts the Yankees. It is possible that Roger Maris may find everything anticlimactic after his exciting bid to break Babe Ruth's home run record and therefore have a bad Series.

Cincinnati needs a healthy Frank Robinson, the Robinson of July rather than September. Perhaps the team's greatest handicap, however, is the lack of Series experience. Yankee Stadium, with its imposing three decks filled with 70,000 people, is enough to rattle any player. The Yankees—most of them—have been through it before.

Perhaps with this in mind, the Las Vegas odds-setters have made the Yankees 11-to-5 favorites in the Series. Before the season opened, they had the Reds at 35 to 1 to win the pennant. They underestimated the Reds then, and they have made that mistake again.

AT THE ODDS, THE REDS ARE THE BETTER BET

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