Jim Hearn came in for Antonelli, and it was tied at six-all. A couple of guys got on base. I'd never hit three home runs in a game and didn't consider myself a home-run hitter, really. I was more of a line-drive type, but Hearn threw me a slider that got out over the plate, and so I took a good cut and—
I sprang up from the table and ran from the kitchen through the living room to the open bedroom door.
"It might be out of here!" Daddy raised up on one elbow. "It could be...it is!"
Daddy laughed and said, "Holy cow!" as David and I jumped around the radio. Mama said, "Oh, for cryin' out loud," and got out of bed. "You don't mean he hit another one."
For the second game of the doubleheader, Daddy moved the radio into the living room.
"You think he could hit another one, Daddy?" asked David.
"Sure he will," I volunteered.
"Not likely," said Daddy, whose opinion on hitting we highly respected because he had been a legendary batsman in Sebastian County. Rumor had it that around 1926 our dad hit four long ones over the pecan trees in Lucas, Ark. off a 15-year-old fireballer, pitching in overalls and bare feet, named Dean. And down behind the courthouse, in 1945, Daddy had blasted a line drive off Warren Spahn, who was pitching for the Army team at Fort Chaffee. Yes sir, our daddy sure could hit a baseball.
The afternoon wore on. Musial walked in the first inning of the second game and flied out deep to Mays his second time at bat. Not realizing the historical import of the day's events and being a restless kid, at about 5:30 I got on my bicycle and coasted to town. I happened to notice that Mr. Stafford was working overtime in the Greenwood Cleaners. As I walked toward the shop, he pulled down the press, causing steam to spew loudly out of the side of the building. "Stan has hit three homers," I announced proudly as I entered. Mr. Stafford smiled and pointed to the radio, saying, "Yeah, I know, and he's up again next." He placed a pair of gray slacks on the bottom pad and brought the handle down while listening to the broadcast over the hissing.