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RITES OF SPRING: BASEBALL STYLE
As the symphony of baseball swung into its second month, the pitching theme reached an artful peak. Sad Sam Jones, a 29-year-old right-hander picked up by the Chicago Cubs in the trade which sent Ralph Kiner to Cleveland, fired a no-hitter against Pittsburgh's version of the whiz kids. Munching a single toothpick throughout the game (he usually consumes seven or eight), Jones gave up seven walks, struck out six to win 4-0 and record the 93rd no-hitter since 1900. Jones came close to being pulled out of the game in the ninth inning when he walked the first three Pirates to face him. After a conference with Manager Stan Hack, however, he fanned the side.
Some sharp contrapuntal crescendos of booming bats were offered to offset the beguiling pitching themes (there have been three one-hitters in addition to Jones's magnum opus). The New York Yankees' aging boy wonder Mickey Mantle became the 86th player in the major leagues to hit three home runs in one game, and Ted Williams, with his divorce settlement arranged, could afford to return to play for the Boston Red Sox (below right).
Some sideline notes of the symphony were a variety of citations to Manager Walter Alston of the far-front-running Brooklyn Dodgers and Dodger Jackie Robinson (below left). Backing up the entire orchestration were the smashing climaxes between catcher and base runner at the pay-off position of home plate as recorded in the fine press photographs on pages 28 and 29.
WITH BASES LOADED IN THE NINTH INNING SAM JONES OF CHICAGO CIBS THROWS HARD TO PROTECT SUCCESSFULLY NO-HITTER OF WHICH HE WAS UNAWARE UNTIL TEAMMATES MOBBED HIM AFTER FINAL OUT. SOMEWHAT WILD IN BEGINNING, JONES'S CURVE WAS MAGNIFICENT AT GAME'S END
Citations go to Dodger Manager Walter Alston, honored by National Pickle Packers Association "for getting out of the biggest pickle of the year," and Jackie Robinson, who was sued for $40,000 by a Milwaukee couple struck by Robinson's flying bat last year.
Slugger Mickey Mantle poses with bats, indicating two home runs hit left-handed, one right-handed against Detroit. Ted Williams practices bunting after joining the Boston Red Sox for an estimated $80,000. Williams expects to be ready after a week.
...BASEBALL'S MOMENT OF TRUTH FOR CATCHERS