Wednesday, ---The World Series came to Forbes Field after a 33-year absence. For the first time since Lloyd & Paul Waner and Pie Traynor were playing in 1927, the Pirates were competing for a world championship. The Yankees came to town having won their final 15 games of the regular season.
NY SS Tony Kubek opened the 1960 Classic with a single off Vernon Law, but was promptly erased on a DP when Hector Lopez followed with a ground ball to Bill Mazeroski. But Roger Maris slugged a HR before Mickey Mantle flied out to Bill Virdon in CF to give the Yankees a quick 1-0 lead.
In the bottom of the first, Virdon walked against Art Ditmar and stole second. He went to third when no one covered 2B and Berra’a throw sailed into CF. Dick Groat’s double tied the game and Bob Skinner’s single scored Groat to give the Pirates a 2-1 lead. Skinner stole second and scored the 3rd run on a Roberto Clemente single after Dick Stuart had flied to right. That was all for Ditmar as he was replaced by Jim Coates. Smoky Burgess and Don Hoak grounded out to end the inning with the Bucs ahead 3-1.
Yogi Berra and Moose Skowron opened the second inning with singles. At that point, Casey Stengel elected to go for broke and sent up ex-Pirate slugger Dale Long to pinch hit for Clete Boyer. Long flied out to Clemente. Bobby Richardson then lined out to Skinner in LF, and Skinner’s throw to Mazeroski doubled off Berra for the 3rd out. Gil McDougald took over at 3B for NY. Coates set down the Bucs in order in the second.
Law had an easy third inning with a strikeout and 2 balls back to the mound. Groat singled to start the bottom of the third. Skinner flied to Mantle in CF and Stuart singled to left. But Groat was thrown out by Lopez trying to go to third. Clemente then flied to Maris in RF. It was still 3-1 Bucs after three.
Maris led off the fourth with a single and Mantle walked. Berra flied to Virdon. Skowron singled home Maris to make it 3-2. McDougald popped to Hoak at 3B and Richardson flied to Virdon. Burgess opened the Pirate fourth with a fly out to Mantle in CF. Hoak walked and Mazeroski slugged a 2-run HR off Coates to make it 5-2 Bucs. Coates then nailed Law with a pitch. But Virdon popped to 1B and Groat flied to CF.
John Blanchard pinch hit for Coates to open the fifth and grounded out to Stuart at 1B. Kubek singled, but Lopez and Maris both popped up to Stuart at 1B. For the Pirates, Skinner reached on an error to Richardson at 2B and went to second when Stuart grounded out to Kubek at SS. Clemente reached on a fielder’s choice with Skinner caught off second. Skinner was caught in a rundown and came within a gnat’s eyelash of making it to third with a dive. He injured his left thumb on the play but continued in the game. Burgess struck out.
Law had a 1-2-3 sixth as he sandwiched strikeouts of Mantle and Skowron around Berra’s fly ball to Skinner in LF. Hoak opened the Pirate sixth with a fly out to Maris in RF. But Mazeroski singled and Law bunted him to second. Virdon’s single scored Mazeroski to put the Bucs ahead 6-2. Groat grounded out to Kubek at SS.
Law retired McDougald and Richardson on grounders to Groat, and Bob Cerv singled for Maas and advanced on a wild pitch. Kubek flied to Skinner in LF. Hard throwing-but wild-Ryne Duren entered the game for NY. Duren hit Skinner to lead off the seventh for the Bucs. Stuart whiffed, Clemente popped to second and Burgess grounded out to second.
Gino Cimoli replaced Skinner in LF. Lopez and Maris opened the eighth with singles. That brought Elroy Face out of the bullpen, as Law left to a standing ovation. Face struck out Mantle. He got Berra to fly out to Clemente. Then he struck out Skowron. Still 6-2 Bucs. Duren walked Hoak in the bottom of the eighth. Mazeroski popped to first and Hoak was thrown out at second when Face missed a bunt attempt. Face grounded back to the mound.
McDougald opened the ninth with a single off Face. Richardson forced him at second. But Elston Howard batted for Duren and smacked a 2-run HR to make it 6-4. Kubek then singled. Lopez came to bat representing the tie run. But he hit it to the wrong guy. Mazeroski fielded the grounder, tossed to Groat who threw to Stuart for the game-ending DP.
So much for the Yankees’ 15-game winning streak. The Pirate win was a shock to many who expected a 4-game sweep for NY. Law (1-0) got the win. Face got a save. Ditmar (0-1) took the loss. Kubek and Maris had 3 hits apiece for NY. Skowron had 2 hits. Maris and Howard had HRs. But the star of the game (if not Law or Face) was Mazeroski. Both he and Groat had 2 hits. Mazeroski supplied the winning margin with his 4th-inning HR. He also singled and scored in the sixth. And he was involved in 3 double plays, including the game-ender.