1968 May

1st  Sudden Sam McDowell of Cleveland strikes out 16 batters and defeats Oakland, 3–1.

2nd  During a 3-0 loss to the Mets, Phillies reliever John Boozer is ejected in the 7th by umpire Ed Vargo at Shea Stadium for throwing spitballs during his warm-up pitches. After the first time he goes to his mouth, the umpire Ed Vargo calls a ball, even though the batter was not in the box. Vargo cites a rule put into place this spring that prohibits a pitcher from putting his hand near his mouth within the 18-foot mound circle. Manager Gene Mauch comes out to argue and orders Boozer to go to his mouth on the next two pitches as well, earning both Boozer and Mauch ejections. Mauch protests the game. Boozer is only the 2nd ML pitcher to be ejected from a game for throwing spitballs. Dick Hall, who replaces Boozer with a 3-0 count on Bud Harrelson, gets him to ground out. Nolan Ryan notches his second career win. Tomorrow, National League President Warren Giles will rule that a pitcher shouldn’t be charged with a ball while warming up.  If a pitcher touches his mouth while warming up, he would be required to dry his fingers before delivering a pitch to the batter.

4th  At Candlestick, the first-place Cardinals overcome a solo HR by Willie Mays and a grand slam by Willie McCovey to down the Giants, 11-6. Dick Schofield has 4 hits and 3 RBIs and Julian Javier has 3 hits and 3 runs scored.

5th  In Los Angeles, Johnny Bench hits an RBI double in the 16th inning as the Reds edge the Dodgers, 3–2.

      At Comiskey, Gary Peters wins his first of the season, batting and pitching the White Sox to a 5-1 victory over the Yankees in game 1 of two. Peters strikes out 9, walks none and clubs a grand slam. The Yankees earn a split with a 4-1 win in game 2.

6th  In a 10–2 loss to Houston, Giants reliever Lindy McDaniel sets a NL record with his 225th consecutive errorless game. The veteran hurler has handled 108 chances consecutively since June 16, 1964.

      Baltimore’s Dave Leonhard shuts out the Tigers, 4–0, as Detroit manages just 23 at bats, tying an AL record, in the 9-inning game. Jim Northrup’s 2-out single in the 7th is the only safety, the second time in two weeks he’s had Detroit’s only hit. Leonard walks 7 and hits 2 batters but the O’s pull of 3 double plays, 3 Tigers are caught stealing and one is caught in a rundown.

7th  Tom McCraw cracks a 3rd inning grand slam and the White Sox beat the Angels, 6-4. Joe Horlen win his first of the year.

8th  Oakland’s Catfish Hunter pitches a perfect game against the Twins, winning 4-0. The 22-year old righthander hurls the first American League regular season perfecto in 46 years. He strikes out 11, including Harmon Killebrew three times, and drives in three of the A’s four runs, the other coming on a two-out, bases-loaded walk to 1B Danny Cater in the eighth inning.

9th  At DC Stadium, the Senators play small ball in beating the Red Sox, 3-1. Winning pitcher Phil Ortega has the Nats only extra base hit, a double, to knock in a run. Washington opens the scoring in the 2nd when Ed Stroud bunts for single, steals 2B, is balked to 3B by Jerry Stephenson, and he scores on wild pitch.

10th  Denny McLain wins 12–1 at Washington, as the Tigers pass the first-place Orioles. Detroit will remain in the lead for the rest of the season.

12thThe Indians Luis Tiant shuts out Baltimore, 2–0, for his 4th straight shutout, a club record. Luis stopped Washington, 2–0, April 28; 2–0 vs. Minnesota, May 4; 8–0 vs. New York on May 7.

13th  University of Denver defeats the Air Force Academy 33–29, establishing a NCAA record for most runs by a losing team and the most total bases in a game (104).

14th  Dodger P Don Drysdale shuts out the Cubs, 1–0. It is the 5th game in a row that the Dodgers have scored but one run, tying a ML record held by 4 other teams.  LA will score 3 tomorrow in a loss to the Cubs.

15th  The first AL game played in Milwaukee is a 4–2 California win against Chicago before 23,403 fans. Rain shortens the game to five innings. This is the first of the 9 games the White Sox will play in Milwaukee in 1968.

16th  With his third 2-HR game in 4 games, Senators LF Frank Howard ties the AL record for most HRs (7) in 4 straight games (at least one in each). Washington wins, 4–1 at Cleveland.

      In Los Angeles, the Cubs Rich Nye tops Don Sutton, 1–0, starting the Dodgers on another one-run per game run, as they will score one run in 4 of their next 5 games.

      In a rainy see-saw battle at Fenway, the Red Sox score 6 runs in the 8th inning and come from behind to edge the Yankees, 11-10.  Ken Harrelson has a 3-run homer for the Sox while Frank Fernandez does him one better with a grand slam for New York in a 6-run 3rd.

17th  Joe Sparma takes a one-hitter into the 9th against the Senators, but Frank Howard homers to give the Nats a 3–2 lead.  In the bottom of the inning, Jim Northrup wins the game, 7–3, with a grand slam, one of five he will hit this season.Howard homers for the 5th straight game; it is his 8th and the most anyone has hit in a 5-game span.

      The Phils Woodie Fryman strikes out 9 and allows 5 hits in 10 innings in beating Bob Gibson (3-3) and the Cardinals, 1-0. Fryman scores with 2 outs in the 10th after opening the frame with a single.

18th  Frank Howard ties the AL record with a HR in his 6th consecutive game to lead Washington to an 8–4 win over Detroit. His 10 HRs in the 6 games are the most of all the record holders. Howard’s 10 HRs (in 20 at bats) are also the most ever in one week (Sunday through Saturday). Earl Wilson will stop him tomorrow. For Detroit, Al Kaline belts a pinch-HR off Steve Jones It is Kaline’s 307th HR, surpassing Hank Greenberg’s 306 in a Tiger uniform.

      Don Drysdale posts his 2nd consecutive shutout, 1–0, over Houston.

      Pirate Bill Mazeroski plays his 392nd straight game, a record for NL 2B, in an 8–3 loss to the Reds.

20th  in Anaheim, Angels SS Jim Fregosi joins a small group of players by hitting for the cycle a 2nd time. California beats Boston 5–4 in 11 innings.

21st  The Cubs climb above the .500 mark the first time all season with a 6–5 win over the Phillies. Chicago’s Billy Williams sets a record for outfielders by playing his 695th straight game.

22nd  The Cards fall 2–0, as the Dodgers Don Drysdale’s streak reaches 3 consecutive scoreless games. Bob Gibson is the loser.

      With the wind blowing out at Wrigley, the Pirates come from 4 runs down to defeat the Cubs, 13-6. Willie Stargell has 3 homers and just misses a 4th when his drive bounces off the bleacher railing for a double. Willie adds a single for 15 total bases as he drives in 7 runs.

25th  Detroit OF Al Kaline is hit by the A’s Lew Krausse’s pitch and suffers a broken arm. He will be out until June 30th. The Tigers win, 2–1, behind Denny McLain, who scores the game’s first run in the 8th. The A’s run in the 9th is unearned.

26th  Los Angeles downs Houston 5–0 behind Don Drysdale’s 4th straight shutout, tying the NL record. It’s Drysdale’s 5th win of the year—all shutouts. Drysdale drives in the 1st run of the game with a single.

      The Yankees sweep a pair from the White Sox, winning 5-1 behind Mel Stottlemyre and take game 2, 7-6, with Bill Monbouquette the winner.  In the opener, P Gary Peters bats 6th, but goes 0-for-2, as the Sox manage just 4 hits. Tresh and Cox hit HRs for the Yanks.

      After a Jack Aker pitch hits Detroit’s Jim Northrup on the batting helmet, a 15-minute fight erupts in Oakland. Aker is injured in the brawl and leaves the game, but Oakland wins in 10 innings, 7–6.

27th  Montreal and San Diego are awarded NL franchises after a 10-hour meeting of league owners.

28th  The AL owners agree to the following divisional alignment for 1969: Eastern: Boston, New York, Cleveland, Baltimore, Washington, Detroit; Western: Chicago, Kansas City, Minnesota, Seattle, Oakland, California.

      Suffering his 4th straight defeat, Cardinal Bob Gibson (3-5) drops a 3–1 decision to Gaylord Perry and the Giants.

      Jim Maloney fires a one-hitter at the Dodgers, as the Reds win 7–0. A single in the 5th inning by Zoilo Versalles is the only LA hit.  It is a record-tying 4th times that Versalles has had the only hit in a game.

29thThe Reds spot the Dodgers a 5–0 lead after three innings, then come back to win, 6–5.

30thNew York and Washington split, with the Yankees winning the opener, 13–4, and the Senators the nightcap, 6–2. In the first game, Mantle goes 5-for-5 with two home runs, and 5 RBIs for New York. He sits out the 2nd game. Mantle’s last 5-for-5 game was on May 24, 1956.

31st  Don Drysdale’s shutout streak apparently ends when Dick Dietz is hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and no outs in the 9th inning, but umpire Harry Wendelstedt rules Dietz did not try to avoid the pitch. Coach Herman Franks argues the call so long that he is tossed by Wendelstedt. Dietz then pops out, and the next two batters make out. Los Angeles wins, 3–0, and Drysdale’s 5th straight shutout ties the ML record set in 1904 by Doc White.

      St. Louis P Larry Jaster retires the first 23 Mets before Greg Goosen singles. The lefty settles for a 2-hitter, beating Tom Seaver, 2–0.