Jackie Robinson: First Black Player in Hall of Fame
Jackie Robinson was the first black player to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Robinson trailed only Bob Feller in the 1962 voting. Between 1956 and 1966, the balloting for selection was conducted every other year rather than each winter.
Jim Bunning Wins 19 Games
Jim Bunning spearheaded the fourth-place Tigers and placed among the American League's top five leaders with 19 victories in 1962. In December of the following year, he was traded to the Phils in one of the first big interleague deals. Interleague trading, which for years had been prohibited except via the waiver route, was kicked off by a 1959 swap between the Giants and Orioles.
Yankees Lead American League in Runs
The Yankees again led the American League in runs (817). This marked the 37th straight year in which they ranked in the top half of the American League in runs.
Ralph Terry in Another Close World Series
Ralph Terry is the only pitcher to throw the last pitch in two World Series, both of which ended dramatically. In each instance, Terry's delivery was hit hard. On the second occasion, however, he was lucky. Had Willie McCovey's line drive escaped Bobby Richardson in the 1962 Series finale, Terry would have lost the game 2-1.
Roberto Clemente Hits .312
Perhaps the closest parallel Roberto Clemente had in terms of hitting was Harry Heilmann, who also started extremely slowly. Clemente had a .282 career average after his first five seasons. In 1962, he hit .312 with ten home runs and 74 RBI. When he died in 1972, his average was up to .317.
Dick Radatz Hot in Relief
Dick Radatz made 62 relief appearances as a rookie with the 1962 Red Sox and notched 24 saves on a 2.24 ERA. For three years, he was nearly untouchable, registering well over a strikeout an inning. Then in 1965, his fastball lost a little of its kick and he began to get blasted.
Jim Kaat, Camilo Pascual Pump Up Twins
Twins teammates Jim Kaat and Camilo Pascual won 38 games between them that year, the most of any American League mound duo except Ralph Terry and Whitey Ford of the Yankees. Kaat and Pascual also tied with Cleveland's Dick Donovan for the lead in shutouts with five apiece.
Chuck Hiller Cracks 1962 World Series Slam
Chuck Hiller's grandslam breaks a two-all tie in the seventh inning of game four of the 1962 World Series. Nicknamed "Iron Hands" for his shaky fielding, Hiller lost his second base job the following year when his average dipped to .223. He never again played regularly.
Tommy Davis: National League's Toughest Out
In addition to leading the circuit with 153 RBI and 230 hits. Tommy Davis was the 1962 National League batting champ with a .346 average. He won a repeat hitting crown in 1963, had an off year in 1964, then broke an ankle the following spring. Soon after returning to full-time action, Davis was traded to the Mets, beginning a ten-year stretch in which he played for nine different teams.
The next page highlights key events and details from the 1962 baseball season.
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