1961 Games 48 & 49: Minnesota Twins (19-28) @ New York Yankees (30-17)

Monday June 5, 1961

Yankees 6, Twins 2
Yankees 6, Twins 1

There is no worse team to play when you are in a slump than the New York Yankees. The Twins found that out the hard way in a Monday double header.

Minnesota actually took an early lead in game one, something that has become quite rare on the current losing streak. Zoilo Versalles led off the game with a single, but managed to reach third base when the ball got by Roger Maris in right field. He scored on a ground out off the bat of Bill Tuttle. Lenny Green followed with a solo home run to right, his third of the season, to give the Twins a 2-0 lead.

Don Lee was able to hold the Yankees scoreless through six innings of play. When Yankees came to bat after the seventh inning stretch, the score was still 2-0.

An error by Billy Gardner and an Elston Howard single gave the Yankees an opportunity with two on and one out. With one swing of his bat, Johnny Blanchard put the Yankees on top. His three-run home run would have been enough, but Mickey Mantle added a two-run shot in the eighth – his 15th of the season – and the Yankees went on to win the first game.

In an effort to change the team’s luck, manager Cookie Lavagetto manned the first-base coaching box in game two. Unfortunately for the Twins, the change was no good luck charm. The Twins got more of the same the second time around. They took an early lead, only to have the Yankees pour on the scoring in the later innings. Tony Kubek’s two-run home run capped off the day for the Yankees, who had outscored the Twins 12-3 when it was all over.

Team Name                        G    W    L    T   PCT    GB    RS   RA
Detroit Tigers                  51   33   17    1  .660     -   293  208
Cleveland Indians               48   31   17    0  .646   1.0   242  183
New York Yankees                47   27   19    1  .587   4.0   236  195
Baltimore Orioles               50   26   23    1  .531   6.5   204  211
Kansas City Athletics           45   22   22    1  .500   8.0   215  241
Washington Senators             50   24   26    0  .480   9.0   187  191
Boston Red Sox                  46   21   25    0  .457  10.0   172  204
Minnesota Twins                 49   19   30    0  .388  13.5   208  262
Chicago White Sox               47   18   29    0  .383  13.5   196  218
Los Angeles Angels              47   17   30    0  .362  14.5   193  233

The streak has now reached 11 losses in a row, and the Twins have lost 16 of 17. What is worse is that the team will face Whitey Ford on Tuesday. Ford is 7-2 with a 3.11 ERA through the first two months of the season.

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