1959 All-Star Game

When the Midsummer Classic came to the Steel City in 1959, the fans were expecting a game worthy of the title "All-Star". After all, the previous year's thirteen-hit sleeper had left the fans with a lot to be desired.

In an attempt to rejuvenate their interest, the league administration had decided on a doubleheader (over a two day period) which seemed like a good idea at the time.

Game 1 featured spectacular pitching by the National League's Don Drysdale who was making the first of eight All-Star appearances. He worked three hitless innings while striking out four. Unexpectedly, the National League took a 3-1 lead into the ninth, only to have the American League score three runs. However the National League came back to win it against Whitey Ford in the ninth. First, Ken Boyer singled and moved up on a sacrifice. Then, Hank Aaron tied it with a single, scoring Boyer. Finally, Willie Mays stepped up who was 3-for-3 against Ford in three other All-Star Games. He made it four-for-four with a triple that scored Aaron. Don Elston came in for the National League in the ninth and retired the side.

Game 2 of the doubleheader was played on August 3. For this game, the managers were not bound to a voted-in starting lineup. They could start whomever they pleased from the All-Star rosters.

Unlike the first game, the American League took a lead into the top of the seventh and scored another run as Tony Kubek walked and advanced to second on an errant pickoff attempt. Kubek reached third and Pete Runnels reached first on an Ernie Banks fielding error. Next, Nelson Fox singled Kubek in for a 4-2 lead. The National League tightened it on Jim Gilliam's homer in the bottom of the seventh, however the American League quickly got it back on Rocky Colavito's homer in the top of the eighth.

Both fans and press shared mixed emotions about the new "doubleheader" format, but they were happy that both games had exceeded the pace of the year before. Some felt it was a meaningless series as both teams walked away with a victory.

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"This ball club (Tigers) has been so fair and decent to me that I'd prefer to have you give it (his salary) to me when I rate it." - Al Kaline

1959 All-Star Game #1

1959 All-Star Game Cachet

The 1959 Midsummer Classic At-A-Glance

Game Number
26
Date / Box Score
Location
Attendance ( Rank )
35,277
Not Awarded Until 1962
Starting Pitchers
Managers
Coaches
Eddie Sawyer

1959 All-Star Game #1

Line Score

League 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
American 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 4 8 0
National 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 x 5 9 1
Early Wynn
Ryne Duren (4th)
Jim Bunning (7th)
Whitey Ford (L, 8th)
Bud Daley (8th)
Don Drysdale
Lew Burdette (4th)
Roy Face (7th)
Johnny Antonelli (W, 8th)
Don Elston (S, 9th)
Al Kaline (4th) Eddie Mathews (1st)

1959 All-Star Game #1

American League All-Star Squad

8. Luis Aparicio Chicago White Sox SS
Yogi Berra New York Yankees C Did Not Play
Jim Bunning Detroit Tigers P
5. Rocky Colavito Cleveland Indians OF
Bud Daley Kansas City Athletics P
Ryne Duren New York Yankees P
Whitey Ford New York Yankees P
2. Nellie Fox Chicago White Sox 2B
3. Al Kaline Detroit Tigers OF
7. Harmon Killebrew Washington Senators 3B
Harvey Kuenn Detroit Tigers OF
Sherm Lollar Chicago White Sox C
Frank Malzone Boston Red Sox 3B
Mickey Mantle New York Yankees OF
Gil McDougald New York Yankees SS
1. Minnie Minoso Cleveland Indians OF
Billy Pierce Chicago White Sox P Did Not Pitch
Vic Power Cleveland Indians 1B
Pete Runnels Boston Red Sox 2B
Roy Sievers Washington Senators 1B
4. Bill Skowron New York Yankees 1B
6. Gus Triandos Baltimore Orioles C
Hoyt Wilhelm Baltimore Orioles P Did Not Pitch
Ted Williams Boston Red Sox OF
9. Early Wynn Chicago White Sox P Starting Pitcher
BOLD = Manager / player / coach choice to start the game.

1959 All-Star Game #1

National League All-Star Squad

3. Hank Aaron Milwaukee Braves OF
Johnny Antonelli San Francisco Giants P
5. Ernie Banks Chicago Cubs SS
Ken Boyer St. Louis Cardinals 3B
Lew Burdette Milwaukee Braves P
Smoky Burgess Pittsburgh Pirates C Did Not Play
6. Orlando Cepeda San Francisco Giants 1B
Gene Conley Philadelphia Phillies P Did Not Pitch
8. Del Crandall Milwaukee Braves C
Joe Cunningham St. Louis Cardinals OF Did Not Play
9. Don Drysdale Los Angeles Dodgers P Starting Pitcher
Don Elston Chicago Cubs P Replaced Mizell
Roy Face Pittsburgh Pirates P
Dick Groat Pittsburgh Pirates SS
2. Eddie Mathews Milwaukee Braves 3B
4. Willie Mays San Francisco Giants OF
Bill Mazeroski Pittsburgh Pirates 2B
Vinegar Bend Mizell St. Louis Cardinals P Replaced - Injury
6. Wally Moon Los Angeles Dodgers OF
Stan Musial St. Louis Cardinals 1B
Vada Pinson Cincinnati Reds OF Did Not Play
Frank Robinson Cincinnati Reds 1B Did Not Play
Hal Smith St. Louis Cardinals C Did Not Play
Warren Spahn Milwaukee Braves P Did Not Pitch
1. Johnny Temple Cincinnati Reds 2B
Bill White St. Louis Cardinals OF Did Not Play
BOLD = Manager / player / coach choice to start the game.

1959 All-Star Game #2

1959 All-Star Game Program

1959 All-Star Game Official Program

Game Number
27
Date / Box Score
Location
Memorial Coliseum
Attendance
55,105
Not Awarded Until 1962
Starting Pitchers
Managers
Coaches
John Fitzpatrick

1959 All-Star Game #2

Line Score

League 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
American 0 1 2 0 0 0 1 1 0 5 6 0
National 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 3 6 3
Jerry Walker (W)
Early Wynn (4th)
Hoyt Wilhelm (6th)
Billy O'Dell (7th)
Cal McLish (S, 8th)
Don Drysdale (L)
Gene Conley (4th)
Sam Jones (6th)
Roy Face (8th)
-
Frank Malzone (2nd)
Yogi Berra (3rd)
Rocky Colavito (8th)
Frank Robinson (5th)
Jim Gilliam (7th)
-

1959 All-Star Game #2

American League All-Star Squad

Bob Allison Washington Senators OF Did Not Play
8. Luis Aparicio Chicago White Sox SS
4. Yogi Berra New York Yankees C
Rocky Colavito Cleveland Indians OF
Bud Daley Kansas City Athletics P Did Not Pitch
Ryne Duren New York Yankees P Did Not Pitch
2. Nellie Fox Chicago White Sox 2B
Elston Howard New York Yankees C-OF Did Not Play
Al Kaline Detroit Tigers OF
Harmon Killebrew Washington Senators 3B Did Not Play
Tony Kubek New York Yankees SS
Sherm Lollar Chicago White Sox C
7. Frank Malzone Boston Red Sox 3B
5. Mickey Mantle New York Yankees OF
6. Roger Maris Kansas City Athletics OF
Cal McLish Cleveland Indians P
Minnie Minoso Cleveland Indians OF Did Not Play
Billy O'Dell Baltimore Orioles P
Camilo Pascual Washington Senators P Replaced - Injury
Vic Power Cleveland Indians 1B
Pedro Ramos Washington Senators P Replaced Pascual
Bobby Richardson New York Yankees 2B Did Not Play
1. Pete Runnels Boston Red Sox 2B
Roy Sievers Washington Senators 1B Did Not Play
9. Jerry Walker Baltimore Orioles P Starting Pitcher
Hoyt Wilhelm Baltimore Orioles P
3. Ted Williams Boston Red Sox OF
Gene Woodling Baltimore Orioles OF
Early Wynn Chicago White Sox P
BOLD = Manager / player / coach choice to start the game.

1959 All-Star Game #2

National League All-Star Squad

3. Hank Aaron Milwaukee Braves OF
Johnny Antonelli San Francisco Giants P Did Not Pitch
5. Ernie Banks Chicago Cubs SS
2. Ken Boyer St. Louis Cardinals 3B
Lew Burdette Milwaukee Braves P Did Not Pitch
Smoky Burgess Pittsburgh Pirates C
Orlando Cepeda San Francisco Giants 1B Did Not Play
Gene Conley Philadelphia Phillies P
8. Del Crandall Milwaukee Braves C
Joe Cunningham St. Louis Cardinals OF
9. Don Drysdale Los Angeles Dodgers P Starting Pitcher
Don Elston Chicago Cubs P Did Not Pitch
Roy Face Pittsburgh Pirates P
Jim Gilliam Los Angeles Dodgers IF-OF
Dick Groat Pittsburgh Pirates SS
Sam Jones San Francisco Giants P
Johnny Logan Milwaukee Braves SS Did Not Play
Eddie Mathews Milwaukee Braves 3B
4. Willie Mays San Francisco Giants OF
Bill Mazeroski Pittsburgh Pirates 2B Did Not Play
Vinegar Bend Mizell St. Louis Cardinals P Replaced - Injury
7. Wally Moon Los Angeles Dodgers OF
6. Stan Musial St. Louis Cardinals 1B
Charlie Neal Los Angeles Dodgers SS
Vada Pinson Cincinnati Reds OF
Frank Robinson Cincinnati Reds 1B
Hal Smith St. Louis Cardinals C
Warren Spahn Milwaukee Braves P Did Not Pitch
1. Johnny Temple Cincinnati Reds 2B

BOLD = Manager / player / coach choice to start the game.

Game / Box Links: 1959 Box Score 1 | 1959 Box Score 2 | 1959 Play-by-Play
Navigation: Previous Classic | Next Classic

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During Game #1, Don Drysdale dominated the mound pitching three spectacular innings: no hits, no runs, no walks, and four strikeouts. On the other team, Hall of Fame pitcher Whitey Ford pitched one-third of an inning, allowed three hits, two runs, and a game winning triple hit by Willie Mays.

Game #2 was the first Midsummer Classic ever played during the month of August, the first ever played on the west coast of the United States and the first to have the same pitcher start both ends of a doubleheader ( Don Drysdale ) All-Star contest.

Was the two game format a good idea? Should they bring it back or was it a huge mistake to begin with? Voice your opinion on our baseball message boards .

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