Year In Review : 1965 National League

O

Controversial civil rights activist Malcolm Little, also known as "Malcolm X", was assassinated while delivering a speech at the OAAU rally in the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem on February 21st. The Islamic minister had become an inspirational leader along side Dr. Martin Luther King after breaking ties with the Nation of Islam in order to create his own religious community known as Muslim Mosque, Inc., and later the Organization of Afro-American Unity.

A routine traffic stop and arrest for drunk driving in South Central Los Angeles lit the fire for what would become known as the Watts Riots. In response to the police action, many residents accused the law of practicing racial bias and erupted violently for six days leaving thirty-four dead, over a thousand people injured, nearly four-thousand arrested, and hundreds of buildings destroyed.

Construction on the nation's tallest memorial, the Gateway Arch, was finally completed after a four-year span. The six-hundred thirty feet high, stainless steel structure was originally designed by architect Eero Saarinen in 1947 for the Expansion Memorial Park which was established on the banks of the Mississippi River to commemorate the westward growth of the United States.

I n the American League

New York Yankees ace Mel Stottlemyre became the first pitcher in fifty-five years to hit an inside-the-park home run during a 6-3 win over their American League rivals, the Boston Red Sox, on July 20th.

Bert Campanaris, of the Kansas City Athletics, set an unprecedented Major League record by playing all nine positions during a September 8th outing against the California Angels. Campanaris allowed just one run (on a hit) and two walks while on the mound, but went 0-for-3 at the plate. Despite the "one man show" the Angels went on to win it, 5-3 after thirteen innings.

Shortstop Ron Hanson of the Chicago White Sox tied a Major League record with twenty-eight fielding chances during a double-header against the Boston Red Sox. Hanson handled eighteen shots in the first contest, setting an American League record, and ten more in the nightcap. Chicago, like their shortstop, came out on top in both games with matching 3-2 victories.

I n the National League

On April 9th, the $31 million dollar, ultramodern indoor ballpark known as the "Astrodome" debuted with an exhibition game between the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees. President Lyndon B. Johnson and Texas Governor John Connally were among the 47,000+ plus fans who witnessed the first ever, indoor home run courtesy of Mickey Mantle.

Chicago "Cubbie" Ernie Banks slugged his four-hundredth career homer during a 5-3 triumph over Curt Simmons and the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field.

San Francisco slugger Willie Mays became the fifth member of the ultra-exclusive "500 Homerun Club" after paying the membership dues off Don Nottebart during a 5-1 Giants victory over the Houston Astros at the Astrodome.

A round the League

Baseball's first free-agent draft was held at the Hotel Commodore in New York City resulting in three-hundred twenty players being selected by twenty Major League teams. It was later determined that the draft would continue to take place every June and January with teams selecting prospects in the reverse order of the league standings.

One of baseball's greatest left-handed aces, Warren Spahn announced his retirement after an amazing twenty-one seasons. Spahn walked away from the game with a 363-245 career record and a lifetime ERA of 3.09. He also ranked as number six on the all-time list with sixty-three shutouts and thirteen, twenty-win seasons.

On December 9th, Branch Rickey, the man who helped Jackie Robinson break through baseball's color barrier by signing him with the Brooklyn Dodgers, died at the age of eighty-three.

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Sandy Koufax became the first two-time recipient of the Cy Young Award. Unfortunately, he would manage only one more season (where he became the first three-time recipient) before retiring with an astounding 165-87 record over a twelve year period.

"There are four-hundred ninety-nine major league ballplayers. Then there's Willie Mays" - Unknown
1965 National League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Houston

97

Batting Average

Pittsburgh

.329

Doubles

Milwaukee

40

Hits

Cincinnati

209

Home Runs

San Francisco

52

On Base Percentage

San Francisco

.399

RBI

Cincinnati

130

Runs

Cincinnati

126

Slugging Average

San Francisco

.645

Stolen Bases

Los Angeles

94

Total Bases

San Francisco

360

Triples

Philadelphia

16

1965 National League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Los Angeles

27

ERA

Los Angeles

2.04

Games

Chicago

84

Saves

Chicago

31

Shutouts

San Francisco

10

Strikeouts

Los Angeles

382

Winning Percentage

Los Angeles

.765

Wins

Los Angeles

26

1965 National League

Team Standings

Los Angeles Dodgers

97 65 .599 0

San Francisco Giants

95 67 .586 2

Pittsburgh Pirates

90 72 .556 7

Cincinnati Reds

89 73 .549 8

Milwaukee Braves

86 76 .531 11

Philadelphia Phillies

85 76 .528 11½

St. Louis Cardinals

80 81 .497 16½

Chicago Cubs

72 90 .444 25

Houston Astros

65 97 .401 32

New York Mets

50 112 .309 47

1965 National League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Cincinnati

538

Batting Average

Cincinnati

.273

Doubles

Cincinnati

268

Hits

Cincinnati

1,544

Home Runs

Milwaukee

196

On Base Percentage

Cincinnati

.341

Runs

Cincinnati

825

Slugging Average

Cincinnati

.439

Stolen Bases

Los Angeles

172

Triples

Cincinnati

61

1965 National League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Los Angeles

58

ERA

Los Angeles

2.81

Fewest Hits Allowed

Los Angeles

1,223

Fewest Home Runs Allowed

Pittsburgh

89

Fewest Walks Allowed

Houston

388

Saves

San Francisco

42

Shutouts

Los Angeles

23

Strikeouts

Cincinnati

1,113



On April 12, 1965, the Houston Astrodome hosted its first regular season game. Dick Allen of the Phillies hit the first home run which drove in 2 runs and ultimately defeated the home town Astros 2-0.

On August 19, 1965, Jim Maloney of the Reds pitched against the Cubs who took him into extra innings, but Leo Cardenas went deep to give Maloney his first no hitter .

On September 13, 1965, Willie Mays became the fifth member of the 500 Home Runs Club when he blasted a Don Nottebart pitch in the Astrodome over the outfield wall.

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