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Dodger Manager Alston Signs 11th One-Year Contract

Dec. 2, 1963 - Walter Alston, baseball’s quiet man, received congratulations today after signing his 11th one-year contract to manage the Los Angeles Dodgers. Alston’s signing was no surprise. He led the Dodgers to a four-game sweep of the Yankees in the World Series in October. Alston’s reported salary will be $52,000, a figure that would make him the highest paid manager in club history. “I’ve always enjoyed working for the Dodgers,” said Alston today, “and I hope to be with them for more than one more season. I think the St. Louis series near the close of the season and then the World Series were occasions that I’ll always remember with a great deal of satisfaction. But we can’t spend too much time looking back. Next season shapes up as much tougher than the last one. You just can’t expect Cincinnati and San Francisco, to name two of the better National League teams, to slip again as they did in 1963. The race will be tougher than ever.” Alston took time out to praise Jim Gilliam for his all-around brilliance. “He’ll be doing a big job for us for years to come. I don’t know how old Jim actually is [the book says 35], but it never enters my mind. You can count on your fingers the mistakes he’s made in major league ball. Frank Howard should have a big season coming up. Sure, he strikes out a lot, but all power hitters do. And Frank is not swinging at nearly as many bad pitches. He’s only 27, you know, so he’s got some wonderful years ahead.” Since the turn of the century, only three National League skippers have managed for longer periods with one club. They were John McGraw of the New York Giants, Wilbert Robinson of the Brooklyn Dodgers, and Fred Clarke of the Pittsburgh Pirates. In 10 years, Alston, who celebrated his 52nd birthday yesterday, has won 4 pennants and 3 world championships. “All I ask is just a few more runs next year,” was Alston’s closing remark today.

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