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Dodgers Top Reds as Drysdale Sets Strikeout Record

Aug. 10, 1963 - In winning a big one for the Dodgers tonight, Don Drysdale became the third pitcher in National League history to record 200 strikeouts in a season four or more times. The flamethrowing sidewinder fanned 13 Cincinnati Reds to run his season total to 201, as Ron Fairly led a ferocious assault that gave L.A. a 10-3 victory before 29,034 fans at Crosley Field in Cincinnati. Since San Francisco and St. Louis bagged matinee contests, the Dodgers needed this one to protect their 4½-game lead over the Giants and their five-length lead over the Cards. In topping the 200-strikeout mark, Big D joined two of the game’s mound immortals, Christy Mathewson and Grover Cleveland Alexander, in the record book. Matty enjoyed five 200-plus seasons and Alex four. Drysdale struck out 242 batters in 1959, 246 in 1960, and 232 last year. In tonight’s contest, Drysdale twice struck out the side and fanned every starter except Frank Robinson at least once with his heater that he moved in and out with immaculate control. Leo Cardenas struck out in the seventh for the third time to become Drysdale’s 200th victim, and Pete Rose ended the inning the same way. Don didn’t walk a batter. Two sterling southpaws, Sandy Koufax (18-4) and Jim O’Toole (14-9), face off tomorrow in the Dodgers’ final Cincinnati appearance of the season. Koufax currently is leading the league with a 1.77 ERA, and should he still be on top at season’s end he’ll be the first N.L. repeater since Cincinnati’s Bucky Walters in 1940 and the first southpaw to lead twice running since the New York Giant’s Carl Hubbell was the champ in 1934.


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