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Giants Top Cards, Regain National League Lead

June 24, 1963 - Southpaw Billy Pierce saved Juan Marichal’s 12th victory today with 2-and-a-third perfect innings of clutch relief and helped the San Francisco Giants climb over the Cardinals and back into the National League lead. The 4-3 win at Busch Stadium boosted San Francisco half a game ahead of St. Louis. The Giants scored all their runs off Lou Burdette in the first inning. One of the San Francisco runs was unearned, the result of two Redbird errors, but Burdette (7-6) was the loser. The veteran right-hander, a tough fellow, hit two Giants with 0-2 pitches. The first one, a ball that hit Orlando Cepeda in the small of the back, forced in the Giants’ first run. The second dart hit Harvey Kuenn just about the left elbow in the second, forcing Harvey out of the game, but X-rays later showed there was no fracture. “I don’t average more than two hit batsmen a year,” Burdette said after the game. Actually, his average has been about three a year, a tiny total for a man who works as many innings as he does. “I tried to pitch high and tight to three men with two strikes on them. I hit two and knocked the other one down. I have nobody to blame but myself. I fouled everything up. I’d like to play that first inning over.” Marichal (pictured), who hasn’t been defeated since Sandy Koufax no-hit the Giants May 11, chalked up his eighth straight victory and now stands 12-3, but he gave up 9 hits and was staggering when Pierce came to the rescue in magnificent fashion.


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