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Maris Hurt in Exhibition

Apr. 1, 1963 - New York Yankee injury woes reached a new high today when Roger Maris pulled up lame during an exhibition game with the Detroit Tigers. In the last of the fourth, Roger made a spectacular backhanded diving catch of a line drive in right center. With this play, however, the Bombers’ star right fielder and home run record-holder knocked himself out of the rest of the exhibition campaign and possibly out of the opener of the season on April 9 as well. Maris landed heavily on the turf and suffered a painful hamstring muscle pull in his left thigh. It was such an amazing catch that Al Kaline, who was on second base at the time with only one out, had rounded third and was on his way home before he realized the ball hit by Dick McAuliffe had not fallen safely. As Maris tried to get up, he flipped the ball to Bobby Richardson. Richardson relayed it to second base for an easy inning-ending double play. Roger then limped off the field. Yankee manager Ralph Houk was already greatly concerned by the spring injuries and ailments suffered by Whitey Ford, Mickey Mantle, Tony Kubek, Tom Tresh, and Clete Boyer. In the clubhouse, the Yankee trainer, Joe Soares, said the injury appeared to be a pretty severe one. “I can’t see him playing before opening day, if by then,” said Soares.

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