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Mets Top Dodgers at Polo Grounds as Rookie Kranepool Gets Big Hit

Apr. 29, 1963 - Sometimes maligned as the Dodger B Squad, the New York Mets defeated the Dodger varsity, 4-2, at the Polo Grounds today in a game of minimum significance and maximum delight for the Mets faithful. The seventh inning was the highlight of the evening. Apparently in control with a 2-1 lead, Dodger pitcher Bob Miller — a Met last year — was greeted by a double to left by rookie Ed Kranepool (pictured right), an 18-year-old phenom who broke all of Hank Greenberg’s prep slugging records at New York’s James Monroe High School. He couldn’t pick up Charlie Neal’s bunt, which went for a hit, and after Kranepool advanced to third, he wild-pitched Kranepool home and Neal to second. When Al Moran followed with a single to left, Neal hesitated and reached only third. Miller was finished, however. A moment later, reliever Ed Roebuck committed a balk while facing Marvelous Marv Throneberry, a pinch hitter, and Neal was sent across the plate with the run that made the score 3-2 and made Miller the loser. The crowd was delirious. Last year, the Dodgers had abused the fledgling Mets mercilessly, beating them 16 of 18 times, throwing a no-hitter at them, and running up scores such as 17-8, 13-6, and 17-3. Duke Snider went hitless in his first game against the Dodgers after 16 years with them, but he did drive in the first run with a sacrifice in the first. Roger Craig, a member of the 1955 and 1959 champion Dodger teams, won the game for the Mets. In the Met clubhouse, Snider said, “It’s hard to believe that the manager of a losing ballclub can maintain his enthusiasm like Stengel. But if you pull a rock, he’ll let you know it right away. I’m doing very well in New York. I’ve already done some T.V. work, and a used-car dealer put a car at my disposal just for making a personal appearance at his lot.” Later, a photographer asked Stengel where Snider was. The grizzled manager looked around, then quipped: “Can’t spot him. Hell, I hope he didn’t rejoin L.A.”


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