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Twins Top Yanks as Mudcat Grant Shines

July 5, 1964 - Jim (Mudcat) Grant, the Twins’ off-season song-and-dance man, pitched a 9-2, five-hit victory over New York today before 23,024 fans at Yankee Stadium.

Minnesota’s 19-hit assault upon the pitching of Whitey Ford, Rollie Sheldon, Ralph Terry, and Bud Daley made Grant’s fifth victory a cakewalk.

Harmon Killebrew (pictured), the Twins’ sultan of sock, clubbed his 30th home run of the season. He completed a 4-for-5 day with three singles and a walk to raise his average to .287.

At the All-Star break a year ago, Harmon, who finished with 45 homers, had only 17. When Roger Maris hit 61 in 1961, he had 32 at the All-Star vacation, while Babe Ruth had 26 at this time in 1927 when he collected 60.

Behind Grant’s pitching and the Twins’ highest hit total of the season, Minnesota stopped Ford’s 10-game win streak. Whitey hadn’t lost since opening day.

The fourth-place Twins pulled within four games of the third-place Yankees in the standings after splitting the four-game series.

“We’ve won six games from the Yankees already,” noted president Calvin Griffith of the Twins. “That’s as many as we won all last year from New York.”

“I’m getting my old rhythm back on the mound,” said Grant. “I think I’m in the groove for a good stretch finish. But I’ve always had good luck against the Yankees. Last year, I beat them once 5-1 and then blanked them on three hits.”

Twins catcher Earl Battey was pleased about his first three-hit day of the season.

“Coach Hal Naragon suggested before the game that I close up my stance a little,” said Battey. “This allowed me to wait a little more for the pitch. It certainly brought results.”

Tony Oliva and Rich Rollins also got three hits each.

“I have to take my hat off to the fellows the way they hit them today after dropping that doubleheader Saturday,” said manager Sam Mele. “We beat a good pitcher in Whitey Ford. This was a big win.”

Over in the Yankee clubhouse, manager Yogi Berra was asked why Ford has failed to win his last five starts after 10 straight wins.

“Ask Camilo Pascual the same question,” said Yogi. “I’m sure he is wondering too why he has lost four straight.

“The Twins got the hits when they needed them. Had we got a hit or two earlier, it might have been a different game.”


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