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Willie Mays Weary but Determined

Oct. 1, 1962 - “Only if we win the pennant. Ask me again tomorrow.” That’s how Willie Mays (pictured left stealing second in the eighth inning today) parried questions of whether the one-man campaign of destruction he waged against the Dodgers today ranked as the supreme thrill of his career. Willie, who two weeks ago broke down with nervous exhaustion and was out of action for four days, said he still was dog-tired. “I’ve never been so weary,” he said. “I’ll sure be glad when this is all over. How was I so strong today? I couldn’t tell you. I had no right to be.” Alvin Dark viewed Willie’s breakdown two weeks ago as “a blessing in disguise.” The Giants manager said: “The way Willie plays, he puts himself under a terrific strain, and he was worn out. Those four days of rest — two of them in the hospital — did wonders for him. No, I wouldn’t call this game or any other game Willie’s greatest. You can’t talk about a Willie Mays on the basis of one game. He plays great baseball in 150 games-plus every season, and it takes a while to fully appreciate him.”


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