Look Back: Jack Meyer OPC '50
Can't imagine too many guys have been part of two MLB records within a two-week period. Well, Jack Meyer OPC '50 accomplished that feat.
Meyer, a righthander from Medford, NJ, made his MLB debut with the Phillies in 1955. He was mostly a reliever in a seven-year career (all with the Phillies), compiling a 24-34 record and 3.92 ERA with 21 saves.
Meyer first tasted fame on Sept. 9, 1958, in a game vs. the Dodgers at Connie Mack Stadium. Five pitchers combined to record 23 strikeouts, a total that tied the MLB record for a nine-inning game. Thanks to Sandy Koufax (eight) and Johnny Klippstein (four), the Dodgers racked up 12. The Phillies answered with 11 due to Ray Semproch, Jack Sanford (two apiece) and Meyer (seven). Meyer posted his Ks in just three innings. He allowed no hits/runs and walked one.
A neat little nugget: Sept. 9, 1958, was the same day outfielder Johnny Callison was promoted to the majors (by the White Sox) at age 19. He went 3-for-3 with one RBI vs. the Red Sox. Later, he became a star for the Phillies.
Let's skip ahead to Sept. 22. That day, also at Connie Mack, the Phillies played the Pirates. The Phillies won, 3-2, in 14 innings, in what was the first game of a twi-night doubleheader. Meyer set a MLB record for relievers (since broken) by striking out the first six batters he faced!
The victims in the 12th inning, in order, were Hank Foiles, Ron Kline and Bill Virdon. In the 13th: Roman Mejias, R.C. Stevens and Bob Skinner, later the Phillies' manager. The string was broken in the 14th when Harry Bright was retired on a fly to left. In the home 14th, Richie Ashburn led off by flying out. Bobby Young then singled, advanced to third on a single by Ed Bouchee and scored on a single by Dave Philley.
Kline was Pittsburgh's pitcher. He pitched the entire game, allowing 13 hits and nine walks while striking out five over 13 1/3 frames. Imagine how many pitches he threw!
Jack Meyer died of a heart attack in 1967. He was only 34.
Meyer at PC: In 1946, as an eighth grader, Meyer competed in the Inter-Ac's junior track meet. He won the shot put with an effort of 41-3 1/4 inches and fared well in the 90-yard low hurdles with a time of 12.8 seconds. His picture, launching the shot put, appeared in the Inquirer.
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