Bizarre Clincher: Jaster No-Hits Pennant Winning Dodgers

Filed under Los Angeles Dodgers, St. Louis Cardinals
September 28, 1966

Dick Hughes (left) and Bob Skinner give Larry Jaster a hero's welcome as he returns to the dugout after no-hitting the Dodgers, 2-0. In the visitor's dugout, the Dodgers held a tempered celebration of the National League pennant.
The champagne was finally open. But the Dodger players sat in front of their lockers as the press milled about the visitor’s clubhouse in Busch Stadium. The men with the notepads did not quite know what questions to ask, and the men in the baseball uniforms did not have any answers. Even Walt Alston had never seen a situation such as this.

Word spread through the Dodger dugout in the third inning of tonight’s game that Hank Aaron hit a three-run home run in Atlanta to break a 2-2 with the second-place Giants. By the sixth inning, it was official. The Giants had lost, and the Los Angeles Dodgers would return to the World Series as champions of the National League. Players shook hands and slapped each other on the back, but there was still the matter of the game being played.

Though the Dodgers knew they were champions, they also picked up on something the rest of the 16,146 in attendance was following on this Indian Summer evening. The score read 1-0 home team and Cardinal pitcher Larry Jaster was pitching a no-hitter against these National League champions. Jaster was doing all the work as he drove in the lone run in the third with a bloop single to left. Here in the eighth, the champion Dodgers were six outs from entering the record book on two separate ledgers – no hit victim and league champion.

Dick Stuart grounded out to short to open the eighth. Jim Lefebvre’s line drive was mishandled by second baseman Jerry Buchek, and Lefebvre was aboard on the error. Dick Schofield drew a base on balls, and it appeared that Jaster may be ready to crack. But the rookie settled down and retired Jeff Torborg on a flyout to center, and pinch-hitter Wes Parker on a redemption ground-out to Buchek at second.

If there was any doubt this would be Larry Jaster’s night, he hit his third home run of the season off Bob Miller in the bottom of the eighth. The top of the Dodger lineup was due in the ninth and determined to break this no-hitter on their celebration night.

Dodger captain Maury Wills stepped in to the batter’s box, and battled the southpaw like a champion. A twelve-pitch confrontation that resulted in a free pass to Wills. Willie Davis grounded a 2-1 pitch to Julian Javier who replaced Buchek at the top of the inning. Javier flipped to shortstop Dal Maxvill to force Wills at second. Lou Johnson flied out to Curt Flood in center. Tommy Davis ended the game with a harmless pop fly which Maxvill squeezed for the final out. Davis walked back to the dugout to his teammates who watched the Cardinals swarm Jaster and carry him off the field.

One of the most bizarre pennant-clinchers was over. Jaster and the Cardinals celebrated his no-hitter in their clubhouse, and though Jaster deflated the their party plans with the no-hitter, the Dodgers still toasted their return to the Series in the visitor’s clubhouse.

9/28/1966, LAD66-STL66, Busch Stadium

                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
1966 Los Angeles       0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0     0  0  1     4  1
1966 St. Louis         0  0  1  0  0  0  0  1  x     2  4  1     4  0

Los Angeles          AB  R  H BI   AVG    St. Louis            AB  R  H BI   AVG
Wills             ss  3  0  0  0  .275    Brock             lf  4  0  1  0  .320
Davis,W           cf  4  0  0  0  .272    Flood             cf  3  0  0  0  .243
Johnson           rf  4  0  0  0  .255    McCarver          c   4  0  0  0  .243
Davis,T           lf  4  0  0  0  .244    Cepeda            1b  2  0  0  0  .294
Stuart            1b  3  0  0  0  .231    Shannon           rf  3  0  0  0  .283
Lefebvre          2b  3  0  0  0  .271    Spiezio           3b  3  0  0  0  .194
Schofield         3b  2  0  0  0  .167     Smith            3b  0  0  0  0  .258
Torborg           c   3  0  0  0  .259    Buchek            2b  3  1  1  0  .243
Sutton            p   1  0  0  0  .181     Javier           2b  0  0  0  0  .244
 Parker           ph  1  0  0  0  .277    Maxvill           ss  2  0  0  0  .253
 Miller           p   0  0  0  0  .100    Jaster            p   3  1  2  2  .275
 Perranoski       p   0  0  0  0  .000                         27  2  4  2
                     28  0  0  0

Los Angeles                      INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Sutton           L 15-12         7.0  2  1  1  1  5  90  63  3.38
Miller                           0.1  2  1  1  1  0  12   8  1.69
Perranoski                       0.2  0  0  0  0  0   4   3  2.53
                                 8.0  4  2  2  2  5 106  74

St. Louis                        INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Jaster           W 9-5           9.0  0  0  0  3  1 105  63  2.22
                                 9.0  0  0  0  3  1 105  63

LAD: Parker batted for Sutton in the 8th
STL: Smith inserted at 3b in the 9th
     Javier inserted at 2b in the 9th

E-Lefebvre, Buchek. HR-Jaster(3). SB-Brock(74). K-Stuart, McCarver,
Shannon 3, Buchek. BB-Wills, Schofield, Sutton, Flood, Cepeda. SH-Maxvill.
PB-Torborg.
GWRBI: Jaster
Temperature: 78, Sky: cloudy, Wind: in from center at 2 MPH.

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