Thursday, June 25, 2015

June 25, 1960: Curt Simmons Returns To Philly and Dominates His Former Club

     On June 25, 1960, Curt Simmons made a triumphant return to Philadelphia and led the way to a 1-0 Cardinals victory over the Phillies at Connie Mack Stadium. Ken Boyer rewarded  Simmons' strong effort by going deep off of Jim Owens to lead off the ninth, which was all the Redbirds would need to secure a victory. It was the 19th big fly of the season for Boyer, and the first of many wins for Simmons as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals.

     Simmons allowed just six hits in the contest. The last of those six hits was a ninth inning double off the bat of outfielder Lee Walls, who was promptly replaced with a pinch runner, as the Fightin Phils tried to fight their way back into this one. Simmons retired the next man, Ken Walters, but it took a spectacular diving play by Joe Cunningham in right that may have been a game saver. While Simmons had pitched a gem, the Cardinals skipper Solly Hemus called on Lindy McDaniel to put the Philllies to bed, and he tucked them in tight by getting Pancho Herrera to hit a fly ball to Curt Flood in center. Herrera owned three of the six hits surrendered by Simmons; he would not get a fourth. Simmons was victorious.

     Simmons had spent parts of 15 seasons in the City of Brotherly Love and won 115 games as a member of the  hometown Phillies, He topped double digits in wins six times during his tenure in Philly, however, the 1959 season was a disastrous for the southpaw, as injury kept him on the shelf throughout the campaign. While Simmons felt good at the beginning of the 1960 campaign, he had a shaky start to the season, and on May 11th he was released. Several teams bid for his services, and the Cardinals came up with the winning bid. Simmons spent parts of seven season with the Redbirds. During that time he posted a 69-58 regular season record, which included a career high 18 win season in 1964. His efforts helped the Cardinals win a title that season, which was in part made possible by an epic collapse by his former club, and for that he will forever be revered in Cardinal Nation.

If you would like to read more about the life and times of Curt Simmons read his SABR bio here:

Check out the box score here:

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