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Monday, August 15, 2016

Five umpires in some 1961 National League games, including the Willie Mays four home run game.

Willie Mays hit four home runs in this game:

Sunday, April 30, 1961, , County Stadium
Attendance: 13,114, Time of Game: 2:40
Giants 14, Braves 4

Umpires: HP - Chris Pelekoudas, 1B - Al Forman, 2B - Jocko Conlan, 3B - Augie Donatelli, LF - Ken Burkhart.

Starting Lineups

Eight of the 14 Giant hits were home runs. In addition to the four by Mays: 2 by Jose Pagan, one each for Orlando Cepeda and Felipe Alou. Jim Davenport made the third out in the top of the 9th with Mays on deck waiting for a possible sixth plate appearance. Mays led off the 5th with a fly out to center in his third PA.

Hank Aaron hit two home runs for the Braves.

Notice that there were five umpires. One of the other games that weekend also used five. A check of some other National League (NL) games in 1961 showed other games with five umps, some with a different crew of umps.

I wondered if the NL had hired additional umpires in anticipation of expansion in 1962 when the New York Mets and Houston Colt 45s were added.

I sent my information and supposition to Cliff Blau, who got confirmation from David Vincent. Thanks to both.

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