Saturday, February 2, 2013

In the first series of what is certain to be a yearlong rivalry for NL supremacy among two teams that despise each other, the St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs split a short two-gamer to open the 1968 season at Wrigley. The wind was blowing out in the first game. Neither Steve Carlton nor Rich Nye were effective for either team, and six home runs were blasted. Unfortunately, for the Cubs, five were by the Cardinals in an 11-5 route (two from vet Orlando Cepeda). But the Cubs turned it around in Game 2 behind a three-hit, complete game gem from young knuckleballer Joe Niekro, whose only blemish was a two-run homer from the Cards' Roger Maris. The Bearcats were recipients of a strong third inning, with two-run taters hit that inning from both Randy "The Rebel" Hundley and Adolfo Phillips off bludgeoned Cardinals starter Dick Hughes.

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