This day in sports: Pirates’ Harvey Haddix’s perfect game ruined in 13th inning

Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Harvey Haddix throws during one of his 12 perfect innings against the Milwaukee Braves on May 26, 1959, in Milwaukee. Haddix was perfect through 12 but ended up losing the game in the 13th, 1-0.
Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Harvey Haddix throws during one of his 12 perfect innings against the Milwaukee Braves on May 26, 1959, in Milwaukee. Haddix was perfect through 12 but ended up losing the game in the 13th, 1-0.
(Associated Press)

Harvey Haddix of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitched 12 perfect innings on this date in 1959 before he endured a hard-luck loss to the Milwaukee Braves 1-0 in the 13th inning on an error, a sacrifice and double by Joe Adcock.

Relying on two pitches, fastball and a slider, Haddix was untouchable until third baseman Don Hoak muffed a ground ball hit by Felix Mantilla. He went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Eddie Mathews and Henry Aaron was intentionally walked.

Adcock hit what appeared to be a home run to deep center at County Stadium, but Aaron, thinking the ball bounced off the wall, cut across the diamond instead of rounding the bases. Because Adcock had passed him, both he and Aaron were ruled out and the game ended on Mantilla’s run.


Lew Burdette went the distance for the Braves, giving up 12 hits for his ninth win of the season.

A look at some of the biggest moments in sports history that occurred on April 12.

The Dodgers were scheduled to play the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday in the second game of a four-game stint at Coors Field. The Angels would have entertained the visiting Cleveland Indians in the second of three games at Angel Stadium. Both contests were postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other memorable games and outstanding sports performances on this date:

1925 — In the Detroit Tigers’ 8-1 win over the Chicago White Sox, Ty Cobb is the first major league player to collect 1,000 career extra-base hits. In the game at Comiskey Park, the “Georgia Peach” gets two hits, including a double.

1987 — Larry Bird steals an inbounds pass from Isiah Thomas and feeds the ball over his shoulder to a cutting Dennis Johnson for the winning basket as the Boston Celtics pull out an improbable 108-107 win over the Detroit Pistons in Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference finals at the Boston Garden. Bird scores 36 points, and the Celtics would go on to win the series in seven games.

1988 — The Edmonton Oilers, with most valuable player Wayne Gretzky leading the way, beat the Boston Bruins 6-3 to complete a four-game sweep and win their fourth Stanley Cup title in five years. Esa Tikkanen scores two goals and Gretzky adds another plus two assists at the Northlands Coliseum in Edmonton. Game 4 of the series is canceled after a power failure at the Boston Garden halts play in the second period, and it is rescheduled to start over at Edmonton.

1991 — Rick Mears passes Michael Andretti with 12 laps to go and wins his fourth Indianapolis 500, this one by 3.1 seconds. Mears, who started from the pole position, joins A.J. Foyt and Al Unser as the only four-time winners. Hiro Matsushita is the first Japanese driver to race at the Indy 500.

2000 — New Jersey finishes the greatest comeback in an NHL conference final as the Devils win the last three games of the series, beating the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final. Patrik Elias scores his second goal of the game with 2:32 to play for the win.

2004 — Andy Roddick loses at the French Open to Frenchman Olivier Mutis, who is ranked 125th in the world. With the five-set loss, Roddick joins Andre Agassi and eight other American players to leave Roland Garros early, making it the first Grand Slam tournament in more than 30 years without a U.S. man in the third round.

2008 — Syracuse wins its 10th NCAA men’s lacrosse championship, beating defending champion Johns Hopkins 13-10 behind three goals from Dan Hardy. The crowd of 48,970 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., is the largest to see an NCAA championship outdoors in any sport. (The Bowl Championship Series football title game isn’t an NCAA event.)

2012 — Toronto FC ends its Major League Soccer record nine-game losing streak to open a season with a 1-0 win over the Philadelphia Union on a goal in the 88th minute by Danny Koevermans.

2013 — Tony Kanaan wins the Indianapolis 500 when he drives past Ryan Hunter-Reay on a restart with three laps to go, then coasts across the finish line under a yellow caution flag after defending champion Dario Franchitti crashes. The race features four women drivers on the starting grid — Simona De Silvestro, Ana Beatriz, Katherine Legge and Pippa Marin.

Sources: The Times, Associated Press