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The World Series that never was

The year 1964 did not begin well in Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love. The populace, which adored former President John F. Kennedy, continued to mourn his tragic deaths seven weeks earlier.

Kennedy had won the popular vote in Philadelphia by 331,000 votes in the 1960 presidential election, thus vanquishing his Republican opponent, Richard M. Nixon. It afforded the U.S. Senator from Massachusetts the state’s 29 electoral votes on his journey to the White House.

By April, attention had turned to baseball and the Phillies. The team had finished in fourth place in the 10-team National League the previous season.

Capitalizing on the anemic performance of the Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs and the New York Mets during the year, the Phillies were in the pennant race throughout the 162-game marathon.

Two performances highlighted interest in the team during the hot days of the Philly summer.

On Father’s Day, right-handed pitcher Jim Bunning hurled a perfect game against the...

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