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Even before their epic pitching duel Juan Marichal and Warren Spahn already had a lot in common. Future Hall of Famers with high-kicking deliveries they were shaped into winners by character-building experiences in the military. Spahn had been baseball's winningest pitcher in the 1950s and Marichal would be equally dominant in the 1960s. Juan's and Spahn's incredible performances on July 2 1963 would forever link their names together in baseball history. The Braves' Spahn and the Giants' Marichal began their duel at 8:21 PM in San Francisco's cold and windy Candlestick Park. Four hours later at 12:30 AM the two pitching legends were deadlocked in a scoreless tie when Willie Mays with one out and no one on hit a walk-off home run to end the greatest game ever pitched. In between Juan and Spahn each threw more than 200 pitches and went 16 innings without relief. Considering today's culture of pitch counts and coddled arms it was a night we wonÕt see repeated ever again. In The Greatest Game Ever Pitched author Jim Kaplan weaves the 1963 contest through a dual biography of its principals in a book that is sure to be a home run with baseball fans everywhere.

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