RECENTLY, IN THE NATIONAL LEAGUE: School kids take over Baker Bowl bleachers and it's all Vinny's fault...Carl Mays murders the Phils to ruin their day...Giants sweep four from the Bucs...Wheat and Fournier clout homers for resurrected Robins...

June 12, 1924

Getting beat by a shortstop-killer yesterday was bad enough. Today it was Wilbur Cooper's turn, coming back from a long injury, to make the Phillies look stupid. But that's why Benny is my best friend, because when either of us are down in the dumps, it's the other's job to make the sun come back out.

We sat way down deep in the right field grandstand to avoid another flood of kids from my school, though it turned out that Mr. Tuggerheinz put his iron shoe down and kept everyone there because there were so many complaints from parents. Of course I was able to get out my favorite window again because Tuggerheinz wasn't looking on purpose and there was no way I was going to spend six hours playing hopscotch or something.

Instead I watched Jimmy Ring de-prove his record on the year to 1-9. What a worthless rube he's turned out to be. And because our bullpen was used so much lately, Art Fletcher made him stand out there and get machine-gunned for nine whole innings.

I don't care how bad a time the Pirates just had up at the Polo Grounds, they still look like the team to beat to me. They have eight tough hitters, some great pitchers, tight fielding and plus they never seem to ground into double plays, which we do like breathing air. They're also relentless against us, and here's an example. One out in the 1st, Moore and Cuyler single and Earl Smith walks. Ring whiffs Traynor and you think great, we got their number today. Uh-uh, because Glenn Wright whacks a homer off a bleacher plank to start the very next inning. They load the bases again with two outs, Ring whiffs Cuyler and you think great, we're gonna come back and win this thing but uh-uh again. Smith, their brutal catcher who looks and hits you like an oil truck, crushes a double to start the next inning. Wright singles him in and it's 2-0. Then 3-0 on a Cuyler sacrifice fly the next inning. You see what I mean? Relentless.

Ring singled in a run for himself in the 5th, but all that did was get the Buccaneers bloodthirsty. Moore walked and Smith homered to begin their 7th, Traynor, Wright and Rabbit Maranville all singled, and the slaughter was on. A walk, hit batter and two more singles later it was 10-1 and fans were running to the exits.

Most of them, anyway. Benny seems to get more fun to be around at times like this, and sure enough, here he was stuffing dollar bills in my hand and dragging me up to the back row, where his incredibly fat friend Rollo Briggs was busy betting on balls and strikes. Rollo is up there for every game with his back leaning against the same wood post like he was glued to it. Benny told him we wanted to bet on batter results instead of balls and strikes so I took the Bucs and bet on hit after hit because that's the way the win was blowing, and right about then Pittsburgh decided to go to sleep and I began losing money. Ring and Ford got doubles in the 8th and of course neither of us bet on that, either.

Rollo was giggling in the fat way he does when his whole body shakes, and he just kept taking our bills, but then the 9th happened. Carey and Jewel Ens singled for the Bucs with one out. I bet Moore would get a hit, too, Rollo didn't, and Eddie tripled in both runs! I doubled down for four straight hits, Rollo said nuts to that and Cuyler singled!

Benny got in on it now, and we gambled on Earl Smith. The oil truck singled! I was nervous suddenly but Benny was drooling like a mad dog, grabbed all my bills and threw everything down on a sixth straight hit by Pie Traynor. Ring had nothing left but he wasn't going anywhere, reared back and threw and Traynor blasted a single into center! We had ourselves a steak and ice cream dinner! Rollo almost exploded all over the grandstand, wanted to keep betting but we were already running down the aisle as Wright grounded out.

Tomorrow is the last day of school, praise God. No more sneaking for three whole months, and no more glares from Mrs. Crackerbee. What the heck will I do with my mornings?

Good night, reader-people!

PIT 011 100 705 - 15 19 1
PHL 000 010 011 - 3 6 0

Other National League games today:

REDS 6-12-0, at GIANTS 1-10-1
Another team comes down with Eppa Rixey for a change as the Cincy ace gives the Giants ten hits and but squirms out of every pickle thanks to four double play grounders. If New York had won this game there would have been a three-way tie at the top going into our game with the Pirates.

at ROBINS 8-18-1, CARDINALS 7-10-0
This one was not really as close as the score tells you because Bill Doak and the Robins had an 8-2 lead going to the 9th when the Cards went nuts with five runs, the final two unearned thanks to a goofy Johnny Mitchell error. In case anybody was wondering, Hornsby had three more hits and is holding steady with his average at . 449.

CUBS 6-9-3, at BRAVES 3-6-2
Today's slopfest at Braves Field is won by Pete Alexander. Boston ties up the game 3-3 in the 7th on three straight single-and-error plays by the Cubs, but Grantham triples in the winning runs the very next inning to make both Braves fans in the stands unhappy.

NATIONAL LEAGUE through Thursday, June 12
Cincinnati Reds3521.625
Pittsburgh Pirates3320.6230.5
New York Giants3222.5932
St. Louis Cardinals3126.5444.5
Brooklyn Robins2825.5285.5
Chicago Cubs2531.44610
Philadelphia Phillies2233.40012.5
Boston Braves1341.24121

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