9.16.2009

CLEANER THAN A DIAMOND'S EDGE


TIGER HOPES DASHED IN FINAL TICKS OF CAPITOL THRILLER

By Calvin J. Butterworth
Detroit Free-Enterprise

July 8, 1924

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Our second visit to this regal, sweltering city began as dramatically as the first one. It was back on May 10th when Al Wingo knocked home the game-winner off the great Walter Johnson in the top of the 13th, and although the Senators were victorious in the next three games, the memory of the opener stayed in the heads of base ball fans nationwide for some time.

Today's match of Earl Whitehill vs. Firpo Marberry appeared to lean in our direction, but the one certainty about this marvelous game is that nothing is ever certain. While Marberry threw better than he has in months, allowing Detroit just one tally in his eight innings on a Heilman double play grounder, Whitehill was even better. He retired the first thirteen Senators in succession before Rice reached on a Lu Blue gaffe in the 5th, and gave up nary a hit until Bucky Harris singled with one out in the 6th.

Indeed, all signs pointed to a complete day of frustration for the American League toppers. McNeely and Judge both flew out after the aforementioned Harris safety, and after a Rice single and Ossie Bluege walk with one out in the 7th, Peckinpaugh flied out and Muddy Ruel dribbled to Rigney. Nemo Leibold batted for the luckless Marberry to launch the Washington 8th and drew a free pass, but Harris, McNeely and Judge could no nothing with their sticks.

After Russell put down the Tigers 1-2-3 in the 9th, the Griffith Stadium horde rose to its feet and unleashed a cacophony perhaps never before heard in these base ball environs. There were tooting horns, unrestrained clapping, even the screeches of scattered females, all designed to inspire their beloved warriors.

The mighty Goose Goslin, leading both leagues in runs driven home, showed undue patience and drew a free pass on a 3-2 pitch. Sam Rice skied out to left, but Bluege also walked. Peckinpaugh then corked a single into center, deadlocking the contest as Goslin flew in, and exhausting the Earl. Ruel was due back at the dish, but Manager Cobb apparently felt more secure with a weary Whitehill, until moments ago spinning a shutout, than with a talent-starved Pillette or Stoner, because their most trustworthy option Hooks Dauss was unavailable to pitch.

With runners at first and third, the corner infielders were drawn in. Ruel is known around the circuit as a slow-footed backstop who can easily be expunged with a double play ball. But Muddy has his nickname with good reason, and as Whitehill whipped in the first pitch, Ruel squared and dropped a perfect bunt down the third base line. In ran Jones, who scooped the sphere in one motion and shoveled it to Bassler with the hope of catching Goslin. Except the bunt was too good, Goslin was too fast, and the Senators had a terrific 2-1 win and a seven-game cushion on us!

The Tiger club house was bluer than normal, but how could any witness at the field not marvel at the near-perfect play by both teams, by the sterling efforts of the two moundsman, at the grit and passion these two pennant chasers provided? Ken Holloway will face off against Curly Ogden here tomorrow, and I can hardly wait to return.

DET 001 000 000 - 1 5 1
WAS 000 000 002 - 2 4 0


Other American League games today:

at YANKEES 3-10-1, WHITE SOX 2-12-2
Chicago is falling out of its pennant tree like a crippled blackbird. In a contest eerily similar to the one in Washington, Sarge Connally takes a 2-1 advantage into the last of the 9th, only to have his luck evaporate. Pennock, Combs and Ernie Johnson all single with one out, Ruth reaches on an Eddie Collins flub to tie the game, and Meusel wins it with a line hit. Pennock receives virtually no run support for eight innings but somehow escapes with his 11th win, and the Yanks are a shocking two games over the .500 mark.

at ATHLETICS 7-12-1, INDIANS 0-4-3
Eddie Rommel, who has pitcher far better than his 5-12 record, leaves no doubt regarding his acumen today, sprinkling four singles across the scorebook and little else. Three A's runs in the 3rd and four in the 8th off George Uhle decide matters.

BROWNS 4-9-0, at RED SOX 3-10-1
Boston drops its second unnerving game in a row, leaving men on second and third with two outs in the 9th as Hub Pruett relieves Shocker and gets Ike Boone on a salty grounder.










AMERICAN LEAGUE through Tuesday, July 8
Washington Senators 5329.646
Detroit Tigers 4737.5607
Chicago White Sox 4437.5438.5
New York Yankees 4139.51311
St. Louis Browns 3745.45116
Cleveland Indians 3647.43417.5
Boston Red Sox 3546.43217.5
Philadelphia Athletics 3548.42218.5

2 comments:

  1. The White Sox are really taking a dive now. It's fun seeing the ebb and flow of the season.

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  2. You betcha. That's why a full season replay is the only way to go. Sometimes you get freak happenings that last all year (Babe Ruth's complete inability to hit his power 2-column no matter where he bats in the order is one), but over the course of 154 games, clubs tend to end up where they should. As for the Pirates, they did go all the way in 1925 so this isn't that strange.

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