RECENTLY, IN THE NATIONAL LEAGUE: Phils lose at Polo Grounds again while Vinny enjoys Luna Park...Cincy beats Bucs to tighten things a little...Rachel's father unavailable on the Sabbath...
July 6, 1924
By the time I woke up this morning there was no time to go to Brooklyn, do my proposal bit again for Mr. Stone and high-tail it back to the ball park, so I packed my bag for the long road trip and picked the batboy job instead.
It was a good thing, because the Giants batboy was out sick, no doubt sneezing into his already snotty nose, and McGraw needed me to work for his team, too. If he had his way I suppose he would rather have the players take care of their own bats, because it was pretty clear before the game even started that he didn't like anyone he didn't really know touching Giants equipment.
"Did you wash those things?" was the first thing he asked me. "You mean the bats?" I asked and he grabbed both of my wrists with his little meat hooks and shook them. "No you dunce, your hands!" I said not yet and he sent me back to the visitor club house to scrub them. The Phillie players saw me at the sink, knew what I was doing and started to needle me. "Tell that buzzard there ain't enough time to wash off smallpox!" yelled Harper, who seemed to be in a real good mood, which was surprising seeing we'd just lost three straight. Sand told me that the team was always kind of lively before a big trip because lots of the players had their dames lined up for the different cities.
I sure had the Phillie bats lined up right. Holke singled off Art Nehf with two outs in the 1st and Cy Williams cranked a ball into the high deck in deep right, and we were up 2-0! Oescheger was throwing for us, and believe me, he probably never pitched this good. The first eleven Giants went down without a fight before Youngs singled with two outs in the 3rd, and with every out I was less in the mood to go near the New York dugout. McGraw just stood there with his arms folded, staring at my hands every time they touched a Giants bat. Heck, it wasn't my fault his team is eight or so games out of first and his second best hitter George Kelly is playing like gutter swill with his average down to .262.
Jimmie Wilson hit a solo homer to start the 6th, it was 3-0, and I could feel McGraw's eye-heat on my neck without even looking at him. When I ran back to the Giants dugout to fish out Travis Jackson's bat, McGraw ripped it out of my hand, inspected the handle, then my hand again, then gave it to Jackson himself. "You're doing something here, kid, and I better not find out what it is." I said how do you know and he kicked over a ball bag, wheezed in my face and pointed out to Oescheger. "That bum's given up 149 hits in 101 innings, and we can't knock a gnat off his sleeve, that's why!" I shrugged and just said, "Well, baseball can be kind of funny" and I thought he was about to knock my head off. At that moment Jackson swung and lined a homer way out to left, the crowd went crazy and McGraw got out of my face. He didn't smile, because I'm not sure he ever has, but at least I'd live for another inning.
A Mokan sacrifice fly made it 4-1 us in the 8th, and Oescheger went back to spinning his best-ever game. After Jackson's homer he didn't allow another hit, gave them only two, and we had a big win to leave town with. The Phillies club house was just a big party and I was the girl on the cake. The Incredible Holke had four straight singles and proclaimed me the best good luck charm we'd had in a while. That was exaggerating too much, but it was true that this might've been McGraw's worst day of the year, which always meant for something.
Benny sure enjoyed it. He sent me a telegram right from Mort's where he must've been following the game:
GOOD WORK BEATING UP IRISH THUG, SPANELLI. HAVE FUN TRIP. I'LL FIND YOU SOMEWHERE.
One thing was definite: There was no way I could get over to Rachel's house like I thought I might. Our moving celebration carried me right to Pennsylvania Station, where we boarded our liner for the whole night and day trip to Ohio. I got a sleeping berth right above Heinie Sand, which was great because I wanted to hear all about San Francisco from him, and if I'm lucky the singing and card games and cigar-smoking might end by midnight. Good night, reader-people!
PHL 200 001 010 - 4 11 0
NYG 000 001 000 - 1 2 1
Other National League Games today:
BRAVES 3-11-1, at ROBINS 1-7-2
Yup, it was a strange day all around. With the Reds and Bucs off, Brooklyn and the Giants had great chances to gain some ground and clunked them both. I really hope Rachel skipped this one at Ebbets because it was their worst loss of the year. With the tough Bill Doak pitching against Boston's crummy Joe Genewich and his 1-11 record, the Robins can't do a darned thing and give the Braves their 20th win of the year.
CUBS 9-9-0, at CARDINALS 5-6-1
Boy, I don't know what's gotten into the Cards. Jacobs beats them here, Heathcote gets three hits off Dickerman and Gabby Hartnett smacks homer no. 18 on the year, two behind Fournier. Even Hornsby hits into a double play and fans with people on base. Guess they'll be happy to host the sad Giants in a few days.
|NATIONAL LEAGUE through Sunday, July 6|
|New York Giants||43||34||.558||9|
|St. Louis Cardinals||38||39||.494||14|