TIGERS, SPECTATORS LOLLYGAG IN SUN UNTIL YANKS COMBUST
By C. Jedediah Butterworth
Base Ball Freescriber
August 4, 1924
I thoroughly enjoyed my time outside the right fence yesterday with Navin Field's young ball hunters, but today I need to rest my limbs and feel something solid under my bottom, so here I am at game time back in the distant right-center bleacher section, choosing the back row for better views of the bordering leafy trees should the game disappoint.
And how cordial and generous my fan-mates are today! Apparently many of them read my missive about yesterday's hijinks, and were most appreciative. Some even offer me lemonades or bottles of pop. I decline all offers, happy to just remove my hat and let the August sun rays massage my temple as the game commences below us.
Bullet Joe Bush has been having his way with us all season, and is back on the Yankee slab for another go-round. The recently flailing New Yorkers appear to make it easy for him right away, as Dugan and Ward open with singles off Whitehill, and after Ruth skies out to Al Wingo in right—to the music of junior squeals from the ball pack just behind me on the street—Bob Meusel blisters a ball off the center field fence for a triple and 2-0 lead.
Bush begins his day by firing his usual unhittable shells. Other than a Manush walk, erased promptly with a Wingo double play, and a two-out Bassler single in the 4th, we are essentially dormant. The fans about me sag their shoulders, eye the distant field glumly, feeling the weight of the potentially sorry spectacle before them, yet I am immune to such defeatist nonsense now. Can't they feel the same glorious sun, hear the birds chirping in the trees over our shoulders? Do they not notice the small clump of non-paying spectators perched on their makeshift wooden roost across the street? We are rolling into late summer with a professional ball game to watch. Who even needs an outcome?
And to underline this notion, the Yankees tee off on their private fairway in the 5th. Schang and Bush reach with singles, Dugan knocks in Schang with a safety of his own, and Aaron Ward clubs a ball way over the left fence, as the Trumbull Avenue gang shouts and scampers around the back of the park to fetch the thing. We are behind 6-0, and a deathly silence fills the stands and bleachers, a silence I will not stand for.
"Precisely where we wanted them!" I shout, drawing a bit of laughter, but the exclamation seems to have loosened the surrounding spirits. A few boys in the stands begin lobbing peanut shells at each other, until an older man receives one off his neck, and soon a flock of adults are joining in. At one point there is a profound pause in the shell game, and all of us point to the sky. Heavens! Is that not one of those new mail delivery aeroplanes circling over the city? Its pilot taking in the game from a gull's lordly vantage point! What freedom!
It is then that Manush BAMS a double off our fence. We look back at home plate, just in time to see Bush's next offering scoot past Schang in wild fashion. Bob Jones conks a double for one run, Burke and Whitehill single for another, and the crowd and Tigers are back in the contest.
To punctuate the occasion, Bassler whangs a double to begin the last of the 6th. Heilman and Manush single and it is 6-3. Wingo fans, but Jones rips a triple to the wall below us. 6-5! Burke walks and Whitehill fans, and then Cobb, hitless on the day, grounds one out to Ward at second with a fair amount of english, causing Aaron to field it childishly and throw wide and tie the game! Any hats still on heads are tossed in the air, and our patience has paid off.
The Yanks, meanwhile, faced with yet another horrific loss, have slipped into a ghastly fever dream and halted all of their swatting. Bassler and Heilman keep our express chugging with opening singles in the 7th. Manush forces-grounds Bassler to third, and after Wingo fans again, Jones, the hero of the day, pounds his second double past Ruth, Bassler romps plateward, and Detroit has the lead! Bleacherites all about me pound my arms and back, as if it were somehow of my doing.
Shags Horan doubles to lead the Yank 9th, but this day is obviously not theirs. A line out and fly follow. Ward walks to bring up the hitless and perfectly useless Bambino, who grounds weakly to Burke to end their the Gothams' latest nightmare and drop them back under .500. on the pennant ladder.
I gather the Navin stands will be an even calmer place tomorrow.
NYY 200 040 000 - 6 11 1
DET 000 024 10x - 7 12 0
THE DAY'S OTHER AMERICAN LEAGUE CONTESTS:
SENATORS 8-13-2, at BROWNS 1-3-0
Alas, if only St.. Louis had made the day complete for us. Curly Ogden will have none of this pennant race stuff, throwing a 2-hit shutout at Sportsman's Park until Baby Doll Jacobson strikes a homer off him to lead the Brownie 9th. The Nats' two-game losing streak ends with a flourish, as they rattle the chamber with seven doubles and a triple off Danforth and others.
at WHITE SOX 7-6-0, ATHLETICS 4-11-3
A decisive lesson in how not to deserve a victory, the Mackmen nearly double the Chicago hit total but make three damaging gaffes and leave far too many mates adrift while the Sox strand just three to give Sloppy Thurston win no. 15.
at INDIANS 6-10-3, RED SOX 1-6-3
Another frightful fielding display helps give Sherry Smith an easy win and keeps the Tribe from dropping their 60th. For a last place club, Boston can wield the sticks, but tough portsiders like Smith tend to keep them quiet.
|AMERICAN LEAGUE through Monday, August 4|
|Chicago White Sox||55||50||.524||14|
|New York Yankees||52||53||.495||17|
|St. Louis Browns||50||57||.467||20|
|Boston Red Sox||45||60||.429||24|