August 2, 1924
At breakfast Mama was more interested in asking me Cy Williams questions than eating. Is he married? Does he drink bootleg liquor? Is he nice to the other players? That sort of thing. I had nothing to tell her and wasn't interested anyway because my head was spinning with dark thoughts about this upcoming exhibition game Benny and me and Roy got involved in. Heinie Sand was supposed to talk to some of the Phillie players about it last night, and after the horrible day in St.Louis when Roy got kicked out of the club house for stupid racism reasons I didn't know what to expect when I got to the park today.
For that reason I took my time getting there, and dressed and set up the bats when everyone but Frank Parkinson was already on the field, and I made sure he was in the toilet first. The weather had gotten all humid again, and some of the players were shagging balls with wet cloths around their necks.
And none of them were talking to me. I finally cornered Heinie when he ran in from infield practice and when I asked how it went his voice got real quiet and he just said, "Somebody's gonna talk to you later." Oh great, big bigots Harper and Wrightstone were going to play the piano on my face and stuff me in a locker or something.
Good thing I had a ball game to watch and try not to think about this. It was a typical swatting party between these two teams, and skinny, glasses-wearing Specs Toporcer got it going for the Cards with a deep and loud triple on Johnny Couch's first pitch. Specs was already 8-for-13 in the series before this and Jack Smith knocked him in right away with a single. A Smith single, Hornsby double and scoring Bottomley fly made it 2-0 in the 3rd, and when Specs came up with a guy on second and two outs in the 4th, I could hear Benny yelling "You stink Four-Eyes!!" at him all the way from the left field bleachers.
Four-Eyes whistled a second triple over Cy's head right then to shut Benny up, scored on a third Smith single and it was 4-0 for St. Loo. We started hitting Jesse Haines in the last of the 4th, a guy who never looks sharp but somehow has a 12-5 record. This game showed why, because every time we put runs on the scoreboard they piled on more of their own. It was a Cardinal triples festival, as Hornsby and Bottomley both whacked 3-bag hits to begin the 5th, before Max Flack doubled in two more in the 7th.
Wilson knocked in two for us with a triple of his own in the 8th, and when the base path smoke cleared we were down 10-8. All this did, though, was bring on tough reliever Jesse Fowler, who after giving up a single and three straight walks got our last four guys to ice the day.
It was a rough one to lose on such a broiling day, and nobody felt like talking about anything afterwards, let alone colored ballplayers. Hod Ford walked right into the shower with his whole uniform on. I kept my head down while I cleaned up the place, waiting for a big hand to yank me aside, but it was just a bunch of thick suspense in there.
When I finally washed up, put my regular clothes back on and stepped outside, who was standing outside the door but Cy Williams. He smiled and jabbed me in the arm. "Heard about this big colored game you got going. If he's good on that cash, count us in."
I could barely talk. "Count WHO in?" I asked.
"Who do you think?" he said. "Me and Rajah. Let's get together on the day off tomorrow and talk about it." And he walked away.
Rajah? Did he mean Rogers Hornsby? The best dang hitter in the league??
I actually don't remember how I made it home.
STL 101 210 320 - 10 17 1
PHL 000 220 040 - 8 12 1
OTHER NATIONAL LEAGUE GAMES TODAY:
at GIANTS 6-11-0, PIRATES 0-4-1
The Bucs were due for a real stinker, and with their closest pennant-chasers all winning, it couldn't have happened on a better day. McQuillan throws his best game of the season, scattering just four dinky singles, and New York puts it away with four runs in the 5th against the usually tough Emil Yde.
REDS 4-9-2, at BRAVES 3-10-1
Eppa Rixey joins Mays with 15 wins, except the Braves don't make it easy for him, coming back from 4-0 with a run in the 6th and two in the 7th. Curt Walker goes 4-for-5 in the leadoff slot for Cincy. Now we'll see if the Reds can get the Buc lead below five games, because it seems like it hasn't happened since I was in bloomers.
at ROBINS 5-9-1, at CUBS 1-5-1
Grimes spits his way to a 15-8 record and Fournier bombs another homer, and Brooklyn moves up another notch with a big win on the re-slumping Cubs.
|NATIONAL LEAGUE through Saturday, August 2|
|New York Giants||58||44||.569||8|
|St. Louis Cardinals||53||50||.515||13.5|