“DIARY OF A WINNER”

THE 1914 "MIRACLE" BRAVES
Hank Gowdy leads the Braves past Brooklyn

September 15, 1914 ... The Braves took the Robins by a 7-5 score at Fenway Park today. Bill James was touched up today for 15 hits for a total of 21 bases, and one would think that the Braves were swamped. While any pitcher who is found for nine singles and six doubles is certainly getting hit hard, James did not appear to exert himself after the Braves took a big lead. When he needed to, he pitched hard and made his pitches count. For instance in the fifth inning, with the bases full and only one out, the visitors failed to score.

Jake Daubert, Casey Stengel, Zach Wheat and Otto Miller were the men who did most of the hitting against him. They had 12 of 15 hits, each getting three apiece, and with the same bunch that got the long hits. Daubert and Miller got two doubles each while Stengel and Wheat each had one. James seemed to be able to stop any rally before it had gone too far and he struck out eight batters.

Nap Rucker was on the mound for Brooklyn and he did not appear to have too much, being relieved in the third inning by Ed Ruelbach. Raleigh Aitchison took over and pitched the last five innings, allowing only one hit, a double by Hank Gowdy in the eighth-inning.

James started out the game as wild as he is been at any point during the year. He passed Jack Dalton on four pitches and the first three he offered to Daubert were off the mark, so he had to come across with a good one. Daubert found one to his liking and sent it into left field for a double, scoring Dalton. Jake went to third on a passed ball and Stengel brought him home with a single to right-center, giving Brooklyn a 2 to 0 start.

It looked as if it was going to be a bad game for James, when with one out, Miller doubled and went to third on Rucker's out at first, to start off the second inning. Dalton then laid down a sacrifice bunt and Red Smith had to hurry his throw to Gowdy at the plate. Hank could not get his hands on the ball, which came to him on a quick bounce and so the squeeze was worked with two outs. When the ball got away from Gowdy however, Dalton tried to take second, but was thrown out on a nice throw on a slick one-handed stab by Johnny Evers.

Now down 3 to 0, the Braves got busy in their half of the second inning. After Whitted was thrown out at first, Butch Schmidt got two bases on George Cutshaw's wild throw to first. Smith was passed and the bases were filled when Dick Egan the shortstop, mishandled the Rabbit's grounder. Hank Gowdy then shot a single through Gus Getz down the third-base line to score Schmidt and Smith, making it 3 to 2.

Brooklyn came back with a run in the third inning as Daubert beat out an infield hit and went to second on Stengel's sacrifice. He scored on Wheat's double, making it 4 to 2.

Then in the Braves half of the third, they put the game away when they proceeded to manufacture a few runs. Evers singled to center and Cather singled to left to put Johnny on third. He scored on Whitted's single, and Butch Schmidt then waited and drew a pass to fill the bases. At this point Nap Rucker was pulled out of the game and Reulbach came into pitch. He passed Red Smith, bringing in Ted Cather and leaving the bases still full. Rabbit Maranville lifted a fly ball to centerfield to score Whitted. Gowdy then doubled to left to score Schmidt, but Smith was thrown out at the plate by Zach Wheat via Gus Getz. Bill James next helped his cause by poking a single to center and Gowdy scored Boston's fifth run of the inning, making it 7 to 4.

That would be the end of the Braves scoring, as Aitchison came in and pitched great ball for the rest of the game. The visitors got a run in the eighth-inning and James was put in the hole after the side should've been put out. Egan was thrown out by James, Miller singled and Aitchison flied out to Cather. Chief Meyers hit a grounder that Butch Schmidt juggled, allowing him to reach first safely. Jake Daubert doubled in Miller and the runs that would tie the score was still on second and third. But Stengel hit a sharp ground ball to the Rabbit which he scooped up at deep shor,t and made a great throw to first, just beating the runner.

With the score 7 to 5, Zach Wheat opened the ninth with a single but never made it to second base, as James buckled down to get the rest of the side 1-2-3.

Hank Gowdy caught a great game and his batting was the feature of the Braves offense. He got three of Boston's seven hits, with two doubles and a single, driving in three of the seven runs.

Rabbit Maranville had a busy day and handled all his chances very cleverly. In the eighth-inning, he saved a sure tie score with a brilliant stop of a grounder by Stengel, following this with a fine long throw to first for the third out. Johnny Evers was back in the job again and it was he who started the batting rally against Rucker in the third inning, which when it was over, apparently left the game clinched. Possum Whitted played in center field, and because of the left-handed pitchers, Ted Cather was in left, in place of Joe Connolly. The St. Louis Cardinals, who arrived here Monday night, watched the game and Miller Huggins took particular notice of the work of his two ex-Cardinal players in the outfield.

By winning the final game of the series with the Robins, the Braves increased their lead over the Giants by one full game, as New York was beaten by the Phillies. The Braves have a margin of 3 1/2 games and are breezing along at a good pace.

 

FENWAY PARK

 

P

C

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R

H

E

 
     

BROOKLYN ROBINS

2

1

1

0

0

0

0

1

0

   

5

15

2

 
     

BOSTON BRAVES

0

2

5

0

0

0

0

0

x

   

7

7

2

 

 

W-Bill James (23-7)
L-Nap Rucker (6-5)
Attendance - 6500

2B-Daubert (Bkn), Stengel (Bkn), Wheat (Bkn),
Miller (Bkn), Gowdy (2)(Bost)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Herbie Moran rf 5 0 0 .231  

 

Johnny Evers 2b 4 1 1 .282  

 

Ted Cather lf 4 1 1 .272  

 

Possum Whitted cf 3 1 1 .232  

 

Butch Schmidt 1b 3 2 0 .273  

 

Red Smith 3b 1 1 0 .248  

 

Rabbit Maranville ss 3 0 0 .244  

 

Hank Gowdy c 4 1 3 .243  

 

Bill James p 4 0 1 .265  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Bill James 9 15 3 3 8  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1914 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

75 55 -

 

 

New York Giants 72 59 3 1/2

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 71 62 5 1/2

 

 

Chicago Cubs 71 63 6

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 62 68 13

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 61 71 15

 

 

Brooklyn Robins 58 73 17 1/2

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 56 75 19 1/2