“DIARY OF A WINNER”

JOHNNY EVERS

THE 1914 "MIRACLE" BRAVES
Johnny is the star on "Johnny Evers Day"

September 16, 1914 ... "Johnny Evers Day" was a great one for Johnny in particular, and the Braves in general. Twelve thousand fans saw Boston beat St. Louis in a great game by a score of 6 to 3. They saw the Braves start out in the lead, then saw the Cardinals work into a tie, and the next inning take a one run lead. They then increased their lead by another run, two innings later. Then they saw Stallings' men take the lead, and then the game remained deadlocked until the eighth-inning when the Boston captain led off with a hit. With daring baserunning he went to third on an error and scored the winning run on a sacrifice fly, while the band played "When Johnny Comes Marching Home". It was a game worth seeing, especially as the home team held their lead over the Giants who beat the Cincinnati Reds.

Evers never played better and he had plenty to do, with six putouts and five assists. He started two lightning doubleplays and scored two of the Braves six runs. Before the game started, he was presented with a silver service, a gift of the members of the club. Manager Stallings made the presentation speech. The recipient of such honors on occasions of this kind, has few opportunities to shine on, but if he has them, he infrequently fails to make the most of it. Johnny Evers was there in every way from the start, as he generally is.

He was not the whole game however as far as the Braves defense went. Rabbit Maranville, who made a slip up early in the day, undoubtedly saved the game with a wonderful play in the eighth-inning. The score was a tie, 3 to 3 and the visitors had a man on third and one on first, with two out. The two baserunners started a double steal and when catcher Bert Whaling threw the ball into the ground on his throw to second it looked as if there was no chance that the runner could be choked off at the plate. The Rabbit flashed in like a shadow however, caught the ball off the tips of his shoes, and slammed it back to Whaling, then slid 10 feet on the grass. His effort resulted in the retirement of Cozy Dolan, completing as spectacular play as there has ever been pulled off on a baseball field. The Rabbit drove in one run, and by daring baserunning was able to score the second, which tied the score in the fifth inning.

While Evers and Maranville with the most prominent performers among the Braves, Butch Schmidt also did some splendid work both in the field and at bat. Josh Devore made a running catch in center, after he took over for Possum Whitted, who also turned in some fine plays.

Lefty Tyler was sent in to start for the Braves against Perritt, who was considered the best pitcher on the Cardinals staff. Both were little wild and while the St. Louis pitcher's support was not nearly as strong as Tyler's, the Boston pitchers showed a better. Dan Griner, who relieved Pol Perritt in the eighth-inning, apparently became pissed off over a line of talk from the Rabbit and came near beaning him on one pitch and made him duck out of the way on a couple of others.

In the Braves first inning, after Herbie Moran flied out to Dolan, Evers was given a pass. Miller Huggins let Joe Connolly's slow grounder get by him, and then Whitted drew a pass to fill the bases. Butch Schmidt came up and dumped the ball along the third-base line, which Perritt could not field cleanly and Evers scored the first one of the game. With the bases still full, Red Smith struck out and Maranville forced Schmidt at second base, but the Braves now had a 1 to 0 lead.

In the second inning, Dots Miller opened with a double and went to third when Tyler mishandled a grounder from Chief Wilson. The Chief went to second on a wild pitch, but Miller stayed on third-base. He came home a moment later however, when Tyler uncorked his second wild pitch, to tie up the game.

Then in the third inning, after Tyler struck out Perritt and Dolan, he passed Miller Huggins, who he then tried to pick off first. Huggins broke for second on the throw, but neither Maranville nor Evers was covering the base. Lee Magee singled Huggins home to give the Cardinals a 2 to 1 lead.

St. Louis increased their lead in the fifth, when Zinn Beck opened with a single and went to second on Perritt's sacrifice. He then went to third on Dolan's infield single to Smith, who batted the ball down and kept it from being a double. A double steal was tried but Dolan was called out running out of the baseline, to avoid being caught by Evers. Beck held at third during the play. Huggins then singled to center to score Beck, and noticing that second base was uncovered made a break for the bag. Whitted saw it and threw to Evers, who beat Huggins out in a sprint and made a fine play.

In the bottom of the fifth, now down 3 to 1, Butch Schmidt came through with a single to start things off. Maranville singled to left, scoring Schmidt and Dolan slightly fumbled the ball allowing the Rabbit to go to second. Dolan recovered the ball and threw it to Huggins, but the ball got away from him and the Rabbit scampered to third. Whaling then lined a hot one back in Perritt who batted down the ball, picked it up and threw wildly to the plate, allowing Maranville to slide over with the tying run, making it 3 to 3.

In the eighth-inning the Braves put the game away. Evers hit one that rolled down along the third-base line and Beck threw it wildly to first. The ball rolled into right field and Evers went to third, and then scored on Connolly's sacrifice fly. Josh Devore worked a pass and came home when Schmidt hit the ball to right-center for a triple. That was it for Perritt who was pulled out and Dan Griner sent in. Red Smith scored Schmidt with a sacrifice fly and after nearly being beaned, Maranville reached first on a pass. Whaling flied out to Dolan to end the inning that the Braves now led 6 to 3.

The game took two hours and 35 minutes the play the game, which seemed unreasonably long for a nine inning contest. There was quite a lot of kicking over his decisions of the umpires by both teams. Patsy Flaherty, who once played for the Braves, was a spectator and rooted hard for his old club. Quite a number of military men were present in uniform, representing Boston's National Guard. The 9th Regiment band gave an excellent concert before the game and played "Tessie" as well as other catchy songs.

 

FENWAY PARK

 

P

C

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R

H

E

 
     

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

0

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

   

3

9

6

 
     

BOSTON BRAVES

1

0

0

0

2

0

0

3

x

   

6

10

2

 

 

W-Lefty Tyler (14-13)
L-Pol Perritt (13-12)
Attendance - 12,000

2B-Miller (StL)
3B-Schmidt (Bost)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Herbie Moran rf 4 0 1 .231  

 

Johnny Evers 2b 4 2 1 .282  

 

Joe Connolly lf 3 0 0 .304  

 

Possum Whitted cf 2 0 0 .229  

 

Josh Devore cf 1 1 0 .237  

 

Butch Schmidt 1b 5 2 3 .277  

 

Red Smith 3b 4 0 2 .251  

 

Rabbit Maranville ss 4 1 2 .246  

 

Bert Whaling c 4 0 0 .215  

 

Lefty Tyler p 4 0 1 .205  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Lefty Tyler 9 9 2 2 4  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1914 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

76 55 -

 

 

New York Giants 73 59 3 1/2

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 71 63 6 1/2

 

 

Chicago Cubs 71 64 7

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 62 69 14

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 62 71 15

 

 

Brooklyn Robins 59 73 17 1/2

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 56 76 20 1/2