THE SUMMER OF .406 AND "THE STREAK" ...
Lefty Grove scores his 300th win
25, 1941 ... Well, Lefty Grove finally did it. And there was a lot of old fashioned justice involved in that 300th victory for the pitching patriarch of the Red Sox in that Jimmie Foxx was the guy who clinched it with his two-run triple. Foxx and his
booming bat have won a lot of games for Grove, maybe as many as 100, here and with the Athletics in days of yore. Their careers are interwoven in the baseball pattern of their times, one as a great hitter, and the other as a remarkable pitcher.
Today, it was Jimmie who finally handed Lefty his passport to baseball immortality by plastering a prodigious triple with two on in the eighth inning. Lefty threw only 38 balls of his 120 pitches and this rightly suggests that his control saved
the day. Lefty had flunked twice trying for his 300th win, and
today he didn't have it either. In the third inning, the Indians reeled off five straight hits, but Lefty pitched using control and courage.
From 1929 through 1933, with the Athletics, there was not a better pitcher in baseball. Grove won 128 and lost 33 for a .795 pitching percentage, which is a feat nobody has bettered up until now. Bob Feller may pass it someday, but Grove
leads names like Mordecai Brown, Christy Mathewson, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Walter Johnson and Cy Young, in his winning percentage over a five year span.