TED WILLIAMS GREETED AT HOME
THE CURSE OF THE BAMBINO, PART 2 ...
A POWERFUL RED SOX TEAM FAILS
IN THE WORLD SERIES ...
Ted Williams 3 HRs highlight
a record setting performance
July 14, 1946 ... The performance that Ted Williams had in the All-Star game five days ago, must have been just a warm-up, because today
he unloaded his most prolific day as a member of the Red Sox. He smashed three home runs in one game, along with a single, in the opening game of a doubleheader at Fenway Park. The Sox won both ends, 11-10 and 6-4, thus widening their league over the New York Yankees who were beaten twice by Detroit to 11 games.
The Kid became the 56th player in the history of baseball to have three home runs in a single-game. Bobby Lowe, Lou Gehrig and Chuck Klein are the only players to have hit four. Yet it is doubtful if any of his predecessors dominated those games the same way Ted did in today's opener. With
his 24th, 25th, and 26th home runs, he figured in nine of the eleven runs the Sox scored. He had eight RBI, his all time high, to break his tie with Bobby Doerr and take the lead in that department with 82.
The Indians were leading 5-0 when Ted slammed a Steve Gromek fastball against the back of the visiting bullpen wall, with the bases loaded, in the third inning. It was Ted's second grand slam this year and the sixth of his career. Cleveland had forged ahead again 8-6, when Ted led off the
fifth by hitting a Don Black change-up between the right field grandstand extension and the bleachers, with this one bounding high and majestically into the upper regions of the grandstand.
Once more the Tribe was out in front 10-8, when Kid settled it once and for all in the eighth inning. Lee Culberson and Johnny Pesky were aboard with two outs, when Ted pulled Joe Berry's curve down the right-field line, a few rows into the grandstand.
Second only to the Williams' phenomenal outburst, was the show put on by Lou Boudreau. Lou not only joined 13 other players, who have hit four doubles in a game, but he smacked his fifth home run of the season, in a game that saw a total of 34 hits combined for 62 bases. The scrappy
Cleveland manager's 12 total bases and Ted's 13, still trailed the major league mark of 16, shared by Gehrig, Klein, and Ty Cobb.
TED WILLIAMS &
Bobby Doerr had four singles himself in the curtain raiser and stayed ahead of Williams with a single to his double, in the closer. Bobby has 104 hits to Ted's 103 for the season. They both passed Johnny Pesky who wound up the day with 102.
The last American Leaguer to hit three home runs in a game, and the last one to do it at Fenway Park, were also present. Pat Seerey had smacked three with a triple last summer. Ken Keltner is the only other player to have done it here. He did it on May 25, 1939. Keltner also hit his ninth
home run of the season during the home run opener.
During the first game, the Indians employed their usual unorthodox shift against Ted by crowding four infielders on the right side, a move that robbed Ted of his fifth hit in his first at-bat of the game. When he came up, with nobody on base in the third inning, he had secondbaseman Jackie
Conway play in short right field, and left fielder George Case playing only a foot behind the dirt of the infield. Ted could have grabbed a gift hit by merely pushing a bunt toward third. Instead he took up the challenge and hit directly to Boudreau. The Indians used the same alignment in
the sixth inning, but ended up giving him his 95th walk of the year and again his 96th in the seventh inning.
Ted gave Jim Bagby his third win of the year in the first game, after he had come in to relieve Joe Dobson and Clem Dreisewerd. Dave Ferriss came in to save Bill Zuber in the nightcap. Zuber was wild, but went along with a five hitter until the eighth inning, when he gave up with a long fly
ball that Dom DiMaggio had to catch in the deep triangle in center field. At that point Ferriss came running in from the bullpen.