THE CURSE OF THE BAMBINO, PART 2 ...
A POWERFUL RED SOX TEAM FAILS
IN THE WORLD SERIES ...
1946 WORLD SERIES, GAME #4
The Red Sox get Slaughter-ed, 12 to 3
October 10, 1946 ... The name Enos Slaughter was on the lips of 35,645 Red Sox fans and in the hearts of the St. Louis Cardinals. Appropriately named,
Slaughter made the occupants in the lower right field stands feel they were in danger, with a line drive home run in the second inning, and the Cardinals went on from there to scatter the wreckage of the Red Sox all over Fenway Park. Leading off the second inning, Slaughter's home run came
on a three and two pitch. The ball was out in the right field stands, 10 rows deep, before Sox starter, Tex Hughson could turn around to look at it.
The final score was 12 to 3, but a Red Sox batting practice pitcher named Clem Dreisewerd scored a moral victory in the process. He rushed in from the bullpen to the mound with the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth inning, to get Slaughter to pop out. That's the was accompanied with
thunderous sarcastic cheers.
And so the World Series is deadlocked at two games apiece. The Cardinals landed on the Red Sox like several loads of lumber. They made 20 hits to match the World Series record, established by the New York Giants in 1921. The 20 hits added up to 29 bases. Slaughter knocked out four hits, as
did the 20-year-old catcher, Joe Garagiola, not to mention the thirdbaseman Whitey Kurowski. But so did Red Sox right fielder Wally Moses, although the Red Sox as a team, could only manage nine.
The contest bordered on being ridiculous. Bobby Doerr walked off the field in the ninth-inning, replaced at second base by Don Gutteridge, with a migraine headache. At that point, who didn't have a headache? Every Cardinal got himself at least one hit.
For three games this World Series it has been one episode after another of great pitching. There had not been a batting display of major proportions. There hadn't been spectacular playing on defense. So suddenly yesterday, St. Louis bats began spraying hits like a Fourth of July fireworks
ENOS SLAUGHTER, TERRY MOORE
& STAN MUSIAL
George Munger did a credible chore of pitching for St. Louis. He yielded nine hits, four to Moses, who incidentally never moved off first base. Ted Williams singled a sinking liner to right field in the fourth inning and Rudy York scored him with a two base blast out into right center field
near the Cardinals bullpen. Doerr got two hits, his second home run clearing the left field screen and the sidewalk, accounting for the two concluding runs in the eighth-inning.
But Munger pitched the ballgame the Cardinals needed. Only few months ago he was serving with the United States occupation forces in Germany. He didn't get discharged until August and pitched his first game on the September 5th. Nobody on the Cardinals would have thought that George could do
such a good job, pitching nine innings in a World Series.
For the Red Sox it was Hughson, who was followed by Jim Bagby, Bill Zuber, Mace Brown, Mike Ryba and Dreisewerd. After Slaughter's home run in the second inning, Kurowski banged a double off the left-field wall, and was singled home by Harry Walker. Johnny Pesky uncorked a wild throw into
the Red Sox dugout, after a pitch out that had Walker trapped off first. That put him on third base and Marty Marion brought him home, to give the Cards a 3 to 0 lead.
The Cardinals helped themselves to three more in the third, when Red Schoendinst banged a solid single to center field. Now the Red Sox started coming apart at the seams. Terry Moore made the sacrifice bunt, and Hughson stormed over to pick it up, bobbled it, and threw it wildly past first
base, putting Red on third and Moore on second. Stan Musial then whacked the ball between DiMaggio in center and Moses in right to bring in two more runs and knocked Hughson out. Jim Bagby came in from the bullpen with the score 5 to 0 and no outs.
He got Slaughter and even Kurowski, but with two strikes, no balls on Garagiola, he fed him a fastball that Joe parked into center field to score Musial. In the fifth inning they came up with successive doubles by Slaughter and Kurowski, followed by a single by Garagiola a pass to Walker,
and a single by Marion.
In the sixth inning the Red Sox had the bases loaded. Rudy York was on third and Johnny Pesky stroked a line drive in the right field. Slaughter caught it and in the same motion sent the ball streaking toward the plate. Rudy was 10 feet from the plate, when Garagiola caught the ball. Rudy
was out standing up, the tail end of a doubleplay.
By the way, the Cardinals scored another four runs in the ninth-inning. Tomorrow is another day and such as the unpredictable nature of the 1946 World Series, that who knows who will win. Joe Cronin tried to pass off the game as just one of those things that makes baseball so great, but he
was plainly worried about how tough the World Series was. He came up with the cliché that it is better to be beaten badly, then to lose a heartbreaker. He mused that he can only hope that the bats come alive soon.