"1948"

The Best Season in Boston's Baseball History


 


 

Joe Tinker   Babe Ruth   Herb Pennock   Bill Sweeney
Died: July 27th   Died: Aug 16th   Died: Jan 30th   Died: May 26th
Ken Brett   Bill Campbell   John Curtis   Rick Miller
Born: Sept 18th   Born: Aug 9th   Born: March 9th   Born: April 19th
Bernie Williams   Dave Concepcion   Reggie Cleveland   George Foster
Born: Oct 8th   Born: June 17th   Born: May 23rd   Born: Dec 1st
Steve Garvey   Bobby Orr   Chris Chambliss   Dave Kingman
Born: Dec 22nd   Born: March 20th   Born: Dec 26th   Born: Dec 21st


 

The 1948 season was one of the most exciting that the city of Boston has ever known.  The old town monopolized the post season, for the Braves won the National League pennant, and the Red Sox were only a playoff game away from a subway series with their rivals up on Commonwealth Ave.  Bitter feelings arose between the Red Sox and Braves players in the final weeks, and a World Series between the two clubs would have been very dramatic.  There had been cross town World Series match-ups in Chicago, New York, and St. Louis but never had it happened in Boston. 

Baseball had a renaissance after World War II and nowhere greater than in Boston. The Braves had finished third in 1947 and attracted close to 1.3 million fans under manager Billy Southworth.  Since Southworth took over in 1946, the Braves had been slowly creeping upward in the National League standings.  The time was right for a legitimate run at the pennant, which had eluded the Braves fans since their "Miracle" back in 1914, when they went from last to first, starting in July.

The Red Sox, in contrast, had a disappointing season in 1947 after running away with the American League pennant in 1946.  But they still maintained their supremacy in attendance by drawing over 1.4 million of the Boston fans to Fenway Park.  Changes were made to the Red Sox, starting with manager Joe Cronin being promoted upstairs to the front office and being replaced by Joe McCarthy who came to Boston with nine first place finishes on his resume.  Tom Yawkey had also picked up numerous players in the off-season from the St. Louis Browns, such as Jack Kramer, Vern Stephens and Ellis Kinder.

The Braves and the Red Sox squared off twice in Florida.  On March 31st, the Braves beat the Sox 4-1 in Bradenton, and on April 4th, it was the Sox who took away a 3-1 victory in Sarasota.  Baseball officially commenced at Braves Field on April 16th before 12,630 fans.  The Red Sox slugged the Braves by a 19-6 score, putting up runs in every inning, and driving Johnny Sain from the mound in the second inning, with Ted Williams hitting a homer over the centerfield wall.  But the excitement was heightened when the Braves' Earl Torgeson got into a brawl with Billy Hitchcock.  The "City Series" resumed at Fenway Park on April 17th.  This time the Braves lost, but only by a score of 2-1.  The game was decided in the last of the ninth via a walk-off base hit from Johnny Pesky.  The next day, on April 18th, the Braves managed to take the last of the three games by a 3-2 margin, with Warren Spahn going the distance.  The Braves then left for their season opener in Philadelphia, while the Sox opened the season at Fenway Park.

There was Ted Williams and Vern Stephens in Kenmore Square and Warren Spahn and Johnny Sain, a short walk up Commonwealth Ave.  Fans could watch Dom DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky and Bobby Doerr play on Saturday and then take the trolley and see Tommy Holmes, Bob Elliott, Alvin Dark and Eddie Stanky play on Sunday.  It was a beautiful summer indeed. 

 

 


1948 BOSTON BRAVES
SPAHN & SAIN and PRAY FOR RAIN ...

The 1948 Braves were strengthened in every department over the 1947 team. For the outfield they bought slugger Jeff Heath from the St. Louis Browns, got Jim Russell from Pittsburgh, and drafted Clint Conaster from Buffalo. The infield had a new keystone combination consisting of Al Dark, a rookie shortstop acquired from Milwaukee to play alongside secondbaseman Eddie Stanky. New pitcher's included Vern Bickford, a competitive right-hander from Milwaukee, Bobby Hogue, a relief pitcher from Dallas, and in June, they picked up Nelson Potter. To help Phil Masi with the catching, Bill Salkeld had been picked up from Pittsburgh.

ALVIN DARK

This gave Billy Southworth a team experienced, but still with the question of whether, the veterans would have good seasons once again, and would the Al Dark come through at shortstop. Dark, while not the slickest fielding shortstop in Braves history, was an outstanding competitor, the kind that would go from first the third on a bunt or cash a pop fly with his bare hands. A Marine flyer during the war, Dark signed with the Braves for $40,000 in 1946. In 1947 he helped Milwaukee win the American Association playoffs.

Southworth did a great job of bringing the Braves players together, most of whom were veterans who had some limitations in one department or the other. The brusque a little manager manipulated his lineup so as to get the maximum results with the talent at his disposal.

The National League's most valuable player in 1947 was Bob Elliott. His average dropped to .283 in 1948, but he knocked in 100 runs and hit 23 home runs.

SIBBY SISTI

Until he broke his ankle in midseason, Eddie Stanky was the spark plug. When he was hurt, Sibbi Sisti step in at second base and played as he never had before and never would again. The Braves did as well with Sisti as they did with Stanky, and some objected when Stanky returned to the lineup for the World Series.

Tommy Holmes not only led the team in hitting with a .325 average, but he actually saved the Braves four straight losses in St. Louis when he threw out Stan Musial at the plate from right-field in the ninth-inning. Earl Torgeson and Phil Masi both slumped, batting .253, but they played steady defense and Torgy was safe the first 14 times he tried to steal a base.

Where the Braves really excelled was in the pitching department. Warren Spahn was the southpaw ace, winning 15 games, and Vern Bickford had an 11-5 record in his first season. The big wheel however, was Johnny Sain, whose 24–15 record made him a 20 game winner for the third successive season.

The Braves led the National League just about all summer and held off a charge by the Dodgers at the end of the season, to win the pennant by 6 1/2 games.

The road to the pennant began in Florida.  The Braves returned to Bradenton after spending the previous two spring trainings in Ft. Lauderdale.  The Braves made headlines on March 6th when they acquired secondbaseman Eddie Stanky from the Dodgers.

Manager Billy Southworth was a by-the-book regimentarian, using a clip board and a stop-watch to judge his recruits.  They were broken up into groups and followed a regular practice schedule.  Practice ended at 4PM and Southworth instituted an 11:30 curfew.

The team started off slowly on the road.  The Phillies took the first two games of the season, but the Tribe salvaged the road trip by taking the third game on April 22nd, before returning back to Boston.

On April 23rd, Braves Field was decked out in red, white and blue bunting as 11, 553 hearty fans.  The field was in fine shape as the day was cold and chilly.  Hank Gowdy, the former member of the 1914 Miracle Braves returned to Braves Field as a member of the New York Giants coaching staff.  The Pat Sands Orchestra provided some of the music, competing with the infamous Troubadours for the fans' attention.  The Troubadours entertained the crowd by playing "Three Blind Mice" when the umpiring crew made their appearance.  The Giants, however, scored all the runs they would need in the first inning against Warren Spahn.  The Giants ended up sweeping the four game series to give the Tribe their fifth loss in six games.

The Braves came back to win on April 26th. They handcuffed the National League champion Brooklyn Dodgers, 5 to 0 on the brilliant three hit pitching of Bill Voiselle. Bob Elliott blasted a long line double off the left-field fence to drive home the first and only run Voiselle needed. In the next game, on April 27th, Red Barrett pitched himself a six hit 3 to 2 victory. Barrett had a bit of help from Bob Elliott, who drove in all the runs.

Warren Spahn shutout the Phillies, 7-0 at Braves Field on April 28th.  The Braves then went to the Polo Grounds and on April 30th, they presented Johnny Sain with his first victory of the season. It was a neat 7 to 2 triumph with three homers. Tommy Holmes started the performance by hitting a terrific 375 four drive well up into the top balcony in left. The second smash was the prize of them all in that won the ballgame. It was hit by Bob Elliott the third inning with two of his teammates aboard. After this, Jeff Heath caught a fast pitch and deposited almost into the same spot where Holmes had hit his.

On May 1st Bobby Hogue curbed a Giants' seventh-inning rally to preserve Bill Voiselle's 6 to 3 victory and knock New York out of first place.   The Braves (6-8) had now won five of their last six, and took two of three in New York.  They were in 5th place, 3 games out of first.

They moved on to Pittsburgh and lost one game and then to Cincinnati and swept a rain-shortened two game series from the Reds. On May 7th, Bill Voiselle got his third straight victory of the season, riding a two run Eddie Stanky single in the sixth inning. They came from behind on May 8th, 3 to 2, as Clint Conaster hit an eighth-inning single to climax a three-run rally, chasing Jim Russell home with the winning run.

Three consecutive shutouts by Johnny Sain in St. Louis on May 10th, Bill Voiselle in Chicago on May 13th and Warren Spahn in Brooklyn on May 15th, pushed the Braves up the standings.  They concluded a series in Brooklyn by knocking out 18 hits and scoring 12 runs on May 17th Tommy Holmes' (.400 BA) hot bat earned him the major league lead in batting in mid May. 

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
05/05/1948 6-9 7th -4  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 3-2 Johnny Sain 1-2
05/07/1948 7-9 5th -3  at Cincinnati Reds W 4-3 Bill Voiselle 3-0
05/08/1948 8-9 5th -3  at Cincinnati Reds W 3-2 Red Barrett 2-1
05/09/1948 8-10 6th -3 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals L 6-4 Warren Spahn 1-2
05/10/1948 9-10 4th -2 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 6-0 Johnny Sain 2-2
05/13/1948 10-10 5th -2 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 2-0 Bill Voiselle 4-0
05/15/1948 11-10 4th -2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 1-0 Warren Spahn 2-2
05/17/1948 12-10 3rd -2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 12-3 Johnny Sain 3-2
 

The Braves returned home and played .500 baseball. The lost 2 of 3 to Pittsburgh, but on May 19th, Vern Bickford got the start and pitched a brilliant five hit, 4 to 1 victory. They split a series with the Cardinals. On May 21st, Warren Spahn wrecked the six-game winning streak of the Cardinals, with a 3 to 1 victory over the league leaders. Spahn scattered seven base hits and missed a shutout by a single pitch.

After losing two to the Dodgers, they split a doubleheader with the Phillies on May 31st. After they blew the opening game, 6 to 3, Spahn and a 13 hit barrage ended a four-game losing streak for the Tribe, 10 to 4, as a six run explosion in the fifth inning enabled him to coast home. The month ended, with the Braves finishing May with a 17-17 record and in fourth place. 

As June began, the Braves got hot, winning 8 out of 10 games. With Johnny Sain holding the Pittsburgh Pirates to three scattered hits, and Jeff Heath and Earl Torgeson furnishing the power, the Braves launched their second road trip with a 5 to 1 win over the Pirates on June 2nd. Two days later, on June 4th, they exploded with a seven run seventh inning that enabled them to wipe out a Pirate lead and score a 10 to 7 victory. Jim Russell's three run homer climaxed the tribes uprising.

After splitting the Pirates series, they swept the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Sain (5-4) won his fifth game, as he put down the Chicago Cubs on four hits with a 1 to 0 victory, on June 6th.

In the second game at Wrigley Field on June 7th, Jim Russell pounded his way into the baseball record books, as the Braves scored a 9 to 5 victory over the Cubs. The Braves outfielder hit two home runs, one swinging right-handed and the other swinging left-handed. On top of the two blasts, Russell knocked out a couple of doubles, batted in five runs and scored three himself as he enjoyed a near perfect day. On June 8th, Vern Bickford threw a four hitter, giving the Boston Braves a lopsided 11 to 1 demolition of the hopeless Cubs and the sweep.

On June 9th, the Braves walloped the Cardinals in St. Louis, by an 11 to 5 score. Fourteen hits bounced off the Braves bats, along with four St. Louis errors and seven free passes handed out by the Cardinals pitchers. Then the next night, June 10th, Sain put down the Cardinals on seven hits. Bob Elliott ended a long slump by crashing out four hits and drawing a walk. Finally, on June 11th, the Braves went into first place after winning six in a row and eight of their last ten.  They staged a sparkling come from behind sweep of the three-game series with the Cardinals, taking the finale 7 to 3. 

After losing a doubleheader in Cincinnati, the team bounced back to sweep a second doubleheader on June 13th. The Braves made a sensational comeback in the first game.  Trailing 6-0 after six innings, they scored four runs in the seventh and four in the ninth, with the winning run being driven in by Eddie Stanky to win, 8 to 7. A three run homer by Bob Elliott and a three run double by Clyde Shoun highlighted the second game, a 10 to 5 victory, in which Cincinnati ace, Ewell Blackwell was driven to the showers.

They headed back to Boston, tied with the Giants for the National League leadership. In last place during the first week of the season, the Braves have made a magnificent drive to the top of the National League.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
06/02/1948 18-17 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates W 5-1 Johnny Sain 4-4
06/03/1948 18-18 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 5-3 Bill Voiselle 4-3
06/04/1948 19-18 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates W 10-7 Bobby Hogue 1-1
06/05/1948 19-19 5th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 8-7 Vern Bickford 2-2
06/06/1948 20-19 4th -3  at Chicago Cubs W 1-0 Johnny Sain 5-4
06/07/1948 21-19 4th -2 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 9-5 Red Barrett 3-2
06/08/1948 22-19 3rd -2  at Chicago Cubs W 11-1 Vern Bickford 3-2
06/09/1948 23-19 3rd -1 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 11-5 Warren Spahn 5-3
06/10/1948 24-19 2nd -1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 10-2 Johnny Sain 6-4
06/11/1948 25-19 1st +1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 7-3 Bill Voiselle 5-3
06/12/1948 25-20 2nd -1/2  at Cincinnati Reds L 3-2 Red Barrett 3-3
25-21 2nd -1 L 11-9 Red Barrett 3-4
06/13/1948 26-21 2nd -1  at Cincinnati Reds W 8-7 Bobby Hogue 2-1
27-21 1st - W 10-5 Jim Prendergast 1-1
 

Johnny Sain won for the first time at Braves Field on June 15th.   Then the Braves staged two come-backs to sweep a doubleheader from the Cubs on June 17th. They then came back against the Reds for a 5-4 win on June 18th. Next, it was Sain (8-4) shutting out Cincinnati, 5-0, on June 19th. During his last five complete and winning games, Sain held the opposing team to just four earned runs.

Backed by the surprisingly good pitching of both Red Barrett and Vern Bickford on June 20th, the Tribe took both ends of a doubleheader, making it 18 wins in their last 23 games. Tommy Holmes (.362 BA) continued to lead the Braves hitting attack.  Earl Torgeson extended his perfect stolen base streak to 14 of 14.

The St. Louis Cardinals next came in and took three straight games, to sweep the series, only one half game behind the Braves. But the Braves bounced back, taking 2 of 3 from Pittsburgh. On June 25th, home runs by Jim Russell and Holmes led the Braves to a 12 to 3 win. On June 27th, the Braves protected their first place lead with a 9 to 1 victory. Clint Conaster knocked in three runs to help Johnny Sain notched his ninth victory of the season. Conaster knocked home the winning run in the second inning by drilling a two run single that gave the Braves a 2 to 0 lead.

They next took 2 of 3 from the Giants, to open a 2 1/2 game lead in the National League, as July began.  On June 30th, Bill Voiselle gave the Braves a 3 to 1 It was his eighth win of the year. Johnny Sain became the first National League pitcher to win his 10th game on July 1st. They finished their homestand in first place by 2 1/2 games.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
06/15/1948 28-21 1st +1  Chicago Cubs W 6-3 Johnny Sain 7-4
06/16/1948 28-22 1st -  Chicago Cubs L 8-5 Red Barrett 3-5
06/17/1948 29-22 1st -  Chicago Cubs W 7-6 Bill Voiselle 6-3
30-22 3rd +1/2 W 8-7 Bill Voiselle 7-3
06/18/1948 31-22 1st +1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 5-4 Clyde Shoun 3-0
06/19/1948 32-22 1st +1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 5-0 Johnny Sain 8-4
06/20/1948 33-22 1st +1 1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 4-1 Vern Bickford 4-2
34-22 1st +1 1/2 W 5-4 Red Barrett 4-5
06/21/1948 34-23 1st +1 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals L 1-0 Warren Spahn 5-4
06/22/1948 34-24 1st +1  St. Louis Cardinals L 5-2 Bill Voiselle 7-4
06/24/1948 34-25 1st +1 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals L 11-2 Johnny Sain 8-5
06/25/1948 35-25 1st +1 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 12-2 Warren Spahn 6-4
06/26/1948 35-26 1st +1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates L 7-1 Bill Voiselle 7-5
06/27/1948 36-26 1st +1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 9-1 Johnny Sain 9-5
06/29/1948 36-27 1st +1/2  New York Giants L 11-3 Warren Spahn 6-5
06/30/1948 37-27 1st +1 1/2  New York Giants W 3-1 Bill Voiselle 8-5
07/01/1948 38-27 1st +2 1/2  New York Giants W 4-1 Johnny Sain 10-5
 

The Braves, in fierce competition with other big league teams, signed an 18-year-old left-handed pitcher who just graduated from high school. Johnny Antonelli was given a bonus of $52,000. The big outlay of cash to an untried schoolboy annoyed veteran players. None were more annoyed than Johnny Sain and to appease him the Braves gave him a new contract before the All-Star game that covered the balance of the 1948 season as well as 1949.

The Braves went on the road to Philly, as July started, taking the first two games of the series and extending their National League lead to four games.  On July 3rd, Bob Elliott smashed two homers. He had four home runs in three successive games.

On July 6th, with Vern Bickford pitching four hit ball and Frank McCormick ripping off his first home run of the season, the Braves successfully fought a 4 to 3 battle with the Giants at the Polo Grounds.

Although Eddie Stanky broke his ankle in the third inning during a collision with Brooklyn thirdbaseman, Bruce Edwards on July 8th at Ebbets Field, the Braves beat the Dodgers in the final game of the road trip, thanks to Jim Russell's grand slam.  Stanky had been scheduled the be the National League's starting secondbaseman in the All Star Game. The Braves (43-31) returned home after a .500 road trip still 2 1/2 games in first.

Alvin Dark (.333 BA) continued on his splendid hitting spree. Starting on June 19th he had hit safely in 23 successive games. Over that stretch he had gotten 39 hits in 91 times at bat for a .425 batting average. In 13 of the games he had connected safely more than once.

Johnny Sain picked up his 11th victory of the year and turned in his 13th complete game, as he rode to a soft victory over the Phillies by a 13 to 2 score on July 9th. They edged the Phillies 4 to 3, the next night. Big Bill Voiselle came within one out of racking up his sixth complete game but he was forced out with the tying run on first in the last of the ninth. In the final game on July 11th, sparked by Connie Ryan, filling in for the injured Eddie Stanky, the Braves defeated the Phillies 9 to 4 and swept the three-game series. The Braves, after sweeping the series with the Phillies, held a 5 1/2 game lead over the Pirates at the All-Star break.

Although Boston players figured prominently in the All Star Game, none did so as dramatically as Johnny Sain. He relieved Johnny Schmitz, the Cubs southpaw and losing pitcher, in the fourth inning. He retired five men in succession before giving away to a pinch-hitter, striking out three men in row on 13 pitches in the fifth inning, two of them being Vern Stephens and Bobby Doerr of the Red Sox.

After the break the Braves went on the road. They took 2 of 3 from the Cubs in Chicago.  On July 16th, the Braves won a slugfest, 12-10, coming from behind three times for their sixth consecutive win.

With Nelson Potter and Vern Bickford pitching superbly, and Jeff Heath, Alvin Dark and Bob Elliott slamming home runs, the Braves captured one of their most important doubleheaders of the season, as they battered the Pirates, 10 to 2 and 3 to 1 on July 18th.

ALVIN DARK

The Braves thus zoomed into an eight game lead in the National League pennant race. They dumped the Pirates into fourth place, 8 1/2 games behind and gained a full game on both the Cardinals and the Dodgers, who split a doubleheader in St. Louis.

But the Braves' fortunes started to slide. They won only two of their last seven decisions on their post All Star Game road trip, finished it with a 6-6 record, but managed to keep their National League lead at 5 games, thanks to late inning heroics by Bob Elliott in their last game against the Cardinals on July 25th. Elliott's clutch home run, with two aboard in the ninth, brought the Tribe back, rescuing them from a desperate situation, after losing three straight to the second place Cardinals.

The Braves came home to sweep a series with the Pittsburgh Pirates.  On July 27th, the Braves defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates behind Nelson Potter's six hit pitching, by a score of 5 to 1. Ralph Kiner, of the Pirates, hit his 28th home run in the first inning, but the Braves offset it with a two run round tripper by Phil Masi, and Clint Conaster's first big-league homer.

The next day, July 28th, the Braves hustled and polished off the Pittsburgh Pirates, 8 to 2, behind Vern Bickford's six hit pitching. Bill Voiselle batted and pitched a 2 to 1 triumph over the Pirates on July 29th. He pounded out his fifth hit of the season in the second inning, to provide his own winning margin for his 11th triumph of the year. His pitching in the clutch was terrific and it overshadowed his stick work, even though his base hit won the game.

After losing the first game of the series with the Cardinals, the Braves staged their greatest comeback of the season on July 31st. A base clearing triple by the almost forgotten Sibbi Sisti, in the ninth-inning, gave the Braves a 7 to 6 walkoff win. 

But the Braves lost two of three to the Cardinals to start August, then lost three of four to the Reds. In the final game of the series with the Reds, on August 5th, Earl Torgeson drilled a hit into left-center for a triple, scoring Tommy Holmes and Alvin Dark for a 6 to 4 victory. The hit ended the Braves four-game losing streak. The relief pitching of Bobby Hogue, blanked the Reds over the final three innings, on one infield hit.

The Cubs came in and, after losing the first game, the Braves staged a seventh-inning rally that dissolved a 3 to 3 deadlock, to score an impressive 6 to 3 win. It gave Johnny Sain his long overdue 14th victory on August 7th. The next day, the Braves knocked out 10 base hits for a 6 to 3 win over the Cubs before 41,527 fans at Braves Field that afternoon. It was the largest crowd to see a game in two seasons. Bob Elliott paced the team with a perfect day on a pair of doubles and two passes, driving in two runs. 

Terrific homers by Elliott and Jeff Heath provided the power behind Sain's 15th win on August 11th against the Giants. It was a win that gave them a even split in that series.

On August 12th, Sibby Sisti was on third in the ninth inning of a tie game. Elliott came to the plate and Ralph Branca's first pitch was a curveball in the dirt, that bounced between Roy Campanella's legs all the way to the backstop. Sisti charged in from third, sliding underneath Branca for the winning walkoff run, as the Braves won their opener from the Brooklyn Dodgers with a 2 to 1 score.

On August 14th, the Braves roared back in the bottom of the ninth-inning, to get by the Dodgers in an exciting, 4 to 3, come from behind win. Entering the ninth, the Braves were two runs down and came up with a thrilling three run rally. The Braves now had a 17-13 record in one-run games, but won only two of the five games in the Brooklyn series.

Their lead was dwindling by mid August as Southworth was booed after using Al Lyons, a pitcher, as a pinch-hitter for Jeff Heath. Then Jim Russell was hospitalized with a heart condition. The Braves finished their homestand winning 10 of the 20 games. They had slumped since the All-Star game, starting the second half with a 5 1/2 game lead in the National League.  They left Braves Field only 2 games ahead of the Dodgers and 2 1/2 ahead of the Cardinals.

TOMMY HOLMES

On August 17th, the Braves traveled to New York to meet the Giants at the Polo Grounds. Behind the six hit pitching of Bill Voiselle, they trounced the Giants by a 10-2 score. The silent bats of the Braves finally became loaded with tremendous power. Clint Conaster rattled a tremendous home run and a triple, along with a single, to lead the 14 hit attack against three Giants pitchers.

After splitting with the Giants at the Polo Grounds, the Braves moved on to Ebbets Field for another showdown with the Dodgers. The Braves got knocked out of first place by percentage points, when the Dodgers took the opening game of the doubleheader by an 8 to 7 score on August 21st. Atop Ebbets Field are the banners arranged in the standings of the National League. It was a wild scene when the Braves banner was switched around for the one of the Dodgers after the first game. The Braves had been wearing the crown since June 13th, 69 days altogether. But in slightly more than two hours, Warren Spahn had slipped his teammates back into their thin one-game lead with a four hitter and a 2 to 1 victory. Spahn pitched one of his best games of the season. He had a shutout until the ninth-inning and allowed only but one man to reach second base. Tommy Holmes (.319 BA), who hadn't knocked in a run in 23 games, drove in two runs in the first game.

On August 22nd, the Brooklyn Dodgers stole eight bases, five in one inning, but the Braves won the game on a clutch eight inning home run from Clint Conaster. The Braves took three games of the four game series, and as a result, they knocked Brooklyn out of second place and moved on to St. Louis with a 2 1/2 game lead over the Cardinals, and a three-game lead over the Dodgers.

Against the second place Cardinals and their ace, Harry Brecheen, the Braves, led by Tommy Holmes (.319 BA) increased their National League lead to 3 1/2 games in a 9-3 rout on August 24th. The next day, August 25th, the Braves opened up more daylight on their two chief contenders for the National League lead, behind Warren Spahn's seven hit, 2 to 0 shutout over the Cardinals.  They had won five straight from the Dodgers and Cardinals and were ahead by 4 1/2 games.

The  team then moved on to Chicago and Pittsburgh and the Braves lost six out of seven games to the Cubs and the Pirates. The team just stopped hitting and left runners on base at an alarming rate (18 in the Pittsburgh series). On August 29th they dropped from the top of the National League. The Braves appeared to be a listless baseball team, returning from their road trip. As one National League umpire said before the team left Cincinnati, he had never seen a team fighting for a pennant with such a lack of enthusiasm.  They finished their road trip, taking 2 of 3 from Cincinnati, going 9-9 and in second place, 1/2 game behind the Dodgers.

TOMMY HOLMES
& JOHNNY SAIN

After a day off, the Phillies came to Braves Field and Johnny Sain got his 17th victory of the year, and just missed a shutout on September 3rd.  The win put Braves back on top of the N.L., with the Dodgers losing both ends of a doubleheader to the Giants. 

On September 4th, after blowing a 3 to 1 lead in the seventh inning of the first game, and losing 4 to 3, the Braves bounced back to beat the Phillies 8 to 1. The Tribe may well have had a double victory, but Bill Voiselle was the victim of some ragged defense in the seventh inning of the opening game.

On September 5th, Red Barrett steered the Braves to a 5 to 1 victory over the Phillies. Barrett, leading 2 to 1 in the fifth inning, rode on to a safer margin with the help of Frank McCormick's three-run double to right. He chalked up his third straight win and issued no walks for his second consecutive time.

The Braves took three of the four games with Philadelphia to move two games out in front of the Dodgers. In their last five wins, Braves pitchers had only allowed one run in each game.

And so, as the Dodgers came to Boston, the showdown series became one of the most important ones that the Braves had played in years. And nothing did the Tribe more good than the double victory over the Dodgers at Braves Field on September 6th, which gave them a four game lead over Brooklyn. Warren Spahn pitched perhaps the best game of the season, winning the opener 2 to 1 in 14 innings, allowing only five hits and picking Jackie Robinson off base two times. Torgeson's double in the 14th inning was the winning hit. Johnny Sain then won the seven inning nitecap 4-0, as the fans roared their approval to see the Braves, for the first time in many long years, actually win games they needed to win.

Two days of rain followed two days off in Philadelphia.  Manager Southworth trotted out Spahn and Sain again and the two aces again dominated the Phillies in sweeping both ends of a doubleheader on September 11th. After splitting a second doubleheader with the Phillies, the Braves beat the Cubs after a travel day back to Boston, as Johnny Sain won his 20th game. The next day Warren Spahn beat the Cubs.

After a day off, the second place Pirates came to Braves Field on September 17th and fell to Sain (21-14). The next day Spahn (15-10) won again also. Spahn and Sain had won eight of the last ten games that the Braves played.

On September 19th, the Braves came from behind to pin a 4 to 2 defeat on the Cincinnati Reds, in a game that saw Eddie Stanky come off the bench to deliver a base hit that helped tied the score in the seventh inning. In doing so the Braves won their six straight game and twelfth in their last thirteen outings.

The Braves were knocking at the door when they swept a doubleheader from the Cardinals on September 21st. Sain played an integral part once more in winning his 22nd game of the season. The big right-hander pitched his sixth complete game and got his sixth win in the Braves' last eleven games in the opener.

They coasted to the pennant, which was clinched a week before the season ended with a 3 to 2 victory over the Giants, on September 26th in Boston. Bob Elliott belted a three run home run in the first inning that gave them the runs they needed.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
09/14/1948 80-58 1st +5  Chicago Cubs W 10-3 Johnny Sain 20-14
09/15/1948 81-58 1st +5  Chicago Cubs W 5-2 Warren Spahn 14-10
09/17/1948 82-58 1st +5 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 6-2 Johnny Sain 21-14
09/18/1948 83-58 1st +6  Pittsburgh Pirates W 2-1 Warren Spahn 15-10
09/19/1948 84-58 1st +6  Cincinnati Reds W 4-2 Clyde Shoun 5-0
09/20/1948 84-58 1st + 5 1/2  Cincinnati Reds pp  
09/21/1948 85-58 1st +6 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals W 11-3 Johnny Sain 22-14
86-58 1st +7 1/2 W 4-0 Vern Bickford 9-5
09/22/1948 86-59 1st +7  St. Louis Cardinals L 8-2 Warren Spahn 15-11
09/25/1948 86-60 1st +6  New York Giants L 3-2 Johnny Sain 22-15
09/26/1948 87-60 1st +6  New York Giants W 3-2 Vern Bickford 10-5
 

The Braves celebrated proudly with the players pounding each other on the back as Stanky and Southworth hugged each other. It took 34 years, a dozen managers and "Three Steam Shovels" to bring Boston the first National League pennant since the legendary miracle men of George Stallings. As the Braves fanatics whooped it up after last out, to the band playing "Tessie", a lone figure was seen moving slowly off the playing field. He had on a New York Giants uniform but was weeping tears of joy. His name was Hank Gowdy and he was a hero of the 1914 World Series victory over the Athletics. He was not a part of the victory celebration, but he could not keep back the floodgates of the memory.

It was Stan Musial and not Johnny Sain who was voted the National League's most valuable player for 1948. But in a period of 19 days, from September 3rd to September 21st, Sain had pitched and won six games for the Braves.

The Braves went into the World Series against Cleveland with one of their heaviest hitters on crutches. Jeff Heath broke his ankle sliding home at Brooklyn four days before the season ended. He had batted .310 and walloped 20 homers, while knocking in 77 runs.

Although tired after winning a six-game series to put them in a playoff with the Red Sox, the Indians were favored to win the World Series, having a more younger and better balanced team than the Braves. The Indians came through because, while the Braves pitching was good, their pitching was excellent.

In Game #1 at Braves Field, Johnny Sain pitched the Braves to a 1 to 0 victory. The man showed that he was a much more resourceful pitcher than his counterpart Bob Feller, thanks to an eighth-inning single by Tommy Holmes. For seven innings Sain and Feller had matched each other and were tossing a shutout. It seemed that this game might go into overtime, so brilliant were the ace right-handers, each of whom was tops in their respective league.

Bill Salkeld was the first Braves hitter in the last of the eighth he went down to first base on a base on balls. Phil Masi came in to pinch run for Salkeld at first. Mike McCormick laid down a perfect bunt on the first pitch. As Feller threw McCormick out at first, Masi scooted down to second. Sain then lined out to Walt Judnich, in right field. That brought Holmes to the plate and  he drove a low line drive to the right of Ken Keltner at third. It was going safely into left field and Masi took off like a shot and with his cap in his hand, he scored the one and only run of the game which turned out to be the game-winner.

Sain yielded only four hits and they were all singles. He was cool, tough, and delivered in the clutch. He felt that one run would be all that he needed. Never was it better than when it happened in the eighth-inning.

Game #2 went to the Indians, a 4 to 1 victory. The Indians found Warren Spahn to be a pushover. He pitched three scoreless innings and then started slipping in the fourth, fading out of the picture by the fifth inning.

Spahn pitched a perfect opening inning, and in the bottom half, the Braves were the first to crack open the game when Dark came up and slapped a roller at Joe Gordon. Gordon fumbled it for an instant, but it was enough for the speedy Dark to beat his throw. The Braves took advantage and didn't hesitate to cash in. Earl Torgeson took a called strike and then lined a single to right, allowing Dark to get over to third. That seemed to shake up Lemon, who fired two balls to Bob Elliott. On the next pitch Bob slashed it vigorously over Boudreau's head for a clean single and Dark walked home with the first run of the game.

But after that they were throttled by Bob Lemon. The Braves put the pressure on him in the second inning, the fourth and the sixth inning, but he took care of the Tribe in the clutch, baffling them with a sinker ball that was very effective.

Lou Boudreau was the leadoff hitter for the Indians in the fourth. He pushed a ball into right field for a double and that brought up Gordon. He atoned for his miscue and pulled a single into left field. Boudreau was off with the crack of the bat and didn't stop as he turned third. There wasn't even a chance to nail him and Gordon took off for second, as Torgeson cut off the ball and the game was tied. Working carefully, Spahn eliminated Ken Keltner on a foul pop up, but Larry Doby, who had doubled off Spahn in the second inning, came through again, as Spahn got himself in a three and one hole. On the next pitch Doby sent a line drive into right field that scored Gordon and put the Indians ahead.

Lou Boudreau was a one-man show. He not only scored the first Cleveland run but knocked in the game clincher. Dale Mitchell opened the fifth with a single to left. Allie Clark sacrificed him over to second and that brought up Boudreau. Spahn got in the hole, three and one, and then Lou drove the next serve back through the box into centerfield, scoring Mitchell with the third Cleveland run.

The Braves committed three errors in the game and allowed the Indians to run them out of the park. They permitted a cheap fly ball to fall in for a hit and run and looked like a jittery sandlot baseball team rather than a club fighting for the world title.

In Cleveland, Gene Bearden, who pitched the Cleveland Indians into the World Series, put his club within two games of winning it. Four days after he put down the Red Sox in the American League showdown, he blinded the Boston Braves with a dipping knuckleball in Game #3. He shut the Braves out, 2 to 0, giving his team a 2 to 1 edge in the series.

Bearden was a one-man show, shutting out the Braves on 85 pitches and he scored the first run for his team. He got two of the five Indians hits, his first being a double in the third inning, and the other knocking out his rival, Vern Bickford, in the fourth inning. The Braves had few scoring chances as Ken Keltner started one doubleplay and Bearden started another. Eddie Stanky was the only Braves player to reach third base during the whole game. Bearden struck out four and registered six putouts with his glove.

The Indians Steve Gromek, who had been largely forgotten, hurled his team to a 2 to 1 win over the Braves in Game #4. The Indians gained their third victory for a 3 to 1 series lead on Larry Doby's monstrous 400 foot home run off Johnny Sain in the third inning. Sain pitched a neat five hitter but didn't win the game as his teammates could not hit the ball at the opportune times to get runs across.

Once again the Braves were futile with their bats. They managed to slap out seven hits, only two more than the Indians got off Sain. But with men in scoring position, Gromek and his knuckle half curveball bewildered the Braves. Two times, Bob Elliott, the 1947 MVP of the National League and leading RBI man on the team this year, had a chance to put the Braves back in the game and didn't come through.

Outside of a few pitches, both pitchers were just about perfect. They each served up a home run ball but Sain had better control. Once more he didn't walk a batter, but he got off to a rough start when the Indians got to him for two hits and their initial run in the first inning. Working with only two days rest, a normal procedure for Sain over the past two months, his curveball didn't have the bite in the cold biting wind. He had blanked the Indians on four hits only three days ago, but his scoreless stretch was shattered in the first inning.

BOB ELLIOT HRs TWICE

In Game #5, the Braves carried the World Series back home back to Boston, with an 11-5 scalping of the Indians. Bob Elliott led the assault on Bob Feller by ripping him for two home runs. Warren Spahn came into the game as a reliever, and threw a magnificent 5 2/3 innings simply freezing the bats of the red-hot ball club. He pitched like the cool effective craftsman, who was a 21 game winner a year ago, as well as the clutch performer against the Dodgers and the Cardinals during the pennant run.

The game was tied until the Braves seventh, when the Boston Tribe broke it open. Holmes singled to left center and Dark sacrificed him to second. Earl Torgeson then slammed a clean single to center, scoring Holmes and putting the Braves up. That was it for Feller and in came Ed Klieman. The first batter he faced was Elliott, who he walked, moving Torgeson up to second base. Marv Rickert then lined a single to center that scored Torgy and Larry Doby tried to cut off Elliott, who was heading into third. But Doby's throw flew over Ken Keltner's head into the Boston dugout. So Elliott walked home and Rickert was waived over to third-base. The next batter was Bill Salkeld, who Kleiman also walked, so Boudreau handed the ball over to Russ Christopher, who also failed to hold the Braves. Mike McCormick he lined a single into right. Rickert scored and Salkeld had plenty of time to glide to third. Eddie Stanky got the hit-and-run sign and he tossed his bat toward the ball, catching it and floating it out to right-field, allowing Salkeld to score and McCormick to race over to third, and that was it for Christopher. So, now striding in from the right-field bullpen, was none other than Satchel Paige.

The crowd howled and cheered as he warmed up. His first batter was Spahn and Warren pulled a long fly out to Doby in center, that scored McCormick from third with the sixth and final run of the inning. The big lead was all that Spahn needed as he retired Indians in order in the seventh and set down nine men in a row, striking out five of the last six batters in the ball game.

LOLLY HOPKINS

For the first time in 28 seasons, the Indians stood on top of the baseball world as they defeated the Boston Braves 4-3 in Game #6 at Braves Field in front of 40,103. The game was a microcosm of the Indians’ season, good offense and starting pitching but a late rally by the opposition tested the Tribe’s mettle and Gene Bearden saved the day.

A backfiring bunt brought the Series to a dramatic, but dismal finish, for the Braves. When Jim Hegan grabbed Sibbi Sisti's pop up in the ninth-inning and converted it into a doubleplay, Cleveland won the game and the World Series, four games to two.

The Braves waged an excellent struggle, to make the game one of the most exciting in the series. They missed winning it in the eighth, when Phil Masi's double to left, fell short of clearing the fence by a few feet. As Bob Kennedy caught Tommy Holmes' fly ball in left field to end it all, the Indians celebrated. Several of the Indians players ganged up on Gene Bearden and started to carry him off the field and then went off into the darkness of the dugout and locker room.

Previous Braves opportunities and failures were forgotten as the Tribe started swinging on Bob Lemon in the eighth-inning. Down 4 to 1, Tommy Holmes opened the inning by slicing the first serve to left for single. Alvin Dark took a healthy cut at a two and one pitch, but lined it straight at Larry Doby for the first out. The fans' groans changed abruptly to screams and cheering when Earl Torgeson slammed the first pitch he saw down the right-field line for a double and Holmes steamed into third base. Lemon pitched carefully to Bob Elliott, who already had three singles, and got him up to a three and two count before walking him.

Marv Rickert was the next schedule hitter and manager Lou Boudreau brought in southpaw Gene Bearden to pitch. Billy Southworth countered by bringing Clint Conaster up to the plate. Bearden was nervous, as this was as tough a spot as he hand been in, during the hectic eight-day span. He was off the plate with his first two pitches and the next one was called a strike. Conaster then connected with a fastball and sent it soaring close to 400 feet, where it went dead and Thurman Tucker corralled it. After the catch, Holmes scored and Torgeson was able to trot down to third.

Southworth was then playing percentages to get a base hit. He sent up Phil Masi to bat for Bill Salkeld and when Phil hit the second pitch, for a moment it looked like it would be a home run to win the ballgame. But the ball struck the wire screen separating the two fences in left field and bounced straight down to Dale Mitchell. Elliott had to halt at third as Masi scooted down to second.

Mike McCormick came up next and slammed the ball hard but straight at Bearden, who flipped it over to Earl Robinson to end the threat. For the second straight Monday afternoon the Indians carried the slim, rookie southpaw off the field on their shoulders. A week ago his teammates carried Bearden off the field when he threw a complete game against the Boston Red Sox in a one-game playoff for the American League pennant. Today, the carried the Purple Heart recipient off the field after getting the last five outs of the season and protecting a lead en route to a World Series title.

The Braves had been in the limelight from opening day, when they gave the fans a new electric scoreboard and inaugurated Jimmy Fund Day, a charity to help children with cancer that is still a hallmark of Boston sports to this very day.

The Braves set their Boston attendance record at 1,455,438 despite miserable weather in the spring. By the end of 1948, it seemed that the Braves had established themselves as powerful competitors of the Red Sox in the favor of the Boston public. But the pennant conquest of 1948 was the last convulsive effort of a dying giant, the last flaming eruption of a volcano before it goes silent.

 

 

 

 

 


1948 BOSTON RED SOX
(THE CURSE OF THE BAMBINO, PART 3) ...
A DREAM SUBWAY SERIES DISAPPEARS ...

At the end of the 1947 season Eddie Collins retired and Tom Yawkey convinced Joe Cronin to become the general manager, leaving the manager's job vacant. Yawkey allowed Cronin to hire his successor. Joe McCarthy had won a pennant with the Chicago Cubs in 1929, and went on to win seven war with the New York Yankees. He was the man who was responsible for creating the business image of the Yankees, changing the team that one symbolized the excess of Babe Ruth, into one that was disciplined and professional. He was one who expected the players to take their job seriously while he protected them from front office interference. He was the man in charge. He divided his clubs into those he thought could play and be trusted, and everyone else. Cronin hired McCarthy to a two-year contract worth $100,000.  Hiring McCarthy was viewed as a sign that Tom Yawkey was ready to spend money again to build up his farm system.

The St. Louis Browns needed cash and they met with Yawkey and told him that if he was willing to cough up the money, their star players Vern Stephens and Jack Kramer were available. After a two-day meeting in November the Sox acquired Stephens, Kramer and Ellis Kinder for $375,000 and nine minor players. Vern Stephens was the key, as he filled the spot of a big bat to backup Ted Williams. Stephens was a powerful right-handed hitter, a decent fielder and an annual All-Star. In spring training, manager McCarthy left Stephens at shortstop and move Johnny Pesky over to third-base. The deal made the Red Sox and Yankees the two favorites to win the American League pennant.

After losing the MVP vote to Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams began the 1948 season determined to prove that that was a wrong choice. While McCarthy was getting to know his club, the Red Sox got off to a horrific start.

On April 19th 56,000 fans poured into Fenway Park to inaugurate the new season on Patriot's Day.  With the annual running of the Boston Marathon, it was a tradition to have a doubleheader.  The Sox scheduled a morning game, allowed the fans to see the end of the race, and then played a second game in the afternoon.

Early arrivals were entertained by Jimmy Coughlin's Band, as new skipper Joe McCarthy shared the spotlight with the Philadelphia A's legendary Connie Mack.  At 10:15 AM, two bands and a squad of Marines marched to the flagpole to hoist "Old Glory".  Governor Bradford threw out the first pitch and the 1948 season got underway. 

In the second inning, Stan Spence, Vern Stephens and Bobby Doerr clouted successive homers, not taking long to show the potency of the Red Sox lineup.  But unfortunately the Sox bats went cold for the rest of the game, with the A's tying it up and sending the game into extra innings.  Philly scored two runs on the top of the 11th and the first game of the doubleheader went in the loss column.

After Canadian runner, Gerard Cote, crossed the finish line at the marathon, 33,875 fans filed back into Fenway Park to see the second game.  Before the 3:15 start, Vaughn Monroe serenaded the crowd from atop the Red Sox dugout.  It was rookie and war hero, Lou Brissie, who held Sox to four hits in a 4-2 sweep for the Athletics.

After being swept by the A's at Fenway Park to open the season, the Sox couldn't garner their first win until they met the Yankees at the Stadium on April 23rd, before Babe Ruth and a crowd of 44,619 fans, as Mickey Harris shut them out 4 to 0.  But that was it, as the Yankees took 2 of 3.

The Sox went to Washington on April 26th. The Sox outpointed the Senators, 6 to 0 in the season's first night game at Griffith Stadium. Mel Parnell supplied the magic on the mound with a five hitter, and Ted Williams supplied the thump at the plate with four straight hits for a perfect night at bat.

Williams hit his 3rd homer in 11 games and the 200th of his career on April 29th.  Thru the end of April, Williams was batting .400, while most of the other starters slumped. 

The Sox hammered four Yankee pitchers with Jack Kramer and Denny Galehouse pitching for the Sox and giving the them an 8 to 6 victory on May 1st. It was Kramer's first victory in a Red Sox uniform. The Sox had gone through four consecutive losses in home before finally finding the win column.

Ted hit his fourth homer of the year and a triple, to beat the Yankees at Fenway on May 2nd.  The Sox took 2 of 3 from the Yankees, winning 3 of their last 4 games.

It was Ted's arm that beat the Tigers on May 5th, throwing out the tying run at the plate, before Vern Stephens next came to bat and laced a walk-off homer in the 11th inning.

The Sox then lost four in a row, losing both ends of a Sunday doubleheader to the Indians on May 9thWilliams, however, kept hitting, knocking out his 6th and 7th homers of the year and still batting around .400 while his teammates slumped badly at the plate.  The Sox slipped to 6th place, five games behind the A's.

BOBBY DOERR

The Sox started a winning streak on May 11th. The Chicago White Sox dropped their seven straight game to the Red Sox by an 8 to 0 score. Chicago was subdued completely by Jack Kramer, and three home runs, two by Vern Stephens and the other by Bobby Doerr, paced the Red Sox offense.

On May 12th, Bobby Doerr clouted a 10th inning walk-off homer to bring the Sox from behind.

The Red Sox won their third straight game on May 15th, beating the Washington Senators, 5 to 0. Joe Dobson's strong right arm let him win his second game of the year, giving up only three hits, walking three and permitted only one base runner to reach third base. On May 16th the Sox climbed back to the .500 mark by clobbering the Senators in the final game of the home stand.  The previously silent bats rang out 19 hits. Johnny Pesky's two run triple knotted the score at 5 to 5 in the fourth inning, and the Sox went on to win, 14 to 5. The Sox were in 4th place, 5 games behind.

On the road, pitching became problematic, as the Sox lost two in Detroit and two of three in Cleveland allowing their opponents 39 runs in three games. Sox pitchers also issued 21 base-on-balls in just a nine innings span, as the team slipped below .500 and fell back in the standings.  Things went from bad to worse in Chicago, St. Louis, Washington and Philadelphia.

The Sox used three different firstbasemen since the season started and nine different pitchers took the ball. Their 1946 pitching stars, Tex Hughson, was sent to pitch for the Austin Pioneers in Texas, and Ferriss had only won one game.  The Sox then put Jack Kramer was put out on waivers.  Only Joe Dobson had pitched effectively. The Red Sox have won only 3 games of 15, since leaving Boston in late May, and Dobson was been the winning pitcher in each game.

Not only was their pitching was spotty and everyone on the Red Sox was not hitting except for Williams, who batted .379 with 10 home runs and 39 RBIs.  The Sox lost 12 of 15 on the road trip and returned to Fenway Park 10 1/2 games out of first, in 7th place. At the end of May they were 14–23, and in seventh place.

The rest of the team finally started hitting in June, and rookie Billy Goodman took over at first base. Suddenly the Red Sox could not lose. Ted Williams hit .460 for the month and the Red Sox went 18-6.

JOE McCARTHY

The Red Sox provided the best antidote to their position in the standings, by getting good pitching, hitting and fielding. On June 3rd, good pitching by Jack Kramer added up to a 3 to 2 Red Sox victory over the St. Louis Browns. The Sox picked up two runs in the opening inning aided by Bobby Doerr and went on to produce what proved to be, the winning run in the sixth inning on doubles by Birdie Tebbetts and Dom DiMaggio. They next twice dumped the Browns by scores of 10 to 4 and 7 to 2 on June 4th. They took three of four from the Browns to start the homestand, but were 9 1/2 games behind.

On June 6th, in their most productive afternoon of the season, the Red Sox came from behind twice to win both games and springboard themselves from seventh place to a three way tie for fourth. The Sox twice downed the Detroit Tigers by scores of 5 to 4 and 12 to 4, to capture their second doubleheader in a row and run their present winning streak to five straight games. Ted Williams, Stan Spence and Vern Stephens sent three successive home runs out of the park in the sixth inning of the second game.

The Red Sox reached a new high for the season when they beat the Cleveland Indians 15-7, at Fenway Park on June 10th. Bob Feller was forced out of the game in the third inning when the Red Sox scored eight runs. The next day, June 11th, Ted Williams put on one of his better hitting shows, driving in seven runs. The Sox beat the White Sox 12-4, for their seventh victory in eight games.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
06/02/1948 15-24 7th -10 1/2  St. Louis Browns L 3-1 Mel Parnell 1-3
06/03/1948 16-24 7th -10  St. Louis Browns W 3-2 Jack Kramer 3-3
06/04/1948 17-24 7th -10  St. Louis Browns W 10-4 Joe Dobson 6-4
18-24 5th -9 1/2 W 7-2 Denny Galehouse 1-3
06/06/1948 19-24 6th -9 1/2  Detroit Tigers W 5-4 Earl Johnson 3-2
20-24 4th -9 1/2 W 12-4 Dave Ferriss 2-1
06/08/1948 20-25 6th -10 1/2  Cleveland Indians L 2-0 Mel Parnell 1-4
06/10/1948 21-25 6th -9 1/2  Cleveland Indians W 15-7 Joe Dobson 7-4
06/11/1948 22-25 6th -9 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 12-4 Jack Kramer 4-3
06/12/1948 22-26 6th -11  Chicago White Sox L 5-3 Mickey Harris 1-5
 

After a 7-3 homestand the Sox headed to Cleveland for another showdown with the Indians, 9 1/2 games behind.  On June 15th, Mel Parnell outpitched Bob Lemon and handed him his first loss of the year. Ted Williams slugged a home run, two doubles and a single in four times at bat, as the Red Sox beat the Indians on June 16th, by a 7-4 score.  In the process, Ted raise his batting average over the .400 mark to .408. The Sox edged the Indians in the final game on June 17th, to sweep the three-game series.

On June 19th, the Red Sox won their 12th game in their last 15 starts and got back to the .500 mark, by beating the Detroit Tigers 9 to 7 at Briggs Stadium. In the next game, they lashed a dozen hits and a total of 22 bases, beating the Tigers 8 to 3 on June 20th. The Red Sox had won all five games on their road trip and had taken 13 of their last 16.

In Chicago, June 22nd, the Sox rallied to grab an 11 to 6 win over the White Sox. Dave Ferriss held the White Sox scoreless for six innings, allowing just three scattered hits, walking one and striking out four, to pick up his third win of the season.

The Sox finished in Chicago on June 24th, down by a score of 5 to 1 in the second inning in the second game of a doubleheader, the Red Sox, paced by Ted Williams' 14th home run of the season, took the lead and won 8 to 5. Ted then hit his 15th home run in the eighth. When the afternoon was done, Ted's batting average sat at in unbelievable .417, with two homers, a double and four base on balls.

Vern Stephens (.304 BA) was the hot batter for the Sox. He had hit safely 14 times in 28 at bats with 13 RBIs.  In the last 18 games, he had knocked out 6 home runs.

Joe Dobson hurled a two-hitter in the opener on June 27th, as the Sox swept a doubleheader in St. Louis. The Sox had won 18 of their last 23 games and picked up a full 5 games in the standings, to move to 5 1/2 games of first place. In addition Ted Williams' RBI total was sent up to 69 to lead the American League, Ted had hit in 14 consecutive games, going 27 for 53 for a .509 average during that run.

After starting their road trip with seven straight wins, the Sox finished it with a 10-5 record on the trip.  They returned to Fenway, having been 9 1/2 games out when they left, and 6 1/2 games out when they returned, as June ended.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
06/15/1948 23-26 5th -9 1/2  at Cleveland Indians W 7-3 Mel Parnell 2-4
06/16/1948 24-26 5th -8 1/2  at Cleveland Indians W 7-4 Joe Dobson 8-4
06/17/1948 25-26 5th -7 1/2  at Cleveland Indians W 8-6 Earl Johnson 4-2
06/19/1948 26-26 5th -7  at Detroit Tigers W 9-7 Jack Kramer 5-3
06/20/1948 27-26 4th -7 1/2  at Detroit Tigers W 8-3 Mel Parnell 3-4
06/22/1948 28-26 4th -7  at Chicago White Sox W 11-6 Dave Ferriss 3-1
06/24/1948 28-27 4th -6 1/2  at Chicago White Sox L 3-1 Ellis Kinder 2-3
29-27 4th -6 W 8-5 Jack Kramer 6-3
06/25/1948 29-28 4th -6  at St. Louis Browns L 9-6 Denny Galehouse 1-4
06/27/1948 30-28 4th -5 1/2  at St. Louis Browns W 2-0 Joe Dobson 9-4
31-28 4th -5 1/2 W 6-3 Dave Ferriss 4-1
06/29/1948 31-29 4th -6 1/2  at New York Yankees L 7-0 Mel Parnell 3-5
06/30/1948 32-29 4th -6 1/2  at New York Yankees W 7-3 Jack Kramer 7-3
07/01/1948 32-30 4th -6 1/2  at New York Yankees L 10-7 Mickey Harris 1-6
 

On July 4th, erupting like a giant firecracker, the Red Sox buried the flag hunting Philadelphia A's, 19 to 5, with a 14 run seventh inning, the likes of which has seldom been seen on a major-league diamond. Billy Goodman was the pacemaker at the plate. He crashed out four consecutive hits, knocked in four runs and scored a pair himself. Johnny Pesky knocked in five runs on a couple of singles during the lucky seventh inning. Ellis Kinder, who was clipped for nine hits including two home runs, survived the slugfest and in the bargain knocked out three hits himself, including a pair in that seventh inning.

Presenting a thrilling finish in the second game of the day, on July 5th, the Red Sox twice knocked off the New York Yankees by scores of 6 to 5 and 8 to 7, in a thrill packed doubleheader. Bobby Doerr enjoyed a big day at the plate with three home runs and a single, to provide a fitting twin killing. His third homer of the day tied the second ballgame that seemed apparently lost. Down 7 to 5 with two away, the quiet Red Sox leader drove his 13th home run of the year off the left-field light tower to tie up the game at 7 to 7 in the nightcap. The Sox sent the fans home in the ninth-inning when they scored on Dom DiMaggio's base hit for the walk-off.

The Red Sox swept the three-game holiday series by downing the Yankees, 2 to 1, on July 6th. Joe Dobson (10-5), held the still formidable Bronx Bombers to five hits and lost a shutout by one run in the eighth-inning. On July 8th, Mel Parnell scattered eight Washington hits, to give the Sox a 4 to 1 victory in the last game of the homestand.

PARNELL, DOBSON, KRAMER

The Sox went on the road to Philadelphia after going 5-3 on the homestand. On July 10th Jack Kramer's solid shutout pitching and a lusty first inning home run by Vern Stephens, carried the Red Sox to a 4 to 0 triumph. Kramer chalked up his seventh win in succession, spreading out ten A's hits so effectively, that only one man ever reached third base.

The Sox finished the first half by splitting a doubleheader with the A's on July 11th. Winning a dramatic 9 to 8, 10 inning opener, they failed to close in on the American League pennant scramble, when they were slapped around for a 7 to 5 loss in the second game. They still remaining in fourth place, 6 1/2 games behind.

Ted Williams then tore a cartilage in his chest that allowed him only to pinch hit in the All Star Game. Bobby Doerr went hitless and Vern Stephens got a base hit as a pinch hitter. Birdie Tebbetts played from the fourth inning until the end.

Without Williams, the Sox took 11 of the 12 games played at Fenway Park after the All Star break. McCarthy settled on a pitching rotation of Jack Kramer, Joe Dobson, Mel Parnell and Ellis Kinder.

On July 15th, in the second game of a doubleheader with the Tigers, Mel Parnell threw his best game since putting on a Boston uniform, 3 to 1, in winning his fifth game of the year and his seventh complete game. The afternoon game, the first of the two admission doubleheader, was a helter-skelter affair in which Bobby Doerr, although striking out three times, provided the decisive blow with a fifth inning home run, with two men on, to sew up the victory.

In the next game, in the face of the seven hit pitching by Joe Dobson, the Tigers lost their third game of the series by a score 5 to 3 on July 16th. Dom DiMaggio supplied the decisive blow, a double that broke a tie game up in the seventh inning. The Sox lost the fourth game and then hosted the St. Louis Browns.

The troublesome Browns outhit the Red Sox 23 to 19, pulled off a triple play, used six pitchers, but dropped a doubleheader to the Red Sox by scores of 12 to 5 and 7 to 6, on July 18th. The Red Sox came from behind in both games to notch their sixth and seventh wins in the last nine games. Johnny Pesky had a great day coming up with five hits in seven times at bat.

Bobby Doerr's grand slam homer and Mel Parnell's wonderful pitching, gave the Red Sox a 4 to 1 victory over the Browns on July 19th. The Sox made it four straight and a clean sweep of the series with St. Louis, as they batted their way to an 8 to 3 victory. Birdie Tebbetts struck the big blow for the Red Sox with a base clearing double in the four-run fifth inning on July 20th. Jack Kramer registered his ninth straight win.

The next day, July 21st, the Sox took a doubleheader from the White Sox, as they scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth in the second game, for a walk-off, come-from-behind win. Bobby Doerr enjoyed his first perfect game of the year, with two singles, a double and a triple. The Sox whipped the White Sox by 3 to 0 and 5 to 3 scores, on July 22nd. Vern Stephens belted his 19th and 20th home runs and batted in five RBI.

The Red Sox won their ninth in a row after humiliating the Chicago by score of 13 to 1, on July 23rd, and a clean sweep of their five-game series. Mickey Harris put down Chicago with only five hits, walking three and striking out two. The game also marked the return of Ted Williams to the lineup after a 15 game absence.

TED WILLIAMS

The Red Sox taking 3 of 4 from the Tigers, sweeping the Browns and the White Sox, winning nine straight and moving into 3rd place, only 1 1/2 games out of first. Bobby Doerr was particularly sad to see the White Sox leave town, getting 10 hits in 17 times at bat over the five games, with three doubles, a triple and a home run for six RBIs.  Vern Stephens (.302 BA) with 84 RBI was the American League leader and second in the league with 20 HRs.

Next the Cleveland Indians came to Fenway, with first place on the line. On July 24th, the Red Sox won a thrilling twin bill from the Indians, coming from behind both times, sneaking by with a 6 to 5 decision in the first game and a 2 to 1 victory in the second. Ted Williams' line drive single won the first game, and his double off the left centerfield wall tied the second one, setting up the winning run. Mel Parnell (7-5) posted his fourth straight win. On July 25th, Joe Dobson (13-6) shut out the Indians, 3-0, for a series sweep. It was the Red Sox 12th straight win, going 15-1 on the home stand.

The Sox were 11 1/2 games behind on May 31st, and now in first place, only .004 percentage points ahead of the Philadelphia Athletics, with 40 wins in 53 games. With the Braves splitting a doubleheader in St. Louis, Boston found both their baseball teams in first place since September 4, 1916.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
07/15/1948 40-35 4th -7  Detroit Tigers W 13-5 Jack Kramer 10-3
41-35 4th -6 1/2 W 3-1 Mel Parnell 5-5
07/16/1948 42-35 4th -5 1/2  Detroit Tigers W 5-3 Joe Dobson 11-6
07/17/1948 42-36 4th -5 1/2  Detroit Tigers L 3-1 Ellis Kinder 3-5
07/18/1948 43-36 4th -5 1/2  St. Louis Browns W 12-5 Earl Johnson 5-2
44-36 4th -5 1/2 W 7-6 Mickey Harris 2-7
07/19/1948 45-36 4th -5 1/2  St. Louis Browns W 4-1 Mel Parnell 6-5
07/20/1948 46-36 4th -4 1/2  St. Louis Browns W 8-3 Jack Kramer 11-3
07/21/1948 47-36 4th -4 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 3-1 Joe Dobson 12-6
48-36 3rd -3 1/2 W 10-9 Tex Hughson 1-0
07/22/1948 49-36 3rd -2 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 3-0 Denny Galehouse 3-4
50-36 3rd -2 W 5-3 Ellis Kinder 4-5
07/23/1948 51-36 3rd -1 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 13-1 Mickey Harris 3-7
07/24/1948 52-36 2nd -1/2  Cleveland Indians W 6-5 Dave Ferriss 6-2
53-36 2nd -1/2 W 2-1 Mel Parnell 7-5
07/25/1948 54-36 1st -  Cleveland Indians W 3-0 Joe Dobson 13-6
 

Ellis Kinder unwrapped his finest pitching performance of the season, a three-hit shutout, muzzling the Tigers, 8 to 0 in Detroit on July 27th. The Sox won 13 straight games before finally losing the second game of their road trip in Detroit. 

They finished in Detroit taking 2 of 3.  In the final game on July 29th, Jack Kramer (12-3) won his 11th straight by limiting the Tigers to one run and seven base hits, and he smashed out a home run in the third inning in an 8-1 laugher. Bobby Doerr hit a home run that was his 100th hit of the season and also stretched his errorless streak to 38 games.

On July 30th, the Sox faced the Cleveland Indians and battled back to capture the game, 8-7, pushing their American League lead to 1 1/2 games. Doerr (20 HRs) knocked out his 12th home run of the month. The win was the 18th out of the last 20 for the Red Sox and marked the 8th straight time they have defeated the Indians this season.

The Red Sox then lost three straight to the Indians and looked like anything but pennant contenders.  They fell to fourth place, percentage points behind Cleveland, Philadelphia and New York. The did however, take two of three from the Browns in St. Louis to start August.

They outscored the 7th place Browns, 15 to 8, in a sloppy game on August 3rd. They thus found themselves simultaneously in third place by percentage points, and yet in a virtual tie for first. Tex Hughson came in and pitched a great game, in relief of Joe Dobson and Dave Ferriss, to gain his second win of the year on August 5th, as the Red Sox enjoyed an 8 to 7 triumph over the troublesome Browns in the series finale.

In Chicago, on August 8th, a doubleheader split with the last place White Sox, gave the Red Sox three losses in their four-game series and dropped them to 2 1/2 games behind the league-leading Indians, into fourth place. Ted Williams had been limited to pinch hitting duties, suffering from a bruised leg and the Red Sox needed his bat back in the lineup.

DOM DiMAGGIO

Timely hits by Dom DiMaggio and Vern Stephens gave the Red Sox a dramatic 9 to 6 victory over the Yankees at the Stadium on August 10th. They had two big rallies with three runs in the first inning and five in the eighth-inning that enabled them to come from behind and win. They won again the next day, August 11th, behind Denny Galehouse, taking both games from the Yankees, and traveled down to Washington to meet the Senators, two games out of first and 1 1/2 games ahead of the Yanks.

Against Washington, on August 13th, Mel Parnell took a no-hitter into the seventh inning, as the Sox coasted to a 6-2 win. The next day, August 14th, the Sox came from behind, scoring four runs in the eighth inning to grab a 4-3 win and move into second place by percentage points.

The Sox finished their 11-9 road trip with a doubleheader split on August 15th, taking 3 of 4 games in Washington, leaving them 2 1/2 games behind after starting out being in first place by one game. Jack Kramer (13-4) ended his consecutive victory streak at 11 games, with a loss in the first game. Bobby Doerr's errorless inning string sat at 56 games, as the Sox came home.

Denny Galehouse had another effective pitching performance that boosted the Red Sox into second place, but he was somewhat overshadowed by the hitting and running of Ted Williams, as the Red Sox whipped the Philadelphia A's by a 10 to 2 score on August 18th.

Then, on the wings of Vern Stephens' home run, with two aboard and two outs, in the ninth-inning of the opening game of a doubleheader, the Red Sox caught fire on August 20th. They pulled out a 5 to 4, 10 inning victory on Stan Spence's walkoff home run and then overwhelmed the Washington Senators, 10 to 4, in the second game.

The next day, August 21st, the terrific one-two hitting punch furnished by Vern Stephens and Bobby Doerr, carried the Red Sox, as they slugged out a 10 to 6 decision over the Senators. Stephens, whose broad shoulders, have been keeping the Sox in the pennant scramble, knocked out a pair of home runs. One of his circuit blasts came with the bases loaded. Doerr, besides delivering a home run for the first Red Sox score, broke up a 6 to 6 deadlock in the eighth-inning. With the bases loaded, he drilled a single through the infield, to break up a tie game at the time. Both Stephens and Doerr drove in eight runs between them and scored five. They accounted for four of the eleven Red Sox hits and their fielding was just as perfect as their times at the plate. Five RBIs increased Stephens' league leadership over Joe DiMaggio with 112. He had now hit 26 home runs, the most he had ever belted in the major leagues.

Mickey Harris found his pitching eye at Fenway Park on August 22nd and set back the Senators by a score of 4 to 1, allowing the Red Sox to creep within one half game of the league-leading Cleveland Indians. Bobby Doerr's 23rd home run in the third inning, with Vern Stephens aboard, furnished Harris with the winning margin. The Red Sox had won 10 of their last 12 games and were only 1/2 game behind the Indians.

The Red Sox next hosted the first place Indians in a classic showdown at Fenway Park.  In the first game on August 24th, the Sox came from behind and edged the Cleveland Indians, 9 to 8, on Vern Stephens' two run walk-off homer in the ninth-inning and took over first place in the American League pennant race by 1/2 game.  The second game was no contest as Bob Lemon shut out the Sox 9-0, putting them back into second place.

The Red Sox moved back on top of the American League in the third contest on August 26th, after a one day eviction. They returned because of Bobby Doerr's (24 HR, .288 BA) lethal bat, belting a towering eighth inning home run to shove the Indians back into second place by an 8 to 4 count. By winning two of the three games from Cleveland, the Red Sox led the American League by one half game. The clubs were tied the loss column, but the Red Sox had won more than the Indians, who played one fewer game. 

The Red Sox next took three of four from the White Sox, moved 1 1/2 games ahead of the pack. On August 27th, they knocked off the Chicago White Sox, 10 to 5, before a record low attendance of 6285 fans at Fenway Park. Ted Williams had a 400 foot homer into the lower portion of the bleachers, behind the visiting bullpen with two men aboard.

The next game, on August 28th, saw Ellis Kinder keep seven White Sox hits scattered, as he hurled the Red Sox to a 6 to 2 triumph, under a broiling sun. Vern Stephens showed that he was well conditioned for the heat as he slapped out four hits, facing a 13 hit attack on three Chicago pitchers.

Then on August 29th, lost the services of their hottest player, who, while racing to beat out an infield hit, pulled the muscle in his left thigh. Doerr had played through 69 consecutive games without an error. He handled 381 chances in succession. The record was held by Stuffy Stirnweiss who went 71 games and 383 chances. Billy Hitchcock proved to be an ideal replacement for Bobby Doerr, when the Red Sox trampled the Detroit Tigers, 8 to 4 on August 31st. Hitchcock belted home three runs and scored the fourth, to help Mel Parnell win his fourth consecutive victory. The next day, September 1st, Hitchcock continued to pace the Red Sox to a 10 to 1 triumph over the Tigers, by driving home three runs on three singles, and giving Jack Kramer an easy 15th win.

The Red Sox closed the 15 game homestand, going 12-3 and sweeping two games from the Tigers. They started their homestand, in the middle of August, against the Athletics and were three games out of first. They went on the road to again meet the Athletics in Philadelphia, holding first place by one game over the Yankees.

In the homestand the Sox scored 106 runs, an average of seven per game, while the opponents scored less than five. Dom DiMaggio hit .354; Johnny Pesky hit .345; Ted Williams has .352; and Vern Stephens hit .286 while driving in 19 runs and knocking out four home runs. Bobby Doerr hit .360; Billy Goodman has hit .365; Stan Spence hit .260; and Birdie Tebbetts hit .326.

GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
08/18/1948 66-45 2nd -3  Philadelphia Athletics W 10-2 Denny Galehouse 6-6
08/19/1948 66-46 3rd -3 1/2  Philadelphia Athletics L 10-3 Joe Dobson 13-7
08/20/1948 67-46 2nd -3 1/2  Washington Senators W 5-4 Earl Johnson 6-2
68-46 2nd -3 W 10-4 Jack Kramer 14-4
08/21/1948 69-46 2nd -2  Washington Senators W 10-6 Earl Johnson 7-2
08/22/1948 70-46 2nd -1/2  Washington Senators W 4-1 Mickey Harris 6-8
08/24/1948 71-46 1st +1/2  Cleveland Indians W 9-8 Earl Caldwell 2-5
08/25/1948 71-47 2nd -1/2  Cleveland Indians L 9-0 Denny Galehouse 6-7
08/26/1948 72-47 1st +1/2  Cleveland Indians W 8-4 Mel Parnell 10-6
08/27/1948 73-47 1st +1  Chicago White Sox W 10-5 Denny Galehouse 7-7
08/28/1948 74-47 1st +1 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 6-2 Ellis Kinder 6-7
08/29/1948 75-47 1st +1 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 10-2 Joe Dobson 14-7
75-48 1st +1 1/2 L 12-4 Mickey Harris 6-9
08/31/1948 76-48 1st +1  Detroit Tigers W 8-4 Mel Parnell 11-6
09/01/1948 77-48 1st +1  Detroit Tigers W 10-1 Jack Kramer 15-4
 

In Philadelphia on September 3rd, Joe Dobson kept the Red Sox on top of the American League with a great pressure pitching job, shutting out the Athletics, 2 to 0. In winning his 15th game of the year, Dobson threw a four hitter, but needed to be perfect, because the Yankees had taken a doubleheader from Washington. The Sox went on to sweep the series in Philadelphia. 

On September 4th, the Sox clung to their one half game advantage with a 5 to 3 triumph over the A's. Billy Hitchcock and Ellis Kinder shared the game honors. Hitchcock drove in two runs and scored two as Kinder notched his seventh win with some stellar clutch pitching. On September 5th, Wally Moses drove in the run to give the Sox an extra inning victory, 4 to 3.

BIRDIE TEBBETTS, MEL PARNELL,
& VERN STEPHENS

The Sox stayed ahead of the Yankees by 1 1/2 games and 4 1/2 games in front of the Indians, after a doubleheader sweep of the Senators on September 6th. Boston won the opener on power, 14-6, as Mel Parnell won his fifth straight, and Jack Kramer held Washington to just four hits, winning his 16th in the second game. The Red Sox had won 22 of their last 26 games.

The Yankees moved into Fenway Park in a battle for first place on September 8th. A couple of stirring comebacks enabled the Red Sox to wallop the Yankees with a 10 to 6 decision. The Yankees opened the game with a four-run splurge. But the Red Sox wiped that out the first time they went to bat, with a five-run outburst. The Yanks fought back to a 6 to 6 tie later in the game and the Sox came back for a second time to put the game away.

The Sox came back the next day, September 9th, once again.  Down 3-0, they exploded for eight runs in the third inning to walk away with another win and increased their American League lead. The 3 1/2 game edge the Sox had in the pennant race was the largest lead they enjoyed all season. The Sox were 11 1/2 games out of first on May 31st and climbed to the top by winning 69 and losing only 26.

But down to the end, the Red Sox were never a safe bet. Each time they appeared on the verge of taking over, the Yankees and the Indians fought back. They lost the last game of the Yankees series, now leading New York by 2 1/2 games, while the Indians won four in a row and stayed 3 1/2 games back on September 10th.

The Sox next took two of three from the Athletics, but the Yankees and Indians moved 1/2 game closer. On September 11th, they mopped up the A's, 9 to 1 and 2 to 1, in a pair of sparkling performances at Fenway Park. They smashed the A's in the afternoon, but at night it was a tense pitcher's duel between Mel Parnell and Joe Coleman. Billy Goodman kept a hitting streak alive for his 14th straight game with a base hit. Billy Hitchcock was batting .455 in the 11 games he's played,

In Chicago, Ted Williams kept the Red Sox ahead of the American League field while Ellis Kinder held the White Sox at bay, allowing only five hits. Williams took over the offense to drive in three runs and scored the other, in a 4 to 1 victory, on September 14th. Ted had two doubles and a single for half of the Red Sox hits. Then the Sox lost to the White Sox and the Yankees moved down to 1 1/2 games out on September 15th

JOE McCARTHY & TED WILLIAMS

In St. Louis the Sox won 2 of 3. Joe Dobson pitched the Red Sox back into the win column and kept them one game in front of the American League race, winning 9 to 3 on September 17th. Seven of the run scorers had received free passes from the St. Louis pitchers. All afternoon the Sox defense was airtight and they were able to pull off five doubleplays.

September 18th was historic. Bobby Doerr made history with his glove, but he also found time to use his bat enough to lead the Red Sox to an 11 to 6 win over the Browns. Doerr set a major league record by playing in his seventy-second straight game without an error. He handled eight chances, to go 404 times without a miscue. He also paced a 17 hit Red Sox attack with three base hits. He hit a three run home run and drove in another run with a single. He also knocked out a double. Doerr's home run was his twenty-fifth, driving in his 101st run.

On September 19th the Sox lost a doubleheader to Detroit, after blowing the lead in both games, and had now lost four of their last six games. Cleveland swept a doubleheader to win their 5th straight game and moved into second place and cut the Sox lead to just 1/2 game over them, with the Yankees sitting in third, one game behind.

Mickey Harris came up with a four hitter to beat the Tigers 7 to 2, on September 20th. Then Mel Parnell enabled the Sox to split the four-game series with the troublesome Tigers on September 21st. The idle Indians and Yankees were pushed 1/2 game further back, as the Sox then held on to a tenuous one game lead.

But Red Sox pitching faltered down the stretch.  The batters got them the lead and time and again they could not hold that lead. By September 24th, all three teams had identical records of 91-56. The front office got nervous. They had received permission from the American League to sell World Series tickets and yet they didn't. Hundreds of thousands of taking orders sat unprocessed.

The Sox lost two of three games to the Yankees, fell out of first place and were tied with them for second, when they left New York on September 27th.  The Indians sat a game ahead of both the Sox and the Yankees with five games left to play.

Back home the Sox lost again, this time to the Senators. They had won only one of their last five games and three of their last nine, in their run for the pennant.  While the cross-town Braves celebrated, on September 28th, the Sox had fallen two games behind the Indians who shutout the White Sox.

On September 29th, in a game played to see who could leave more men on base, the Red Sox beat the Senators, 5 to 1. The Red Sox beat the Senators 7 to 3 the next day. With the Indians not playing, the Red Sox and Yankees picked up one half game in their pursuit, and now both teams stood 1 1/2 games behind the Indians.

The Tigers beat Cleveland on October 1st in the first game of the series, cutting the lead to a single-game with only two left to play. But the next day, on October 2nd, Cleveland's rookie Gene Bearden threw a shutout to clinch at least a tie for the pennant.

On October 2nd, the Red Sox beat the Yankees 5-1, as Ted Williams, run down by a cold and taking penicillin, cracked a two run homer in the first inning and Jack Kramer pitched his best game of the year. The win knocked the Yankees out of the race with one game left. The Red Sox needed another victory over New York and Detroit to beat the Indians to force a playoff at Fenway Park.

That night, the DiMaggio brothers drove to Dom's house in Wellesley.  There was to be a family dinner that night to celebrate Dom's up coming wedding.  The story goes that during the quiet drive, the quiet Joe said to his younger brother, "You knocked us out today, but we'll get back at you tomorrow - we'll knock you out.  I'll take care of it personally."  Dom pondered for a moment and he chose his words carefully. "You're forgetting I may have something to do with that tomorrow," he said. "I'll be there too."

JOE McCARTHY

On the last day of the season, October 3rd, the Yankees fought like a boxer hopelessly behind on points but refusing to fall. Joe DiMaggio limped around but insisted on playing, in keeping the Sox from a chance at the postseason. For when the Yankees played the Red Sox and Joe played against Ted Williams, reputation, honor and a host of other issues were at stake. The game itself was always just the framework a larger battle. Joe fulfilled his promise in the first inning as he singled in a run to give the Yankees a 2 to 0 lead. But in the second inning, the Fenway fans roared when they learned that Detroit had taken a four run lead against Bob Feller and the Indians.

The Red Sox responded with five runs of their own, keyed by a double from Ted. Joe's fifth inning double pulled the Yankees back to within one. But then Dom DiMaggio trumped his older brother with a leadoff homer in the sixth, and the Sox put the game out of reach by scoring four more runs. In the ninth-inning with the score 10 to 5, Joe singled again and then limped off the field after being replaced by a pinch runner. The entire crowd of 35,000 fans stood and applauded his effort. The cheering thundered on and on.  Joe, a man who worked hard to conceal his emotions, was so touched by the ovation that he later referred to it as the single greatest thrill of his career. Ted did not go unnoticed in the series. He reached base eight times in ten at bats.

In Cleveland, the gods were kind to the Sox.  The mighty Hal Newhouser had beaten Feller, 7-1.  The season of 154 games was over, but the outcome was not yet decided. Thousands of Red Sox fans never went home, electing to stand in line for playoff tickets, which quickly sold out the following morning. The Braves had won the National League pennant and Boston went half mad at the prospect of a streetcar series. If there was a year to break the "Curse of the Bambino", this was it.  The stars were aligned for the Red Sox to meet the Braves it seemed.

On the way to Boston, manager Lou Boudreau elected to pitch Gene Bearden on one days rest against the Sox in the playoff. Bearden was hot, with the league's lowest ERA and 19 wins. He had won two games and lost one against the Red Sox and was coming off two successive shutouts.

But as their history and fate would have it, the doomed future of the Red Sox boiled down to a wrong decision on who to pitch. Manager Joe McCarthy had not decided and his decision became a defining moment in his managerial career in Boston. The Red Sox really didn't have an ace and most assumed that it would be Mel Parnell (15-8) to pitch the playoff game. He was well rested and had enjoyed a wonderful rookie year. Ellis Kinder was also arrested and available, but McCarthy decided to pitch the veteran Denny Galehouse. He decided against Parnell, because he was a rookie, the wind was blowing out, he was a left-hander and the Cleveland lineup was loaded with right-handed power hitters in Lou Boudreau, third baseman Ken Keltner, secondbaseman Joe Gordon and catcher Jim Hegan. He also passed over pitching Kinder, who had won four of his last five starts, because the Indians and hit him hard earlier in the year. Galehouse, McCarthy rationalized, had more than 100 career wins and was more experienced. McCarthy ignored the fact that the Indians had tagged him for nine runs in five innings in an earlier game, and that after winning two games in early September, had only pitched twice, and had been knocked out each time.

Only when Galehouse started warming up, did his Red Sox teammates know of McCarthy's decision. The players were stunned as was manager Lou Boudreau of the Indians. All had expected Parnell to be the pitcher of choice. Boudreau thought it was a trick and perhaps Galehouse would start, throw to one batter, and the Parnell would come in.

LOU BOUDREAU
& TED WILLIAMS

The first pitch was thrown at 1:30 PM on October 4th and within minutes the Red Sox were in trouble. In the midst of an MVP season, Lou Boudreau jerked a slider over the left-field wall to give the Indians a 1 to 0 lead. Both pitchers escaped trouble in the second and third innings.

Galehouse wasn't sharp and was already tired. In the fourth he gave a leadoff single to Boudreau, and Gordon followed with another. Now McCarthy decided to have Kinder start warming up. Ken Keltner came to the plate and took a Galehouse pitch over the left-field wall for three run homer that gave Cleveland a 4 to 0 lead. At that point McCarthy came out and took the ball from Galehouse and gave it to Kinder. The home run blast deflated the Red Sox as Tom Yawkey threw up his hands up with disgust and stormed out of his private box.

Kinder gave up another run in the inning and then the Indians added another one in the fifth. Bobby Doerr slammed a two run homer in the sixth, but the score was 6 to 3.

Bearden, though not sharp, reached down deep and pitched effectively, as the Indians continued to chip away at Kinder. The Red Sox ended up losing 8 to 3 and hopes of a subway series faded away. Denny Galehouse never started another game, and he pitched only two more innings in the majors. For the third time in three seasons the Red Sox season ended in defeat not because they faced a better team, but because of their own failures.

There were numerous reasons the Red Sox lost the pennant. Could it have been that manager McCarthy forgot Mickey Harris for most of September? Could it be that Ted Williams, who had to prove he could hit the left, went for easy singles and doubles and wound up with one of his lowest slugging percentages? Could it have been that it was lost when important relief jobs were entrusted to the likes of Earl Caldwell or when Joe Dobson stopped pitching well after being struck on the wrist by Feller last July? Was it when Vern Stephens went into a batting slump after a mighty midseason splurge?

Joe McCarthy can accept some of the blame. Unlike Billy Southworth, he sometimes played hunches instead of percentages. Twice in the vital last month he let Caldwell lose big games, once on Joe DiMaggio's grand slam home run and once in the 17-10 defeat in Chicago, with Harris sitting on the bench. On August 22nd Harris defeated the Senators on five hits and then on the 29th allowed the Browns five runs in the first inning. For almost a month McCarthy did not pitch Mickey again, until September 20th, when he threw a four hitter at the Detroit.

JOHNNY PESKY

The fact is the Red Sox led the league from August 26th until September 26th and lost the pennant during the last two weeks of the season. The downfall started when Joe Dobson blew two games in the days when the Sox lost the lead. There was the one in Cleveland and the 4 to 3 decision he lost in Washington on the last week. The large amount of blame goes to the Red Sox failure in the other members of the pitching staff. Dave Ferriss (7-3), Tex Hughson (3-1) and Mickey Harris (7-10) won 62 games in capturing the 1946 pennant, but only 17 victories between them this season. Harris put on weight and was the only Red Sox pitcher with a losing record this season. The two games lost in New York found Kinder, Johnson, Parnell and Galehouse all hit easily. But the four fatal defeats were not all the responsibility of the pitchers, because in three of them the Red Sox power hitters generated only two runs. All in all, however, the Red Sox had a powerful, well-balanced lineup in batting order.

The other Red Sox pitchers had winning percentages at or above .500 with the notable being Mel Parnell (15-8) the rookie southpaw. Jack Kramer (18-5) had the best won loss record, but the Sox scored an average of eight runs per game for him, as a average only five runs for Parnell. Yet Kramer pitched an excellent baseball and proved extremely valuable to the Red Sox. It should be noted that the Red Sox pitching was generally ineffectual, in spite of one of the best catchers in baseball, Birdie Tebbetts.

However uncertain their pitching, the Red Sox had the pennant won until September 21st, twelve days before the end of the season. There were alone in first place with five of their remaining nine game scheduled at home. They could not hold the lead and while they came back to tie it up, they lost the flag in a playoff game that was not particularly close.

It is futile to point to the woeful start that the Red Sox had, that left them 11 1/2 games out of first on May 31st. All the clubs have their ups and downs, but if the Red Sox had not started the season so poorly, they could have won the pennant easily.

 
SPRING TRAINING
 
02/15/1948

 The Braves schedule 32 night games

02/25/1948

 Red Barrett heads south for spring training

02/26/1948

 Danny Litwhiler's signed contract is received

02/27/1948

 The Braves head out for spring training from South Station with the Red Sox

02/29/1948

 The Braves plan to build a railroad station at Braves Field

03/01/1948

 The Braves arrive in Bradenton and Phil Masi signs his contract

03/03/1948

 The Braves start workouts

03/04/1948

 Mike McCormick and Al Treichel agree to terms ... Geoff Heath arrives

03/05/1948

 The Freddie Fitsimmons team beat the Johnny Cooney team, 5 to 4

03/06/1948

 The pitchers spend the morning working on pickoff plays

03/07/1948

 The Braves pick up Eddie Stanky in a trade with the Dodgers, for Ray Sanders and Bama Rowell

03/08/1948

 Eddie Stanky is stricken with pneumonia

03/09/1948

 The Braves workout after a day of rain

03/10/1948

 Cincinnati Reds

W 14-3

 Al Dark triples and doubles

03/11/1948

 Johnny Sain agrees to a new contract

03/12/1948

 Johnny Sain pitches batting practice

03/13/1948

 Braves pitchers work on pick-offs ... Red Barrett has a sore shoulder

03/14/1948

 New York Yankees "B" squad

L 7-1

 Al Dark gets three hits

03/15/1948

 Cincinnati Reds

W 4-3  
03/16/1948

 Detroit Tigers

W 4-3

 Frank Kerr gets winning hit

03/17/1948

 Braves workout ... Jeff Heath is nursing a sore back

03/18/1948

 Detroit Tigers

W 6-4

 Spahn strikes out six

03/19/1948

 Washington Senators

W 8-6

 Beazley imporesses

03/20/1948

 Washington Senators

W 8-6

 Jim Russell knocks in winner

03/21/1948

 New York Yankees "B" squad

L 5-3

 Johnny Sain is wild

03/22/1948

 at Detroit Tigers

W 2-1

 Sisti starts three DPs

03/23/1948

 at Detroit Tigers

L 6-3

 Bob Hogue belted

03/24/1948

 at Washington Senators

W 14-6

 Bob Elliott homers

03/25/1948

 at Newark Bears

W 5-2

 Dick Manville impresses

03/26/1948

 Eddie Stanky ready to play

03/27/1948

 Kansas City

L 9-4  
03/28/1948

 at Cincinnati Reds

L 3-1  
03/29/1948

 St Louis Cardinals "B" squad

W 10-4

 Dark's bases loaded double

03/30/1948

 Braves take two hour batting practice against every Braves pitcher

03/31/1948

 Boston Red Sox

W 4-1

 

04/01/1948

 St Louis Cardinals

W 4-3

 Torgy's winning bunt

04/02/1948

 at New York Yankees

W 10-4

 Sain pitches complete game

04/03/1948

 at St. Louis Cardinals

W 4-2

 Bill Voiselle complete game

04/04/1948

 at Boston Red Sox

L 3-1

 Spahn pitches complete game

04/05/1948

 Louisville Colonels

L 6-5

 10 innings

04/06/1948

 Day off

04/07/1948

 A short workout was held with Dark and Stanky working on doubleplays

04/08/1948

 The Braves travel to South Carolina

04/09/1948

 Cincinnati Reds (at Florence, SC)

L 13-4

 Sain blasted for 10 hits

04/10/1948

 at Cincinnati Reds (at Columbia, SC)

W 3-2

 Stanky get game winning hit

04/11/1948

 Cincinnati Reds (at Columbia, SC)

L 4-3

 Spahn belted for nine hits

04/12/1948

 at Richmond Colts

 Spahn hit by a line drive ... rained out

04/13/1948

 at Naval Academy

 Game rained out

04/14/1948

 The Braves return home and workout at Tufts

04/15/1948

 The Braves workout at Tufts

04/16/1948

 Boston Red Sox

L 19-6

 

04/17/1948

 at Boston Red Sox

L 2-1  
04/18/1948

 at Boston Red Sox

W 3-2

 Spahn pitches magnificently

 
GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
04/19/1948 0-0 2nd -1/2  
04/20/1948 0-1 4th -1  at Philadelphia Phillies L 3-1 Johnny Sain 0-1
04/21/1948 0-2 8th -2  at Philadelphia Phillies L 4-3 Ed White 0-1
04/22/1948 1-2 7th -1  at Philadelphia Phillies W 10-4 Clyde Shoun 1-0
04/23/1948 1-3 7th -2  New York Giants L 3-1 Warren Spahn 0-1
04/24/1948 1-4 8th -2  New York Giants L 16-9 Bobby Hogue 0-1
04/25/1948 1-5 8th -4  New York Giants L 6-2 Ernie White 0-2
1-6 8th -4 L 6-0 Jim Prendergast 0-1
04/26/1948 2-6 8th -4  Brooklyn Dodgers W 5-0 Bill Voiselle 1-0
04/27/1948 3-6 8th -4  Brooklyn Dodgers W 3-2 Red Barrett 1-0
04/28/1948 4-6 7th -3 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies W 7-0 Warren Spahn 1-1
04/29/1948 4-7 8th -3 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies L 4-2 Johnny Beazley 0-1
04/30/1948 5-7 7th -2 1/2  at New York Giants W 7-2 Johnny Sain 1-1
05/01/1948 6-7 5th -2  at New York Giants W 6-3 Bill Voiselle 2-0
05/02/1948 6-8 5th -3  at New York Giants L 5-1 Red Barrett 1-1
05/03/1948 6-8 5th -3  
05/04/1948 6-8 5th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates pp  
05/05/1948 6-9 7th -4  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 3-2 Johnny Sain 1-2
05/06/1948 6-9 7th -3 1/2  at Cincinnati Reds pp  
05/07/1948 7-9 5th -3  at Cincinnati Reds W 4-3 Bill Voiselle 3-0
05/08/1948 8-9 5th -3  at Cincinnati Reds W 3-2 Red Barrett 2-1
05/09/1948 8-10 6th -3 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals L 6-4 Warren Spahn 1-2
05/10/1948 9-10 4th -2 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 6-0 Johnny Sain 2-2
05/11/1948 9-10 5th -2 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals pp  
05/12/1948 9-10 5th -2 1/2  at Chicago Cubs pp  
05/13/1948 10-10 5th -2 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 2-0 Bill Voiselle 4-0
05/14/1948 10-10 5th -2 1/2  at Brooklyn Dodgers pp  
05/15/1948 11-10 4th -2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 1-0 Warren Spahn 2-2
05/16/1948 11-10 3rd -2 1/2  at Brooklyn Dodgers pp  
05/17/1948 12-10 3rd -2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 12-3 Johnny Sain 3-2
05/18/1948 12-11 4th -3  Pittsburgh Pirates L 4-3 Bill Voiselle 4-1
05/19/1948 13-11 3rd -3  Pittsburgh Pirates W 4-1 Vern Bickford 1-0
05/20/1948 13-12 4th -4  Pittsburgh Pirates L 13-0 Red Barrett 2-2
05/21/1948 14-12 4th -3  St. Louis Cardinals W 3-1 Warren Spahn 3-2
05/22/1948 14-13 4th -4  St. Louis Cardinals L 6-4 Johnny Sain 3-3
05/23/1948 15-13 3rd -4  Chicago Cubs W 12-4 Vern Bickford 2-0
16-13 3rd -4 W 8-5 Clyde Shoun 2-0
05/24/1948 16-13 3rd -3 1/2  at Holy Cross W 9-8  
05/25/1948 16-13 3rd -3 1/2  Cincinnati Reds pp  
05/26/1948 16-14 3rd -3 1/2  Cincinnati Reds L 8-5 Warren Spahn 3-3
05/27/1948 16-14 3rd -4  
05/28/1948 16-15 4th -4 1/2  Brooklyn Dodgers L 7-5 Johnny Sain 3-4
05/29/1948 16-16 5th -4 1/2  Brooklyn Dodgers L 3-1 Bill Voiselle 4-2
05/30/1948 16-16 5th -3 1/2  Brooklyn Dodgers pp  
05/31/1948 16-17 4th -3 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies L 6-3 Vern Bickford 2-1
17-17 4th -3 W 10-4 Warren Spahn 4-3
06/01/1948 17-17 4th -3  
06/02/1948 18-17 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates W 5-1 Johnny Sain 4-4
06/03/1948 18-18 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 5-3 Bill Voiselle 4-3
06/04/1948 19-18 4th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates W 10-7 Bobby Hogue 1-1
06/05/1948 19-19 5th -3  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 8-7 Vern Bickford 2-2
06/06/1948 20-19 4th -3  at Chicago Cubs W 1-0 Johnny Sain 5-4
06/07/1948 21-19 4th -2 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 9-5 Red Barrett 3-2
06/08/1948 22-19 3rd -2  at Chicago Cubs W 11-1 Vern Bickford 3-2
06/09/1948 23-19 3rd -1 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 11-5 Warren Spahn 5-3
06/10/1948 24-19 2nd -1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 10-2 Johnny Sain 6-4
06/11/1948 25-19 1st +1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 7-3 Bill Voiselle 5-3
06/12/1948 25-20 2nd -1/2  at Cincinnati Reds L 3-2 Red Barrett 3-3
25-21 2nd -1 L 11-9 Red Barrett 3-4
06/13/1948 26-21 2nd -1  at Cincinnati Reds W 8-7 Bobby Hogue 2-1
27-21 1st - W 10-5 Jim Prendergast 1-1
06/14/1948 27-21 1st -  
06/15/1948 28-21 1st +1  Chicago Cubs W 6-3 Johnny Sain 7-4
06/16/1948 28-22 1st -  Chicago Cubs L 8-5 Red Barrett 3-5
06/17/1948 29-22 1st -  Chicago Cubs W 7-6 Bill Voiselle 6-3
30-22 3rd +1/2 W 8-7 Bill Voiselle 7-3
06/18/1948 31-22 1st +1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 5-4 Clyde Shoun 3-0
06/19/1948 32-22 1st +1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 5-0 Johnny Sain 8-4
06/20/1948 33-22 1st +1 1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 4-1 Vern Bickford 4-2
34-22 1st +1 1/2 W 5-4 Red Barrett 4-5
06/21/1948 34-23 1st +1 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals L 1-0 Warren Spahn 5-4
06/22/1948 34-24 1st +1  St. Louis Cardinals L 5-2 Bill Voiselle 7-4
06/23/1948 34-24 1st +1  St. Louis Cardinals pp  
06/24/1948 34-25 1st +1 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals L 11-2 Johnny Sain 8-5
06/25/1948 35-25 1st +1 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 12-2 Warren Spahn 6-4
06/26/1948 35-26 1st +1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates L 7-1 Bill Voiselle 7-5
06/27/1948 36-26 1st +1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 9-1 Johnny Sain 9-5
06/28/1948 36-26 1st +1/2  
06/29/1948 36-27 1st +1/2  New York Giants L 11-3 Warren Spahn 6-5
06/30/1948 37-27 1st +1 1/2  New York Giants W 3-1 Bill Voiselle 8-5
07/01/1948 38-27 1st +2 1/2  New York Giants W 4-1 Johnny Sain 10-5
07/02/1948 39-27 1st +3 1/2  at Philadelphia Phillies W 7-3 Bobby Hogue 3-1
07/03/1948 40-27 1st +4  at Philadelphia Phillies W 11-6 Warren Spahn 7-5
07/04/1948 40-28 1st +3  at Philadelphia Phillies L 7-2 Bill Voiselle 8-6
40-29 1st +2 1/2 L 5-2 Red Barrett 4-6
07/05/1948 40-30 1st +2 1/2  at New York Giants L 6-5 Johnny Sain 10-6
41-30 1st +2 W 4-1 Bill Voiselle 9-6
07/06/1948 42-30 1st +3  at New York Giants W 4-3 Vern Bickford 5-2
07/07/1948 42-31 1st +2 1/2  at Brooklyn Dodgers L 4-3 Warren Spahn 7-6
07/08/1948 43-31 1st +2 1/2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 7-4 Clyde Shoun 4-0
07/09/1948 44-31 1st +3 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies W 13-2 Johnny Sain 11-6
07/10/1948 45-31 1st +4 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies W 4-3 Bill Voiselle 10-6
07/11/1948 46-31 1st +5 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies W 9-4 Bobby Hogue 4-1
07/12/1948 All Star Game Break
07/13/1948
07/14/1948 46-31 1st +5 1/2  at Milwaukee Brewers  
07/15/1948 47-31 1st +5 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 2-1 Johnny Sain 12-6
47-31 1st +6 W 1-1  
07/16/1948 48-31 1st +6 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 12-10 Bobby Hogue 5-1
07/17/1948 48-32 1st +6 1/2  at Chicago Cubs L 4-3 Warren Spahn 7-7
07/18/1948 49-32 1st +7 1/2  at Pittsburgh Pirates W 10-2 Nels Potter 4-3
50-32 1st +8 W 3-1 Vern Bickford 1-1
07/19/1948 50-33 1st +7 1/2  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 1-0 Johnny Sain 12-7
07/20/1948 50-34 1st +6 1/2  at Cincinnati Reds L 9-6 Bill Voiselle 10-7
07/21/1948 51-34 1st +6  at Cincinnati Reds W 6-2 Warren Spahn 8-7
07/22/1948 51-34 1st +6  at Cincinnati Reds pp  
07/23/1948 51-35 1st +5 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals L 7-5 Johnny Sain 12-8
07/24/1948 51-36 1st +5  at St. Louis Cardinals L 4-3 Bill Voiselle 10-8
07/25/1948 52-36 1st +6  at St. Louis Cardinals W 8-6 Johnny Sain 13-8
52-37 1st +6 1/2 L 6-5 Bobby Hogue 5-2
07/26/1948 52-37 1st +5  
07/27/1948 53-37 1st +5 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 5-1 Nels Potter 5-3
07/28/1948 54-37 1st +5 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 8-2 Vern Bickford 7-2
07/29/1948 55-37 1st +5 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 2-1 Bill Voiselle 11-8
07/30/1948 55-38 1st +5 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals L 6-2 Johnny Sain 13-9
07/31/1948 56-38 1st +5 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals W 7-6 Bobby Hogue 6-2
08/01/1948 56-39 1st +5  St. Louis Cardinals L 9-6 Nels Potter 5-4
08/02/1948 56-40 1st +5  Cincinnati Reds L 3-1 Vern Bickford 7-3
08/03/1948 56-41 1st +4 1/2  Cincinnati Reds L 5-4 Johnny Sain 13-10
08/04/1948 56-42 1st +4  Cincinnati Reds L 4-2 Bill Voiselle 11-9
08/05/1948 57-42 1st +4 1/2  Cincinnati Reds W 6-4 Bobby Hogue 7-2
08/06/1948 57-43 1st +3 1/2  Chicago Cubs L 5-4 Red Barrett 4-7
08/07/1948 58-43 1st +4 1/2  Chicago Cubs W 6-3 Johnny Sain 14-10
08/08/1948 59-43 1st +4  Chicago Cubs W 6-3 Bill Voiselle 12-9
08/09/1948 59-43 1st +3 1/2  
08/10/1948 59-44 1st +3  New York Giants L 6-5 Nels Potter 5-5
08/11/1948 60-44 1st +3  New York Giants W 4-3 Johnny Sain 15-10
08/12/1948 61-44 1st +4  Brooklyn Dodgers W 2-1 Warren Spahn 9-7
08/13/1948 61-45 1st +3  Brooklyn Dodgers L 6-3 Bill Voiselle 12-10
08/14/1948 62-45 1st +4  Brooklyn Dodgers W 4-3 Nels Potter 6-5
08/15/1948 62-46 1st +3  Brooklyn Dodgers L 4-2 Johnny Sain 15-11
08/16/1948 62-47 1st +2  Brooklyn Dodgers L 6-2 Warren Spahn 9-8
08/17/1948 63-47 1st +2  at New York Giants W 10-2 Bill Voiselle 13-10
08/18/1948 63-48 1st +1  at New York Giants L 8-2 Vern Bickford 7-4
08/19/1948 63-48 1st +1  at New York Giants pp  
08/20/1948 63-48 1st +1  at Brooklyn Dodgers pp  
08/21/1948 63-49 1st -  at Brooklyn Dodgers L 8-7 Johnny Sain 15-12
64-49 1st +1 W 2-1 Warren Spahn 10-8
08/22/1948 65-49 1st +2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 4-3 Red Barrett 5-7
08/23/1948 66-49 1st +2 1/2  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 3-2 Bobby Hogue 8-2
08/24/1948 67-49 1st +3 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 9-3 Johnny Sain 16-12
08/25/1948 68-49 1st +4 1/2  at St. Louis Cardinals W 2-0 Warren Spahn 11-8
08/26/1948 68-50 1st +3 1/2  at Chicago Cubs L 5-1 Bill Voiselle 13-11
68-51 1st +2 1/2 L 5-2 Vern Bickford 7-5
08/27/1948 68-52 1st +2  at Chicago Cubs L 1-0 Johnny Sain 16-13
08/28/1948 69-52 1st +1 1/2  at Chicago Cubs W 5-4 Al Lyons 1-0
08/29/1948 69-53 1st +1/2  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 6-1 Warren Spahn 11-9
69-54 2nd - L 5-2 Bill Voiselle 13-12
08/30/1948 69-55 2nd - 1 1/2  at Pittsburgh Pirates L 2-1 Johnny Sain 16-14
08/31/1948 70-55 2nd -  at Cincinnati Reds W 3-1 Red Barrett 6-7
09/01/1948 70-56 2nd -1  at Cincinnati Reds L 3-1 Warren Spahn 11-10
71-56 2nd -1/2 W 11-1 Glenn Elliott 1-0
09/02/1948 71-56 2nd -  
09/03/1948 72-56 1st +1 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies W 3-1 Johnny Sain 17-14
09/04/1948 72-57 1st +1 1/2  Philadelphia Phillies L 4-3 Bill Voiselle 13-13
73-57 1st +2 W 8-1 Vern Bickford 8-5
09/05/1948 74-57 1st +2  Philadelphia Phillies W 5-1 Red Barrett 7-7
09/06/1948 75-57 1st +3  Brooklyn Dodgers W 2-1 Warren Spahn 12-10
76-57 1st +4 W 4-0 Johnny Sain 18-14
09/07/1948 76-57 1st +4  
09/08/1948 76-57 1st +3 1/2  
09/09/1948 76-57 1st +3  at Philadelphia Phillies pp  
09/10/1948 76-57 1st +3  at Philadelphia Phillies pp  
09/11/1948 77-57 1st +3  at Philadelphia Phillies W 3-1 Johnny Sain 19-14
78-57 1st +3 1/2 W 13-2 Warren Spahn 13-10
09/12/1948 78-58 1st +2 1/2  at Philadelphia Phillies L 6-4 Red Barrett 7-8
79-58 1st +3 W 2-1 Nels Potter 7-5
09/13/1948 79-58 1st +3 1/2  
09/14/1948 80-58 1st +5  Chicago Cubs W 10-3 Johnny Sain 20-14
09/15/1948 81-58 1st +5  Chicago Cubs W 5-2 Warren Spahn 14-10
09/16/1948 81-58 1st +4 1/2  
09/17/1948 82-58 1st +5 1/2  Pittsburgh Pirates W 6-2 Johnny Sain 21-14
09/18/1948 83-58 1st +6  Pittsburgh Pirates W 2-1 Warren Spahn 15-10
09/19/1948 84-58 1st +6  Cincinnati Reds W 4-2 Clyde Shoun 5-0
09/20/1948 84-58 1st + 5 1/2  Cincinnati Reds pp  
09/21/1948 85-58 1st +6 1/2  St. Louis Cardinals W 11-3 Johnny Sain 22-14
86-58 1st +7 1/2 W 4-0 Vern Bickford 9-5
09/22/1948 86-59 1st +7  St. Louis Cardinals L 8-2 Warren Spahn 15-11
09/23/1948 86-59 1st +7  
09/24/1948 86-59 1st +6 1/2  
09/25/1948 86-60 1st +6  New York Giants L 3-2 Johnny Sain 22-15
09/26/1948 87-60 1st +6  New York Giants W 3-2 Vern Bickford 10-5
09/27/1948 87-60 1st +6  
09/28/1948 87-61 1st +5  at Brooklyn Dodgers L 9-8 Clyde Shoun 5-1
09/29/1948 88-61 1st +6  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 4-3 Johnny Sain 23-15
09/30/1948 88-61 1st +6  at Brooklyn Dodgers pp  
10/01/1948 89-61 1st +6  at Brooklyn Dodgers W 3-1 Vern Bickford 11-5
10/02/1948 89-62 1st +5  at New York Giants L 8-2 Warren Spahn 15-12
90-62 1st +5 1/2 W 2-1 Johnny Sain 24-15
10/03/1948 91-62 1st +6 1/2  at New York Giants W 11-1 Nels Potter 5-2
   
THE WORLD  SERIES
  RECORD   OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
10/06/1948 1-0 Game #1  Cleveland Indians W 1-0 Johnny Sain 1-0
10/07/1948 1-1 Game #2  Cleveland Indians L 4-1 Warren Spahn 0-1
10/08/1948 1-2 Game #3  at Cleveland Indians L 2-0 Vern Bickford 0-1
10/09/1948 1-3 Game #4  at Cleveland Indians L 2-1 Johnny Sain 1-1
10/10/1948 2-3 Game #5  at Cleveland Indians W 11-5 Warren Spahn 1-1
10/11/1948 2-4 Game #6  Cleveland Indians L 4-3 Bill Voiselle 0-1
  
1948 BRAVES BATTING & PITCHING
 
 

 

 

FINAL 1948 N.L. STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

91 62 -

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 85 69 6 1/2

 

 

Brooklyn Dodgers 84 70 7 1/2

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 83 71 8 1/2

 

 

New York Giants 78 76 13 1/2

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 66 88 25 1/2

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 64 89 27

 

 

Chicago Cubs 64 90 27 1/2

 

 

     
SPRING TRAINING
02/11/1948

 Ellis Kinder's, who was secured from the Browns, contract is received

02/13/1948

 Johnny Pesky signs his contract at Fenway Park, and Dom DiMaggio's contract is received

02/14/1948

 Denny Galehouse agrees to terms with the Red Sox

02/16/1948

 Earl Johnson agrees to terms ... Pete Modica, who was picked up from New Orleans, signs

02/20/1948

 Stan Spence, who was picked up fcrom Washington, agrees to terms

02/25/1948

 The last two unsigned Red Sox, sign their contracts, Jack Kramer and Jake Jones

02/26/1948

 Dom DiMaggio arrives at Fenway Park

02/27/1948

 The Red Sox leave from South Station for spring training with the Braves

03/01/1948

 The Red Sox arrive in Sarasota

03/02/1948

 The Sox start workouts ... Ted Williams arrives, but Ellis Kinder is absent

03/03/1948

 Johnny Pesky and Vern Stephens work out at shortstop

03/04/1948

 Stan Spence impresses Joe McCarthy at first base

03/05/1948

 Mickey Harris, Denny Galehouse and Harry Dorish all pitch

03/06/1948

 Ted Williams hits four home runs in a intra-squad game

03/07/1948

 The Ted Williams team beats the Vern Stephens team, 5 to 4 ... Ted drives in the game winner

03/08/1948

 Johnny Pesky will play third base and Vern Stephens will be the shortstop

03/09/1948

 The second stingers beat the varsity, 3 to 1, on an error by Ted Williams

03/10/1948

 Joe McCarthy has his outfielders work out in the infield

03/11/1948

 Dom DiMaggio hurts his hand

03/12/1948

 St. Louis Cardinals

W 14-9

 Bobby Doerr gets five hits

03/13/1948

 St. Louis Cardinals

L 8-5

 Cardinals clout Boo Ferriss

03/14/1948

 New York Yankees

L 5-2

 Joe DiMaggio homers in 10th

03/15/1948

 Dom DiMaggio takes batting practice

03/16/1948

 Philadelphia Phillies

W 5-2

 Mickey Harris impresses

03/17/1948

 Sam Mele credits Ted Williams for making him a better hitter

03/18/1948

 New York Yankees

W 3-0

 Dobson & Dorish blank NY

03/19/1948

 New York Yankees

L 6-3  
03/20/1948

 Detroit Tigers

L 4-1

 Pesky makes two errors

03/21/1948

 at Cincinnati Reds

L 4-1

 Kinder impressive

03/22/1948

 St. Louis Cardinals

W 4-0

 Harris & Parnell pitch great

03/23/1948

 at St. Louis Cardinals

W 3-2  
03/24/1948

 at Detroit Tigers

L 3-1  
03/25/1948

 at Cincinnati Reds

W 12-7

 Hughson shelled

03/26/1948

 New York Yankees

L 7-2

 Kinder pounded

03/27/1948

 at Cincinnati Reds

L 11-3

 Mele hits two homers

03/28/1948

 Washington Senators

W 10-5

 Bobby Doerr pulls a muscle

03/29/1948

 at New York Yankees

T 2-2

 17 inning tie

03/30/1948

 Louisville Colonels

W 13-0

 Kramer & Stobbs pitch nicely

03/31/1948

 at Boston Braves

L 4-1

 

04/01/1948

 Louisville Colonels

W 4-3

 9th inning comeback win

04/02/1948

 at Philadelphia Phillies

L 6-1

 

04/03/1948

 Cincinnati Reds

W 5-0

 Mickey Harris shutout

04/04/1948

 Boston Braves

W 3-1

 Joe Dobson pitches 2-hitter

04/05/1948

 Day off

04/06/1948

 Workout at New Orleans

04/07/1948

 at New Orleans Pelicans

W 14-6

 John McCall pitches great

04/08/1948

 at New Orleans Pelicans

W 6-2

 Pesky doubles and triples

04/09/1948

 at Birmingham Barons

L 6-3

 Wally Moses homers

04/10/1948

 at Atlanta Crackers

W 13-2

 Sox make a triple play

04/11/1948

 at Atlanta Crackers

L 1-0

 

04/12/1948

 Cincinnati Reds (at Charlotte, NC)

L 9-7  
04/13/1948

 Cincinnati Reds (at Durham, NC)

L 8-6

 Harris clubbed for seven runs

04/14/1948

 Cincinnati Reds (at Roanoke, VA)

 Game rained out

04/15/1948

 at Baltimore Orioles

W 3-1

 Sox poke out three homers

04/16/1948

 at Boston Braves

W 19-6

 Ted homers, 4 RBIs

04/17/1948

 Boston Braves

W 2-1

 Pesky knocks in game winner

04/18/1948

 Boston Braves

L 3-2  
 
GAME LOG
  RECORD PLACE GB/GF OPPONENT   SCORE  PITCHER W/L
04/19/1948 0-1 4th -1  Philadelphia Athletics L 5-4 Joe Dobson 0-1
0-2 8th -2 L 4-2 Danny Galehouse 0-1
04/20/1948 0-2 8th -2  
04/21/1948 0-2 8th -2  Philadelphia Athletics pp  
04/23/1948 1-3 6th -2  at New York Yankees W 4-0 Mickey Harris 1-0
04/24/1948 1-4 7th -3  at New York Yankees L 7-2 Joe Dobson 0-2
04/25/1948 1-5 7th -4  at New York Yankees L 5-4 Windy McCall 0-1
04/26/1948 2-5 7th -4  at Washington Senators W 6-0 Mel Parnell 1-1
04/27/1948 2-5 7th -4  at Washington Senators pp  
04/28/1948 2-5 7th -4  at Philadelphia Athletics pp  
04/29/1948 3-5 7th -4  at Philadelphia Athletics W 11-5 Earl Johnson 1-0
04/30/1948 3-6 7th -4 1/2  New York Yankees L 6-0 Mickey Harris 1-1
05/01/1948 4-6 7th -3 1/2  New York Yankees W 8-6 Jack Kramer 1-0
05/02/1948 5-6 6th -2 1/2  New York Yankees W 7-1 Joe Dobson 1-2
05/03/1948 5-6 6th -2 1/2  
05/04/1948 6-6 6th -1 1/2  Detroit Tigers W 6-3 Dave Ferriss 1-0
05/05/1948 7-6 4th -1  Detroit Tigers W 4-3 Ellis Kinder 1-0
05/06/1948 7-7 4th -2  Detroit Tigers L 8-3 Jack Kramer 1-1
05/07/1948 7-7 4th -2  
05/08/1948 7-8 5th -3  St. Louis Browns L 9-4 Mickey Harris 1-2
05/09/1948 7-9 6th -4  Cleveland Indians L 4-1 Joe Dobson 1-3
7-10 6th -5 L 9-5 Hal Dorish 0-1
05/10/1948 7-11 6th -5 1/2  Cleveland Indians L 12-7 Dave Ferriss 1-1
05/11/1948 8-11 6th -5 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 8-0 Jack Kramer 2-1
05/12/1948 9-11 5th -5 1/2  Chicago White Sox W 6-5 Cot Deal 1-0
05/13/1948 9-11 5th -5 1/2  Chicago White Sox pp  
05/14/1948 9-11 4th -5 1/2  Washington Senators pp  
05/15/1948 10-11 4th -5 1/2  Washington Senators W 5-0 Joe Dobson 2-3
05/16/1948 11-11 4th -5  Washington Senators W 14-5 Earl Johnson 2-0
05/17/1948 11-11 4th -5  
05/18/1948 11-12 4th -5  at Detroit Tigers L 10-7 Denny Galehouse 0-2
05/19/1948 11-13 5th -5 1/2  at Detroit Tigers L 4-1 Ellis Kinder 1-1
05/20/1948 11-14 6th -6 1/2  at Cleveland Indians L 13-4 Mickey Harris 1-3
05/21/1948 12-14 6th -5 1/2  at Cleveland Indians W 11-5 Joe Dobson 3-3
05/22/1948 12-15 6th -6 1/2  at Cleveland Indians L 7-0 Jack Kramer 2-2
05/23/1948 12-16 6th -7 1/2  at Chicago White Sox L 4-3 Earl Johnson 2-1
12-17 7th -7 1/2 L 4-3 Joe Dobson 3-4
05/24/1948 12-17 7th -7 1/2  
05/25/1948 12-18 7th -8 1/2  at St. Louis Browns L 9-4 Ellis Kinder 1-2
05/26/1948 13-18 6th -8  at St. Louis Browns W 5-3 Joe Dobson 4-3
05/27/1948 13-18 6th -8 1/2  
05/28/1948 13-19 7th -9 1/2  at Washington Senators L 2-1 Mel Parnell 1-2
05/29/1948 13-20 7th 10 1/2  at Washington Senators L 5-4 Jack Kramer 2-3
13-21 7th -11 L 7-6 Earl Johnson 2-2
05/30/1948 13-22 7th -11 1/2  at Washington Senators L 8-1 Denny Galehouse 0-3
05/31/1948 14-22 7th -10 1/2  at Philadelphia Athletics W 7-0 Joe Dobson 5-4
14-23 7th -11 1/2 L 2-1 Mickey Harris 1-4
06/01/1948 15-23 7th -10 1/2  at Philadelphia Athletics W 8-1 Ellis Kinder 2-2
06/02/1948 15-24 7th -10 1/2  St. Louis Browns L 3-1 Mel Parnell 1-3
06/03/1948 16-24 7th -10  St. Louis Browns W 3-2 Jack Kramer 3-3
06/04/1948 17-24 7th -10  St. Louis Browns W 10-4 Joe Dobson 6-4
18-24 5th -9 1/2 W 7-2 Denny Galehouse 1-3
06/05/1948 18-24 7th -9 1/2  Detroit Tigers pp  
06/06/1948 19-24 6th -9 1/2  Detroit Tigers W 5-4 Earl Johnson 3-2
20-24 4th -9 1/2 W 12-4 Dave Ferriss 2-1
06/07/1948 20-24 5th -9 1/2  
06/08/1948 20-25 6th -10 1/2  Cleveland Indians L 2-0 Mel Parnell 1-4
06/09/1948 20-25 6th -10 1/2  Cleveland Indians pp  
06/10/1948 21-25 6th -9 1/2  Cleveland Indians W 15-7 Joe Dobson 7-4
06/11/1948