JEFF HEATH SCORES IN THE 9TH
SPAHN & SAIN and
PRAY FOR RAIN ...
The Braves give another game to Philly
April 21, 1948
... As darkness began to engulf cold and
frosty Shibe Park late this afternoon, the Tribe handed the
league-leading Phillies a 4 to 3 victory in 13 innings, to the
delight of the remaining 4720 chilled customers. Ernie White began
his comeback in a relief role, that should have resulted in his first
major league triumph since 1942. But a bad throw by Bob Elliott,
after he had made a sizzling stop of rookie Richie Ashburn's hot
smash, enabled the Phillies to send the game into overtime, where
White's wildness gave them their second straight win.
five fine innings before he lost his control in the 13th and literally threw the
ball game away. He started by passing Bert Haas on straight pitches. Dick Sisler
bunted a low liner and Earl Torgeson charged in for the ball and dove. But the
ball went right through him and White recovered in time for a play at first, but
threw the ball into the dirt, by Eddie Stanky, out into right field. That placed
the Phillies runners on second and third with nobody out. It forced White to
issue an intentional walk to Del Ennis and load the bases. Here Ernie bore down
and tried to fight out of the difficult situation, as he erased Harry Walker on
a pop up a few feet from the plate. Then Granny Hamner flew deep out to Clint
Conaster, in left field and Haas scampered across the plate with the winning
run. The ball was hit so far back that Conaster never even attempted a throw to
The Braves got one run in the second inning on Jeff Heath's double and Bill
Salkeld's single that drove him in. That was wiped out when the Braves starter
Bill Voiselle passed Eddie Miller and Andy Seminick hit a home run into the
double deck left-field bleachers in the fourth inning.
With two gone and nobody aboard in the eighth, Schoolboy Rowe gave up the
tying run. He walked Jim Russell, who scored all the way from first when Earl
Torgeson bounced a wicked drive off the fence in right-center for two bases. In
the ninth, the Braves went ahead on a run, which should've been sufficient to
win. Rowe walked Heath, who went to second on Tommy Holmes' sacrifice fly.
Salkeld was passed intentionally and Frank McCormick was sent up to bat for
Sibbi Sisti. He came through with a single to score the and sent the Braves into
a 3 to 2 lead which they could not protect.
White, who had replaced Voiselle, after he was removed for a pinch-hitter in
the top half of the eighth, got off badly in the ninth when Ernie Miller greeted
him with a base hit. However, Seminick helped out the Braves by hitting into a
doubleplay. With the bases empty and two out, it looked like money in the bank
for the Braves. Johnny Blatnick was sent in to bat for Rowe and was issued a
walk. Then Ahburn slashed his wicked twister at Bob Elliott. He did well to
knock it down and recovered quickly, but in his haste and nail the fleet
Ashburn, threw the ball past Torgeson in the dirt. Blatnik was off swiftly and
he didn't stop until he slid home with the tying run.
Both runs against White were unearned. They were the first scored against him
this spring, as he had pitched nine brilliant scoreless innings during three
different exhibition games. Manager Billy Southworth used all kinds of strategy
in this game. He even took advantage of the wind which was favoring left-handed
hitters. That is why he happened to make a late switch in his catchers, going
with Bill Salkeld instead of Phil Masi.