THE BEST SEASON IN BOSTON'S BASEBALL HISTORY


 

DUSTY BOGGESS

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

The Braves
lose a tough one and two in all

April 25, 1948 ... According to the scoreboard, the New York Giants handed the Braves a double defeat by scores of 6 to 2 and 6 to 0 at the Wigwam today. But you can't convince the vast majority of the fans, that the Braves fairly lost both decisions to the powerhouse New Yorkers. An umpires ruling created an unprecedented situation that cost the Braves the first game.

A monstrous grand slam homer by Walker Cooper in the 10th inning gave the Giants the game. Two hit pitching by Sheldon Jones handed the Braves their first shutout of the year with only a handful of fans present in the second game. Most of the customers had earlier walked out, muttering to themselves about a ninth-inning, opening game verdict, by umpire Dusty Boggess. It was the only thing that kept them warm, as a matter of fact hot under the collar.

Johnny Sain and Bobo Newsom had pitched brilliantly during the early stages of the game, although Newsom was forced out of the game with a muscle strain in the seventh inning with the game knotted at 1 to 1. In the ninth-inning Johnny Mize opened with a single for the Giants. Willard Marshall single to center and when Jim Russell fumbled the ball, Mize made it to third base and Marshall legged to second. Cooper was given an intentional pass to set up a doubleplay. The next batter was Jack Lohrke and he rolled one down to Al Dark who fired the ball home to rub out Bobby Rhawn, who was pinch running for Johnny Mize. But the relay back to first failed to double up Lohrke and the bases were still full.

With the infield drawn in, Dark rushed in to grab Buddy Kerr's low line drive. From his reaction and those of Eddie Stanky it appeared he had caught the ball on the fly. Down on the field however there was an important dissenter by the name of Boggess. He motioned that the ball had been trapped, and Dark not seeing his call, fired the ball to Stanky for would seem to be an inning ending double play. The Braves rushed off the field and the customers were excited, applauding Dark and Sain. But the Giants came storming out on the field. They hollered at Boggess, and the other umpires Bill Stewart and Butch Henline for a clarification. When it was pointed out that the ball was trapped and it was not a doubleplay, and it was only two outs, Cooper raced back to third and Kerr back to first.

Then the Braves rushed out of their dugout led by manager Billy Southworth and Eddie Stanky. They argued in vain, of course, that Dark and caught the ball and that the Giants had been retired without Marshall's run-scoring. Stanky was so upset that he kicked his glove almost out into left field. After a five-minute delay, the Braves were ordered back on the field. Boggess had said that the ball had been trapped, but Bill Stewart, the first base umpire had flashed the out sign. Plate umpire Henline ruled that it was Boggess' call and there was nothing the Braves could do about it.

So the next batter up was Ken Trinkle, who rolled out to Dark with the play that officially ended the inning, and the Giants leading 2 to 1. But the debating did not end at this point.

So the Braves, Bob Sturgeon walked to open the ninth-inning and Dark sacrificed him to second. Pinch-hitter Frank McCormick popped out and Stanky singled to left field. But as Sturgeon was getting squared away to hit third-base and head for home, Lohrke crashed into him and obstructed his progress. This play was right in front of Boggess. Instantly he motioned Sturgeon home and called interference. Sid Gordon threw the ball home and Sturgeon was tagged out, but since interference had been called, the run counted and the game had been tied up.

Now it was the Giants turn to do some complaining. They argued that Stanky, who had legged it out to second base on the play, should be ordered back to first. It didn't make any difference because Jim Russell was called out on a slow roller to Trinkle that ended the inning.

Since Sain had been taken out for a pinch-hitter, Ernie White took over as the Giants came up in the 10th inning. He retired Bob Blattner and then everything went haywire. Whitey Lockman laid down a bunt to the right of White. He ran after the ball and fired it into right field, allowing Lockman to race to third. Gordon was then walked on purpose and White struck out Johnny McCarthy for the second out. Then he lost his control and walked Marshall to fill the bases. He served up two balls to Walker Cooper and Billy Southworth came out and brought in Bobby Hogue from the bullpen. The score was tied, the bases were full, and slugger Cooper was at bat. Hogue had to throw a strike. He got two strikes and then threw a slider in tight. But this time Cooper had the pitch timed and he put everything into it. The ball sailed high and far striking the scoreboard half way up and rebounding back onto the field, or a grand slam homer.

That took the heart out of the Braves and they were pretty easy prey for Sheldon Jones in the second game. Jones held them to just two singles. The first was a high bouncing ball behind the mound by Stanky in the fifth inning and the other was a hot roller to centerfield by Phil Masi in the seventh.

The Giants scored five of their six runs off rookie lefty Jim Prendergast during the 2 2/3 innings he lasted, in his major league debut. The first one was unearned as Sturgeon fumbled the ball away with two outs and Lohrke followed with a double and Buddy Kerr with a single.

Five hits and pass gave the Giants four runs in the third inning before Vern Bickford was called in to put out the fire. Bickford yielded the final run in the fourth with three passes sandwiched around a two base hit by Lohrke. Then he settled down in did some fine pitching, putting the Giants down in order during the next three innings, as Ray Martin came in and then held them scoreless for the final two.

 

 
  B R A V E S   F I E L D 

 

 


GAME #1
 

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R H E  
 

NEW YORK GIANTS

 

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

1

4

 

6

11

0

 
 

BOSTON BRAVES

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

0

 

2

10

2

 

 

 

W

KEN TRINKLE (1-0)

 

2B

 

DARK (BOST), STURGEON (BOST),
HEATH (BOST)

 

L

ERNIE WHITE (0-2)

 

 

S

   

3B

   
     

 

   

ATTENDANCE: 35,954

 

HR

 

COOPER (NY)

 

 

 
  B R A V E S   F I E L D 

 

 


GAME #2
 

 

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R H E  
 

NEW YORK GIANTS

 

0

1

4

1

0

0

0

0

0

 

 

6

8

0

 
 

BOSTON BRAVES

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

 

0

2

1

 

 

 

W

SHELDON JONES (2-0)

 

2B

 

MIZE (NY), LOHRKE (2)(NY)

 

L

JIM PRENDERGAST (0-1)

 

 

S

 

 

3B

   
       
 
   

 

 

HR

 

COOPER (NY)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GAME #1

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Eddie Stanky 2b 5 0 2 .192  

 

Jim Russell cf 5 0 1 .269  

 

Earl Torgeson 1b 5 0 2 .346  

 

Danny Litwhiler lf 5 0 1 .368  

 

Jeff Heath ph 4 0 1 .292  

 

Bill Salkeld c 4 1 1 .250  

 

Bobby Sturgeon 3b 3 1 1 .375  

 

Alvin Dark ss 2 0 1 .429  

 

Johnny Sain p 3 0 0 .000  

 

Frank McCormick ph 1 0 0 .333  

 

Ernie White p 0 0 0 .000  

 

Bobby Hogue p 0 0 0 .000  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Johnny Sain 9 9 2 3 3  
  Ernie White 0.2 1 3 2 1  
  Bobby Hogue 0.1 1 1 0 0  

 

 

         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GAME #2

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Eddie Stanky 2b 3 0 1 .207  

 

Jim Russell cf 2 0 0 .250  

 

Earl Torgeson 1b 3 0 0 .310  

 

Danny Litwhiler lf 3 0 0 .318  

 

Mike McCormick rf 4 0 0 .143  

 

Phil Masi c 3 0 1 .158  

 

Bobby Sturgeon 3b 4 0 0 .250  

 

Alvin Dark ss 3 0 0 .300  

 

Jim Prendergast p 1 0 0 .000  

 

Vern Bickford p 1 0 0 .000  

 

Bob Elliott ph 1 0 0 .118  

 

Ray Martin p 0 0 0 .000  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Jim Prendergast 2.2 7 4 2 0  
  Vern Bickford 4.1 1 1 4 2  
  Ray Martin 2 0 0 1 0  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1948 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

New York Giants 5 2 -

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 4 2 1/2

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 4 4 1 1/2

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 3 3 1 1/2

 

 

Brooklyn Dodgers 3 3 1 1/2

 

 

Chicago Cubs 3 3 1 1/2

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 4 4 1 1/2

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

1 6 4