THE BEST SEASON IN BOSTON'S BASEBALL HISTORY

DANNY MURTAUGH

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

Danny Murtaugh with a game winner for the Pirates

May 5, 1948 ... Ex-Braves farmhand, Danny Murtaugh turned a cold damp day into warm sunshine, when he belted a line drive single in the last of the ninth-inning to give the Pittsburgh Pirates their six straight victory and keep them in first place, by beating the Braves 3 to 2 at Forbes Field.

Johnny Sain had a huge edge over Pirates starter, Elmer Riddle for eight innings. He had pitched four hit ball going into the ninth. The fact that he had only a 2 to 1 lead was to the Braves inability to hit with men on base. Riddle was ripe for an early exit, but he managed to get out of four tough jams. He kept his unblemished record intact because of the Pirates last ditch victory.

Opening the ninth-inning, Frankie Gustine, who is batting .449 singled sharply to left. The Red Sox expected a sacrifice bunt, but Ralph Kiner hit a high foul pop up that was gathered in by Billy Salkeld. Dixie Walker came up next and blasted a drive to right-center. Mike McCormick made a brilliant catch. He grabbed the ball while running at full speed, but it bounced out of his glove, and he managed to grab it with the other hand to hold on. That looked like the end for the Bucs, but Wally Westlake hit a soft one back to the mound that Sain was able to slow up with his bare hand. The ball, however, had enough carry on it to fall safely behind second base for a base hit. That brought up Ed Stevens, who was easy pickings for Sain in his first three times up. But this time he stroked a long single to right that brought home Gustine with the tying run. Next came Danny Murtaugh and he hit a sharp shot down the first base line that Earl Torgeson leaped for, managed to get his glove on, but couldn't hold it. It fell for a base hit as Westlake scored the winning run.

The Pirates had scored first in the fourth inning. Kiner had beat out an infield hit. Then on a fine hit-and-run, Dixie Walker hit through the hole vacated by Eddie Stanky. That put Kiner on third and he scored as Westlake flied out to Danny Litwhiler in short left field. Danny's throw to the plate was wide of the mark and the Pirates had a 1 to 0 lead.

The Braves scored twice in the fifth inning to take the lead back. Al Dark reached first on an error and was sacrificed to second by Sain. Eddie Stanky singled to score him and took second on Tommy Holmes' ground ball out. Bob Elliott's base hit scored Stanky with the go-ahead run.

Forty one Braves' baserunners were left on base during the last four games, with ten stranded today. Johnny Sain had a terrific curveball an excellent control. He didn't issue a pass and struck out four.

The Braves took the midnight train for Cincinnati where they will open a three-game series.

 

at Forbes Field (Pittsburgh) ...

R

H

E

BOSTON BRAVES

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

 

2

9

0

PITTSBURGH PIRATES

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

2

 

3

9

1

W-Kirby Higbe (1-1)
L-Johnny Sain (1-2)
Attendance 5210

2B-Stanky (Bost), Walker (Pitts), Murtaugh (Pitts)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Eddie Stanky 2b 4 1 2 .295  

 

Tommy Holmes rf 4 0 1 .379  

 

Mike McCormick cf 4 0 1 .231  

 

Bob Elliott 3b 4 0 1 .326  

 

Frank McCormick 1b 4 0 1 .222  

 

Earl Torgeson pr/1b 0 0 0 .288  

 

Danny Litwhiler lf 3 0 1 .273  

 

Bill Salkeld c 3 0 1 .321  

 

Alvin Dark ss 4 1 1 .314  

 

Johnny Sain p 3 0 0 .000  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Johnny Sain 8.2 9 3 0 4  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1948 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 9 4 -

 

 

New York Giants 9 6 1

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 7 5 1 1/2

 

 

Brooklyn Dodgers 7 7 2 1/2

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 7 8 3

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 7 9 3 1/2

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

6 9 4

 

 

Chicago Cubs 5 9 4 1/2