SPAHN & SAIN and PRAY FOR RAIN ...
Frank McCormick's HR lifts
the Tribe past the Giants
July 6, 1948 ... 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 under the Polo Grounds' lights. The final
count was established in the fifth inning when McCormick delivered
his game-winning blow.
Johnny Mize hit his 18th home run of the
year, which was driven into the right-field stands with two men aboard earlier,
and more than offset the early single runs which the Tribe had accumulated in
the first and third innings against Giants starter Monte Kennedy. Kennedy was
hit safely seven times by the Braves before he gave way to a pinch-hitter in the
Giants' seventh inning. Sheldon Jones was his successor and was hit safely once
by Eddie Stanky and then retired two Braves on strikeouts.
Bickford's performance was his fifth victory of the year and it was more
pleasing to manager Billy Southworth because until a few days ago, it had been
feared that shoulder trouble might keep the young pitcher on the sidelines
indefinitely. There certainly was no trouble with his shoulder tonight as he
pitched six hitless innings. If not for a third inning error by Alvin Dark, Mize
would never have had the opportunity to deliver his home run. Bickford could
just as easily had a shutout as well as the victory. He passed three runners,
one of whom scored.
The top of the Braves batting order did all the work. Dark, hitting second,
knocked out a single and a triple. Too early walks by Kennedy to Eddie Stanky
set the stage of the Braves first two runs. Bob Elliott had singled with two
outs in the fifth inning just prior to the Frank McCormick home run. The Braves
got a run in the first inning against Kennedy when he walked Stanky and Mike
McCormick's single put him on third, scoring on Elliott's deep fly ball to
center. Then in the third with one out, Stanky walked again, stole second, moved
to third on a fly ball and scored on Elliott's single.
The two run Braves lead did not last long as the Giants, in their half of the
third one out in front 3 to 2. Johnny Mize knocked his 18th home run of the year
into the upper right-field stands to score Bill Rigney, who had reached on the
error and Les Layton, who Bickford had passed.
Bob Elliott knocked out a base hit in the fifth and then jogged home on Frank
McCormick's home run to left to put the Tribe back out in front 4 to 3, where
they stayed. Bickford was cool from start to finish. His two free passes were
far separated and two of his three strikeouts came with a giant on base. Alvin
Dark drove in the second run and it was his 28th hit an 18 game stretch.