THE BEST SEASON IN BOSTON'S BASEBALL HISTORY

PHIL MASI

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

Braves hitters chip away at the Cubs pitching

August 7, 1948 ... Chicago Cubs pitcher, Johnny Schmitz, has never won a game, that he has started at Braves Field since 1941. The Braves ripped him to shreds with a seventh-inning rally, that dissolved a 3 to 3 deadlock, to score an impressive 6 to 3 win over the Cubs. It not only gave Johnny Sain his long overdue 14th victory, but the Braves a 4 1/2 game lead in the closely packed National League field.

Schmitz has started at least a dozen times here and has come close on a few occasions, as he was tonight, until the seventh inning when four singles and a pass gave the Braves three runs and the ballgame. He was fortunate, however, to survive the opening inning. He had a one run lead but found himself in trouble right off the bat. Tommy Holmes led off with a double to left field and Alvin Dark followed with a line single to left to score Holmes and tie the game. After Torgeson forced Dark at second, Schmitz handed Bob Elliott a pass. Mike McCormick slapped a single to left and scored Torgeson with Elliott pulling up at third. He scored when Phil Masi slapped a double to left, putting Johnny Sain up 3 to 1.

Sain restored order during the second and third innings, but Phil Cavaretta opened up the fourth with a single and scored when Andy Pafko lined one off the scoreboard with a terrific crash for his 18th home run of the year to tie it up.

The Braves passed up several scoring chances from the second inning through the sixth and then the Cubs looked as if they might break the tie in the seventh. With one out, Roy Smalley got a base hit and Schmitz was a safe on a bunt between Sain and Torgeson. However Emil Verban knocked a ground ball that was converted into a doubleplay to end the threat.

In the bottom of the seventh, Dark turned the atmosphere into a joyous one when, with one gone, he crashed a single to left and then Torgeson bounded a ground ball over the head of Eddie Waitkus, that allowed Dark to get to third. Bob Elliott came up and half topped a slow curve down the third-base line, for a hit, that allowed Dark to score and put the Braves ahead 4 to 3.

A walk to Clint Conaster loaded the bases and once again, Mike McCormick found a hole in the infield right over second base. His ground ball went for a clean single and shipped home two more runs, securing the lead.

The victory was the fourth in a row for Sain over the Cubs. In those four games he has granted seven runs, 27 hits, walked six and struck out 16. Phil Masi cracked out three straight hits and then was robbed of the fourth when Bill Nicholson grabbed a line drive near the right-field foul pole. Elliott was passed three times, raising his total for the year to 98.

The victory enabled the Braves to gain a full game on the Dodgers, Cardinals and Giants who all lost. The Braves, who had a 6-6 record on their Western road trip, which followed the All-Star game, have been in a slump but they've lost only one game off their N.L. lead.

Bill Salkeld's injured thumb has vastly improved and he will probably come back tomorrow. Jim Russell, feeling stronger, is now available for pinch-hitting duties. Tomorrow the cast comes off Eddie Stanky's right ankle.

 

 
  B R A V E S   F I E L D 

 

 

 

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R H E  
 

CHICAGO CUBS

 

1

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

0

 

 

3

10

0

 
 

BOSTON BRAVES

 

3

0

0

0

0

0

3

0

x

 

 

6

12

0

 

 

 

W

JOHNNY SAIN (14-10)

 

2B

 

VERBAN (CHI), HOLMES (BOST), MASI (BOST)

 

L

JOHNNY SCHMITZ (11-10)

 

 

S

   

3B

   
 

 

 

 

   

ATTENDANCE: 13,521

 

HR

 

PAFKO (CHI)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Tommy Holmes rf 5 1 2 .322  

 

Alvin Dark ss 5 1 2 .329  

 

Earl Torgeson 1b 4 2 1 .261  

 

Bob Elliott 3b 1 2 1 .285  

 

Clint Conaster cf 2 0 0 .284  

 

Mike McCormick lf 4 0 2 .297  

 

Phil Masi c 4 0 3 .243  

 

Bobby Sturgeon 2b 3 0 1 .269  

 

Johnny Sain p 4 0 0 .125  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Johnny Sain 9 10 3 1 2  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1948 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

58 43 -

 

 

Brooklyn Dodgers 51 45 4 1/2

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 52 46 4 1/2

 

 

New York Giants 51 47 5 1/2

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 47 46 7

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 49 50 8

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 45 57 13 1/2

 

 

Chicago Cubs 41 60 17