THE BEST SEASON IN BOSTON'S BASEBALL HISTORY

NELSON POTTER

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

The Giants take advantage of the Braves

August 9, 1948 ... No game scheduled

August 10, 1948 ... Nelson Potter might have considered himself lucky by getting picked up to pitch for the Braves, but he would've never believed that bad luck would haunt him, like it did against the Giants at Braves Field. The Braves right-hander had a three run lead in the third inning, as his teammates were hitting the pitching from the Giants all over the park. But they were also leaving men on base and were demonstrating some poor skills in the field.

Al Dark, who had four hits for the night and seven in his last eight times, started the third inning with a line drive single to left off Sheldon Jones, the starting pitcher for the Giants. Earl Torgeson and Bob Elliott duplicated that to load the bases with solid line drives, that were hit so hard that the Braves runners could not advance. Jeff Heath finally singled home both Dark and Torgy, with the throw from Willard Marshall in right field, hopping over catcher Walker Cooper's head. Another single by Mike McCormick scored Elliott and that was the night for Jones.

Potter coasted along beautifully from then on until the seventh inning. He had fanned eight of the Giants and walked to the mound to start the inning that should've ended with only two runs at best, scored off him, but he saw the Giants go-ahead 4 to 3. Johnny Mize laid a bunt down the third-base line and beat it out. Then Willard Marshall did the same thing and Bob Elliott couldn't get the ball out of his glove. Walker Cooper next slammed the ball past Elliott for a double that scored Mize, with Marshall stopping at third. Both runners held when Bobby Thomson rolled another grounder down to Elliott. Lonnie Frey topped a bounder down to Torgeson, who had no play at the plate on Marshall and was forced to take the out at first. Johnny McCarthy came up to pinch-hit for the pitcher and hit a fly ball out to Tommy Holmes in right, but Holmes misjudged it and the ball fell safely just inside the line, allowing Cooper to score the third run. Potter, upset by the pay, became unraveled and made wild pitches to Bill Rigney and to Monte Kennedy, that allow the fourth go-ahead run to score.

Sid Gordon and Johnny Mize singled to open the eighth and another mental error stung the Braves. Marshall hit a ground ball to Connie Ryan, and instead of faking Gordon back to third and throwing out Marshall, Ryan held the ball on Gordon too long and Marshall was safe on first to load the bases. Walker Cooper next topped a ball that struck him for an automatic out, but Bill Salkeld, not knowing what had happened, picked up the ball and ran down Gordon. The play was ruled dead and Gordon was back on third safely. Then Thomson lined a single to left that scored two more Giants runs.

Now down 6 to 3, the Braves climbed all over Clint Hartung in the eighth, but fell a run short of tying the game. With one out, Holmes doubled to center and scored on Dark's single, moving to second on the throw. Torgy walloped a double down the right-field line, but Elliott and Heath made outs to end the threat.

 

 
  B R A V E S   F I E L D 

 

 

 

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R H E  
 

NEW YORK GIANTS

 

0

0

0

0

0

0

4

2

0

 

 

6

10

2

 
 

BOSTON BRAVES

 

0

0

3

0

0

0

0

2

0

 

 

5

14

0

 

 

 

W

DAVE KOSLO (7-5)

 

2B

 

GORDON (NY), COOPER (NY), DARK (BOST),
HOLMES (BOST), TORGESON (BOST)

 

L

NELS POTTER (5-5)

 

 

S

ANDY HANSEN (1)  

3B

  McCARTHY (NY)
 

 

 

 

   

ATTENDANCE: 32,931

 

HR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Tommy Holmes rf 5 1 1 .316  

 

Alvin Dark ss 5 2 4 .341  

 

Earl Torgeson 1b 5 1 3 .266  

 

Bob Elliott 3b 4 1 1 .289  

 

Jeff Heath lf 5 0 1 .298  

 

Mike McCormick cf 4 0 1 .298  

 

Bill Salkeld c 5 0 1 .279  

 

Bobby Sturgeon 2b 3 0 1 .254  

 

Jim Russell ph 1 0 0 .264  

 

Connie Ryan 2b 0 0 0 .211  

 

Clint Conaster ph 1 0 0 .277  

 

Nels Potter p 3 0 1 .393  

 

Phil Masi ph 1 0 0 .246  

 

Vern Bickford p 0 0 0 .133  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  

 

Nels Potter 8 10 6 0 9  
  Vern Bickford 1 0 0 1 1  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1948 NATIONAL LEAGUE STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON BRAVES

59 44 -

 

 

Brooklyn Dodgers 54 45 3

 

 

St. Louis Cardinals 55 46 3

 

 

New York Giants 53 48 5

 

 

Pittsburgh Pirates 49 47 6 1/2

 

 

Philadelphia Phillies 49 54 10

 

 

Cincinnati Reds 45 59 14 1/2

 

 

Chicago Cubs 41 62 18