THE DODGERS AT BRAVES FIELD
SPAHN & SAIN and PRAY FOR RAIN ...
and hold off the Braves
August 15, 1948
... A first inning line drive home run by Duke
Snider, with one aboard, was the eventual margin by which the
Brooklyn Dodgers defeated the Braves before 28,420 fans at Braves
Field. The 4-2 Dodger victory squared the current series between the
league leaders and their chief rival. It left Brooklyn three games
behind the Braves, alone in second place, with the Cardinals
splitting a doubleheader with Pittsburgh.
Trailing by one run going
into the eighth-inning, Ralph Branca, the Dodgers starter, passed Al Dark on
four consecutive pitches. That brought manager Bert Shotton out of the dugout,
and he called for southpaw Paul Minner from the bullpen. Billy Southworth
allowed lefty Earl Torgeson to bat and he hit a terrific drive into right field
that went right at Gene Hermanski for the first out. Then Bob Elliott came up
and drew a walk. With lefty Jeff Heath coming to bat, Southworth once more
decided to not switch to a righty. Heath took Snider deep into centerfield with
a long fly ball, and Dark was able to sprint to third after the catch.
HERMANSKI STEALS SECOND
Now Southworth brought up Phil Masi, a right-handed batter to bat for Bill
Salkeld. That made Shotton switch pitchers and he brought in Hank Behrman.
Behrman threw three straight balls to Masi, and then a strike. On the next
pitch, Masi connected and popped out to end the Braves hopes.
The Dodgers up 2 to 0, as a result of Snider's home run, added one more run
in the third. Then Tommy Holmes opened up the Braves half of the inning with a
double, scoring on Dark's single, but Branca was able to hold the next three
Braves batters in check. Then in the sixth, Heath smashed a Branca fastball on
to the concrete walkway next to the Jury Box to put the Braves within a run. The
Dodgers picked up an insurance run in the ninth on Marv Rackley's double and
Gene Hermanski's single.
Johnny Sain gave out 10 hits and it was three more than the Braves could
collect off the trio of Dodgers pitchers.