THE BEST SEASON IN BOSTON'S BASEBALL HISTORY


 

TED WILLIAMS CROSSES THE PLATE

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

The Sox pummel the Braves
as tempers flare

April 16, 1948 ... The Red Sox knocked off the Braves and former army private Earl Torgeson bunched former army major Billy Hitchcock on the point of the chin with a left jab. Torgeson didn't flatten Hitchcock, but his teammates broke Boston's baseball season wide open with a 24 hit barrage, as the Red Sox pummeled the Braves 19 to 6, in the third game of the "City Series" before 12,630 spectators at Braves field.

Ted Williams operated on the Braves himself, as he smacked his first home run of the season, and one of the best of his career, over the dead centerfield fence, knocked in four runs and scored two others in this one-sided affair. Anything that didn't occur in this game probably will occur in the next one, when the fourth city game takes place at Fenway Park. Nothing, however, could surpass this fiasco, when the teams assured themselves of a packed house and tempers flared with Torgeson, the Braves firstbaseman, trading punches the Sox newcomer, Hitchcock in the fourth inning.

Hitchcock, making his first Red Sox appearance, was pinch hitting for Joe Dobson. Sam Mele had doubled and was on second base when Hitchcock grounded one back to pitcher Ed Wright. Wright had Mele caught between second and third when Alvin Dark tagged him out. When Hitchcock rounded first, a quick throw was made by Torgeson. The ball hit Hitchcock as he slid back to first and bounded away some 15 feet beyond the bag near the box seats. Torgeson started to retrieve it and hold Hitchcock on first. But Hitchcock wasn't going anywhere as he soon proved. He grabbed Torgeson's legs as the firstbaseman started chasing the ball. Torgeson stumbled and started again and Hitchcock yanked at his leg one more time. Torgeson at that point dropped his glove and started for Hitchcock. As Hitchcock got up Torgeson let fly a left-handed punch that caught him on the chin.

Ted Williams and the rest of the team charged from the Sox dugout and Eddie Stanky led the charge from the dugout of the Braves. Williams main objective was to separate the players and Stanky had the same idea. So after both teams held what, looked like a town meeting at first base, both Torgeson and Hitchcock were ejected from the game.

As odd as it may seem, some baseball was played, but most of it was on the part of the Red Sox. The Braves did score 6 runs on 11 hits as Stanky and Phil Masi were the only Braves to get more than one. The Sox powdered Johnny Sain, Clyde Shoun, Ed Wright and Red Barrett in rapid succession. Before the first three innings were completed, the Braves had rushed three pitchers to the mound.

JOE McCARTHY & BILLY SOUTHWORTH

Williams started with a single to center off Sain against the "Williams Shift". He homered with two men on against Shoun in the second inning. The homer was a thing of beauty, according to the Red Sox players. On a 3-0 pitch, the ball was sent flying high and far over the centerfield barrier. The mark at that point is 390 feet and there's no telling how far it would've gone up in the centerfield bleachers at Fenway Park. Ted singled to left in the fifth inning, reached on an error in the eighth, and scored both times. He didn't hit one to right-field all afternoon against the shift. Williams' performance alone was almost sufficient to beat the Braves, but he had plenty of help as the Sox piled up 24 base hits of all types.

Dominic DiMaggio had four hits, Johnny Pesky had three, Billy Goodman had four and Sam Mele had four. Vern Stephens hit the left-field fence while some of the other blows were close to it. Billy Goodman, who was buried in the minor leagues last season, had himself a field day, filling in for Bobby Doerr. Besides scoring four of the runs, Goodman had three singles and a long double that brought in two runs. He also participated in two doubleplays.

For the second straight outing Johnny Sain was hit hard. The Red Sox beat him off the mound with four runs and five hits and one in the third innings. Pesky had a triple against him. Clyde Shoun was up next on the chopping block. He gave six runs and five hits, including Ted's home run, and 1 1/3 innings. Ed Wright was hit for four runs in five hits in 2 2/3 innings and Red Barrett allow the last five runs.

Joe Dobson gave up one run and two hits in three innings and Denny Galehouse followed, giving up three more. Harry George completed the game as the Braves fashion their last two final runs.

 

 
  B R A V E S   F I E L D 

 

 

 

 
 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R H E  
 

BOSTON RED SOX

 

2

6

2

1

3

0

1

3

1

 

 

19

24

1

 
 

BOSTON BRAVES

 

1

0

0

0

2

1

0

2

0

 

 

6

11

5

 
 
 

W

JOE DOBSON

 

2B

 

TEBBETS (SOX), STEPHENS (SOX),
MELE (2)(SOX), GOODMAN (SOX),
DiMAGGIO (SOX)

 

L

JOHNNY SAIN

 
 

S

JOE DOBSON

 

3B

  PESKY (SOX), MASI (BRAVES)
       
 
   

ATTENDANCE: 12,630

 

HR

 

WILLIAMS (SOX)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RED SOX

 

AB

R

H

RBI

 

 

Dom DiMaggio cf 6 4 4 2  

 

Johnny Pesky 3b 7 3 3 2  

 

Ted Williams lf 5 3 3 4  

 

Stan Spence 1b 5 1 2 2  

 

Vern Stephens ss 6 0 1 1  

 

Billy Goodman 2b 6 4 4 2  

 

Sam Mele rf 6 1 4 2  

 

Birdie Tebbets c 6 2 2 2  

 

Joe Dobson p 1 1 0 0  

 

Billy Hitchcock ph 1 0 0 0  

 

Neill Sheridan pr 0 0 0 0  

 

Denny Galehouse p 1 0 0 0  

 

Harry Dorish p 2 0 1 0  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Joe Dobson 3 2 1 1 1  
  Denny Galehouse 3 4 3 1 1  
  Harry Dorish 3 5 2 0 0  

 

 

         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BRAVES

 

AB

R

H

RBI

 

 

Eddie Stanky ss 4 1 2 1  

 

Jim Russell cf 4 0 0 0  

 

Earl Torgeson 1b 2 0 1 0  

 

Frank McCormick 1b 2 0 0 0  

 

Bob Elliott 3b 4 1 1 1  

 

Jeff Heath lf 4 1 1 0  

 

Tommy Holmes rf 4 0 1 1  

 

Phil Masi c 4 1 2 1  

 

Alvin Dark ss 4 1 1 0  

 

Johnny Sain p 0 0 0 0  

 

Clyde Shoun p 0 0 0 0  

 

Ed Wright p 1 0 0 0  

 

Mike McCormick ph 1 1 1 0  

 

Red Barrett p 1 0 0 0  

 

Danny Litwhiler ph 1 0 1 0  
               
    IP H ER BB SO  
  Johnny Sain 1.1 5 4 2 0  
  Clyde Shoun 1.1 5 6 2 0  
  Ed Wright 2.1 5 4 0 1  
  Red Barrett 4 9 5 0 2