Babe Ruth's "walk-off" homer is his last one for the Red Sox
ON THIS DATE (September 20, 1919) ...
It was the ninth-inning of the first game of the doubleheader, with the score tied at 3 to 3. Lefty Williams, the star White Sox pitcher had been pitching a great ballgame and it did not look as if the Red Sox would be able to score another run against him. He had just struck out Braggo Roth and then he faced the man that most pitchers fear. Because he was pitching so well, Williams was full of confidence and put a fast one over the outside corner of the plate. The Babe met the ball squarely and sent it sailing over the scoreboard, to the right of the clock and through a window of a building on the other side of Lansdowne Street. More than 30,000 fans jumped to their feet and howled and howled, until they had to stop from sheer exhaustion.
Meanwhile, the Babe was jogging around the bases, and as he crossed the plate, he gracefully tipped his cap several times, while the players and bat boys patted him on the back and extending congratulations. That was the end of the game but not the end of the festivities.
The presentation of gifts by the Knights of Columbus, the Pere Marquette Council, were presented at home plate to the Babe and Mrs. Ruth, as they were escorted to the center of the group. The players of both teams gathered around, while the photographers and motion picture men started to take the pictures. Babe turned to Mrs. Ruth, and handed her the certificates, one by one, like a dutiful husband, and after giving her the last one, gave her a kiss, which was registered by all the photographers.
Knights of Columbus members of both teams, which included Ruth and Mike McNally of the Red Sox, Eddie Murphy, Shano Collins, and Urban Faber of the White Sox, were given fraternal charms. They then presented the bat with which Babe hit the home run to a delegation representing the Liberty Loan Newspaper boys Association. It will be sold off at auction later on, for the benefit of the "Scotty Memorial Fund" Scotty was a newspaper boy, 15 years old, who enlisted and was killed in France during the war.
The crowd was of World Series proportions, overflowing onto the outfield. Every seat in the grandstand was occupied and fans were standing behind the seats, ten rows deep. The 5000 or so behind the ropes in the outfield, caused some confusion on what many thought was another home run by the Babe in the second game, but which umpire Billy Evans ruled was only a ground rule double. He ruled that the ball never went into the bleachers on the fly, as it had done so many times before. Evans ran deep into the outfield so as to get a sure line on the ball and after the game said the ball hit the ground outside and bounced up against the bleacher fence, then rebounding into the stands.
Incidentally the Red Sox won both games of the doubleheader. They won the first game 4 to 3 and the second one, 5 to 4. Ruth started to pitch in the first game, but was relieved by Allan Russell when Chicago had tied up the score in the sixth inning and had two men on base with only one out. Russell saved the game, as he later did for Herb Pennock in the second game.
In the sixth inning of the first game, Buck Weaver started trouble for the Babe, when with one down, he doubled to left and went to third on Jackson's infield hit. Buck scored the tying run on Felsch's single to left. The score remained tied until Ruth dissolved the deadlock with the walkoff home run in the ninth-inning.
The second game saw the Red Sox score first in the third inning. Ossie Vitt and Bill Lamar both drew passes to fill the bases, and Ruth hit one down to Collins who forced Vitt at second, but the Babe beat the relay to first. On the play Gilhooley scored and McInnis' single to deep short scored Lamar, giving the Red Sox a 2-0 lead.
The White Sox scored one in the fourth inning on Weaver's double and Jackson single, but the Red Sox came back with two more in their half of the fourth. Roxie Walters, the first man up, walked and went to second on McNally's ground ball out. He then made it to third on Everett Scott's single, and he and Scotty both counted on an attempted double steal, as the catcher Byrd Lynn threw the ball into centerfield. That made the score 4 to 1.
What would be the winning run was counted in the Red Sox half of the fifth inning. Ruth led off with the ground rule double into the bleachers in center. McInnis sacrificed him the third and the Babe scored when Risberg bobbled Walters' ground ball, to make it 5 to 4 and the Red Sox walked away with a satisfactory doubleheader sweep.