1915 April

5th In the final match of a 3-game series against the Memphis Turtles (Southern Association), the Red Sox win 10–5 to sweep. Babe Ruth pitches the final 5 innings in relief. The Sox are traveling north from their spring training camp in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

7th Ensign Cottrell is reassigned for duty with the Yankees as the Boston Braves sell the lefty to New York.

10th The Federal League gets a jump on the AL and NL with four games today. Before 16,000 at Washington Park the Brookfeds whip the Buffalo Feds, 13-9 in a 3 hour affair. Benny Kauff breaks a 1-1 tie with a 3-run homer in the 3rd off Hugh Bedient, and the locals are never headed. With no player limit in the Federal League the two teams use an army of pinch runners, pinch hitters and pinch managers. Grover Land appears as a pinch runner, is substituted for and then appears as a pinch hitter later in the game. The umps don’t notice he is a repeater. The New York Times suggests, “If the Federal League teams don’t don’t cut down the number of players, each man will have to carry an identification card, with his photograph, for the benefit of the umpires.”

In his FL debut, Eddie Plank gives up 3 runs in the 8th as the Chicago Whales lose their opener to St. Louis, 3-1.

In the final of the city series in Philadelphia, the Phillies beat the A’s, 5–3, when Gavvy Cravath belts a 3-run homer off Bob Shawkey in the 8th. The series, which began in Jacksonville, ends at 3 wins apiece, and a tie.

In an exhibition game in Cincinnati, the Reds beat Babe Ruth and the Red Sox, 3–1. Boston will prevail tomorrow, 2–1.

The New York Giants drop their fifth exhibition to a minor league club, losing 4-3 to the Baltimores, now the Richmonds, at Richmond. McGraw’s men have previously lost once to Dallas, once to Beaumont, and twice to New Orleans.

14th  The A’s young Herb Pennock comes within one out of pitching the first Opening Day no-hitter. With two outs in the 9thHarry Hooper bounces a single over Pennock’s head for the Red Sox’ only hit in a 2–0 loss at Philley. Ernie Shore is the loser. The Sox like what they see in Pennock: on June 13th they will claim him on waivers for $1500 as Mack strips his team. Attending the game as a spectator is third baseman Home Run Baker, who has been a holdout all winter despite having signed a contract. Expected to reach a new agreement in a few days, Baker instead returns to Maryland and sits out the entire season to Mack’s disgust. Eddie Murphy takes 3B in place of Baker, the first time the outfielder has started a game in the infield.

With government offices closed to commemorate the 50thanniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s death, many government workers, including President Woodrow Wilson, are among the 15,556 fans on hand for the Washington Opener against the Yankees. Wilson throws out the first ball and the rest is all Walter Johnson, who allows just two singles in the first 2 innings, and issues three walks, all to Andy High. High adds two steals. The Senators score 7 runs against the Yankees starter Jack Warhop to coast to a 7–0 win. Wilson stays the entire game.

Following New York mayor Mitchel’s throwing out the first ball, the Giants open the season with a trouncing of Wilbert Robinson’s Dodgers, 16–3. Larry Doyle is 5-for-5 and Fletcher has a 2nd-inning home run to deep right center field. Jeff Tesreau is the winner.

At Washington Park, the Brookfeds score 3 runs in the 9th to beat Newark, 8-7. Manager Lee Magee has 4 hits, including a double and triple. He steals home after the triple.

In Boston, Pete Alexander stops the world champion Braves, 3–0, as the Phillies beat Dick Rudolph. Bill James, the Braves other star from the World Series, is in California recovering from an illness incurred in Hawaii during the all-star world trip. James’ career is virtually over.

In the White Sox-Browns Opener, St. Louis reserve outfielder Ernie Walker swipes home in the bottom of the 11th inning to tie the score, but the Sox win in 13 innings, 7–6. Red Faber wins in relief of Jim Scott, while reliever Parson Perryman takes the loss. Bunny Brief homers for Chicago.

15th  Rube Marquard, who lost 22 games for the Giants in 1914, pitches a 2–0 no-hitter over Brooklyn in the Giants’ 2nd game of the season. The loser is Nap Rucker, who pitched a no-hitter in 1908. Rube faces just 30 batters, walking Stengel and Zack Wheat, while George Cutshaw reaches on an error.

With Red Faber on the mound, the White Sox roll over the Browns, 16–0, giving Faber his 2nd win in 2 days. Faber strikes out 10 and has 4 hits. Led by Eddie Collins, the Sox pull off a triple steal in the 1st inning. Collins walks 4 times.

With the game tied at 3–3 in the 9th, Tris Speaker draws a 2-out walk, goes to the 3rd on a hit-and-run by Lewis and then scores on a double steal. Boston beats the A’s, 5–3.

The Brookfeds score 10 runs in the 5th to beat Newark (FL), 17–6.

16th The Dodgers recover from yesterday’s loss to beat the Giants, 5–3.

17th Behind their ace Pete Alexander, the Phils drill the Giants, 7–1, their second successive victory by that score. Christy Mathewson lasts just 4 innings in taking the loss, as Gavvy Cravath deep sixes Big Six with a double and homer.

In his first game with the Browns, Hank Severeid hits his first ML home run, a 3-run blast off Hi Jasper, who had given up just one hit, to propel the Browns to a 4–3 win over the White Sox. Severeid played for the Reds from 1911-13.

In a 9–1 Yankee win over Philadelphia, the Yankees use a winning formula of 13 walks, 3 HBPs, 8 hits and 9 stolen bases to clobber the A’s. With young Jack Harper making his ML debut in the 9th, Fritz Maisel takes advantage of the rookie’s full windup to steal 2B, 3B and home in the frame. Maisel has 4 steals.

Dallas owner/president Joseph W. Gardner announces the arrival of the Texas League’s first infield tarp (as noted by David O. Barker). The new covering reportedly contains 2,300 square yards of canvas.

19th  In a 4-1 loss to the Reds, St. Louis Cardinals righthander Lee Meadows makes his NL debut and becomes the first player to wear glasses regularly on the field since P Will White in 1877. Later in the season, Carmen Hill will become the 2nd pitcher to do so.

Al Demaree shuts out Boston, 3–0, for his first victory for the Phils, who are now 4-0 on the season. They will not start a season 4-0 for the rest of this century.

20th  Reds president August Herrmann announces the completion of a trade of young catchers with the Cardinals whereby Cincinnati will receive Ivey Wingo for Mike Gonzalez and cash. The announcement succeeds the reality since Ivey got into his first Reds game on April 17 (Retrosheet has the trade on April 8).

22nd  Massachusetts’s governor Walsh is on hand for the Red Sox home opener and watches as Mayor James Curley tosses out the first ball. Ralph Comstock, in relief of Ernie Shore, is the winner, 7–6, for Boston over the A’s. The A’s newly acquired 2B Nap Lajoie makes 5 errors. He is the last of six second baseman to boot that many in one game.

The Phillies win their 6th in a row, beating the Braves, 8–4, with a five-run 8th inning. Pete Alexander picks up his 3rd victory.

The Pirates down the visiting Reds, 8-2, behind Babe Adams. Bill Hinchman hits a 7th inning inside-the-park homerun to the flag pole in CF, earning him (and all future Pirates hitting a homer at home) a 25-pound can of Radium fertilizer. Hinchman’s 5 homers this year will tie him for the team lead.

24th Frank Allen, Pittsburgh (FL) lefty, pitches a 2–0 no-hitter against the St. Louis Terriers. Allen will win 23 for Pittsburgh, who will finish 3rd just a half game back of the first-place Chicago Whales and the 2nd-place Terriers. The Terriers, in the race all the way, will outdraw the Cardinals and Browns.

At Ebbets Field, the Dodgers beat an aging Christy Mathewson, 7–5. It’s the 6th loss in a row for the Giants.

Herb Pennock pitches the A’s to a 6-3 win over the Red Sox. For the second time in his young career, Babe Ruth is lifted for a pinch hitter as Hick Cady bats for him.

The Phils lose their first game after eight straight victories, falling to Boston, 10–2. The Phils 8-0 start is the best in their history; they will not even start 4-0 in any season this century.

25th No New York teams are in action today as the temperature reaches 91, a record high for the day. But the hot first-place Newark Peppers (FL) play host to the BuffFeds, beating them 2–1.

Guy Morton pitches the Indians to a 3-1 win over the Tigers, stopping Detroit’s 8-game win streak.

26th  After scoring 7 runs in the 1st off Babe Adams, the Reds take a 10-1 lead on the Cubs in the 2nd, but Chicago goes ahead with an 8-run 6th inning, before the Reds respond in the 8th to win, 13-12.

27th Detroit edges St. Louis, 3-2, as eight double plays are pulled off by the two teams. Grover Lowdermilk walks 9 and hits a batter for St. Louis.

28th The Tigers trim the Browns, 12–3, scoring 10 runs in the 8th. Bill James walks 4 Tigers in the 3rd but, despite giving up a triple steal (Cobb, Crawford, and Leach), allows just one run in the inning. Cobb will steal home six times this season.

The New York Times announces the trade of Brooklyn star Zach Wheat to the Giants for P Pol Perritt and outfielders Jack Murray and Dave Robertson. However, it is a false alarm and the trade never takes place.

In the Reds 9-8 win over the visiting Cubs, Chicago’s Cy Williams hits “the longest ball ever” at Redlands Field, a triple in the 7th. The ball bounces off the RF bleachers wall. Wilbur Goode is 5-for-5 for Chicago as each team collects 16 hits.

Brooklyn cuts down its roster by selling pitcher Pat Ragan (1–0) to the Boston Braves, where he will win another 16 games this year. Brooklyn put Ragan on waivers with the intention of sending him to Newark, but Boston plucked him off. The rules state that once put on waivers a team cannot remove the player.

29th  Federal League star Benny Kauff jumps from the Brookfeds to the New York Giants. When Boston refuses to play if Kauff is in the Giants’ lineup, ump Ernie Quigley forfeits the game to New York. The two teams agree to play an exhibition game. The other ump, Mal Eason, telephones NL president John Tener, who declares Kauff ineligible until reinstated and orders Eason to forfeit the game to Boston. Meanwhile, the Braves win the 7-inning exhibition game, 13–8, as Hank Gowdy hits a grand slam off Rube Marquard. The next day Tener rules this to be an official game, and both forfeits are canceled. Kauff goes back to Brooklyn where he leads the FL at .342, and McGraw has to wait until next year to sign him.

30th  In his third appearance as a Brooklyn Robin, Jack Coombs pitches a complete game victory over the Phillies, winning, 2-1. Afflicted with typhoid fever in 1913, Coombs made just two appearances that year and two more in late 1914. He was released by Connie Mack and signed with Brooklyn.