1936 April

1st Babe Herman, who hit .316 for the Reds last year, says on the phone to Chuck Dressen that he’ll stay home unless the Reds meet his terms. GM Larry MacPhail thunders, “Herman will play with the Reds or he won’t play.”

In a poll of 98 sports editors and writers, 43 pick the Cardinals to win the NL pennant. 39 go with the Cubs.

5th In Fayettville, NC, 5000 turn out to see Babe Ruth and the Braves defeat NC State, 6–2. All balls hit in to the crowd are kept as souvenirs and by the time the last one is hit into the crowd 12 dozen balls have been used up.

11th  In a resumption of their city series started in L.A., the White Sox score 5 runs off Larry French to beat the Cubs, 5-1, at Wrigley Field. Fabian Kowalik holds the Sox scoreless in the last 4 frames, while rookie Monte Stratton holds the Cubs to two hits in the last 5 innings. The Sox lead in the series, 3 games to 2.

12th  The Browns rally in the 9th to beat the Cardinals, 7-4, at Sportsman’s Park. The two teams conclude their city series splitting the two-game series. Yesterday’s match was rained out. With spring training completed, the Browns are atop the Grapefruit League standings with a 15-5 record. But only half the games are against ML teams. Washington is 2nd at 13-7; The Yankees finish 13-8, and are 8-6 against AL teams (0 games against the NL). The Cards go 17-10, with a 9-6 record against ML squads. The Cubs are 12-11 against the ML teams.

In the Hub City series, limited to one game because of the weather, the Boston Bees down the Red Sox, 8–4, in front of 6500 shivering fans. Bill Werber has 3 of the 9 Sox hits.

Behind Al Smith and Harry Gumbert, the Giants shut out the Indians, 7-0, in Cleveland and conclude their series together at 7 wins apiece.

14th  At Griffith Stadium, Vice-President James Garner makes the march to the flagpole for the President. Then to a standing ovation from 31,000 Franklin Roosevelt tosses out the first ball (but misses the catcher) in the Senators opener against New York. Nats starter Bobo Newsom pitches a masterful game, surviving a 5th inning beaning when he is hit by a throw to first by 3B Ossie Bluege, to shut out the Yankees, 1–0, on 4 hits. Afterwards, it is discovered that Newsom’s jaw was broken by the throw, reminiscent of his complete game loss last season after his knee was broken. Lefty Gomez loses his second straight 1–0 Opener. Roosevelt stays till the 9th, munching peanuts and keeping his own scorecard.

For the first time since the repeal of Prohibition, in December 1933, and following three years of state and city licensing questions, beer is offered again at Fenway Park. At least that is the implication of a New York Timesarticle on April 10 noted by Red Sox historian Bill Nowlin. The Times piece reads in part, “Fans will find several changes in the nation’s ball parks this season. They will be able to buy a glass of beer in the Boston parks, for example.” Red Sox fans hoist their beer cups as Boston downs the Philadelphia A’s, 9-4, behind Wes Ferrell.

In a 12-7 loss to Cubs, Cardinals rookie Eddie Morgan pinch-hits and drives the first pitch he sees from Lon Warneke for a HR, the only one he’ll hit in a 39-game career. He is the first to hit a pinch HR in his first at bat. Billy Herman leads the Cubs going 5-for-5 with 3 doubles and a homer. Frank Demaree has a pair of roundtrippers, while Gabby Hartnett and Chuck Klein have one apiece. Augie Galan, who hit into no double plays last year, hits into one his first time up.

For the 2nd year in a row, Waite Hoyt is the winner in the Reds opener. The Pirate ace wins, 8–6. Babe Herman has 4 hits.

15th The Giants Harry Gumbert defeats the Dodgers Van Lingle Mungo, 5–3, in a game that features a fine brawl between Mungo and Dick Bartell. On an unassisted ground out to 1B Buddy Hassett, Mungo comes over to cover the bag and gives a hard block to the batter Bartell. Rowdy Richard goes flying and comes up swinging. Umpire Beans Reardon races over and pries the 2 combatants apart, then tosses them. Tomorrow they get a fine from Frick. Ox Eckardt, 35, a veteran of the NFL Giants, clubs his one and only ML homer, a 2-run shot, for the Dodgers. Ox led the PCL in hitting last season with a .399 average, one point ahead of Joe DiMaggio. The Dodgers will gore Ox in mid-May sending him and his .182 batting average to Indianapolis, where he will continue to hit minor league pitching like a rented mule, compiling a .353 average.

16th  In a 10–4 win over the visiting A’s, Red Sox player-manager Joe Cronin breaks his right thumb on a force play at 2B. He will miss almost half the season.

With 2 runners on and 2 outs in the 9th inning, the Dodgers lead the Giants 6–5 when New York’s Hank Lieber hits an easy fly to LF Freddie Lindstrom. But Dodger SS Jimmy Jordan crashes into Lindstrom and the ball bounces out of Jordan’s glove. Both players lie dazed as two Giants’ runners score to win 7–6.

In Texas, the Tokyo Giants beat the Jacksonville Jax (East Texas L), 11–2, in an exhibition game.

17th Cleveland spoils the Browns home opener at Sportsman’s Park—the cold weather keeping the crowd short of 1500—by winning the 10-inning contest, 13–10.

Lefty Grove and the Red Sox take the Yankees home opener, 8–0, before a shivering crowd of 22,256. Grove pitches a masterful 2-hitter, with Lou Gehrig collecting 2 singles.

In a PCL match, Eddie Joost has 6 hits to pace Mission to a 13–6 win over Sacramento. Mission pitcher Boom-Boom Beck has a pair of homers. Beck will go 18-21 this year and have another 20-loss season in 1937.

20th Pittsburgh’s Gus Suhr belts a two-out homer in the 9th with two on off Roy Henshaw to give the Bucs a dramatic win over the Cubs, 9–8. Bill Swift picks up the win.

At Brooklyn, Dodger castoff Wayne “three fingered” Osborne hands Freddie Fitzsimmons a 4–1 lead, but the Bees come back to tie 6–6 in the 12th in a game called on account of darkness. Bees reliever Ben Cantrell induces a 1-2-3 DP to end the 12th. Joe Stripp ends his holdout and signs with the Dodgers today.

22nd The Reds Calvin Chapman hits his only ML homer in the 8th to snap a 4–4 tie as the Reds beat the Cardinals, 7–6. Chapman hits a fly ball that RF Lou Scoffic loses in the sun and Chapman legs out an inside-the-park homer.

23rd In the Dodgers 4–3, 10-inning win over the Giants, Dodgers OF Randy Moore breaks his right ankle sliding into 2B and will miss most of the season. He’ll return to the active list on July 27 and play in just one more game on the field before August 27. He’ll hit .103 next year, his last. A Mel Ott HR gives the Giants the lead in the 10th, but the Dodgers counter with 2 runs.

26th  In a ragged game featuring 11 errors, the Dodgers overcome 7 errors to beat the Phils, 10–7. Adding to the miscues, Brooklyn SS Ben Geraghty reaches base twice on interference (tipped bat) by Philadelphia C Earl Grace for a ML record.

At Boston, the Red Sox score six runs in the bottom of the first inning, but the Yankees rebound with 7 in the 2nd. New York holds on to win, 12–9. Foxx and Gehrig match homers while Frank Crosetti is 5-for-6 and Bill Dickey goes 4-for-6.

29th  In St. Louis, Roy Parmelee, former Giants pitcher, beats Carl Hubbell, 2–1, in a 17-inning duel. The game is scoreless until the 12thwhen the Giants score a run, but the Cards match it in the bottom of the 12th. Parmelee allows just 6 hits in 17 innings, while King Carl gives up 11.

Tiger first sacker Hank Greenberg breaks his left wrist in a baseline collision with Washington’s Jake Powell and is finished for the season. It will be suggested that Powell’s anti-Semitism is behind the crash. This is the same wrist that Greenberg broke in the 2nd game of the 1935 WS. The Tigers lose, 7–3, to Pete Appleton as they collect just 2 hits, one a 9thinning HR by Al Simmons. Greenberg is 0-for-3 and finishes his season at .348 with 15 RBIs in 12 games.

Career minor leaguer Cecil Dunn, playing for Alexandria (Evangeline League), clouts five home runs, a single and drives in 12 runs as the visiting Aces beat Lake Charles, 28–5. Alexandria beat them on April 19that Lake Charles, 27-17. Lake Charles had an 11-run 7th, while seven Alexandria hitters had 3 or more hits.

The first professional baseball game in Japan is played. Nagoya defeats Daitokyo by a score of 8–5.

30th  The hits keep coming for Detroit. Tigers player/manager Mickey Cochrane is hit on the right instep by a foul tip. Like yesterday, it is Jake Powell doing the damage. Powell adds insult by driving in the winning run in the 9th of Washington’s 8–7 victory over the Tigers. Jack Burns, whom the Tigers acquired from the Browns to fill in at 1B, has a hit and RBI.

After cups of coffee the last four years with the Pirates, Bill Brubaker makes his first appearance in ’36 and hits a 3-run homer to help the Pirates down the visiting Phillies. Bill will drive in 102 runs this year, nearly half his career total, while leading the NL in strikeouts with 96. He’ll also lead third sackers in errors.

The A’s outslug the Browns, 12–8, behind George Puccinelli’s four hits. Bill Dietrich chops down Sugar Cain for the win. Browns manager Hornsby announces that he is swapping 1B Jack Burns to the Tigers for lefty Chief Hogsett and cash. Burns will take over for the injured Greenberg and hit .283.