1940 April

5th At Greensboro, NC a game between the Cincinnati Reds and Boston Red Sox is called at the end of 8 innings because the supply of balls is exhausted. The Reds win 12–10. The same happened to the two teams on April 6, 1939 in Florence, SC.

10th In an exhibition game in Ashland, KY, the Yankees collect only 2 hits off Max Macon and Newel Kimball but beat the Dodgers, 7–6. The scoring comes in the 4th on Rolfe’s single, 4 walks, and 2 errors, and in the 6th on Dahlgren’s solo HR. The Yanks do lose Jake Powell, who suffers a brain concussion in a collision. Powell will play just 12 games this season.

14th With two outs in the 9th inning of an exhibition game against the Dodgers in Brooklyn, Joe DiMaggio injures his knee sliding into 2B. Joe will miss Opening Day for the 4th time in five years.

At the Bee Hive in Boston, the Bees beat the Red Sox, 7–5, before a crowd of 9,900. Yesterday’s match was called off because of bad weather.

In Los Angeles, Carlos Bernier homers in the 18th inning to give Hollywood a 6–5 PCL win over the Angels. It is the longest game ever at Wrigley Field.

15th The Indians give up on the enigmatic pitcher Johnny Broaca, 4-2 last season, and ship him to the New York Giants. Broaca will make no appearances for New York and the Giants will send him back to Cleveland on June 5th at which point he will be handed his release.

16th Every White Sox player ends the day with the same batting average he starts with. Working in 47-degree weather, Bob Feller of the Cleveland Indians throws an Opening Day no-hitter, winning 1–0 at Comiskey Park. Edgar Smith is the losing pitcher. Rollie Hemsley has the only RBI.

In the earliest start of today’s openers, the Reds shade the visiting Cubs, 2–1. Derringer outguns Lee, with all the runs coming on homers: McCormick, Goodman, and Galan for the Cubs.

At Griffith Stadium, President Roosevelt throws out the first ball for the Washington-Boston game. Lefty Grove then allows just two hits as Boston edges the Senators, 1–0.

Before 20,187 at Shibe Park, Chubby Dean outlasts Red Ruffing as the A’s defeat the defending champion Yankees, 2–1, in ten innings. It is Dean’s first complete game in the majors. New York’s only run is unearned in the 3rd inning, but the A’s tie it up on a Bob Johnson solo homer. Chubby Dean’s long sac fly in the 10th off Ruffing drives in the winning run.

At Detroit, the majors largest crowd—49,417—watch the Browns upset the Tigers, 5–1. Detroit castoff George Coffman is the winner over Buck Newsom.

The highest score of the day is the 6–4 Pirates win over the Cards, with pitchers collectively turning in one of the best openers in history. The Philadelphia Inquirer attributes this to the new rule that allows pitchers to start their delivery with one foot off the rubber. The rule change was made because of the complaints that the lively ball had given the advantage to the batters.

20th  The Baltimore Afro-American reports that sports editors from 10 colleges in the New York City metro area adopted a resolution calling for the admission of black players into the major leagues. Columbia University led the way in preparing the full text of the resolution, which organized and represented opinions of students. Twenty-five collegiate press representatives met in New York City to endorse the resolution. At the same time, they sought elimination of discrimination against black athletes on college squads. (as noted by Dennis Van Langen).

23rd A flood at Crosley Field washes out a game against the St. Louis Cardinals, the first time a flood has caused the postponement of an NL game. The teams will later decide to replay the game on May 13thwhen both teams will be heading east from St. Louis, but they neglect to inform the NL office.

24th At Philadelphia, the Yankees whip the A’s, 9–4, behind Red Ruffing. Master deceiver Frankie Crosetti pulls off at least his 6thsuccessful hidden ball trick (as noted by Bill Deane) when he nabs the A’s Al Brancato.

25th Dizzy Dean allows 2 runs in the 1st, but settles down to win 4–2 over the Reds. The Cubs beat Paul Derringer, who loses for the first time after winning 11 straight decisions. Derringer’s last loss was August 10 of last year, the same date Diz recorded his last win.

26th Yankee Red Rolfe has nine assists at 3B against Boston, but the Red Sox win 8–1.

At Philadelphia, Freddie Fitzsimmons shuts out the Phils, 6-0, as the Dodgers move to a 6-0 record atop the NL. Cookie Lavagetto hits a 7th-inning grand slam to give Fitz a comfortable margin.

At Wrigley, the Cubs score 5 in the 1st inning, 4 on a grand slam by Swish Nicholson off Junior Thompson, as Chicago defeats the Reds, 6-2.

The Giants send slow-footed slugger Zeke Bonura back to the Senators for P Rene Monteagudo and $20,000.

27th Rookie SS Lou Boudreau’s first ML HR leads off the game against Detroit’s Hal Newhouser. He adds another + a single against Prince Hal, as Cleveland wins, 4–2.

In Philadelphia, the A’s score 7 runs in the 7th and beat the Red Sox, 8-3. Sam Chapman connects for a grand slam, off Joe Hoving.

Yankee rookie Marv Breuer makes his first ML start and loses, 3-2, to Washington’s Ken Chase. Chase has an RBI triple and scatters 5 hits in winning. Breuer might be excused for his loss: he set the PCL record for consecutive losses in 1937 with 12.

At the Polo Grounds, the Dodgers beat the Giants, 4–1, to go to 7–0, their best start in 50 years. Hot Potato Hamlin is the winner: he beat the Giants 5 straight times in 1939.

28th The Indians take a 9–3 lead into the 9th but the Tigers score 6 to tie. Hal Trosky wins it for the Indians with a 2-run, 2-out HR in the 10th, 11–9.

29th At Detroit, Bob Feller walks in the winning run in the 8th inning and loses to the Tigers, 4–3. Cotton Pippen is the winner with 8 1/3 innings of relief. The Indians (7-3) are now tied with the Red Sox for 1st place.

30th Tex Carleton of the Brooklyn Dodgers, who dropped to the minors in 1939 after successfully hurling for the Cards and Cubs, tosses a no-hitter, blanking the Reds, 3–0, in a dried-out Cincinnati. Pete Coscarart’s three-run homer in the 5th off Jim Turner is all the scoring. The win is the 9th straight for Brooklyn since Opening Day, which ties a 20th C ML record set by the Giants in 1918. Carleton had been released by the Minneapolis Millers after the 1939 season, and Brooklyn signed him as a free agent. Cincinnati ends the streak tomorrow, winning 9–2, to move two games behind the Dodgers.

The Browns Emil Bildilli gives up hits to the first 2 Yankee batters, and that’s all as St. Louis wins, 2–1. New York is 4-6.