1941 April

11th At the Bee Hive, the Red Sox beat the Bees, 11–6, pinning the loss of Wes Ferrell. Sibby Sisti hits a HR.

13th In the final pre-season tune-up game with Brooklyn, the Yankees win their 3rd in a row at Ebbets Field, 3–0, on Sunday afternoon. The Dodgers had come into the series with an 11-game winning streak, including 4 with the Yanks on the way North.

At Fenway, the Bees take the 2nd game in a 2-game set against the Red Sox, winning, 10–3. Babe Dahlgren and Max West homer.

14th With the only game scheduled in sweltering Washington, writers for The Sporting News selecting Cincinnati to repeat in the NL and Cleveland to win the AL. Franklin Roosevelt tosses out the first ball, and then the Yankees score single runs in the 1st, 4th, and 5th innings off Dutch Leonard to win, 3–0. Mario Russo allows three hits and drives in a run with a double to win. Phil Rizzuto, like Russo a graduate of New York’s Richmond Hills High School, is hitless in his debut, but fields flawlessly.

15th Cubs SS Lou “second” Stringer makes 4 errors in his debut, a NL record for a player in his first game. Stringer does better on offense adding 2 hits and 2 RBIs and Chicago beats the Pittsburgh Pirates, 7–4, behind Claude Passeau and a clutch HR by Bill Nicholson. The win is the first for Jimmie Wilson, making his managerial debut. Arky Vaughan matches Bubbles Hargrave as the only major leaguer to collect 2 triples in an Opener. Tommy Henrich will do it in 1950.

The Cardinals top the defending champion Reds 7–3, benefiting from homers by Ernie Koy, Enos Slaughter, and John Mize.

Bob Feller walks 7 White Sox batters, hits 2, and allows 5 hits as Chicago edges Cleveland, 4–3. One of Feller’s walks forces in the winning run. A crowd of 46,064 breaks the Municipal Stadium record for an opener.

17th At Wrigley Field, Vince DiMaggio cracks a first-inning grand slam off Vern Olson and that is all Rip Sewell needs as the Pirates top Chicago, 7-2.

Junior Thompson is staked to a 4-run lead over the visiting Cardinals, but the when he tires in the 7th and Elmer Riddle relieves, the Birds scratch back. Johnny Riddle, subbing for a hurt Ernie Lombardi, is behind the plate as brother Elmer walks Terry Moore and serves up a homer to Johnny Mize, the only 2 batters he faces. The Cards plate another 2 runs in the 9th to win, 7-6. For the Riddle brothers, it is the first time that 36-year-old Johnny and 27-year-old Elmer are batterymates in the majors (they were at Indianapolis). They’ll reprise their act in 1948 in Pittsburgh with Johnny calling gopher balls on the only two batters Elmer and he face together.

18th At the Polo Grounds, Mel Ott hits a grand slam in the Giants 5-run 3rd inning, and the Giants beat the Phillies, 7-2.

19th In the annual Patriot’s Day doubleheader in Boston, the Dodgers sting the Bees, winning 8–0 in each game. Luke Hamlin and Whit Wyatt apply the whitewashings. George Barnicle starts and loses the nightcap, his last appearance in the majors.

Harry Danning hits a 4th inning grand slam and Hal Schumacher shuts out the Phils as the Giants win, 7-0. New York is now 5-0.

20th At Shibe Park, the Yankees bombard the A’s, 19–5, with Joe DiMaggio driving in 6 runs, 4 on a 9th-inning grand slam. Red Ruffing is down, 4–2, to Chubby Dean after 4 innings, but the New Yorkers notch 8 runs in the 5th. Joe Gordon has 2 home runs good for 5 RBIs.

At the Polo Grounds, the Giants draw 56,314 to date the biggest crowd ever to view a single game. They get their money’s worth as the Dodgers shade the Giants, 10–9. Mel Ott has 2 of the 5 homers hit in the game. The Dodgers score the winning run in the 9th when Dolph Camilli scores from 2B after Babe Young’s throw hits Kampouris, running from 1B, in the head. Reiser has 4 hits for Brooklyn and Hugh Casey wins in relief.

In Washington, Doc Cramer hits an 8th inning inside-the-park grand slam for the Senators but it is too little, too late as the Red Sox win, 14-8. Boston scores 4 in the top of the 8th and 3 in the 9th.

At the direction of Larry MacPhail, the Dodgers start to wear liners designed by Dr. Walter Dandy in their caps. This is in response to the numerous beanball wars of 1940 that hospitalized Joe Medwick, Billy Jurges, and others, and the cap will “save” Pete Reiser when he is beaned by the Phil’s Ike Pearson. In August, Dr. Dandy will apply for a patent on the cap but will turned down because the Patent Office has already granted one to MacPhail. An accommodation will be reached between the two granting Dandy the patent with royalties going to the Majors. The Dandy cap will get only occasional use until 1949, when it is discarded.

A syndicate of 12 Bostonians buys 73 percent of the Braves, formerly the Bees, for $350,000 from the Charles F. Adams estate.

21st 33-year-old vet Wes Ferrell beats the Phillies, 8–1, in a complete game win for the Braves. He also has an RBI single, but it is his last ML win. He’ll be released May 8, but end up managing in the minors and winning two batting titles (the Virginia L in 1942, when his 31 HRs will lead the league: the Western Carolina L in 1948). His lifetime minor league average will end up at .349.

23rd With Ted Williams on the bench, having reinjured his ankle yesterday, the Red Sox fall to the Yankees, 4–2, in 11 innings. Joe DiMaggio is hitless, but Phil Rizzuto provides the offense by hitting his first ML homer, a 2-run shot off Charlie Wagner in the 11th, to win the contest.

Phillies sidearmer Ike Pearson beans Brooklyn’s Pete Reiser on the cheek. Pearson lasts 7 innings in losing, 4–0, to Whit Wyatt.

The A’s plate 9 runs in the 3rd inning, 4 on a grand slam by Frankie Hayes, and veto the visiting Senators, 11-2.

In a PCL game, Hollywood’s Babe Herman pinch hits in the 9th with 2 out and hits a grand slam to beat Los Angeles, 10–6. It’s the Babe’s 2nd PH homer this year.

Hank Greenberg, baseball’s highest paid star, is ordered to report to his draft board on May 7th.

26th The Chicago Cubs are the first team to install an organ within a ballpark. With Roy Nelson at the keyboard, the Cubs hit sour notes, losing 6–2 to the St. Louis Cardinals’ Max Lanier. Nelson has to stop playing at 2:30 when the radio pregame shows begin. Rules at the time forbade songs from the ASCAP song publishing service from being played over the radio—even in the background—without compensation.

27th The Giants touch Hugh Casey for 11 hits in 6 innings, but Lee Grissom fires 3 hitless frames as the Dodgers top the Giants, 7-5, to go 4-0. Casey is 3-0, with all his wins coming against the Giants. Cookie Lavagetto is 4-for-4.

29th At their stockholders meeting, the new owners of the Boston Nationals abandon the Bees nickname in favor of the Braves. Bob Quinn, retained as president, instituted the name change in January 1936, by appealing the public for suggestions.

30th The Dodgers, down 3–0, score 4, including a run in the 9th to beat Vander Meer and the Reds. For the Dodgers, it is their 9thstraight win, but they drop to 2nd place behind the Cards.