1948 April

3rd Thanks, Mr. Mack. The A’s sell pitcher Russ Christopher to the Indians.

7th The Cards trade first baseman Dick Sisler to the Phillies for infielder Ralph LaPointe and cash, a trade that will work out well for the Phils.

10th Desperate for pitching help, the Giants sign the well-traveled Bobo Newsom, released by the Yankees. After an 0–4 start in 11 games, New York will pass the Buck, and he will be out of the majors until 1952.

12th The Yanks give veteran Spud Chandler his release. Chandler won 109 games in 11 seasons as a Yank, the only ML team he played for. He was 9–5 last season, and finishes his ML career with a winning percentage of .717 (109-43).

16th The White Sox beat the Cubs, 4–1, at Wrigley Field with Jack Brickhouse at the WGN-TV mike. This is the first telecast on WGN-TV: the first broadcast for the Cubs was on WBKB-TV in 1946.

In an exhibition game between the Braves and Red Sox at Braves Field, the Sox unload 24 hits to win, 19–6. Ted Williams is 3-for-5 with a HR. There are a couple more hits as it takes both teams to break up a fight between Braves Earl Torgeson and Sox Billy Hitchcock.

18th At Yankee Stadium, 62,369 fans—the largest ever for an exhibition game—watch the Dodgers edge the Yankees, 5–3.

Before 26,663 at Fenway, the Braves salvage a win in the 3-game series with the Red Sox, winning, 3–2, behind Warren Spahn.

19th At Griffith Stadium, President Harry Truman tosses out the first ball. Fans might’ve thought Truman stayed on the mound as the Yankees bat around in the opening inning against Nats starter Early Wynn. The second man up, Tommy Henrich, belts a two-run homer, and a few batters later Allie Reynolds hits his first major league homer, a three-run shot, that makes the score, 7–0. Wynn gives up 16 hits and all 12 runs before leaving in the 9th for Ramon Garcia. Reynolds wins, 12–4, allowing 11 hits, four by Leon Culberson. The Yanks like what they see in Culberson, acquiring the first baseman on May 13th, but he will never play another game in the majors.

In the 2nd inning of the Patriot’s Day doubleheader at Fenway, the Sox slug three consecutive homers off A’s pitcher Phil Marchildon. Connecting for Boston are Stan Spence, Vern Stephens, and Bobby Doerr. The Sox don’t do much more, though, and the A’s win the A.M. game in 11 innings, 5–4. A’s rookie LH Lou Brissie then defeats the Red Sox 4–2 on 4 hits in the afternoon game. Wounded in W W II, Brissie, who has a metal plate in one leg and wears a shin guard as protection, is hit just above the guard by a Ted Williams line drive and is downed for several minutes.

At Cincinnati, the Reds open with a 4–1 win over the Pirates in a game delayed by a shower of bottles in the 8th. The rhubarb starts when Hank Sauer hits a HR with Young on 2B and the runner collides with SS Stan Rojek. The 2 start swinging and the RF bleacherites toss bottles.

20th In the Opener at Comiskey Park, George Vico of the Tigers hits the first pitch thrown to him in the majors for a HR, a first in the AL. Chicago’s Joe Haynes is the pitcher. Mike Tresh answers for the Sox with his 2nd career homer, off Hal Newhouser; Tresh’s first career homer came back in May 19, 1940, off Dutch Leonard. The Tigers win, 5–2.

At Washington, the Senators score 5 runs in the first inning, 4 on an inside-the-park grand slam by Tom McBride off Eddie Lopat, and roll to a 9-1 victory over the Yankees. Sid Hudson is the winning pitcher. For the light-hitting McBride, this is his 2nd and last ML homer: his first came three years ago. For the Nationals, this is one of just 11 homers they’ll hit at home this year.

Red hot Murry Dickson shuts out the Reds, 4–0 in the home opener at St. Louis. In spring training, Dickson threw 2 shutouts, including a no hitter, over the Yankees.

Before an Opening Day crowd of 48,130 at the Polo Grounds, the Dodgers rally for 4 runs in the 8th to beat the Giants, 7–6. Billy Cox’s 2-run homer is the big blow. Robinson collects a 2-run double when Rhawn and Lockman collide on an easy popup. Roy Campanella makes his ML debut, coming in for Hodges behind the plate.

21st Leo Durocher, back at the helm of the Dodgers after a one-year suspension, uses 24 men, a new ML record, in a 9–5 loss to the Giants. Robinson leaves with a bone bruise after 5 innings and 3 second baseman follow.

At Griffith Stadium, the Senators overcome a DiMaggio homer to beat the Yankees, 6–3. DiMag’s blast is a 450-foot shot.

The Cards Red Munger outpitches Johnny Vander Meer to beat the Reds, 5–2. Vandy does himself in by walking 12 batters.

23rd The Cards spoil the home opener for the Cubs, nipping Chicago, 1–0, despite garnering just two hits off Johnny Schmitz. Harry Brecheen is the winner.

On the 25th anniversary of the opening of Yankee Stadium, the Red Sox spoil the ceremonies by stopping New York, 4–0, as Vern Stephens accounts for all the runs with a grand slam. A sick Babe Ruth cheers on the Yanks from the dugout.

Bob Lemon belts a homerun and goes the distance as the Indians stop the Tigers, 8-2. Ken Keltner hits a pair and Larry Doby adds one, all off losing pitcher Fred Hutchinson. Hutch will serve up 32 homers this year to break Ted Lyons’ AL record.

24th The Cubs hit 4 home runs at home in a 6–2 win over the Cards. Bill Nicholson’s HR, off Al Brazle, is to the right of the Wrigley Field scoreboard, and lands on Sheffield Avenue. It bounces off a building and reportedly lands on the hood of a southbound car.

25th Russ Meyer fires a one-hitter for the Cubs in a 3-1 win in Chicago over the Cardinals. Whitey Kurowski’s hit in the 2nd inning is the only scratch against Meyer.

The Giants sweep a doubleheader with the Braves, winning 6–2 in 10 innings, and 6–0. Bobo Newsom, pitching for his 9th team, makes his Giant debut in the first game but leaves with a injury. Sheldon Jones fires a 2-hitter in the second game and is helped by a 3rd-inning grand slam by Walker Cooper.

In game 2 at Cincinnati, Ted Kluszewski hits his first ML homer, a 3-run shot off Pirates P Hal Gregg, to give the Reds a brief 7–6 lead. The Pirates rally to win, 13–10, as Wally Westlake contributes a grand slam. Hank Sauer, who hit a walkoff homer in the Reds 7-6 win in game 1, adds two more homers in game 2.

At Detroit, the Indians down the Tigers, 7-4, though without much help from Larry Doby, who strikes out a record-tying 5 times, all consecutive.

26th The White Sox take an 11–9 lead over the Indians after 5 innings, but the Tribe comes back to win 12–11 in 14 innings. Cleveland scores 2 in the 9th to tie. Lou Boudreau paces a 22-hit attack with 5 safeties, including a pair of doubles and a pair of triples. Russ Christopher is the winner with 5 innings of shutout relief.

27th The Cubs score 3 in the 1st inning at Cincinnati and go on to whip the Reds, 7-2, behind the pitching of Dutch McCall (1-0). However, Dutch will lose his next 13 decisions to set a franchise record for consecutive losses.

29th Cards relief pitcher Ted Wilks bows 5–4 in 14 innings to the Cincinnati Reds on rookie Hank Sauer’s single. Sauer’s HR in the 8thhad tied the game. It is Wilks’ first loss after 77 mound appearances dating back to September, 1945. He had won 12 in a row.

At Shibe Park, Ted Williams thumps his 200th homer to lead the Red Sox to an 11–5 victory over the A’s.

Batting around in 3 innings, the Dodgers pound out 20 hits to break the Giants 6-game win streak, 17–7. Reiser has 5 RBIs—on a 3-run lefty homer and a 2-run righty triple—and Preston Ward a grand slam. The Giants continue their HR string with homers by Mize and Thomson.

30th A 5-hit game—HR, 2 doubles and 2 singles—by Stan Musial at Cincinnati is the first of 4 such performances by him during the year as The Man sparks the Cards, 13–7 win. He will do it again on May 19, June 22, and September 22. Only Cobb and Keeler have done it before. Joe Garagiola adds 3 hits including a grand slam in the 7-run 7th. Reliever Al Brazle is the winner.

In a 9–2 win over Purdue, University of Illinois pitcher Marv Rotblatt sets a Big 10 strikeout record with 18 K’s. After graduation in June, Rotblatt will pitch in 7 games for the White Sox this season.