1912 August

1st  Rube Marquard is fined $25 by the National Commission for pitching an inning in a semipro game in Port Chester, NY, on a day off.

Heinie Zimmerman has two hits in the Cubs 9–3 win over Brooklyn to raise his average over .400. Bill Sweeney will briefly pass Zim in mid-August before the Cubs star regains the batting lead for good.

The Giants take a pair from the Reds, winning 5-4 and 7-5. New York has a 13-game winning streak over Cincinnati.

Phillies manager Roger Bresnahan helps in a 4–3 win over visiting St. Louis. With the bases loaded in the 5th, Bresnahan suddenly jumps off the bench, yells, and starts running towards home. Slim Sallee stops in the middle of his windup to Sherry Magee, and the ump calls a balk. Paskert then hits a sac fly to drive in the go ahead run.

Washington wins a contentious game over the Tigers, 6–3. In the 6th inning, Cobb on 1B, takes off with 2 strikes on Crawford, who misses a Groom spitter, which eludes the catcher. Crawford is automatically out but catcher Williams throws to Gandil at 1B anyway. With that Cobb goes to 3B. When Groom takes a big windup, Cobb steals home, initially being called out by umpire Connolly, who did not see Williams drop the ball. The Tigers leave the field in protest and return after Connolly confers and makes the correct call. The Washington Post criticizes Connolly for getting it wrong and creating confusion by conferring.

2nd  Smoky Joe Wood stops the Browns on three hits and his teammates score 6 runs in the 4th en route to a 9-0 shutout. Jake Stahl hits a grand slam in the big inning.

3rd  At the Polo Grounds, the Giants score runs on two solo homers by Fred Merkle and one by Beals Becker, off Art Fromme, to beat the Reds, 3–2. In a typical game, Mathewson scatters 10 hits and walks none for the win. Armando Marsans is 4-for-4 for the Reds. With the 4–0 win yesterday and today’s win, the Giants have won 15 straight.

Six errors in a doubleheader has Ivy climbing the wall as Cleveland shortstop Ivy Olson makes three miscues in each game as the Naps lose 7-4 and 9-2 to the visiting A’s. Olson will make 44 errors this year, but only 27 come while he’s playing shortstop. Rookie Buck Weaver will lead the AL shortstops in E’s with 71.

5th  At Comiskey Park, Walter Johnson relieves Carl Cushion with 2 outs in the 8th and stops the White Sox. Johnson throws another 2 innings of hitless ball and drives in the winning run to give Washington an 8–7 win. Johnson has now won 9 out of 10 decisions with the White Sox this season.

At St. Louis, Cards pitcher Ed Konetchy hits 2 inside-the-park homers in an 8–4 win over Brooklyn.

Pittsburgh doubles the Giants, 8–4, the snap the Giants’ 15-game winning streak. The Cubs win a pair from the Phillies, 5–2 and 5–4, to stay 8 ½ games behind first place New York.

6th  Inspired in part by the Cobb suspension and the Tigers’ brief strike in May, the formation of a Players’ Fraternity is announced, headed by attorney and former player Dave Fultz. Leading players include Cobb, Mathewson, Mickey Doolan, and Jake Daubert. The goals are to oppose contract violations, rowdyism, and anything that may “impair a player’s ability.” At one point, a strike will be called for a Brooklyn attempt to send an obscure player, Harry Kraft, down to Newark, but many teams balk at the strike call, and it is rescinded.

At Cleveland, Joe Wood gives up 13 hits in an 11-inning 5–4 win for Boston. He strikes out 5 in running his record to 23–4.

7th  in a 7–2 loss to the Athletics, Browns manager-1B George Stovall makes 7 assists, topping Bill Brown’s ML record of 6 in a game for Louisville in 1893.

At Pittsburgh, the Pirates win their 3rd straight against the leading Giants, belting Christy Mathewson for 15 hits and 6 runs in 8 innings. Spitballer Marty O’Toole allows 7 hits to win, 7–2.

9th  Washington’s game with St. Louis is rained out in the 3rdinning depriving Deerfoot Milan of three stolen bases he racked up. He will still set an American League record for the year with 88 steals.

10th Led by Grover Cleveland Alexander, the Phils whip the Reds, 10–2. Pete wins the game on the mound and also adds a home run.

In a game at Boston, Chicago star Johnny Evers pushes umpire Finneran after the latter challenges Evers, Zimmerman, and Chance to fight him under the stands after the game. Evers will be suspended for five days, and though the Cubs win three games, there will be a howl that president Lynch is favoring the Giants. Downs will fill in at 2B for Chicago. Chicago scores 3 in the 8th to win, 11-10.

11th  In an 8–3 win over the Yankees, Cleveland’s Joe Jackson becomes the 2nd AL player to steal home twice in a game. He steals home in the first inning, and then in the 7th, he steals 2B, 3B, and home. The latter comes on a double steal with Vean Gregg.

Following a 4-2 Tiger win over the Red Sox, Ty Cobb and his wife are driving to the Detroit train station when they are stopped on Trumbull Avenue by three thugs intent on robbing them. According to one account, Cobb exits the auto and is set upon by all three. He pulls out a gun, which fails to work, then starts swinging. One of the men jumps on him and stabs Cobb in the lower back, inflicting a 6-inch wound. Cobb decks another before the other two run off. (The Sporting News relates that all three ran off, according to Cobb) As Al Stump outrageously relates it in his biography, Cobb catches one and “left him in a sorry condition. I ran down the other. He’d ducked into a dead-end alley between two houses. Cobb slashed away with the pistol butt until he was faceless, “Left him there, not breathing, in his own rotten blood.” Two days later, an unidentified body is found in an alley near Trumbull (A SABR article in 1996 by Doug Roberts found no evidence that a murder was committed). Cobb puts a handkerchief in the wound and refuses medical attention, driving instead to station, where a trainer stitched him up. The wounded Cobb—“amazingly” (Detroit Free Press) plays tomorrow in a exhibition game in Syracuse, garnering two hits, and plays the following day against the Yankees in New York. [the date of this altercation in Detroit has been variously listed as June 3, 1912 (Al Stump) and August 12 (Ron Cobb and others). The off-day exhibition is played on Monday, the 12th, the Yankee game on the 13th]

12th  The Cards paste Red Ames for 6 runs in 3 innings, then add two more against reliever Christy Mathewson to win, 8–6. Matty takes the loss; his record is now 17–8.

Cubs owner Charles Murphy hints that the Cards and other clubs go easy against McGraw’s Giants. Later Phils’ owner Horace Fogel, a former Giants manager whose ownership of the Phils is seen as a front for Murphy and financial backer Charles Raft of Cincinnati, echoes the accusation and charges NL umpires with favoring the Giants. It will lead to Fogel’s being expelled from the NL.

14th The Pirates score an unearned run in the 10th to beat Alexander and the Phils, 2–1. It is Pete’s first loss to Pittsburgh.

Tris Speaker runs his hit streak to 20 straight games, lining a hit in game 1 of today’s twinbill with the Browns. This is Speaker’s 3rd long streak of the season; earlier he had streaks of 20 games and 30 games, the only player in history to do so. In the nitecap, Smoky Joe Wood wins his 25th, beating the Browns, 8–0. He allows 4 hits and strikes out 9.

In game 1 against Vean Gregg, Stuffy McGinnis has 2 inside-the-park home runs to pace the A’s to an 8–3 win over Cleveland. Philadelphia takes the nitecap, 2–0.

15th  Little-known Guy Zinn, Yankees outfielder, steals home twice on double steals in a 5–4 win against Detroit; this will add to New York’s ML record of 18 steals of home for the year. The Giants will set the NL record this season with 17 swipes of home. Zinn adds two more steals in the game. The Yankees climb out of the cellar today and will win tomorrow against Detroit, 9–8, when Zinn hits a 9th inning double. The loss today goes to Johnny Dubuc, ending the Frenchman’s 11-game winning streak.

In Chicago, the first place Giants (70-30) lose to the Cubs, 5-1. Rube Marquard (23-6) takes the loss, New York’s 6th in 8 games, exiting during the Cubs 5-run 5th. All the scoring comes with two outs.

A report out of Buffalo says that George Stallings, currently manager of Buffalo, will manage the Boston Braves next season, and that Johnny Kling, current manager of Boston, will skipper Kansas City of the American Association. The Stallings report is correct; Kling’s is not.

16th  Walter Johnson and Joe Wood are in pursuit of Rube Marquard’s 19-game win streak. Johnson picks on the White Sox for his 14th straight, a one-hitter, tying Jack Chesbro’s 1904 mark. Only 3 balls are hit out of the infield. The Washingtonians win, 4–0, beating “our meatball expert” (Chicago Record-Herald) Joe Benz with 8 hits. A week later Joe Wood will win number 13 in a row.

In Chicago, the Giants score twice in the opening frame off Jim Lavender to knock out the would-be Giant killer and go on to win, 7–4. Merkle and Doyle pull off a double steal in the inning, with Doyle on the front end. Jeff Tesreau puzzles the locals and the Cubs drop six games behind the Giants.

Behind Earl Hamilton’s seven hitter, the lowly Browns beat the front running Red Sox, 3–2. Hamilton gives up six hits to beat Buck O’Brien. Boston is 8 ½ ahead of the A’s.

17th Chicago’s Jimmy Archer singles home Vic Saier in the 11th to give the Cubs a 6–5 win over Christy Mathewson. The Giants lead has now slipped to 5 games.

20th  In Washington, Walter Johnson wins his AL record 15thstraight, downing Cleveland 4–2, although he doesn’t start the game. Manager Griffith pencils in Lefty Schegg’s name as starter and after he retires the first batter on a liner, Johnson takes over. Big Train is topped in the nitecap when Washington hurler Carl Cashion tosses a 6-inning no-hitter, winning 2–0, and topping Vean Gregg. The only base runners reach on 2 errors by SS George McBride. Johnson’s effort takes 1 hour: 55 minutes, while Cashion’s 6 innings finish in just 65 minutes: the game is called to allow Cleveland to catch a train to Boston. Cashion will win only 11 other games in his ML career.

21st  Thomas C. Noyes, president and part owner of the Senators, dies, opening the way for Clark Griffith to eventually become club owner.

22nd Before a sellout crowd of 27,000 at Forbes Field, the Pirates split two with the Giants, winning 3–2 and losing 8–6. Howie Camnitz outpitches Mathewson in the opener, and Rube Marquard takes the loss in the nitecap. The Bucs are led by Honus Wagner who goes 3-for-4 in the first game, and hits for the cycle in the nitecap. Honus’ 7 hits total 14 bases, he scores 5 runs, drives in 4 and swipes 2 bases. Wagner will hit 7 homers this season, with 3 coming off Rube. Chief Meyers goes on the warpath in game 2, collecting 4 hits in 4 at bats, driving in 5 runs, and combining with Merkle on the back end of a double steal. With the Cubs mauling Boston, New York’s lead in the NL is down to 4 games.

Rookie Eddie Onslow, 19, hits a first inning grand slam off Tom Hughes as the Tigers down the Senators, 9-6. It is Onslow’s only major league homer.

In the Philadelphia Evening Star, Dan McCarty writes: “According to the Chicago Cubs, Frank Schulte of that club breaks an average of 50 bats per season. The Cub star uses bats that have the smallest handle of any that are produced. The club is of second growth ash, and weighs forty ounces. Scores of other major and minor leaguers who have asked to inspect the Schulte model while ordering bats have invariably put the home run stick aside, likening it to a ‘switch.’”

23rd The Tigers fall to Washington and Walter Johnson, 8–1, Big Train’s 16th win in a row. He is now 29–7.

The Highlanders trade Guy Zinn and a player to be named (Klondike Smith) to Rochester (International League) for Jack Lelivelt. A year from now, Rochester will sell Zinn to the Boston Braves before getting him back at the end of the season. Zinn will play in the Federal League in 1914-15. Lelivelt will be swapped next year.

24th Fred Merkle’s 3-run homer off Babe Adams in the 7th to give the Giants a 3–2 lead over Pittsburgh, and Mathewson pitches the last 3 innings to preserve Hooks Wiltse win over the Bucs. The Giants won a pair yesterday from the Bucs by one-run scores.

26th  Walter Johnson’s 16-game winning streak ends under AL rules of the time. In the 2nd game of a doubleheader against the Browns, he relieves Tom Hughes with one out and 2 on in the 7thinning of a 2–2 game. The 2 runners score on Pete Compton’s single up the middle and the Nationals lose, 4–3. The two runs are charged to Johnson, not Hughes, giving him the defeat. Under the NL’s rules, Johnson would not be charged with the loss. After the season, AL president Ban Johnson will change the rules to conform with the senior circuit, but he will deny he does it because of this game.

At Boston, Owen Wilson has his 2nd three-triple doubleheader this year. The fleet Buc triples off Otto Hess in the game 1 win, 5–4. In the nitecap, an 8–4 loss, he triples in the 6th and 8th innings off Ed Donnelly.

27th  It takes a one-hitter by Art Fromme, but the Reds finally beat New York, and Mathewson, 2–0. Art Fletcher’s single is the only safety. The Giants’ lead shrinks to 3 1⁄2 games over the Cubs.

Owen Wilson triples for his 3rd game in a row, a 4th inning drive off Walter Dickson good for 3 runs. Pittsburgh beats Boston, 9–4.

At Boston, Chicago White Sox infielders Rath and Weaver get thrown out of the game, and coach Kid Gleason takes over at 2B. The 45-year-old last appeared in a game 4 years ago, but he makes no errors and goes 1-for-2 at the plate. With his appearance, Gleason has now played in four decades. The two Sox knot at 8 runs apiece.

In response to demands for an alternative way to rate pitchers besides wins and losses, the NL will officially keep ERA’s for the first time; the Giants Jeff Tesreau will lead the league at 1.96. Despite an increase in .300 hitters from 22 to 32 this year, there will be 19 pitchers with ERA’s under 3.00. The AL will not make ERA part of their official statistics until 1913.

28th The Red Sox have only 50 at bats—a ML record for fewest at bats in a DH—in a doubleheader with Chicago, but they make them count. Boston wins, 5–3 and 3–0.

30th  Lefty Earl Hamilton, 22, pitches his only shutout of the year, a no-hitter in the Browns’ 5–1 win over Detroit. Ty Cobb scores on an error after a walk.

31st The Red Sox run their record to 87–37 with a 2–1 win over the A’s. Following the game, Connie Mack says he never realized how strong the Sox were, and concedes the pennant to them. There are 30 games left for Boston.