1917 August

1st The Reds purchase vet Sherry Magee from the Boston Braves. Magee was hitting just .256 in 72 games with one homer, but will hit .321 for the Reds for the rest of the season.

6th Veteran Eddie Plank, 41, hooks up with Washington’s Walter Johnson in a brilliant 11-inning duel, won 1–0 by Johnson. For Plank, this is the last game of his outstanding career, and he will announce his retirement in a week, citing stomach problems as the reason. Pitching for the hapless Browns doesn’t help as Plank’s 1.79 ERA this season results in just a 5–6 record.

The Yankees trip the visiting Tigers, 5-3, behind pitcher George Mogridge. Mogridge helps out with a pair of triples.

Boston Red Sox hurler Rube Foster allows just one hit—a double by Joe Harris following 2 walks—in losing to Cleveland, 2–0. Jim Bagby is the winner.

10th Babe Ruth beats the Tigers, 5–4, giving up just 4 hits. The Babe’s drive into the CF bleachers, said to be the longest hit at Fenway, is the difference. The homer is Babe’s first of the year.

Four days after shutting out the Browns, Walter Johnson pitches a 1-hitter against the Chicago White Sox. Tomorrow, three Nationals—Jim Shaw (6.2 innings), Doc Ayres, and George Dumont will duplicate Big Train’s performance, also against Chicago. It won’t be duplicated in the AL until 1996.

14th The Giants and the Brooklyn Robins split a doubleheader at the Polo Grounds,. New York’s Ferdie Schupp takes the opener, 5–4, and ex-Giant Rube Marquard wins the 2nd game for Brooklyn, 3–1. A highlight of the nitecap is a fight between Brooklyn Casey Stengel and Giant SS Art Fletcher.

17th At St. Louis, Wally Pipp accounts for all the Yankee scoring with a grand slam, and New York wins, 4-1.

19th  Coaching at 3B in a 1–1 game against Washington, Ty Cobb gives base runner “Tioga” George Burns a shove when Burns stops at 3B on a long hit; Burns keeps going and scores the winning run. Clark Griffith protests, and Ban Johnson upholds him, as the rules now ban coaches from touching a runner. The game is replayed, and Washington wins 2–0.

As part of a benefit for the 69th New York regiment—which is about to depart for France—the Giants move up the date of a game against the Cincinnati Reds. The 2,100 European-bound troops march from the armory on 25th Street and Lexington Avenue to the East River at 34th Street, where a ferry takes them to the foot of 157th Street. The troops parade to the Polo Grounds, entering through the Eighth Avenue gate, and drill on the field. A concert follows. Then the Giants play their first official Sunday game within the city limits. More than 25,000 fans watch the Reds shut out the Giants, 5-0. The Giants circumvent the Sunday law by stipulating that they are charging patrons for the concert, then allowing them to watch the game for free (with all proceeds turned over to war charities). But city officials try to prosecute the two managers—Christy Mathewson of Cincinnati and John McGraw of New York—for violating the Sunday Blue Law. Mathewson and McGraw will be called to court two days after the game but the charges against them will be quickly dismissed by Magistrate Frank McQuade, who actually praises them. (McQuade, a rabid Giants fan, later becomes part owner of the team.)

21st  Reds rookie righthander Hod Eller fans the side on 9 pitches in the 9th inning, beating the Giants 7–5, and breaking Slim Sallee’s 10-game winning streak.

At Boston, the Cardinals edge the Braves, 1-0, in six innings as rain stops the game. Marv Goodwin tosses a one hitter, allowing a hit to Ed Konetchy, a ML record-tying 4th time he’s had the only hit in a game.

Now with the Philadelphia Phils, Chief Bender, 34, pitches his 3rd straight shutout, winning 6–0 over the Cubs. In his last active season, Bender will turn in 4 shutouts and win 8 with 2 losses and a 1.67 ERA. His mound partner from the glory days of the A’s, Eddie Plank, will also close out his career, ending the season 5–6 for the St. Louis Browns with a 1.79 ERA.

22nd  Brooklyn and the Pirates play their 3rd straight extra-inning game in Ebbets Field. The Robins win it, 6–5, in 22 innings, breaking a NL record for longevity set on July 17, 1914. Rube Marquard, with 2 innings of relief, is the winner, while poor Elmer Jacobs pitches 16.2 innings, giving up one run in the loss. Even that run is tainted. With runners on 1st and 2B, a grounder forces the back runner and when Jake Pitler holds to ball trying to decide whether to try for a DP, the lead runner Hickman races around 3B and scores easily. Pittsburgh’s Carson Bigbee goes to bat 11 times, tying a record. The two teams combine to leave 40 runners on base. The scheduled game 2 starts at 5:56 but is mercifully called in the second inning when Bill Klem apparently decides there has been enough baseball played for the day. The three extra-inning games in a row between the same clubs sets the NL record (The AL mark is four.) and the 45 total innings played in the 3 games is a ML record.

At Sportsman’s Park, the Senators and Browns split a duo, with the Nats taking the opener, 2-1, behind Walter Johnson’s 4 innings of shutout relief. It is Johnson’s 9th straight win. The Senators make 7 errors in game 2 to help the Browns to a 9-4 win.

23rd The Tigers use a triple play to help them beat the A’s, 7–3. Stuffy McInnis hits a liner to Donie Bush to start it. In the 8th, Ty Cobb steals home against the battery of Tom Sheehan and Val Picinich.

24th  The A’s and the White Sox split a doubleheader with Chicago winning the opener, 9-4 and the A’s taking game 2, 2-1, behind Scott Perry. For Perry, it is his 20th win of the year. He’s the first AL hurler to win 20 for a last-place team.

25th  Behind Jeff Pfeffer and Rube Marquard, the Dodgers apply a doubleheader whitewash to the Cardinals, winning 12–0 and 4–0. In game 1, the Dodgers have 2 bases-loaded triples to tie the NL mark last matched in 1898. Brooklyn’s Hy Myers is thrown out 3 times trying to steal in one game by the Cards, the 2ndplayer this year to be thrown out 3 times in a game. Not till Rodney Scott, in 1979, will another NL runner be caught stealing 3 times.

27th In the 4th inning in New York, Pirates swiftie Max Carey beats out a bunt single, and goes to 2B on a single by Tony Boekel. Both runners steal on the next pitch from Rube Benton and, with Boekel entangled with New York 2B Buck Herzog, Carey steals home as well. Wilbur Cooper makes the one run stand up for the 1–0 win. For Carey, it is his 13th steal of home en route to a NL record 33 steals of home.

At Detroit, Ty Cobb is 3-for-4 to lead the Tigers to a 5–1 win over the Red Sox and lefty Babe Ruth.

28th The Cards rally for 4 runs off Pete Alexander to beat the Phils, 6–5. Gene Paulette’s steal of home is capper.

31st At Fenway, Babe Ruth wins his 20th, beating the A’s, 5–3. Ruth gives up 6 hits and walks 5.