1908 July

1st Jimmy Dygert of the A’s shuts out the Nationals, 2-0, as Washington concludes a 30 game road trip winning 8. Last year they played 31 straight on the road, an AL record.

2nd The Giants rally for two runs in the 7th off Phillies starter Bill Foxen, and win, 4–3. Christy Mathewson wins his 14th.

Well, they didn’t get him to beat Chicago. Pittsburgh’s Irv Young, acquired two weeks ago from Boston, loses his 11th straight to Chicago, 3–0, in game 1. His streak dates back to August 6, 1905. The Pirates claw back in game 2, winning, 9–4, to stay a half game behind first-place Chicago.

4th  Lefthander Hooks Wiltse pitches a 10-inning no-hitter for the Giants over the Phillies 1–0. He loses his bid for a perfect 9 innings when, with 2 outs, he hits Phils P George McQuillan with a pitch on a 1-and-2 count. Ump Charles Rigler calls the pitch earlier a ball, to the dismay of Hooks and the fans, who thought it a strike. In between games McQuillan will agree that he thought it a strike as well. Art Devlin scores the winner in the 10th after singling off McQuillan and coming around on two errors. New York wins the afternoon contest more easily, 9–3, behind Dummy Taylor.

In Chicago, the first-place Browns split a pair with the White Sox, putting the Sox in 4th place, two games out. The Sox take the opener, 8–4, as reliever Ed Walsh paces the offense with a homerun, one of just three the Sox will collect all year (Frank Isbell and Fielder Jones each hit one), an all-time low. Walsh starts game 2 but doesn’t last as the Browns win, 8–1.

With suspended manager Kid Elberfeld in a front row box seat at Washington, the Highlanders take the morning game, 6-1, with a 4-run uprising in the 7th inning. Washington loads the bases in their half of the 7th with one out and Joe Lake comes in to put out the fire. After issuing two balls to Otis Clymer, Elberfeld stands and start waving and shouting to his team to bring in Doc Newton. Umpire Egan ignores the calls to ban the suspended manager and Newton trots in to strike out Clymer and end the threat. In the afternoon game, Elberfeld is banished to the clubhouse and Washington wins, 6-2, behind Walter Johnson.

In Pittsburgh, an a.m.-p.m. doubleheader with the Cubs draws 50,000 fans. Three Fingered Brown wins the morning game, 2–0, for his 4th straight shutout. Ed Reulbach takes the afternoon affair, 9–3. The Cubs and Bucs play 5 games in 3 days with the Cubs winning three: Three Fingered Brown cops 2, tossing two shutouts—a 6-hitter and a 2-hitter.

While every team is playing a doubleheader today, the Cardinals host the first single-admission doubleheader on Independence Day, according to Charlie Bevis (Doubleheaders). The Birds split with the Reds, winning 3-2, before losing, 6-3.

At Newark, Jersey City and Newark play a 19-inning scoreless tie called after 3 hours: 40 minutes on account of darkness. Lew Brockett, who started the year with the Highlanders, allows 6 hits while Ed Laffitte gives up 3 safeties.

6th In Cincinnati, Christy Mathewson stops the Reds, 2–1, beating Andy Coakley for a Giants win. He’ll beat them again by the same score on the 9th. The 3rd place Giants are now 1 ½ games behind the first-place Pirates. John McGraw misses the game to scout 19-year-old prospect Rube Marquard, pitching in Columbus.

8th Despite 5 hits by Honus Wagner, the host Pirates drop a doubleheader to their cross-state rivals, the Phillies, 4–1 and 8–5. They will split the next two games, but lose Deacon Phillippe for the year when he is hit on his pitching hand by a Red Dooin line drive.

9th Mathewson spins another 4 hitter over the Reds, beating them again, 2–1. The losing hurler is Bob Ewing.

The Cubs win their 2nd in a row from Brooklyn, this time in 10 innings, 4–3. Three Fingered Brown tops Nap Rucker.

10th At Pittsburgh, the Giants (43-30) take a 4-0 lead, but the Pirates claw back on back-to-back triples by Wagner and Clarke. Tommy Leach wins it for the Bucs with a 9th inning home run to deep center.

The Red Sox purchase 1B Jake Stahl from the Highlanders.

11th  The White Sox play their 2nd 16-inning game in 2 days, beating Philadelphia 5–4.

Vic Willis gives the Pirates their 2nd win in a row over the Giants, winning, 6–2. Mike Donlin’s triple is the only New York hit.

13th  New York sweeps the Pirates, beating Lefty Leifeld, 7–0, on a 3-hitter by Mathewson, then taking the nitecap 7–4. Pittsburgh racked up 3 homers—by Wagner, Chief Wilson and Alan Storke—but to no avail. McGinnity wins the nitecap with relief help from Hooks Wiltse.

15th In Chicago, the Giants pound Three Fingered Brown and 2 relievers to win, 11–0, and move into 2nd place. The Cubs drop two places to 3rd.

The Pirates tie the Braves in the 9th and win in the 10th, 3–2, when Fred Clarke is hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. The Bucs take the NL lead by a half-game.

16th At Chicago, manager Frank Chicago figures to rattle Giants rookie Otis “Doc” Crandall and elects to bat the Cubs first (this option rule for the home team was changed in 1950). But Crandall is a rock and nurses a 4-1 lead into the last of the 9th. After one out, Christy Mathewson, warming in the bullpen, decides the game is well in hand and goes into the clubhouse to shower. Crandall promptly walks three straight, wherein McGraw looks in vain for Matty. The Giants ace quickly dries off, throws on a uniform, and puts his street shoes on. By the time he arrives on the mound, reliever Joe McGinnity has walked in a run. Matty gets a ground out, then a strikeout, and the Giants win, 4-3. Ed Reulbach takes the loss for Chicago.

17th In another classic matchup, Three Fingered Brown and Christy Mathewson pair off with Brown winning, 1–0. The Cubs pitcher allows 6 hits, with Matty giving up 7. The only run comes on a 5th inning inside-the-park home run by Matty’s nemesis, Joe Tinker, who runs through the arms of 3B coach Heinie Zimmerman to score. In the 12 matchups between the two pitchers, Brown has won eight. A tragic occurrence happens during Tinker’s home run dash when a boy, standing on the roof of a nearby building to view the game, falls 50 feet to his death.

It is Honus Wagner Day in Pittsburgh, as players from both teams line up to pay homage. Wagner’s tribute was originally scheduled for the 16th, but Honus asked that it be moved a day so it would not conflict with the annual benefit picnic for orphans. Wagner is presented with a $700 gold watch. Pittsburgh beats Boston, 4–0 to cut the Giants lead to a half game over the Bucs.

Despite hitting no home runs, first-place Detroit rolls over the Athletics, 21–2. Germany Schaefer scores 5 runs.

18th The Cubs win by a run, beating the Giants, 5–4, behind Orval Overall. Hooks Wiltse takes the loss as Joe Tinker once again wins the game, this time with a two-run double in the 9th inning. Tinker also had a 6th inning triple off Hooks.

Danny Murphy hits a grand slam off Ed Willett to lead the A’s to an 11-5 win over Detroit.

19th Walter Justis, pitching for Lancaster (Ohio State L), hurls the first of his four no-hitters this season, beating Mansfield, 6-0. He strikes out 5.

21st  In St. Louis, the Cards split with the Giants, with Harry Sallee losing the opener, 4–2. Mathewson wins his 21st straight over St. Louis, though he gives up 11 hits in the victory. The Cards beat Dummy Taylor in the nitecap, 3–1, in 12 innings.

According to a Chicago newspaper contest, the Giants’ Mike Donlin, the NL’s leading hitter, is baseball’s most popular player. Turkey Mike tops Honus Wagner by a wide margin and will be awarded a trophy cup. Donlin was involved in a car accident on the 18th when the car he was riding in on Michigan Avenue collided with another vehicle driven by Chicago Mayor Fred Busse.

22nd In Pittsburgh, Brooklyn first sacker Tim Jordan hits an over-the-fence HR, the first in 9 years, but its all the scoring his team can muster. The Pirates prevail, 2–1.

24th At the Polo Grounds, the Giants edge the visiting Pirates, 2–1, behind Hooks Wiltse. Larry Doyle leads the offense with a single, double and RBI triple.

The first-place Tigers stop off in Cleveland for a one game set, their last game of the year with the Naps. Detroit wins, 4-0, as Ed Summers bests Addie Joss.

25th With the Highlanders leading the Tigers 3–2 in the 8th, Detroit scores 2 runs on a Ty Cobb triple. With lefty Claude Rossman the next hitter, New York’s new manager Kid Elberfeld moves righty pitcher Jack Chesbro to 1B and replaces him with first baseman Hal Chase. Chase allows a fly ball that scores Cobb, then goes back to 1B and Chesbro resumes his spot on the mound. It is Chase’s only pitching appearance as the Tigers win 5–3.

Before an overflow crowd of 30,000 in New York, the Pirates Lefty Leifield tops the Giants and Christy Mathewson, 7–2. The loss drops New York to 3rd place. Two errors by Larry Doyle—he’ll add another—in the 7th open the gates for 5 Pirate runs. Pittsburgh is lead by Honus Wagner who goes 5-for-5 to take over the batting lead from a hitless Mike Donlin. After each hit, Wagner holds up a finger to show the number of safeties to the RF Donlin.

The Chicago Tribune reports on star White Sox pitcher Frank Smith, missing in action since June 14, that “according to the dope, Mr. F. Smith, the prodigal piano mover is about to burst upon the job once more. He was to have met the team at Cleveland with his mouth wide open for a feed of the justly celebrated husks. Smith so often declared he never would return that Jones applied reverse English to the declaration and told Smith to come on as far as Cleveland, anyhow. Moving the kind of pianos they have at Allegheny, Pa., sounds poetical and all that, but, strong as he is, the esteemed Smithy couldn’t kick in $125 per week at the job. Moving a baseball with saliva on it is much easier, the distance is shorter, as a rule, and there is no expense on the side for horse feed and axle grease.” (as noted in Deadball Stars of the American League). Smith will win 11 games upon his return to the Sox.

Future Red Sox pitcher Hugh Bedient, pitching for a semi-pro Falconer, NY team, strikes out 42 batters in what is heralded as a world’s record. He does it 23 innings against Corry, PA, finally winning, 3–1. He is matched all the way by Charles Bickford. When the wire services pick up the story, Bedient will receive 19 pro offers.

27th Following the Sunday off, Wagner hits doubles in his first 2 at bats to again lead the Pirates to a 4–3 win over New York. Nick Maddox, with relief help from Irv Young, is the winner over Doc Crandall. Both Maddox and Young plunk two Giant batters.

28th Hooks Wiltse and Vic Willis lock horns and the Giants and Pirates duel for 16 innings before the game is called, 2–2, because of darkness. Wagner is 0-for-6 but drives home a run with a “sacrifice fly.”

Walter Johnson’s (1–5) recuperation from his operation seems complete as he pitches 15 innings against the Browns with neither team scoring. Washington pulls out a 2–1 victory in the 16th as Johnson K’s 15, Big Train’s highest strikeout total for his career. He will win 11 of his next 13 decisions.

In a 4–2 win at Boston, Bob Ewing of the Reds hits a homer that travels 3 miles (as noted by Rhodes & Snyder). The ball goes over the LF at South Street Grounds and lands in a passing mail car railroad train. The train travels 3 miles before reaching its destination.

29th  Mathewson defeats the Cardinals again, beating Harry Sallee, 1–0. Sallee allows 4 hits, but the one run scores on an error and passed ball.

Rube Waddell continues to haunt Connie Mack, fanning 16 A’s in a 5–4 win for the Browns.

John McFarland of Helena (Arkansas State) loses his perfect game when the 27th batter refuses to bat, resulting in a 9–0 forfeit.

31st  Behind Wiltse and McGinnity, the Giants beat the Cardinals, 4-3 in 10 innings, and 4-3 in regulation.