1944 June

1st Stan Spence goes 6-for-6 with a HR and 5 singles in the Senators’ 11–5 win over the Browns. Teammate George Myatt went 6-for-6 a month ago, on May 1.

Hal Newhouser picks up a victory in relief as the Tigers beat the Yankees 4–3 on Don Ross’s 16th– inning RBI.

Dick Barrett, the winning pitcher in the Phillies 8–7 win over the Reds, has a double, triple, 4 RBI, plus 3 wild pitches.

2nd Mel Ott hits 2 HRs in the Giants’ 6–4 win over the Pirates. These are Ott’s 7th and 8th homers in his last 10 games.

The Tigers beat the Red Sox 4–1 for their 7th straight win, as Red Sox SS Eddie Lake tosses 2 hitless innings in relief. Lake will make 6 appearances this season, pitch 19-1/3 innings with a 4.19 ERA. He’ll walk 11.

3rd The Giants and Pirates are tied after 9 innings when an announcement comes over the loud speaker that the invasion of Europe has begun. After cheering by the 9,171 fans on hand, the players stand for a moment of silent prayer. It turns out to be a false alarm, started when a young teletype operator in the London office of AP was practicing on her machine and punched out the message. The AP office in New York sent out the message nationwide, then quickly sent a retraction. The genuine D-Day message will go out in three days. Pittsburgh wins in the 10th, 7-6.

In a slugfest in St. Louis, the Browns and A’s each collect 17 hits, but St. Louis prevails, 18-8. Mark Christman has a four-run homer for the Browns. With the Yankees losing in 13 innings to the Indians, the Browns are atop the AL by 1 ½ games.

In Detroit, the Tigers outhit the Red Sox 11-8 but can manage to score only a run in the first inning against Tex Hughson. The Sox win, 11-1, as veteran Jim Bucher ices the game with a grand slam in the top of the 9th.

4th In Hawaii, Joe DiMaggio hits a 435-foot HR, but the 7th Army Force team loses, 6–2, to a Navy team, as former ML P Bob Harris throw a 4-hitter for the Navy.

6th D-Day begins. All ML games (2) are canceled as the country’s focus is turned toward Europe as allied forces invade occupied France. Yesterday was an off-day after all teams played Saturday doubleheaders. Five minor leaguer and semi-pro players are killed in action today, including promising pitcher Lefty Brewer, who had been sent a ML contract by the Senators as he enlisted. Brewer won 25 games in 1938, his first season in the Florida State League, and pitched a no-hitter on June 6, 1938 for Orlando. He was 7-11 the following year for the team. Promoted, he went 11-9 for Charlotte in 1940.

Chicago Cubs trade Eddie Stanky to the Brooklyn Dodgers for Bob Chipman. Chipman will have six solid years in Chicago, pitching mostly in relief, but Stanky will play in three different World Series for three different teams.

7th Detroit’s Hal Newhouser is wild and issues 9 passes in 6 innings as the White Sox defeat the Tigers by the score of 3–1.

At Racine (All-American Girls Baseball League), Racine runs by Minneapolis, 11–5. Racine 3B Maddy English steals 6 bases, and her teammates swipe another 18.

8th Bucky Walters of the Reds outduels Max Lanier of the Cardinals 2–1. The Cardinal run, scored in the 9th, is the first they have scored off the Reds righty in 45 innings.

At Pittsburgh, three runs score for the Cubs on one wild pitch by Pirates rookie Art “Cookie” Cuccurullo, as the Cubs win, 10–6. Hy Vandenberg wins over Preacher Roe.

Helped by an unassisted DP by CF George Case, the Senators tip the A’s, 7–5. Case adds 3 stolen bases. The loss drops the A’s into last place, though they are just 4 ½ games out of first.

The Cubs trade reserve infielder Eddie Stanky to the Dodgers for P Bob Chipman.

10th Joe Nuxhall of the Cincinnati Reds is the youngest player in the 20th century to appear in a game. Nuxhall, only 15 years, 10 months old, pitches 2⁄3 of an inning in an 18–0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals and Mort Cooper. He manages to give up 5 walks and 2 hits before Bill McKechnie takes him out. The Cards tie a league record by having 18 runners left on base in the most lopsided shutout win in the NL in 10 years. The loser at the end of the day is Bill Lohrman. Only Jack Chapman, age 14, who appeared in one game on July 22, 1887, was younger than Nuxhall when he appeared in a ML game. Unlike Chapman, Nuxhall will return to the majors, in 1952, and win 135 games.

11th Gene Moore hits a pinch-hit grand slam in the bottom of the 7thoff Joe Heving of Cleveland to give the Browns a 4–2 win in a doubleheader split with St. Louis. The Indians win the other game 13–1.

The Giants takes a doubleheader from the Phillies by identical scores of 6–5. In the first game the Giants use 22 players, including 5 pitchers, 3 catchers, 3 second basemen, 3 pinch hitters, and 2 pinch runners.

In Pittsburgh, Chicago’s Paul Erickson stops the Pirates, 5–0, and newly acquired Bob Chipman follows with a 1–0 win. The Cubs score in the nitecap comes on rookie Tony York’s 6th hit of the day: he’ll have just 20 hits in this, his only ML season.

The Cards set a NL record for DPs in a doubleheader as they turn 9 to back the six-hit efforts of Red Munger and Harry Gumbert to win 3–1 and 4–1. The Cards up their NL lead to 5 ½ games. The Cards turn 4 double plays in game 1 and 5 in game 2 to up the NL mark from 7 in a DH: the 1943 Senators had 2 DPs in a double header. 2B Emil Verban is in 7 of the twin killings. In game 2, the Cards break a 1–1 tie with three consecutive homers in the 6th off Clyde Shoun—by Walker Cooper, Whitey Kurowski, and Danny Litwhiler.

12th The Giants defeat the Dodgers 15–9, as Mel Ott and Phil Weintraub each homer twice and each scores 5 runs. Ralph Branca makes his ML debut for Brooklyn, striking out the first 3 batters he faces.

13th Al Simmons, 42, comes to bat for the first time in 1944 in the 9thinning of the Athletics’ 7–2 loss to the Red Sox. He hits into a double play.

The Yanks lose their 7th straight as Washington drops them, 3-0, behind Dutch Leonard’s pitching.

The Browns stay 1 ½ games in front of Boston by scoring 3 runs in the 9th to beat the host White Sox, 5–3. Jack Kramer is the winner over Eddie Lopat. Playing in his final game, veteran outfielder Frank Demaree is 0-for-3 to drop his 12-year career average from .29954 to .29947, preventing him from finishing with a .300 average.

14th At Cincinnati, the Reds Bucky Walters beats the Pirates 3–2 in 11 innings to become the season’s first 10-game winner.

15th Tex Hughson runs his record to 9-2 with a 5–1 victory over the Athletics, as the Red Sox win their 9th in a row. Less than 800 fans are in attendance in Boston.

In the 7th inning of 5–5 game at Borchert Field in Milwaukee (AA), a sudden thunderstorm erupts blowing off 100-ft section of the grandstand roof, blowing over part of the OF fence, and damaging cars. Thirty fans are injured, some seriously.

16th Washington’s Milo Candini shuts out the Red Sox, 4–0, to end the Boston win streak at 9.

Whit Wyatt wins his first game of the year as the Dodgers beat the Phillies 4–3. Phils P Bill Lee takes a one-hitter into the 9th inning but loses the game on 2 errors.

18th The White Sox take a pair from the Indians in Cleveland by the scores of 3–2 and 7–6. The White Sox win the first game on a 10th-inning HR by Wally Moses, who, in the twin bill, has 2 triples, a double, and a single.

Cal McLish is knocked from the mound by a 5-run outburst by the Phillies in the first inning of a Philadelphia 6–2 victory over the Dodgers. The 18-year-old McLish is followed to the mound by Dodgers hurlers Ralph Branca, also 18, and Charley Osgood, 17, in his only major league appearance.

21st At Ebbets Field, the Giants plate 7 runs in the top of the 9th to win handily over the Dodgers, 11-2. Rookie Clyde King makes his ML debut in the inning in relief of Ralph Branca. He inherits the bases loaded and gets two outs before Mel Ott drills a 2-strike pitch off the scoreboard for a double. Bill Voiselle is the winner.

22nd In the doubleheader opener in Philadelphia, Ron Northey homers in the bottom of the 15th off starter Al Javery for a 1–0 Phillies win over the Braves. It is a first for the Phils to end a game like that. The Braves answer quickly in the 2nd game as Tommy Holmes leads off with a HR and, a batter later, Butch Nieman bangs a 2-run homer. That’s all the support Jim Tobin needs, as he throws his 2nd no-hitter, albeit shortened, winning 7–0. The game is called in the 5th inning because of darkness.

23rd The Dodgers Ed Head tosses a 2-hitter against the Phillies to win his 4th straight, 2–0. Philadelphia infielder Charley Letchas accounts for both Phillies hits.

24th The Cardinals beat the Pirates 16–0 as Cards hurler Mort Cooper tosses a 3-hitter while his teammates pound out 22 hits. Cooper won an 18–0 shutout two weeks ago and he will lead the NL with 7 this season.

25th At Forbes Field, the Cards nose out the Pirates, 2–1, Red Munger (9-1) then play a 5–5 tie called after 9 innings because of the Blue Law. The Pirates score 3 in the 9th on a pinch homer by Virgil Davis that goes through the screen in front of the RF stands. Cards manager Southworth protests on the basis that the ground rules state that a fair ball sticking in the screen is a double. Beans Reardon rules it penetrated the screen for a HR.

26th More than 50,000 pack the Polo Grounds to watch a “triple-header” between the Yankees, Dodgers and Giants, as the three teams play each other in a 6-inning contest to raise money for war bonds. The Dodgers and Yankees, as the visitors, crowd into the same visitors’ locker room. Each team in the tripleheader plays successive innings against the other two teams, then sits out an inning. The final score is Dodgers 5, Yankees 1, Giants, 0. The Giants manage just 2 hits in their own park. The field events before the game include Cal McLish, the 18-year-old Brooklyn pitcher, winning the fungo hitting contest with a drive of 416 feet, 5 inches (he will hit three homers in his 15-year-career). None of the six catchers who participate could throw the ball into a barrel with a peg from home plate to second base. The sprint contest, has which runners racing in pairs, one starting at home plate, the other at second base, is won by the Yanks’ George Stirnweiss. He tops Johnny Rucker of the Giants with a time of 7.8 seconds. Comedian Milton Berle headed a number of musical events and former mayor Jimmy Walker introduced a group of New York’s all-time stars, including Herb Pennock, Zach Wheat, Nap Rucker, Wally Schang, and the famous Giant battery of “Hooks” Wiltse and Roger Bresnahan. It is announced that $6,500,000 in War Bonds were sold.

27th The strong Great Lakes Naval team sinks the Chicago Cubs, 3-2, on 3 runs in the 9th inning. Up till then Paul Erickson of the Cubs had outpitched Virgil Trucks on the Bluejackets. Trucks will go 10-0 in service ball.

28th At Yankee Stadium, the Yankees move into 2nd place, beating the Browns, 7–2, for their 6th win in 8 games with St. Louis. Bob Muncrief loses, snapping his 6-game win streak. Stirnweiss hits an inside-the-park HR to CF with a man on in the 4th.

Stan Hack returns to the Cubs’ lineup after holding out for the first three months of the season, in part because of his dislike of Jimmie Wilson, who resigned as manager May 1. To the delight of the 16,332 fans at Wrigley, manager Charlie Grimm carts Hack out to 3B in a wheelbarrow and dumps him there (as noted by historian John Snyder). Stan goes 3-for-8 in the doubleheader as the Cubs trounce the Dodgers, 12-6 and 6-2. Bill Nicholson has a pair of homers in the opener, including a 6th inning grand slam off Les Webber. Nicholson will lead the NL in homers (33), RBI (122) and runs (116).

29th The Yanks move to 2 ½ games behind St. Louis with a 1–0 win over Sig Jakucki. Walt Dubiel gives up 2 hits for the win.

The Cardinals largest home crowd of the year, 24,782, sees a dandy as Red Munger and the Phillies Bill Lee hook up. The veteran Lee goes 10 innings for the 1-0 win.

30th Ace Adams goes 1-1 today for the Giants, winning game 1 with the Pirates, 7-5, and losing the nitecap, 9-8. Joe Medwick has 7 hits on the day and Johnny Rucker has 6. Johnny Barrett has no hits in the game for the Bucs, but contines to produce against the Giants with 3 walks and 2 runs. In 9 games against the Giants this year he’s compiled 2 homers, 4 triples, a double, along with 6 walks and 8 runs.