1909 October

2nd  Eddie Grant of the Phils has 7 hits against the host Giants as the Phils sweep two, 9–2 and 2–1. Harvard Eddie has 5 hits off Marquard in game 1, adding a steal of home on a double steal, and goes 2-for-4 against Christy Mathewson in game 2. Marquard is clobbered in the opener, allowing 16 hits—7 straight in the first inning­­—and 9 runs. Kitty Bransfield hits a 3-run shot into the bleachers for his only homer of the year. Quaker catcher Red Dooin pulls off an unassisted DP, nabbing Myers between 3B and home and then touching the following runner on the other side of 3B. George McQuillan throws the final 3 innings of game 1 and then outpitches Mathewson in the nitecap for a 2–1 victory. Mathewson ends the season with an ERA of 1.14 and a career-high winning percentage of .806.

In the first game of a season-ending doubleheader against Washington, Jim Curry plays second base for the Athletics and goes 1-for-4 against Walter Johnson. At 16 years, six months, and 22 days, Curry is the youngest player in American League history and the youngest major league position player in the 20th century (his birth year is reported as both 1889 and 1893): Carl Scheib will debut at 16 years of age in 1943. Walter Johnson’s 6–5 loss in the opener seals the last-place finish for Washington with 110 losses—Johnson and Bob Groom suffering 51 of them. The A’s take the nitecap as well, 7–2. Three years later, when Washington rises to 2nd place, Johnson and Groom will combine for 56 wins. Today, Groom and P Dolly Gray play the outfield for the Nationals. The last place finish costs Pongo Joe Cantillon his job. The new manager is Jimmy McAleer.

In Kansas City, former Cubs catcher Johnny Kling wins the world championship of pool, defeating Cowboy Weston, 800 to 789. Kling was ahead in each of the four days of play. He runs 198 straight balls today while Weston, the defending champion, runs 208 straight.

In an exhibition game in Chicago, the NL Colts lose, 7-3, to the colored Leland Giants at Gunther Park. Merz, with no ML record, is the loser as all the regulars rest. In the second game, the Giants play the Gunthers, winning 8-4.

3rd  Pitching for the Reds, manager Clark Griffith makes his last career start and his first since 1906, losing, 8-3, to the host Cardinals. He gives up 11 hits as the game is called after 6 innings because of darkness.

4th The Colts close out their home season with a 8-2 victory over the first-place Pirates. Three Fingered Brown gives up a pair in the 1st inning while Sam Frock holds Chicago scoreless until the 8th before the locals defrock him with 8 runs. Six hits, 2 errors and 2 HBPs score the 8. Brown finishes his year with a career-high 342.2 innings pitched and an NL-high 27 victories.

At the Polo Grounds, the Phillies score 5 in the 8th against New York to take the lead but the Giants plate 2 in the 9th to win, 6-5. The second match turns ugly in the 4th inning when three complaining Quakers—Knabe, Doolan and pitcher Moren—are tossed out of the game by umpire Mullen. They refuse to leave and the ump gives the Phillies 5 minutes to take the field. When they decline his invitation, he forfeits the game to the Giants.

5th After losing two out of three to the Colts, the Pirates end their season with a doubleheader victory over the Reds, winning 5-4 and 7-4 at Cincinnati. Pittsburgh reaches 110 victories while Chicago is in 2nd place with 104. For the second time this decade, and the last time this century, the Pirates have to top four leaders in runs scored: Tommy Leach (126); Fred Clarke (97); Honus Wagner and Bobby Byrne (92 each). Byrne scored most of his runs with the Cardinals.

6th Chicago Cubs King Cole makes his major league debut a royal one by stopping the Cardinals, 8–0, the first shutout for the Cubs in three weeks. It is the Cubs 32nd shutout of the year tying the ML mark set by the 1906 White Sox and the 1907 Cubs. Chicago wins the 2nd contest, 5-1, pinning the loss on Fred Beebe. It is the 11th straight loss for Beebe to the Cubs. Rudy Schwenck, who debuted two weeks ago, is the winner in his final ML appearance.

Before 6,000 in New York, the Yankees and Tigers play a game for the benefit of Sam Crane, a former Tiger and presently ailing sportswriter in New York. Christy Mathewson and Joe McGinnity, currently part owner of the Newark team, are the opposing starters, with Matty going 3 frames. The season is over for the Yankees but Matty pitches even though his Giants are still playing. The game is interrupted in the 8th inning to allow the auctioning of a bat used by Ty Cobb and a ball used in one of his games. In spirited bidding, the ball goes to former Police Chief Devery for $275 while the bat goes for $50.

7th On the last day of the season, Brooklyn beats the Giants, 7–5.

8th  The Pirates, winners of 110 games, face Detroit in the WS, which pits the 2 leagues’ top offensive stars, Honus Wagner and Ty Cobb. It is the first of three times this century that batting champs will face each other in the WS (Al Simmons and Chick Hafey in 1931: Bobby Avila and Willie Mays in 1954 are the others) Pittsburgh manager Fred Clarke starts 27-year-old rookie righthander Babe Adams against Tigers P George Mullin. There are only 11 hits in the game, but one is a HR by Clarke, and the Pirates win, 4–1, before a crowd of 29,264.

Before 4,573 at the Polo Grounds, the Boston Americans defeat the Giants, 4-2, behind Smoky Joe Wood. Christy Mathewson is the loser. The exhibition grosses $2956 with $1596 going to the players.

In the windy city series opener, the Cubs defeat the White Sox, 4-0.

9th  The Tigers win the 2nd WS game behind Bill Donovan 7–2. Cobb’s steal of home highlights a 3-run 3rd. Detroit has been defenseless against stolen bases in the past 3 WS, giving up 16 in 5 games to the Cubs in 1907, 15 in 5 games to the Cubs in 1908, and 18 in 7 games to the Pirates this year, for a total of 49 in 17 games, and the highest SB totals in all of WS history.

11th  Paced by Honus Wagner’s 3 hits, 3 RBI, and 3 stolen bases, the visiting Pirates take game 3, 8–6. Nick Maddox is the winner over Ed Summers, who is recovering from dysentery. Hughie Jennings will be roundly criticized for starting Summers and ignoring Ed Killian and 21-game winner Ed Willetts, neither of whom throw an inning.

12th  George Mullin’s 5-hitter, 5–0 victory evens the Series again, as Cobb drives in 2 runs with a double. Mullin strikes out 10 batters, as Lefty Leifield takes the loss. Lefty is not helped by 6 Buc errors.

13th  Babe Adams hurls his 2nd complete-game victory 8–4, despite a double and HR by Sam Crawford. Fred Clarke’s 3-run HR breaks a tie and gives the Pirates a 3–2 Series lead.

14th  George Mullin outlasts 3 Pirates pitchers for a 5–4 win that sends the Series to a 7th game in Detroit. This is the first WS to go the limit.

In a series between the two leagues’ third-place finishers, the Red Sox defeat the Giants and win the series, 4 games to 1.

16th  Rookie Babe Adams comes through with a 6-hit, 8–0 win. It is his 3rd complete-game WS victory and gives the Pirates their first World Championship. He is the only rookie this century to win a game 7 in the WS: The next to do it will be John Lackey, in 2002. Fred Clarke has five plate appearances and no at bats as he walks 4 times and has a sacrifice, and Wagner and Miller each drive in 2 runs. The 2 teams combine for a WS record 34 errors, with Detroit contributing 19, also a record.

18th At the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exhibition in Seattle, Lizzie Arnold of Bellingham, Washington sets a women’s record for the long toss of a baseball when she throws a ball 209’5”. The 16-year-old is the first woman to throw a baseball over 200 feet. Future articles will give her 1/8” to ½” on her record. (as noted by Michelson’s Book of World Records and historian J.G. Preston).