1917 October

1st In a 2–0 Pittsburgh win over the Braves, Boston LF Joe Jelly and SS Rabbit Maranville combine on a 9–6 double play. Rabbit makes his out at home plate.

In an exhibition game at Ft. Hamilton, the Yankees beat Brooklyn, 11–8, with the two teams combining for 7 homers. This matches a record set by the Browns and Tigers during the 1886 season. A large crowd of soldiers ringing the field helps the homer total as a number of balls land in among them for extra bases.

2nd At Boston the Red Sox and Senators divide a doubleheader, Washington winning 9–7 in 10 innings, then losing 2–1 in 8 innings. Shanks has 4 of the 15 Nats hits off Dutch Leonard in the first game as Doc Ayers wins in relief. Ayers and Carl Mays, both after bonus money, duel in the 2nd game, with Mays emerging the richer.

In the nitecap of two games at Baker Bowl, Pete Alexander downs the Series-bound Giants, 8–2, for his 30th win. McGraw uses his bench liberally in the match. Alex adds two doubles in winning his last game ever in a Phils uniform. The Quakers will sell the star to the Cubs in December. In the opener, a 5–2, New York win, the Giants push across 3 runs in the top of the 12th to win. Starter Pol Perritt wins the slab duel with Benton.

With few fans braving the cold weather, pitcher Jesse Barnes of the Braves beats Brooklyn ace big Jeff Pfeffer, 6-2, and goes into the record books in the 3rd inning when he draws two walks, the only pitcher in history to be walked twice in an inning. Barnes wins 5 of his last 8 games to finish the year 13-21, which gives him the most losses in the NL.

In a tune-up for the World Series, the White Sox beat Cleveland, 8-5, in a practice game in Cleveland.

3rd After six losses to Babe Ruth, including three by 1–0 scores (one in 13 innings), Walter Johnson finally emerges a winner against the Boston lefty. Johnson contributes a bases loaded double in the 8th to help visiting Washington win, 6–0. Ruth gives up 11 hits and his ERA balloons to 2.01 for the year.

In Philadelphia, Ferdie Schupp goes 4 innings for the Giants, leaving with a 6-0 lead. He gets credited with his 21st win, with George Smith tossing the last 5 innings of the 11-1 win. New York completes the sweep with a 6-0 win in game 2. Ross Youngs has a double and two triples, September call up Al Baird has 4 hits, and High Pockets Kelly, in his lone pitching appearance, is the winner with 5 innings of relief. Fred Anderson and Jeff Tesreau each toss 2 innings, with Anderson pushing his ERA down to an NL-best 1.44.

In the first game of a scheduled 7-game Mound City championship, the Cardinals top the Browns, 3-2. The Cards will win the series in five days, four games to two, with one tie. According to the New York Times of October 16 the results showed receipts of $2,361 for the Cards and $1,574 for the Browns. For the 14 Browns players, that works out to $112 each. The clubs each received $2,876 and the National Commission was paid $756. This is the last exhibition series between these two clubs with the exception of spring training.

4th  After Brooklyn beats the Braves, 5–1 in game one, Boston responds with a 4–2 victory in the nitecap. Southpaw Art Nehf’s 40-inning scoreless streak is ended by the Robins in the 8thwhen a walk, single and sac fly produce a score. He holds on for the win over Leon Cadore and finishes the year at 17–8 for the 6th-place Braves. In game one, Sherry Smith evens his season’s record, beating Jack Scott as RF Casey Stengel starts his league-high ninth double play (8 from RF) of the year. His 30 assists, including two yesterday, also is the high in the NL.

In the season closer, Washington’s Jim Shaw tops the Red Sox, 5–4 despite giving up 13 hits. The Senators tally 14 safeties off Herb Pennock. By winning his 15th game, Shaw earns a $500 bonus.

In the tune-up for their battle with the White Sox, the Giants lose a warm-up game to the Cubs in Chicago, 9–5. Vaughn gives up all five New York runs in his 3 innings, but Carter and Hendrix in their three inning stints are clean. Al Demaree goes 8 innings against his old teammates, and will sit on the bench for the Series.

6th  Before the WS starts, Charles Comiskey offers one percent of his team’s WS share to Clark Griffith’s Bat and Ball Fund for American soldiers in France. In Chicago, Happy Felsch’s HR is the difference as Ed Cicotte beats the Giants’ Slim Sallee, 2–1, in the Series opener.

7th  In game 2 New York’s Ferdie Schupp doesn’t get out of the 2nd inning, and reliever Fred Anderson is bombed in a 5-run 4th, as the 14 White Sox hits produce a 7–2 win for Red Faber. Faber’s pitching is better than his base running; in the 5thinning, he tries to steal 3B, only to find teammate Buck Weaver occupying it. 3B Zimmerman tags both runners out, though Weaver is still safe.

10th  The White Sox are stifled by Rube Benton, who becomes the first lefty to pitch a WS shutout. Dave Robertson, the NL’s leading HR hitter with 12, triples and scores the first of two 4th-inning runs for a 2–0 New York win. Robertson will lead all batters in the Series with a .500 average.

11th  New York’s Ferdie Schupp fares better against Red Faber in game 4; Benny Kauff hits 2 HRs, which are more than enough for a 5–0 win to even the Series.

13th  Game 5 sees White Sox southpaw Reb Russell relieved by Ed Cicotte. Russell gave up 2 hits and a walk to the first 3 batters he faced. In a sloppy game marred by 3 New York and 6 Chicago errors, the White Sox break a 5–5 tie with 3 runs in the 8th. Red Faber, working the last 2 innings, is the winning pitcher.

15th  After Red Faber and Rube Benton match 3 scoreless innings, in Game 6, Eddie Collins leads off the 4th and hits a grounder to Heinie Zimmerman at 3B. Collins takes 2nd when the throw gets past 1B Walter Holke. Joe Jackson’s fly to RF is dropped by Dave Robertson, and Collins goes to 3B. When Happy Felsch hits one back to the pitcher, Collins breaks for home. Benton throws to 3B to catch Collins, and C Bill Rariden comes up the line. But with Zimmerman in pursuit Collins keeps running and slides home safely. Zimmerman will be blamed for chasing the runner, but nobody was covering home plate. The Giants come back with two runs on Buck Herzog’s triple in the 4th, but Faber wins his 3rd of the Series 4–2. The winners earn $3,669.32 each; the losers $2,442.21. One-fourth of each team’s share, about $4,000, is divided equally among the clubs in each league.

16th  The day after the WS ends, the Giants and White Sox play an exhibition game for 600 soldiers at Garden City, NY. The Sox win, 6–4.

21st In an exhibition game (Henry W. Thomas’ Walter Johnson: Baseball’s Big Train) in Kansas City featuring the second and last matchup between Walter Johnson and Grover Cleveland Alexander, Alex’s team wins, 4–3. Included in Alexander’s lineup is 21-year-old Rogers Hornsby. Hornsby describes his last at bat (in his 1962 book My War With Baseball) “Johnson had two strikes on me. He threw me a real fast ball and I knocked it straight for the fence. The ball knocked out the knot and went through the fence for a home run and we won 4-3. The hole, I admit, was one of the biggest cases of pure luck I ever heard of. I’m convinced he absolutely had the best fastball of anyone who ever played baseball.” Hornsby will face Johnson again in 1924.

26th  Miller Huggins, who managed the Cardinals to a 3rd-place finish, is signed to run the Yankees by owner Jake Ruppert. Co-owner Til Huston, who favored Wilbert Robinson for the job, has a falling out with partner Ruppert and will sell his half interest to Ruppert in 1923.