1931 October

1st  Pepper Martin, an unheralded rookie, gets 3 hits, but the A’s Lefty Grove coasts to an easy 6–2 victory in the WS opener in St. Louis.

2nd  The Cards even the WS as Wild Bill Hallahan shuts out the A’s 2–0 despite 7 walks and a wild pitch. Pepper Martin continues to steal the Series, scoring from 2B on a base hit in the 2nd inning and sliding in a cloud of dust on a squeeze play in the 8th. He has 2 stolen bases and score two runs, but the game almost gets away on a bonehead play by the usually savvy Cardinal C Jimmy Wilson. With 2 on base in the 9th, and 2 outs, PH Johnny Moore swings at a ball in the dirt and misses. Wilson needs only to throw the ball to 1B. Instead, he throws it to 3B, and everyone is safe. Fortunately for Wilson’s reputation, Jim Bottomley makes a sensational catch, leaning into the box seats to get the final out on a pop foul by Max Bishop.

5th  Because of a Pennsylvania law banning baseball on Sunday, an extra day is added as the Series moves to Philadelphia. Lefty Grove pitches the 3rd game with 3 days rest. However, Burleigh Grimes, who had lost twice to Grove in 1930, has a no-hitter until the 8th inning, winning 5–2. Pepper Martin continues to excite the crowds with 2 more hits, scoring twice.

6th  The A’s George Earnshaw evens the WS with a 3–0 shutout, giving up just 2 hits, both to the red-hot Pepper Martin. Jimmie Foxx hits a ball over the LF stands, judged one of the longest drives ever at Shibe Park.

7th  Connie Mack, who surprised everyone in 1929 by starting veteran Howard Ehmke in the WS opener, tries the ploy with Waite Hoyt. Pitching in his 7th WS, Hoyt falls victim to Pepper Martin, who homers and drives in 4 runs with 3 hits. Hallahan wins for the Cards 5–1.

9th  With the Series back in St. Louis, Lefty Grove evens matters by containing Pepper Martin and winning easily, 8–1.

The Braves trade catcher Al Bool, acquired off waivers last year, to Milwaukee (American Association) for Art “Whataman” Shires and $10,000. The light-hitting Bool led the NL in intentional walks in 1930 with 8.

10th  Connie Mack sends George Earnshaw out to win the final game as he had in 1930. However, Burleigh Grimes carries a 4–0 lead into the 9thbefore he weakens. The A’s score twice and have 2 runners on base with 2 outs when Bill Hallahan rescues Grimes. Max Bishop lines out to Pepper Martin for the final out as the Cardinals take the Series 4 games to 3. As in the 1929 and 1930 WS, the A’s finish the 1931 WS with no stolen bases: Martin steals 5 for the Cards.

15th  Sportswriter Fred Lieb leads an all-star squad on a barnstorming trip to Hawaii and Japan. Among those aboard ship are Lou Gehrig, Frank Frisch, Rabbit Maranville, Willie Kamm, Al Simmons, Lefty O’Doul, Mickey Cochrane, and Lefty Grove.

20th  Frankie Frisch, the Cardinals’ fiery field leader, is named MVP of the NL. He led in stolen bases with 28, hit .313, and was chosen for his all-around excellence.

23rd  Brooklyn announces Wilbert Robinson is through as manager and the club will be called the Robins only in the past tense. Max Carey, a no-nonsense sort, will take over next year.

26th  Charles Comiskey dies at age 72. The White Sox owner and a pioneer player, he never recovered from the betrayal of the 1919 WS.

29th  Lefty Grove, the A’s P who won 31 games, is named the AL’s MVP. He led the league in strikeouts for the 7th straight season and topped all pitchers in winning percentage, ERA, and complete games.