Thursday, September 23, 2010

The 1886 World Series: Game Five

The Chicagos are now fully convinced that there is at least one base ball club in the country that knows as much if not a little more about the game than they do. Until they ran up against the St. Louis Browns they had an inflated idea that they were simply invincible on the diamond. The Browns gave them another lesson in ball playing at Sportsman's Park yesterday afternoon. They are improving in their work very rapidly and it is safe to say that if they meet the home club in another half dozen games, they will be able to make a fair showing against the champions of the world. At present, however, they are out of their class, and though it is rather late, they have discovered that fact. Yesterday's contest between the two clubs, the fifth one in the world's championship series, was a veritable walkover for the Browns. They got the lead in the first inning and kept it throughout. They outplayed the League champions at all points. A big wrangle occurred, just as the game was to be called, about the Chicago pitcher.

On Wednesday last President Spaulding announced that he had signed Baldwin, the left-handed pitcher of the Duluth Club, of the Northwestern League, who made such a good showing this season, and has a record of nineteen strike outs in a single game. Mr. Spaulding stated, though, that he was engaged for 1887, and that he would not do any work this season. It was noticed, however, that while he was in Chicago he was constantly practicing. He accompanied the club to St. Louis, and yesterday his name appeared on the score card as either the pitcher or right-fielder, while the same positions were marked after Flynn's name. It was the Chicagos' intention to put Baldwin in first and if he was batted hard Flynn was to succeed him. As soon as President Von der Ahe became acquainted with this fact he made a vigorous protest. He said that the articles of agreement called for games between the two clubs of 1886, and that he did not propose to allow the Chicagos to present an outside pitcher; that Mr. Spaulding had refused to allow him to strengthen his batteries by signing Ramsey, of the Louisvilles, as he could have done, and that Baldwin could therefore not pitch, or, if he did, the game would not be played. Spaulding made long objections and excuses, but Mr. Von der Ahe would listen to none of them. The umpires were appealed to by the Chicagos' President, but they gave him no satisfaction and nothing remained for Mr. Spaulding but to put in another pitcher, which he did.

Ryan was to play left field and Dalrymple was to lay off. Ryan was sent to right field in the first inning, and Dalrymple had to dress and go to left. Williamson was put in to pitch, and Kelly went to short, while Silver Flint did the back-stop work. Three hits were made off Williamson in the first inning. He also sent a man to base on balls, and as a result the Browns scored two runs. That was the last of Williamson's pitching. He retired to his regular position at short, Kelly going to third and Burns to right. Ryan came in and pitched through the remaining innings. He was very wild, and that his balls were not very deceptive may be seen at once in the total base column. Flint also had a hard time catching him. There was another delay when the captains selected the umpire. Grace Pierce was chosen, but he was not on the grounds, as a long search revealed. It was then decided to try the three umpire system, which worked so well in Chicago last Tuesday. Quest was selected umpire for the Chicagos, and McQuade for St. Louis, while John Kelly officiated as referee. The latter was decidedly against the home club and made many unjust decisions, while he favored the Chicagos on every opportunity. Even when Quest and McQuade decided alike, and Anson saw any chance for a kick, he would appeal to Kelly and the latter would invariably reverse the umpires' decision. Hudson, who pitched for the Browns, made another excellent showing. All the "sluggers" could make off his delivery were but three hits and two of these were decidedly questionable. One was a grounder to Gleason which the latter got to first certainly as quick as the runner, and the other was a grounder to third which Latham handled very slowly. Anson's two-bagger to center was the only clean hit that was made; also the longest on the Chicagos' side. The Browns had their batting clothes on. Caruthers did the best work with the stick. Out of three times at the bat he made two singles and a three-bagger. Welch and Comiskey made doubles, and Hudson is credited with a triple. Gleason also did excellently. He made two singles out of three times at the bat.

It was nearly 3:20 before the game was called. The Browns chose the outs. Gore, the first batter for the Chicagos, struck out, and the crowd applauded Hudson's good beginning. Kelly knocked a fly to Welch, Anson and Pfeffer both secured their bases on balls, and when they were each advanced a bag on a passed ball it looked like runs. Williamson's out from short to first left both men on the bases. for the Browns, Latham, by his successful fouling of balls, got his base. He made a brilliant steal to second, and Caruthers' safe hit to right close to the foul line advanced him to third, and O'Neil's single to center brought him across the plate. Caruthers, however, in trying to stretch his hit into a two-bagger, was thrown out at second. O'Neil went down to second on a passed ball and came in on a hit to left by Gleason. The latter tried to make second on the throw in, but perished at second. Comiskey's fly to Pfeffer wound up the inning. The Chicagos scored their first run in the second inning. Burns, the first man, went out from pitcher to first, and Ryan was hit with a pitched ball. The latter, of course, took his base. He stole second. Dalrymple then knocked a hard grounder to short, and Gleason made a bad error by letting it roll between his legs. Ryan scored on the play. Flint struck out and Gore knocked a foul fly in the direction of first. It was in close to the stand, but Comiskey made a run for it. He got past the ball, but as it was coming down he reached out his right hand and succeeded in making one of the most remarkable catches ever seen on the grounds. This retired the side.

The Browns in their half of the inning made another run. Welch struck at three bad balls and retired to the bench, but Robinson made a beautiful hit to left, and a wild enabled him to go down to second. He started for third, and Flint's bad throw to head him off let him reach there in safety, and another wild pitch brought him across the plate. Hudson struck out, and Bushong got his base on balls, but the latter was left by Latham's out from third to first. Robinson is responsible for the run that the Chicagos made in the third inning. Kelly, the first batter, was thrown out at first on his grounder to short. Anson again got his base on balls, but Pfeffer forced him out at second. The latter stole down to bag No. 2. Williamson then knocked a slow and easy grounder to Robinson. Williamson thought there could be no doubt about his being thrown out, and almost stopped running. Robinson made several grabs for the ball, but could not get it up, although it lay right at his feet. Pfeffer came in on the bad error. Burns retired the side with a fly to O'Neil. The Browns' four runs in this inning put at rest all doubts about their winning the game. Caruthers made an encouraging beginning by driving the ball to the bulletin board for a good three bases, and a passed ball let him home. O'Neil struck out, although the heavy batter made a great kick on the strikes that were called. Gleason got his base on balls, and Comiskey brought him home with a two-bagger to right. Burns, however, let the ball get by him and the Browns' captain went all the way to score. Welch made a clean steal to third, but Flint's wild throw to Kelly to head him off enabled him to come in. Robinson went out from third to first, and Ryan sent Hudson to first on balls. The latter was left, however, by Bushong's liner to Gore.

The Chicagos made a run, the last of the game, in the fourth. Ryan led off with a hit to left. Latham fielded the ball and held it in his hands while Ryan went down to second. Sacrifices by Dalrymple and Flint brought Ryan home, and Gore went out on a fly to Welch. A very funny incident occurred in the Browns' half of this inning. Latham was the first batter, and he commenced to work for his base by fouling balls. Ryan pitched no less than seventeen balls to him without retiring him. Anson became angry, and leaving first base, walked over near the grand stand to the right of Flint, with the intention of catching some of Latham's fouls. Latham, however, observing that first was not covered, tried to knock the ball in that direction. He succeeded in doing so, but Pfeffer, suspecting his intention, played rather close to the bag. As luck would have it, Latham knocked the ball directly to him, and was consequently put out. The play greatly interested the crowd. Caruthers and O'Neil, the next two men, were retired on easy plays.

The Chicagos had two men left on the bases in the fifth. Kelly knocked a grounder to Gleason, and got his base on a questionable decision of the umpire. He stole second. Anson knocked a fly to Caruthers, and Pfeffer went out on a grounder to Comiskey, sending Kelly to third. Williamson got his base on balls and stole second. Burns' grounder to short, on which he was thrown out at first, retired the side. The Browns went out quickly. Gleason knocked a fly to second. Comiskey went out from Ryan to first and Welch from short to first. In the sixth Ryan was thrown out at first on his grounder to Latham, Dalrymple struck out and Flint went out from second to first. The Browns' three runs in this inning brought their total up to ten. Robinson struck out, but Hudson made one of the prettiest hits of the day, sending the ball to extreme center for three bases. He scored on a passed ball. Buschong got his base on balls, but Latham forced him out at second. A wild pitch enabled Latham to advance a base, and Caruthers' single to left brought him in. O'Neil hit safely to right, Caruthers going to second. A wild pitch sent Caruthers to third. Gleason hit safely to right and Caruthers scored. O'Neil tried to make third on Gleason's hit, but was easily thrown out, finishing the inning. The Chicago men went to bat in the seventh, but it was so dark that it was almost impossible to see the ball, and when they had been retired the game was called, although Anson, at first, insisted on playing. Gore went out from third to first and Kelly from pitcher to first. Anson made a beautiful drive to extreme center over the fielder's head, but Welch's quick handling of the ball prevented Anson from getting beyond second. Pfeffer's line drive to Welch made the third out, left Anson standing on second with his head drooping like a faded flower and finished the game. The attendance was about the same as on Thursday.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, October 23, 1886


Cliff Blau said...

"The Chicagos made a run, the last of the game, in the fourth. Ryan led off with a hit to left. Latham fielded the ball and held it in his hands while Ryan went down to second."

I can't understand this at all. Was Latham literally asleep? I've never in my life seen get a double on a groundball to a third baseman, at least in a professional game.

Anonymous said...

Another thing I don't understand. After the Chicagos moved Williamson to SS, why didn't they put Kelly in RF, his usual position, instead of moving him to third and putting Burns out of position in RF? What was Anson thinking? The Browns were known to do bizarre stuff like that occasionally, too.

Jeffrey Kittel said...

The Chicago press asked the same question that you did about the moves that Anson made during the series. No telling what he was thinking.

As to Latham, I'm not sure. Maybe a slow roller down the line, Latham slow to get to it, Ryan running hard out of the box and Latham bobbles it and just holds it as Ryan takes second. It certainly was an aggressive play by Ryan if that's how it happened but both these teams were aggressive on the base paths. Or maybe it was a high chopper. I've never seen something like it either but I can kind of imagine how it might happen. Latham really didn't have a particularly good series.