1939 World Series

The 1939 World Series featured the three-time defending champion New York Yankees against the Cincinnati Reds, who were making their first Series appearance since winning the scandal-tainted 1919 World Series. The Yankees swept the Series in four games for the second straight year, winning their record fourth consecutive title (they would later win five straight from 1949 to 1953). Yankee manager Joe McCarthy won his fifth title, tying the record held by Philadelphia Athletics manager Connie Mack.

In the 10th inning of the final game, a famous play at the plate typified the Series. "King Kong" Charlie Keller scored when he and the ball both collided with catcher "Schnoz" Ernie Lombardi, and then Joe DiMaggio also scored while Lombardi, rolling on the ground, tried in vain to retrieve the ball. Lombardi had been smacked in the groin, but the puritanical press reported it as Lombardi "napping" at the plate.

The Yankees matched the Reds in hits with 27, but out-homered them 7 to 0 and out-scored them 20-8. Keller led the Yanks with seven hits, three home runs, six RBI, eight runs scored, a .438 average and a 1.188 slugging percentage. Both teams played sterling defense for most of the series until the ninth inning of Game 4. Up until then the Reds matched the Yankees with committing just one error for the series. But Cincinnati committed a total of three errors in the ninth and 10th innings of Game 4 which led to five unearned runs, sealing the New York sweep.

Keller broke the record for most homers by a rookie in a World Series game with two in Game 3. Also in Game 3, Junior Thompson gave up five hits in ​4 23 innings worked. Four of the five were home runs, tying the record for long balls allowed during a Series game set by the Cubs' Charlie Root in 1932.

Despite the loss, the Reds were an organization on the rise, having improved from eighth and last in the National League in 1937 (56–98, .364) to fourth in '38 (82–68, .547) and first as NL champions in '39. Ironically, despite being dominated by the Bronx Bombers in the 1939 Series, the Reds would return in 1940 to win the World Series while the Yankees finished behind Detroit and Cleveland in the AL pennant race, snapping their consecutive World Series streak at four.

At a cumulative time of seven hours and five minutes, the 1939 World Series is one of the shortest World Series in real time, and was shorter than the third game of the 2018 World Series that lasted 7 hours, 20 minutes and was 18 innings long. [1]

1939 World Series
Team (Wins) Manager(s) Season
New York Yankees (4) Joe McCarthy 106–45, .702, GA: 17
Cincinnati Reds (0) Bill McKechnie 97–57, .630, GA: ​4 12
DatesOctober 4–8
UmpiresBill McGowan (AL), Beans Reardon (NL), Bill Summers (AL), Babe Pinelli (NL)
Hall of FamersUmpire: Bill McGowan Yankees: Joe McCarthy (mgr.), Bill Dickey, Joe DiMaggio, Lefty Gomez, Joe Gordon, Red Ruffing.
Reds: Bill McKechnie (mgr.), Ernie Lombardi, Al Simmons.
Broadcast
RadioMutual
Radio announcersRed Barber and Bob Elson
World Series

Summary

AL New York Yankees (4) vs. NL Cincinnati Reds (0)

Game Date Score Location Time Attendance 
1 October 4 Cincinnati Reds – 1, New York Yankees – 2 Yankee Stadium 1:33 58,541[2] 
2 October 5 Cincinnati Reds – 0, New York Yankees – 4 Yankee Stadium 1:27 59,791[3] 
3 October 7 New York Yankees – 7, Cincinnati Reds – 3 Crosley Field 2:01 32,723[4] 
4 October 8 New York Yankees – 7, Cincinnati Reds – 4 (10 innings) Crosley Field 2:04 32,794[5]

Matchups

Game 1

Wednesday, October 4, 1939 1:30 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cincinnati 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 0
New York 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 2 6 0
WP: Red Ruffing (1–0)   LP: Paul Derringer (0–1)

In the opener, starters Red Ruffing and Paul Derringer pitched complete games. The Reds struck first in the fourth when Ival Goodman walked with two outs and scored on Frank McCormick's single, but the Yankees tied the game in the fifth Joe Gordon singled and scored on Babe Dahlgren's double. In the bottom of the ninth with one out and the score tied 1–1, Charlie Keller tripled. The Reds walked Joe DiMaggio, but Bill Dickey ended it with a walk-off single to center.

Game 2

Thursday, October 5, 1939 1:30 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cincinnati 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
New York 0 0 3 1 0 0 0 0 X 4 9 0
WP: Monte Pearson (1–0)   LP: Bucky Walters (0–1)
Home runs:
CIN: None
NYY: Babe Dahlgren (1)

Lasting just 87 minutes, both pitchers threw complete games, Monte Pearson winning it with a two-hitter. In the bottom of the third, Babe Dahlgren hit a leadoff double and scored on two groundouts. Red Rolfe then singled and scored on Charlie Keller's double. After another single, Bill Dickey's RBI single made it 3–0 Yankees. They added another run in the fourth on Dalgren's home run and took a 2–0 series lead heading to Cincinnati.

Game 3

Saturday, October 7, 1939 1:30 pm (ET) at Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Ohio
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 2 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 7 5 1
Cincinnati 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 10 0
WP: Bump Hadley (1–0)   LP: Junior Thompson (0–1)
Home runs:
NYY: Charlie Keller 2 (2), Joe DiMaggio (1), Bill Dickey (1)
CIN: None

In Game 3, Charlie Keller's two-run home run the first off of Gene "Junior" Thompson put the Yankees up 2–0. In the bottom half, three consecutive two-out singles, the last an RBI one by Ernie Lombardi, cut the lead to 2–1. Yankees' starter Lefty Gomez left after that inning. In the second, Bump Hadley allowed four singles, the last two of which to Billy Werber and Ival Goodman scoring a run each, but in the third, Joe DiMaggio's two-run home run after a two-out walk to Keller put the Yankees back in front 4–3. They added to their lead in the fifth on Keller's two-run home run and Bill Dickey's home run to knock Thompson out of the game. Their 7–3 win left them one win away from the championship.

Game 4

Sunday, October 8, 1939 1:30 pm (ET) at Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Ohio
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
New York 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 3 7 7 1
Cincinnati 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 0 4 11 4
WP: Johnny Murphy (1–0)   LP: Bucky Walters (0–2)
Home runs:
NYY: Charlie Keller (3), Bill Dickey (2)
CIN: None

Neither side scored until the seventh. Home runs by Charlie Keller and Bill Dickey off of starter Paul Derringer put the Yankees on the board, but the Reds struck back in their half of the inning. With runners on second and third via an error and double off of reliever Steve Sundra, Wally Berger's RBI groundout put the Reds on the board, then after a walk, back-to-back RBI singles by Willard Hershberger and Billy Werber put the Reds up 3–2. They added another run next inning when Ival Goodman hit a leadoff double off of Johnny Murphy and scored on Ernie Lombardi's single, but in the ninth after two leadoff singles off of Bucky Walters, Dickey's fielder's choice aided by an error scored a run, then one out later, Joe Gordon's RBI single tied the game. Next inning, with two on via a walk and error, Joe DiMaggio drove them both in with a single and another error allowed DiMaggio himself to score to put the Yankees up 7–4. In the bottom half, Murphy allowed two leadoff singles, but retired the next three batters to end the game and series.

Composite line score

1939 World Series (4–0): New York Yankees (A.L.) over Cincinnati Reds (N.L.)

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
New York Yankees 2 0 5 1 4 0 2 0 3 3 20 27 2
Cincinnati Reds 1 2 0 1 0 0 3 1 0 0 8 27 4
Total attendance: 183,849   Average attendance: 45,962
Winning player's share: $5,542   Losing player's share: $4,193[6]

Notes

  1. ^ http://www.sportingnews.com/us/mlb/news/world-series-2018-boston-red-sox-los-angeles-dodgers-game-3-records-stats-longest-game-postseason-history/16lw4z8yg337811q5eanvy5m47
  2. ^ "1939 World Series Game 1 – Cincinnati Reds vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  3. ^ "1939 World Series Game 2 – Cincinnati Reds vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  4. ^ "1939 World Series Game 3 – New York Yankees vs. Cincinnati Reds". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. ^ "1939 World Series Game 4 – New York Yankees vs. Cincinnati Reds". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. ^ "World Series Gate Receipts and Player Shares". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved June 14, 2009.

References

  • Cohen, Richard M.; Neft, David S. (1990). The World Series: Complete Play-By-Play of Every Game, 1903–1989. New York: St. Martin's Press. pp. 175–178. ISBN 0-312-03960-3.
  • Reichler, Joseph (1982). The Baseball Encyclopedia (5th ed.). Macmillan Publishing. p. 2147. ISBN 0-02-579010-2.

External links

1939 Cincinnati Reds season

The 1939 Cincinnati Reds season was a season in American baseball. The team finished first in the National League, winning the pennant by 4½ games over the St. Louis Cardinals with a record of 97–57. The team went on to the 1939 World Series, which it lost in four straight games to the New York Yankees.

1939 New York Yankees season

The 1939 New York Yankees season was the team's 37th season in New York, and its 39th overall. The team finished with a record of 106–45, winning their 11th pennant, finishing 17 games ahead of the Boston Red Sox. New York was managed by Joe McCarthy. The Yankees played their home games at Yankee Stadium. In the World Series, they beat the Cincinnati Reds in 4 games. This marked the first time any team had won four consecutive World Series and the first season for the team's radio gameday broadcasts.

Bucky Walters

William Henry "Bucky" Walters (April 19, 1909 – April 20, 1991) was an American Major League Baseball All-Star pitcher and the 1939 National League MVP. A native of Philadelphia, Walters played for the Boston Braves (1931–32, 1950), Boston Red Sox (1933–1934), Philadelphia Phillies (1934–1938) and Cincinnati Reds (1938–1948). He batted and threw right-handed.

Bump Hadley

Irving Darius Hadley (July 5, 1904 – February 15, 1963) was an American Major League Baseball pitcher. Born in Lynn, Massachusetts, he played the major leagues for the Washington Senators (1926–31 and 1935), Chicago White Sox (1932), St. Louis Browns (1932–34), New York Yankees (1936–40), New York Giants (1941), and Philadelphia Athletics (1941).

Charlie Keller

Charles Ernest Keller (September 12, 1916 – May 23, 1990) was an American professional baseball player. He played as a left fielder in Major League Baseball from 1939 through 1952 for the New York Yankees (1939–43, 1945–49, 1952) and Detroit Tigers (1950–51). A native of Middletown, Maryland, he batted left-handed and threw right-handed. His ability to hit massive wall reaching fly balls, and home runs, earned him the nickname "King Kong".

Ernie Lombardi

Ernesto Natali Lombardi (April 6, 1908 – September 26, 1977), was an American professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a catcher for the Brooklyn Robins, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Braves, and New York Giants during a career that spanned 17 years, from 1931 through 1947. He had several nicknames, including "Schnozz", "Lumbago", "Bocci", "The Cyrano of the Iron Mask" and "Lom". He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986.

Baseball writer Bill James called Lombardi "the slowest man to ever play major league baseball well." The fact that he was so slow spoke to what an outstanding hitter he was. Lombardi was an All-Star for seven seasons, he hit over .300 for ten seasons and finished his major league career with a .306 batting average despite infields playing very deep for the sloth-like baserunner. He is listed at 6'3" and 230 lbs, but he probably approached 300 lbs towards the end of his career. He was also known as a gentle giant, and this made him hugely popular among Cincinnati fans.

Frank McCormick

Frank Andrew McCormick (June 9, 1911 – November 21, 1982) was an American baseball first baseman who played fifteen seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB). Nicknamed "Buck" in honor of Frank Buck, he played for the Cincinnati Reds, Philadelphia Phillies and Boston Braves from 1934 to 1948. He batted and threw right-handed and was listed at 6 feet 4 inches (1.93 m) and 205 pounds (93 kg).

McCormick signed with the Cincinnati Reds as an amateur free agent in 1934 and played for their minor league affiliate in Beckley until September of that same year, when the Reds promoted him to the major leagues. After spending twelve seasons with the organization, McCormick was sold to the Philadelphia Phillies, where he spent the next two seasons. In the middle of the 1947 season, he was released and subsequently joined the Boston Braves, with whom he played his last game on October 3, 1948. He is most famous for winning the National League Most Valuable Player Award in 1940.

Ival Goodman

Ival Richard Goodman (July 23, 1908 – November 25, 1984) was an All-Star right fielder in Major League Baseball who played for the Cincinnati Reds (1935–1942) and Chicago Cubs (1943–1944). Goodman, who batted left-handed and threw right-handed, helped lead the Reds to a National League pennant in 1939 and a World Series title in 1940, and he was elected to the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame in 1959.

List of Cincinnati Reds managers

The Cincinnati Reds are an American professional baseball franchise based in Cincinnati, Ohio. They are members of the National League Central Division in Major League Baseball. In chronological order, the Reds have played their home games in the Bank Street Grounds, League Park, the Palace of the Fans, Redland Field (later known as Crosley Field), and Riverfront Stadium (later known as Cinergy Field). Since 2003, the Reds have played their home games at Great American Ball Park.There have been sixty-one different managers in the team's franchise history: four while it was known as the Cincinnati Red Stockings (1882–1889), four while it was known as the Cincinnati Redlegs (1953–1958) and the other fifty-three under the Cincinnati Reds (1882–1952, 1959–present). In baseball, the head coach of a team is called the manager, or more formally, the field manager. Pop Snyder was the first manager of the Reds and managed from 1882 to 1884. Sparky Anderson is the franchise's all-time leader in regular-season games managed (1,450) and regular-season game wins (863). He is followed by Bill McKechnie in both categories with 1,386 and 744, respectively. Anderson is the only Reds manager to have won the World Series twice, in 1975 and 1976. Pat Moran, Lou Piniella, and McKechnie have one World Series victory each; Moran was the manager during the Black Sox Scandal, which refers to the events that took place in the 1919 World Series. McKechnie led the team to the championship in 1940, while Piniella led the team to it in 1990. Jack McKeon is the only manager to have won the Manager of the Year Award with the Reds, which he won in 1999. The most recent manager of the Reds is Jim Riggleman, and the current owner is Robert Castellini.

The manager with the highest winning percentage over a full season or more was Pop Snyder, with a winning percentage of .648. Conversely, the worst winning percentage over a full season or more in franchise history is .382 by Donie Bush, who posted a 58–94 record during the 1933 season.

List of World Series champions

The World Series is the annual championship series of Major League Baseball (MLB) and concludes the MLB postseason. First played in 1903, the World Series championship is determined through a best-of-seven playoff and is a contest between the champions of baseball's National League (NL) and American League (AL). Often referred to as the "Fall Classic", the modern World Series has been played every year since 1903 with two exceptions: in 1904, when the NL champion New York Giants declined to play the AL champion Boston Americans; and in 1994, when the series was canceled due to the players' strike.The best-of-seven style has been the format of all World Series except in 1903, 1919, 1920, and 1921, when the winner was determined through a best-of-nine playoff. Although the large majority of contests have been played entirely during the month of October, a small number of Series have also had games played during September and November. The Series-winning team is awarded the Commissioner's Trophy. Players, coaches and others associated with the team are generally given World Series rings to commemorate their victory; however, they have received other items such as pocket watches and medallions in the past. The winning team is traditionally invited to the White House to meet the President of the United States.

A total of 114 Series have been contested, with the NL champion winning 48 and the AL champion winning 66. The New York Yankees of the AL have played in 40 World Series through 2018—winning 27—the most Series appearances and most victories of any Major League Baseball franchise. The Los Angeles Dodgers of the NL have the most losses with 14. The St. Louis Cardinals have represented the NL 19 times, and won 11 championships, second-most among all teams and most among NL clubs. Both the Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers have appeared in more World Series, with 20 each.

The Seattle Mariners and the Washington Nationals (formerly Montreal Expos) are the only current Major League Baseball franchises to have never appeared in a World Series; the San Diego Padres, Colorado Rockies, Texas Rangers (formerly the 1961–1971 version of the Washington Senators), Tampa Bay Rays, and Milwaukee Brewers (formerly Seattle Pilots) have all played in the Series but have never won. The Toronto Blue Jays are the only franchise from outside the United States to appear in a World Series, winning in 1992 and 1993. The Houston Astros have represented both the NL (2005) and the AL (2017), winning the Series in 2017. The current World Series champions are the Boston Red Sox.

Lou Gehrig

Henry Louis Gehrig (born Heinrich Ludwig Gehrig; June 19, 1903 – June 2, 1941) was an American professional baseball first baseman who played 17 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the New York Yankees (1923–1939). Gehrig was renowned for his prowess as a hitter and for his durability, which earned him his nickname "The Iron Horse". He was an All-Star seven consecutive times, a Triple Crown winner once, an American League (AL) Most Valuable Player twice, and a member of six World Series champion teams. He had a career .340 batting average, .632 slugging average, and a .447 on base average. He hit 493 home runs and had 1,995 runs batted in (RBI). In 1939, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame and was the first MLB player to have his uniform number (4) retired by a team.

A native of New York City and a student at Columbia University, Gehrig signed with the Yankees in 1923. He set several major-league records during his career, including the most career grand slams (23) (since broken by Alex Rodriguez) and most consecutive games played (2,130), a record that stood for 56 years and was long considered unbreakable until surpassed by Cal Ripken, Jr., in 1995. Gehrig's consecutive game streak ended on May 2, 1939, when he voluntarily took himself out of the lineup, stunning both players and fans, after his performance on the field became hampered by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, an incurable neuromuscular illness; it is now commonly referred to in North America as "Lou Gehrig's disease". The disease forced him to retire at age 36, and was the cause of his death two years later. The pathos of his farewell from baseball was capped off by his iconic 1939 "Luckiest Man on the Face of the Earth" speech at Yankee Stadium.

In 1969, the Baseball Writers' Association of America voted Gehrig the greatest first baseman of all time, and he was the leading vote-getter on the MLB All-Century Team chosen by fans in 1999. A monument in Gehrig's honor, originally dedicated by the Yankees in 1941, currently resides in Monument Park at Yankee Stadium. The Lou Gehrig Memorial Award is given annually to the MLB player who best exhibits Gehrig's integrity and character.

Luxor, Pennsylvania

Luxor is an unincorporated community and coal town in Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, United States.

Milt Shoffner

Milburn James Shoffner (November 13, 1905 – January 19, 1978) was a Major League Baseball pitcher. He played seven years in the majors, from 1929 until 1931, then again from 1937 until 1940.

Shoffner debuted in the majors with the Cleveland Indians in 1929 and pitched three seasons for them. In 1930 and 1931, his ERA was over 7.00, and by mid-season he was pitching for the Toledo Mud Hens. Shoffner did not return to the major leagues until 1937, with the Boston Bees. That season, he made six appearances—five of them starts—with an impressive 2.53 ERA.

That performance led to a larger role on the 1938 team, and while his performance slipped a bit, his record was a respectable 8–7 with a 3.54 ERA. Despite getting off to a good start in 1939, Shoffner was waived by the Bees and claimed by the Cincinnati Reds. Overall that season, Shoffner finished 6th in the league in ERA at 3.18 in 170 innings (a career high). Despite this, he did not appear in the 1939 World Series for the Reds.

The following season, Shoffner had a rougher go, as his ERA slipped back to 5.63 and he was mostly limited to mop-up duty. Once again, he did not appear in the 1940 World Series, which the Reds won. During the offseason, Shoffner was traded to the New York Giants for infielder Wayne Ambler, and after pitching one last season in the minors he retired.

Monte Pearson

Montgomery Marcellus "Monte" Pearson (September 2, 1908 – January 27, 1978) was an American baseball pitcher who played ten seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB). Nicknamed "Hoot", he played for the Cleveland Indians, New York Yankees and Cincinnati Reds from 1932 to 1941. He batted and threw right-handed and served primarily as a starting pitcher.

Pearson played minor league baseball for three different teams until 1932, when he signed with the Cleveland Indians. After spending four seasons with the organization, Pearson was traded to the New York Yankees, where he spent the next five years. At the conclusion of the 1940 season, he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds, with whom he played his last game on August 5, 1941. A four-time World Series champion, Pearson holds the MLB record for lowest walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP) in the postseason. He is most famous for pitching the first no-hitter at the original Yankee Stadium.

Nino Bongiovanni

Anthony Thomas "Nino" Bongiovanni (December 21, 1911 – January 6, 2009) was a professional baseball player and manager. He played two seasons in Major League Baseball for the Cincinnati Reds. Bongiovanni was 5 feet, 10 inches tall and weighed 175 pounds.

Red Ruffing

Charles Herbert "Red" Ruffing (May 3, 1905 – February 17, 1986) was an American professional baseball player. A pitcher, he played in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1924 through 1947. He played for the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, and Chicago White Sox. Ruffing is most remembered for his time with the highly successful Yankees teams of the 1930s and 1940s.

Ruffing dropped out of school as a child to work in a coal mine in his native Illinois. He played for the mine's company baseball team as an outfielder and first baseman. After he lost four toes from his left foot in a mining accident, he became unable to run in the field, and switched to pitching. He played in minor league baseball in 1923 and 1924 before making his MLB debut with the Red Sox. After struggling with Boston, pitching to a 36–93 win–loss record, the Red Sox traded Ruffing to the Yankees, where he became successful, pitching as the Yankees' ace through 1946. After one season with the White Sox, Ruffing retired from pitching to work in coaching. He served as a bullpen coach for the White Sox, a pitching coach for the New York Mets, and a scout and minor league instructor for the Cleveland Indians.

Ruffing was a member of six World Series championship teams with the Yankees. He also appeared in six MLB All-Star Games. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1967. The Yankees dedicated a plaque to Ruffing in Monument Park in 2004.

Tommy Henrich

Thomas David Henrich (February 20, 1913 – December 1, 2009), nicknamed "The Clutch" and "Old Reliable", was an American professional baseball player of German descent. He played his entire Major League Baseball career as a right fielder and first baseman for the New York Yankees (1937–1942 and 1946–1950). Henrich led the American League in triples twice and in runs scored once, also hitting 20 or more home runs four times. He is best remembered for his numerous exploits in the World Series; he was involved in one of the most memorable plays in Series history in 1941, was the hitting star of the 1947 Series with a .323 batting average, and hit the first walk-off home run in Series history in the first game of the 1949 World Series.

Tony Kubek

Anthony Christopher Kubek (born October 12, 1935) is an American former professional baseball player and television broadcaster. During his nine-year playing career with the New York Yankees, Kubek played in six World Series in the late 1950s and early 1960s, starting in 37 World Series games. For NBC television, he later broadcast twelve World Series between 1968 and 1982, and fourteen League Championship Series between 1969 and 1989. Kubek received the Ford C. Frick Award in 2009.

Wally Berger

Walter Anton Berger (October 10, 1905 – November 30, 1988) was a Major League Baseball outfielder who played for four National League teams, primarily the Boston Braves. Berger was the National League's starting center fielder in baseball's first All-Star Game.

One of the league's top sluggers of the early 1930s, in his initial 1930 season he hit 38 home runs, a record for rookies which stood until 1987; he still holds a share of the NL record. He also led the league in home runs and runs batted in in 1935 despite the Braves having the fourth-most losses in MLB history, and went on to become the seventh NL player to hit 200 career home runs.

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