The New York Giants, following out the aggressive plans laid by their lead, made a brilliant dash at the sound of the gong yesterday, and when the first inning was over they had the Red Sox on the defense, with Boston’s great pitcher lost in a maze of base hits and the Speed Boys practically buffaloed, McGraw’s men finally winning by 11 to 4 and bringing the great series to an even break, with three wins for each team.
So the next game, to be played today at Fenway Park, will be the decisive one for the championship and the big end of the purse.
32,964 see the game
There was another great crowd present – 32,964 – all keyed up to the highest pitch, and when Joe Wood walked onto the rubber a cheer went up that shook the bleachers, for the smoke artist had shown form and nerve at every call in a long, trying season and had downed the New York boys twice on their own grounds.
Tesreau, who had gone down before the Boston Speed Boys twice, was to face Wood once more, and it looked like a 2-to-1 shot that Boston would land the series and celebrate the winning of a World’s championship before sundown.
McGraw begins to take chances
Neither team had broken ground in the series and few chances had been taken. The games were close and interesting, with everyday methods being followed as a rule. But the Giants were making observations and figured they could pull off double steals and get the Red Sox on the defense, while the Boston man stuck to their straight-away ball playing.
Johnnie McGraw started to take chances yesterday, and his plan worked; but no one believed that he would try the same tactics with Joe Wood in the box.
Giants off with a rush
However, finding the Boston battery playing mechanical ball, orders were sent out to hit at the first ball, and to take chances on the bases from the jump. If the Giants were lucky enough to get away with their steals, it would have the effect of worrying the Red Sox, McGraw figured, and, once in the air, it would be easy picking for the Giants.
The Giants had their plays mapped out and went away like a pack of greyhounds.
There was no time in the game when the Boston men were together. They had all the breaks in the luck, when about to start a rally; and, of course, the big lead could be overcome only by luck and free hitting.
With men on bases in two innings, fast drives were blocked by Doyle that were turned into forceouts. There was some poor base running by the home team, but the teams went along fairly even after the first inning, with the Giants, however, playing the better baseball.
Played under trying conditions
I doubt if a ball game was ever played under more trying circumstances. There was a high cold wind blowing from the northwest that sent clouds of dust over the field, until outfielding became difficult and the infielders were bothered.
It was the one game of the seven wherein one team outpointed the other in every department of the game, in fielding, hitting and taking the proper chances on the bases.
A batting streak is likely to come to some team in a long series, but no one could dream that Joe Wood, the king of pitchers, would be the Speed Boy to fall by the wayside, a victim of sluggers in hitting humor.
Sox had warning Monday
Knowing that the Giants would take long chances on the bases, as they advertised in the game Monday at New York, it was up to the Red Sox to form a defense, such as wasting a ball on the batsman in order to get the runner on his way.
But there was no attempt at this line work; in fact, it was a clear case of cutting the ball over the heart of the plate from the jump by Wood, and the Giants, laying for speed, met the ball with a short swing.
Day favored Giants
With a new ball and a bright, sunny day, the ball could be traced coming to the plate, and the result was a slaughter.
It was rather cold for curve pitching, and the great number of curve balls used by Wood in his last game in New York may have put his arm in poor condition for this style of delivery, especially as the day was cold. On the other hand, the conditions were ideal for Tesreau, the moist-ball workman.
Joe Wood has the reputation, well-earned, of possessing a cool head and a strong heart.
Wood’s first mistake
Wagner made the bad fumble on the first ball hit, and when Doyle cracked the first ball pitched to him for a single the Boston pitcher must have become disturbed.
At any rate, on the first ball that he sent in with men at second and third, it was noticed that he took a preliminary swing, just as if the bases were clear. The base runners were quick to notice Wood’s mistake and were off as he started his long swing on the next ball pitched, making a double steal without trouble and giving Cady no chance to throw the ball.
No pitcher can take a long swing and stop base running, and the Giants realized right then that Wood was off.
Joe’s second error
In the hole, Wood tried to shoot them over, with little regard for the weak points of the batsmen, and the result was a free hitting bee for six clean hits in the inning – more than some teams have found Wood for in a whole season.
Six large runs behind, it was diamonds to collar buttons that Boston was in for a trouncing. It was Joe Wood’s Waterloo, after a series of well-won victories, and the immense crowd saw the great pitcher retire to the dugout with deep regret.
Sox on bases every inning
The fine lead, of course, gave Tesreau encouragement, and he managed to pull out of several bad places. The Red Sox got men on bases in every inning, or 16 in all, and were often in a position where a few timely hits would have tried even the Giants’ nerves.
But the Speed Boys were not there either with luck or hits, and were forced to take the backwash from the Giants’ fast-traveling bark, with Johnnie McGraw all smiles on the coaching lines, and all the New York players bristling with enthusiasm as they saw their way clear to an even break in the series and the opportunity of settling the matter today at Fenway Park.
Hall had little
Charley Hall, who worked the last eight innings, had little to bother the Giants with, and they hit him freely, Tris Speaker showing class in the outfield by cutting off several vicious drives.
The Giants have shown to their best advantage in the Boston games. Not one of their pitchers has really been knocked out. Tesreau has worked smoothly, though twice defeated by Wood and getting the better of the argument on the third try.
Mathewson has shown class, a level head and was always on his feet, while Marquard has shown class in both of his games. The work of these three men has been high class and without a break.
Bedient vs. Mathewson today
O’Brien, Collins and Wood, the Boston standbys, have been pounded hard at times, and relieved of duty by another pitcher, while Bedient in one try at the Giants made the best showing of the lot, and he will be given the opportunity today of making his title clear. He will no doubt face Matthewson.
During the entire game yesterday two or three Giant pitchers were warming up, while Hall was the only Red Sox pitcher to warm up.