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1952 Baseball

Individual Performances.

Micky Mantle of the New York Yankees watching the ball sail over the head of third baseman Bobby Morgan of the Brooklyn Dodgers. The ball was relayed by the shortstop after Mantle tripled to center field in the fourth game of the 1952 world series. The Yankees won the game 2-0, and took the series, four games to three.

Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals won the 1952 National League batting title with a .336 (unofficial) mark. It was the sixth time that “Stan the Man” had captured the title and put him within reach of the National league record of eight batting titles set by Honus Wagner. Hank Sauer of the Chicago Cubs and Ralph Kiner of the Pitts-burgh Pirates tied for the home-run crown with 37 (unofficial) homers each. For Kiner, it marked the seventh consecutive year that he had led or tied for the National League home-run title. Sauer also won the runs-batted-in crown with 121 (unofficial). In the American league, Ferris Fain of the Philadelphia Athletics took his second straight hitting title with a .327 (unofficial) average. Larry Doby of the Cleveland Indians was top home-run producer in the league with 32 (unofficial).  His teammate, Al Rosen, won the runs-batted-in contest with 105 (unofficial)
Relief pitcher Hoyt Wilhelm of the New York Giants captured the earned-run average title in the National League. He had 2.43 (unofficial). The pitcher with the best earned-run average in the American league was Allie Reynolds of the New York Yankees, who had a mark of 2.06 (unofficial). There were six 20-game winners. Robin Roberts of the Philadelphia Phillies was the only National League pitcher to enter the charmed circle with 28 victories. The American leaguers were: Bobby Shantz of Philadelphia (24), Early Wynn of Cleveland (23), Mike Garcia of Cleveland (22), Bob Lemon of Cleveland (22) and Allie Reynolds (20).
Three no-hitters were hurled during the 1952 season. Virgil Trucks of the Detroit Tigers threw two no-hitters, the first coming on May 15 against the Washington Senators and the second on Aug. 25 against the New York Yankees. The third no-hitter was hurled by Carl Erskine of the Brooklyn Dodgers On June 19 he held the Chicago Cubs hitless in a game interrupted by rain.
The armed services interrupted the careers of some of the game’s stars. Ted Williams, a captain in the marine air corps reserve, was called back to duty shortly after the season got underway. Facing a tour of duty which could carry through the 1953 baseball season, the Boston Red Sox outfielder announced it was doubtful that he would resume playing upon his discharge because of his age. If the military did ring down the curtain on the career of Williams prematurely, the records he had amassed while in major league ball still ranked him as one of the great sluggers in the game’s history. Williams was not the only American league star lost to the services. The New York Yankees lost the second baseman Jerry Coleman and pitcher Tom Morgan. Bob Kennedy of the Cleveland Indians was also called into service.
In the National league the 1951 pennant winner, the New York Giants, had the services of Willie Mays, 1951 “rookie of the year,” for only a short time during 1952 before he was drafted. The Brooklyn Dodgers were also hard hit by the military draft when they lost their fireballing right-hander, Don Newcombe.All-Star Game
Shibe Park, Philadelphia, was the site of the 19th annual All-Star game, which the National league took by a 3–2 score. A total of 32,785 fans turned out to witness the spectacle. Hank Sauer of the Chicago Cubs provided the victory margin for the National League team with a two-run homer. Jackie Robinson of the Brooklyn Dodgers also homered for the National League. Bob Rush of the Chicago Cubs was given credit for the victory, while the losing pitcher was Bob Lemon of the Cleveland Indians. Bobby Shantz of the Philadelphia Athletics turned in a great performance in the one inning he pitched by striking out the three men he faced. Carroll (Whitey) Lockman of the New York Giants, Jackie Robinson of the Dodgers and Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals. The game was delayed because of rain and after five innings of play were completed the proceedings were held up. After a 56-min. delay the umpires were forced to call the game. It was the seventh victory in the series for the National leaguers, who had lost 12 of the annual meetings.

Major League Races.
The Cleveland Indians in the American League and the New York Giants in the National league were the preseason favorites of many observers to take the pennants in their respective leagues. The Indians’ pitching staff came through with three 2o-games-plus winners and the hitting was good enough, but the infield play of the club was not of high enough caliber to capture the pennant flag. The New York Yankees were without the services of the retired Joe DiMaggio and it was the general belief that they could not repeat in 1952. However, on Aug. 23 the Yankees defeated the Indians to take the lead until the race was over. The Chicago White Sox were a threat for some time and the Washington Senators and Philadelphia Athletics had a knack of winning so-called big games from the leaders. In the National League, the New York Giants appeared to be stronger than the 1951 edition of their team. Their pitching looked better than in the preceding year. The Brooklyn Dodgers, however, were not to be denied. Things did not look good for the Flatbush team when they lost Don Newcombe, their 20-game winner of 1951, to the armed forces. The Giants, on the other hand, were hit with two crippling blows. Monte Irvin suffered a compound fracture of his right ankle during the exhibition season, and Willie Mays, the spark plug of 1951, was called to the army. The Dodgers moved into undisputed possession of first place on June 1 and never gave up the lead throughout the remainder of the season. In both leagues, it was a two-club race with the Yankees outlasting the Indians and the Dodgers proving too much for the Giants. The St. Louis Cardinals made a late-season move for the title in the senior circuit, but their surge was too late to prove effective.

   The 1952 world-series was a give-and-take battle right down to the last out in the seventh and final game, with the New York Yankees coming home with their fourth straight series victory. It was the 19th series in which the Yankees had participated and it was the 15th time they had triumphed in the classic. Rookie Joe Black went to the mound in the first game for the Dodgers, the second relief pitcher in the history of the series to start in the opening game. His foe was Allie Reynolds of the Yanks. Black held the New York team to six hits as the Dodgers walked away with the opener by a 4–2 score. In the second game, Casey Stengel nominated Vic Raschi to tie the series. Raschi came through, giving up one run on only three hits as the Yankees won 7–1. Carl Erskine started for the Dodgers and suffered the loss. Game number three saw the scene shift from Ebbet’s field to Yankee stadium. Once again the Dodgers took the lead when they scored a 5–3 win. Elwin (Preacher) Roe started for the Dodgers and went all the way, giving up six hits to gain the decision. Ed Lopat had been Casey Stengel’s starting choice but the loser did not finish the game. The nip-and-tuck battle followed the pattern in the fourth game as the Yankees again tied up the series. It was Allie Reynolds against Joe Black on the mound as it had been in the first game. This time, however, Reynolds turned the Dodgers back as he racked up the only shutout of the series and the Yankees won, 2-0. Johnny Mize clouted his second home run in as many days in the game.
Perhaps the greatest game of the series was the fifth contest. The Dodgers won this one, 6–5, in 11 innings to take the lead for the third time. Carl Erskine started for the Dodgers and went all the way. Although he was rapped for five runs in the fifth inning, he retired 19 in a row after that, to gain credit for the game. Ewell (The Whip) Blackwell started for the Yankees but was taken out for a pinch-hitter in the big Yankee fifth inning. The spree put the Yankees ahead 5–4 at the time. Edwin (Duke) Snider had homered in the top of the fifth with a man on to push the Brooklyn lead to 4–0 when the Yanks came to bat. The biggest blow of the Yank uprising was Johnny Mize’s three-run homer. It was Mize’s 2,000th hit in the majors, including world series and All-Star games. Duke Snider came through with a run-producing single in the seventh to tie the game at 5–5. The two teams battled through the eighth, ninth and tenth innings unable to score. In the 11th, Snider (who was the hero of the Brooklyn cause throughout the series) sent a double to right-center to give Brooklyn the deciding one-run edge. The losing pitcher was Johnny Sain. Back at Ebbets field, the New York team tied the series for the third time by edging Brooklyn, 3–2. Vic Raschi was the winner although he had to have assistance from Allie Reynolds in the eighth inning. In the seventh and final game, Ed Lopat was the starting pitcher for the Yankees while Joe Black was Brooklyn’s choice. The Yankees won, 4-2, and Black was charged with the loss. Allie Reynolds, who came into the game in the fourth inning for Lopat, was the winner. Vic Raschi was called in to help Reynolds and finally, Bob Kuzava hurled no-hit, no-run ball for two and two-thirds innings to save the game for Reynolds and give the Yankees their fourth straight world crown.
A total of 340,906 fans attended the seven games, and receipts totaled $I,622,753.01. Of the total, the players’ share was $500,-003.28. Each Yank full share amounted to $5,982.65, while the losing Dodgers’ full shares were each worth $4,200.64.

Two new members were elected to baseball’s Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, N.Y. Paul (Big Poison) Waner, who had starred for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and Harry Heilmann, an all-time great of the Detroit Tigers.


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