A Day In Wrigley Field History: October 4, 1935

Courtesy Mike Bojanowski

Another World Series comes to the North Side... with the same old result, along with some umpiring theatrics.

The Cubs roared to the National League pennant with a 21-game winning streak (still the N.L. record) near the end of the 1935 season; the 100 wins marks the last time the team hit the century mark in victories.

After splitting the two games in Detroit, the Tigers and Cubs headed to Wrigley Field for Game 3 on Friday, October 4. Another overflow crowd of 45,532 jammed the grounds at Clark & Addison. Among other things reported by the Tribune was an exact pitch count of the Cubs' 6-5, 11-inning loss to the Tigers by Harvey Woodruff (a name I haven't seen in any other baseball reporting in my searches through the Tribune archive). Woodruff reported that Cubs pitchers combined for 153 pitches (97 by Bill Lee in 7⅓ innings, 28 in 1⅓ by Lon Warneke and 28 in the last two by Larry French). Detroit hurlers threw 139: 70 by Eldon Auker in six innings, 18 in one relief inning by Chief Hogsett and 51 in the final four innings by Schoolboy Rowe.

Really, those numbers wouldn't be so out of place in an 11-inning game in modern baseball; they also break down about the same as innings today (the major-league average today is about 16 pitches per inning).

The Cubs took a 3-1 lead into the eighth, only to fall behind on a four-run Tigers rally. They sent the game into extra innings with a two-run rally of their own in the last of the ninth, only to lose it thanks in part to an error by third baseman Stan Hack. What I found most interesting in the Tribune articles about the game was this from Edward Burns:

The Cubs care little for George Moriarty, American league umpire, who yesterday chased Manager Charlie Grimm, Capt. Woody English, and outfielder George Stainback out of the third game of the World Series. 

They hiss him on whatever claims he may have for gentlemanly and sportsmanlike conduct on the field. They think he is a bully, just as the White Sox claimed when Lew Fonseca gave him a Memorial day trimming at fisticuffs under the Cleveland stands. Fonseca was a harassed manager, subject not only to Moriarty's rulings but to the verbal embellishments which are said to characterize Moriarty's frequent run-ins with the players.

Commissioner Landis began an investigation into the controversy between Moriarty and the Cubs.

Long known in his own league as a "homing pigeon," an official who caters to the home crowd, Moriarty yesterday belied this reputation. He cursed and ranted at the Cubs in the presence of their home constituency, according to patrons in earshot. He lost his poise completely when he bounced Grimm at second base in the sixth inning and later in front of the dugout when he banished Capt. English in the eighth inning.

Moriarty, a former player and manager (it wasn't uncommon for players in that pre-umpire-school era to become umpires) had a reputation as a nice guy and good umpire, but with a temper. This incident resulted in a change in World Series umpiring:

For that stunt, Moriarty was fined $200; he had violated Kenesaw Mountain Landis' rule against ejecting players from World Series games without the commissioner's prior approval.

There's no such rule today, but modern umpires generally give modern players and managers a lot of leeway in postseason games. The idea is that the players should be allowed to decide the action without being ejected.

English (despite being team captain) and Stainback were both reserves on the 1935 team and neither had actually been in the game when ejected (nor did either play at all in the '35 Series). The language and back-and-forth between players and umpires in that era was a reflection of a different time, as was the fight noted in the Tribune article (according to the SABR article linked above, that fight actually had happened three years earlier).

The Tigers took a three games to one lead by winning Game 4; the Cubs came back with a Game 5 Wrigley Field win, which was the first time that any team trailing three games to one had come back to do that. But the Tigers finished off their World Series win, the first in three Fall Classic meetings with the Cubs, with a victory back in Detroit in Game 6.

Here are all the images from the 1935 World Series program. You'll note that the price was reduced to 15 cents, from the 25 cents it had been in 1932, perhaps because of the ongoing Depression.

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