Wednesday, July 3, 2013

July 3, 1946, The Turning Point in '46

On July 3, 1946, the Cardinals exploded for 10 runs in the fourth inning en route to a 16-0 win over the Cincinnati Reds at Sportsman's Park. Enos Slaughter led the Cardinals charge as he went 3-5 with 6 rbi and Whitey Kurowski's provided the highlight of the big inning with a three run home run that is still orbiting the planet. The Cardinals came into this game intent on stopping a 4 game skid that had the fans in St. Louis questioning if they could put together a true run at the pennant. The win put the club 7 games back in the standings behind the league leading Dodgers and they knew they better win some ballgames if they were going to keep up with Dem Bums from Brooklyn, and win they did. By July 12th they found themselves just 4 1/2 games back and the Dodgers were heading to town for a four game set, by the time the series came to an end the Redbirds had their brooms out and were only a 1/2 game out in the standings. A few days later they took the lead but it was short lived as both teams had their sights set on a pennant. Down the stretch neither team held more than a 2 1/2 game lead over the other as they went back and forth throughout. The two clubs would be tied with a 95-68 record as as the season came to an end which led to a best of three palyoff to decide the winner of the National League. The Cardinals took care of business as they swept the Dodgers in two and punched themselves a ticket to the Fall Classic where they would beat the Boston Red Sox in 7 games. There are games you can point to in a championship season that you think that was a turning point for a team, I think that 16-0 beatdown of the Reds in '46 might just be one of those games for the Cardinals.

This is Whitey Kurowski, Enos Slaughter, Marty Marion, and Stan Musial posing after beating the Dodgers in in the championship game.

Check out the box score:

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