Sunday, May 4, 2014

May 4, 1922: A Wild Ninth Inning Ends With A Cardinals Victory

     On May 4, 1922, in a game versus the Reds at Sportsman's Park, the Cardinals watched a 3-1 lead turn into a 7-3 deficit in the top of the ninth inning, as the club from Cincy plated six runs in the frame. The implosion was forgotten in the bottom half of the inning when the Birds scored five runs to win the game 8-7. The rally began with a one out bases loaded single off the bat of  Joe Schulte. Eddie Ainsmith picked up another single to load the bases again, and Jack Fournier drew back-to-back walks that pushed in the tying run. Rogers Hornsby followed them with a long drive to right that capped off the ninth inning heroics. The reported attendance was 4,000 people. I'm sure many of them began making their way home after watching the lead disappear in the ninth. Those who stayed witnessed an epic comeback that they would not soon forget.

     Hornsby won the Triple Crown in 1922 with a .401 average, 152 RBIs, and 42 home runs. In 1924 he led the league with a .424 average which has not been matched since. He followed it up with another with his second Triple Crown in 1925 with a .403 average, 143 RBIs, and 39 homers. The only other Cardinal to accomplish the feat was Ducky Medwick who did it in 1937. Stan The Man Musial almost joined Hornsby and Medwick , but fell one home run short of taking the Crown in his MVP season of 1948. Frankie Frisch was asked about Hornsby once and he responded with "He's the only guy who could hit .350 in the dark."

Stats of a legend:

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