Today in Tribe History: August 16, 1920
Cleveland shortstop Ray Chapman, 29, is beaned in the head by a Carl Mays pitch. A righthanded batter who crowds the plate, Chapman freezes and fails to get out of the way of the submarine delivery. He is carried from the field and dies the next day from a fractured skull. Mays, a surly, unpopular pitcher, is the target of fans’ and players’ outrage. Chapman, a Cleveland favorite since breaking in in 1912, had been married the previous year. In October his wife will receive a full World Series share, $3,986.34. The incident has no effect on Mays’s pitching. One week later he will blank Detroit, 10 – 0, and go on to win 26 and lose 11. Joe Sewell will be called up to take Chapman’s place, and for 14 years he will be the hardest man to strike out in the Major Leagues.