Larry Doby settled into the outfield in Cleveland Stadium and was called the best center fielder in the game by the Sporting News in 1950. Doby led the American League with 32 home runs and 126 RBI as the Indians won the pennant in 1954.
He was traded to Chicago after the 1955 season, and spent two years at Comiskey before coming back to Cleveland. The Indians traded him to Detroit in 1959 for Tito Francona. Doby was the first black player for the Tigers. Bill Veeck traded midseason for him to play for the White Sox that year as well.
Doby, the second black player in the majors, also became the second black manager. Doby was a coach for the Indians when he was bypassed for Frank Robinson, the first black manager, and went to Chicago, where he was reunited once again with Veeck. He became the Pale Hose manager in 1978 after Veeck fired Bob Lemon, and resigned after the 1979 season.
September 13, 1948
The Indians blew a 2-0 lead, allowing two runs in the eighth inning to tie the game and another in the ninth to lose a heart-breaking game, 3-2, to the St. Louis Browns in a pennant race where every game matters.
Yet, it all seemed secondary or trivial after the bottom of the second inning.
Indians starting pitcher Don Black collapsed during his first at bat and was helped from the field by his teammates after suffering an apparent brain hemorrhage. Black was Cleveland’s spot starter in the replay of Sunday afternoon’s 3-3 tie that was called due to darkness. During his at bat Black fouled a ball off from Browns’ starting pitcher Bill Kennedy, then staggered back a step or two before collapsing.
August 29, 1948
Cleveland squandered an early lead and a chance to make up ground in the division, as the Washington Senators took the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader by a 5-2 final.
The loss for the Indians, paired with splits of respective doubleheaders for both Boston and New York, left Cleveland two games in back of the Red Sox and a half-game behind the Yankees.
The Indians jumped on top in the second off of Washington’s Early Wynn.
August 27, 1948
Losers of two of three in Boston, the Indians left Beantown last night and headed for New York to start their next “biggest series of the season.”
The Tribe’s three-game series at Fenway Park was the last series the two teams will play this season. They have one game remaining against one another on September 22 in Cleveland. After winning just one game of the series the Indians have slipped a half game behind Boston for first place and now only lead the New York Yankees by a half game for second place.
August 22, 1948
Bob Feller’s bad summer continues.
The former Indians ace, once the most feared pitcher in the major leagues, got tagged for five runs, but only three earned, as the Cleveland defense committed three errors behind him and the Tribe dropped the first game of a doubleheader 8-1 to the White Sox. The loss drops Rapid Robert to 12-14.
In the Indians’ eight games previous, the opposition had scored a total of seven runs.
August 11, 1948
A four-run seventh inning is normally a good thing for a team’s offense, but it does little good when the team is already down 12-0. Three Indians pitchers were blasted around the ballpark in game two of Wednesday’s doubleheader at Sportsman’s Park, as the Browns walloped the Indians by a score of 12-4.
Indians starter Bob Muncrief (5-4, 4.04) was awful this evening, as were relievers Don Black and Russ Christopher. The trio gave the Indians no chance of winning and was only saved from complete embarrassment due to the pitching of Ed Klieman – the only Cleveland pitcher who seemed to be able to record an out.
The loss, coupled with Philadelphia’s 8-3 victory in Washington, puts the Indians in second place, one-half game behind the Athletics.
Bob Muncrief, who will become a member of the 1948 World Series winning Cleveland Indians team, is born in Madill, Oklahoma.
Muncrief had already logged nine seasons in the Major Leagues with the St. Louis Browns when he was traded …
July 21, 1948
The New York Yankees used four home runs from their lineup and three hits from Joe DiMaggio to take the first game of Wednesday’s doubleheader with the Indians at Yankee Stadium by a score of 7-3.
Bob Muncrief, who once looked to be solidifying himself in the Tribe’s rotation, allowed two homers before giving way to Sam Zoldak, who gave up two more. Eddie Lopat, who scattered six hits over nine innings to defeat the wig-wammers, again stymied Cleveland. Had Lopat had an answer for Lou Boudreau, he could have shut out the Tribe rather easily.
Cleveland did take an early lead before the Bronx Bombers took control. In the top of the first inning, Larry Doby was hit by a pitch and was able to trot home when Boudreau hit his ninth home run of the season and gave the Tribe a 2-0 lead before New York came to bat.
July 16, 1948
With an opportunity to even up his record on the season, Cleveland starter Bob Feller was battered for five runs and five hits and was pulled after just six batters, as the Philadelphia Athletics went on to beat the Indians by a 10-5 final on Friday.
July 6, 1948
There’s a long list of reasons for the Indians to be battered and embarrassed after falling 9-0 tonight to the Detroit Tigers in front of 41,655 beleaguered fans.
They could be embarrassed because their offense could muster just six hits, because they never got a base runner to third base or because they allowed a mammoth home run into the upper deck in left field to a pitcher.
Regardless of the reason to be embarrassed, the Tribe’s defeat drops them to 17-18 overall at home and is now their seventh straight loss under the Cleveland Stadium lights. It also leaves them in a virtual tie with the Philadelphia Athletics for the first place spot in the American League. Cleveland is just ten percentage points ahead of the Mackmen because they have played six fewer games.