The Indians suddenly found themselves in the market for a manager after the 1941 season.
Although Cy Slapnicka was celebrated as a scout, unearthing pitching talent like Mel Harder, Herb Score, Bob Lemon, and, most famously, Bob Feller, he had a rough go as the team’s general manager. After missing out on the pennant in 1940, the Indians ended up four games below .500 in a tie for fourth place – 26 games behind the pennant-winning Yankees. Slapnicka, who had had a heart attack in 1938, wanted to return to scouting, which he said was his first love. After one year as manager, Roger Peckinpaugh was promoted to the front office, but that opened a vacancy in the Indians’ dugout.
And as it turned out, the new manager was found in the Tribe dugout as well.
In front of a reported crowd of 500 at Griffith Stadium, the Cleveland Indians pull off a triple play in the fifth inning. It does not help their final score, however, as despite rallying to tie the game in the ninth, they fall 10-9 to the Washington Senators.
The Cleveland Indians will honor another one of their legends of the past on Saturday, when the club unveils a statue of Lou Boudreau, its fifth at Progressive Field and its second to debut this season.
The statue of Boudreau will take up residence alongside two of his former teammates, Bob Feller and Larry Doby, outside of the Gate C entrance to the ballpark. The statues of Jim Thome and this year’s other addition, Frank Robinson, are on display inside the park.
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Countdown to Opening Day – 5 days
Number five on our countdown is one of the handful of players honored in Indians history with a retired number. He was a man who held two very distinct titles during his tenure in Cleveland and several more nicknames for good measure. Whether you called him “Old Shufflefoot”, “Handsome Lou”, “Boy Wonder”, “The Good Kid”, or skipper, Lou Boudreau was one thing in the end – a Hall of Famer.
The Indians will honor Boudreau on August 5th of this season with a statue outside of Progressive Field, where he will be immortalized alongside former teammates Bob Feller and Larry Doby, legendary slugger Jim Thome, and fellow former player-manager Frank Robinson, who will be recognized on May 27.