Boudreau Booed – Tribe Toppled in Game One of Double Dip; White Sox 6, Indians 4

May 16, 1948

Home runs by Allie Clark and Pat Seerey were not enough to make Cleveland victorious – or even keep them in the lineup, for that matter – as the Chicago White Sox ended their nine-game losing streak by defeating the Indians by a score of 6-4 in ten innings at the Stadium.

The White Sox were led by the clutch performance of Bob Kennedy and by the outstanding hitting of star third baseman “Luscious” Luke Appling. The Indians were guided to defeat by the questionable managing of player/manager Lou Boudreau, who was booed mightily for decisions made late in the ballgame.

The Indians sent star right-hander Bob Lemon to the mound in game one of the Sunday doubleheader to face Chicago’s Bill Wight. Wight, a left-hander, was acquired by Chicago from the New York Yankees this past offseason in the Eddie Lopat trade. Neither starting pitcher wound up factoring in the game’s final decision.

Both pitchers were excellent through the first half of the ballgame, taking a scoreless tie into the bottom of the fifth when Cleveland finally broke through. Ken Keltner worked a one-out walk off of Wight and Seerey followed by smacking a two-run home run over the fence for a 2-0 Indians lead.

The Tribe doubled their advantage in the sixth, when Clark crushed a solo homer off of Wright with one out in the frame. After a Boudreau popup made the second out of the inning, Eddie Robinson extended the fun with a double into left. Joe Gordon smoked a clutch single to score Robinson and make the score 4-0 in favor of the Cleveland squad. From there, the momentum swung over to the White Sox and Boudreau’s questionable decision making came into play.

Lemon, who was looking to equal staff ace Bob Feller’s 4-2 record on the season, pitched brilliantly for six innings, but allowed an RBI single to Cass Michaels in the seventh. Still holding a 4-1 lead, Lemon was then hit hard in the eighth.

First baseman Tony Lupien got the Sox rally started with a one-out double to center field and scored when Appling singled him home to cut the Tribe’s lead in half. The base knock was the second of Appling’s three-hit afternoon. Ralph Hodgin then really put Lemon in hot water as he scorched a triple up the alley that scored Appling and brought the Pale Hose back to within one run. Lemon was then pulled from the game and replaced by reliever Russ Christopher, who eventually allowed the Sox to tie the game with a two-out, RBI single to Dave Philley. In the blink of an eye, the Indians’ 4-0 lead had vanished and the pathetic White Sox had new life.

The Indians offense went quietly in the bottom of the eighth and both teams did the same in the ninth. The same cannot be said, however, for the Cleveland faithful, as the fans let Boudreau hear their boos when he pinch hit Hal Peck for Seerey with no outs and one on in the bottom of the ninth. While Seerey had been a hero earlier in the game with a home run, Peck tapped a weak popup to the pitcher to help deflate the Tribe rally.

The White Sox finished the scoring for the day in the tenth inning, when Christopher loaded the bases thanks to a couple of walks and another Appling single. It was with two outs that Kennedy got to be his team’s hero as he smoked a single into left field to score both Lupien and Appling for a 6-4 Chicago lead. Trailing heading into the bottom of the 10th, it seemed that Boudreau was not fazed by the Stadium’s boo-birds.

In the bottom half, the Indians manager made the Stadium crowd see déjà vu as he pinch hit Wally Judnich for Clark after Thurman Tucker had walked to lead off the inning. As if it were scripted, Judnich also popped out, this time in foul ground to the catcher, as boos rained down on Boudreau as he dug into the box. The Cleveland fans made him hear it even louder when Boudreau grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the ballgame.

In defeat, some bright spots for the Indians came from Robinson’s two hits as well as the home runs by Seerey and Clark. The other positive comes from the fact that the Indians have another game to play today, which means another chance to take a swing at baseball’s worst team.

In game two, the Indians will send rookie left-hander Bill Kennedy (0-0, 7.71) to make his first Major League start and just his third appearance overall. He will be opposed by former All-Star Orval Grove (1-2, 4.55) who is the only White Sox hurler to throw a complete game so far this season. The second game of the first doubleheader in Cleveland this season is scheduled to start shortly after 4 p.m.

Photo: (pictured: Bob Kennedy)

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