The 1945 World Series was, until this year, the last appearance in the Fall Classic for the Chicago Cubs.
It also pitted managers against each other that represented the Indians’ past – and possibly its future.
The Tigers manager was Steve O’Neill, who was originally signed by the Athletics but played the bulk of his career for the Indians. He was a part of the 1920 championship team, and ended his career with stints in Boston, the Bronx, and St. Louis.
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.
So Tim Tebow’s decided to give baseball a shot.
Tebow, who won a national title at the University of Florida but has had a limited career in the NFL, wouldn’t be the first Heisman Trophy winner to go pro in a sport other than (or addition to) football. Elyria’s own Vic Janowicz played briefly for the Pirates, Charlie Ward played in the NBA, and Bo Jackson memorably tried to play in the NFL and Major League Baseball at the same time.
The Indians’ Twitter account joked about Tebow being signed by the Indians (they made a similar statement when Kobe Bryant announced his retirement from the NBA), but the Tribe was one of 20 teams that scouted Tebow at a private workout Tuesday. I have to believe it’s unlikely that the Indians will take a flyer on him, but it’s worth noting that a Tribe Hall of Famer had a brief pro career in a sport other than baseball.
The Midsummer Classic is upon us and the first place Cleveland Indians have three representatives in the annual Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
This season, Francisco Lindor, Danny Salazar, and Corey Kluber represent the Tribe on the American League squad. The two Tribe players who will take the field (Salazar is out with a sore elbow) may be highly motivated to excel in the exhibition game due to the Indians current spot at the top of the American League Central Division standings.
The winner Tuesday night will claim home field advantage for the World Series, a final destination far more in the sights of the Indians this season than in recent memory.
This is the second of three installments of “After the Cleveland Indians’ 1948 Season”, the final chapter of the 1948 season review. See Part 1 here.
Bob Lemon had the first of seven 20-win seasons for the Indians in 1948. He became a mainstay of the pitching staff through the 1950s. His 1950 season was one for the ages, going 23-11 and leading the league in wins, innings (288), starts (37), complete games (22) and strikeouts (170). He won 23 games again in 1954 as the Indians rolled to the pennant. He retired in 1958 with a career record of 207-128, and had a successful career as a manager. He managed the Royals, was hired by Bill Veeck to manage the White Sox, and was named AL Manager of the Year in 1977.
After he was fired by Veeck in 1978, he became the Yankees manager, hired by George Steinbrenner and reunited with Al Rosen. The Yankees won the World Series that year and Lemon was named manager of the year again. But his son’s death in a car accident cast a pall on the 1979 season for him, and he was fired 25 games into the season. Lemon came back to manage the Yankees in 1981, as they won the pennant. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1976, and his number 21 was retired by the Indians in 1998. He died in 2000.