Saturday, June 25, 2005


June 25th, 1934

White Sox Play at Yankees

This game represents a classic example of "Do what you're paid to do and leave the rest to the professionals." (That's good advice in life but also, as we shall see, in baseball.) The Yankees jumped all over the ChiSox, defeating them handily by a thirteen-two score to retake first place. Much of the offense in the eleven run victory was provided by Lou Gehrig, having an astounding season: .363/.465/.706, with forty-nine home runs and one hundred sixty-five RBIs. It was plainly Gehrig's team by then. Although Babe Ruth didn't have a bad season (.288/.448/.537) he would leave the Yankees after that year and it would be Gehrig's team until the ALS that would eventually kill him ended his career in 1939 and the team passed to DiMaggio. Gehrig was still in his prime on this day however, and proved it by hitting for the cycle (or, as the Times described it the next day, "ran the scale in hitting from single to homer"). In contrast, Yankee pitcher Johnny Broaca, in the midst of a middling rookie season, suffered at the plate tying a rather inglorious record by striking out five times in a row.

But, and here's where that part about doing what you're paid to do and leaving the rest to the pros comes in. For all of Gehrig's heroics at the plate, he didn't throw a single pitch that afternoon. And, for all of Broaca's struggles at the plate, he got to bat five times because he was pitching a fine game. Although he surrendered ten hits to the Pale Hosers, he limited them to just two runs and took the complete game victory. So, Gehrig hits (and boy could he hit) but wouldn't think of pitching and while Broaca was an embarrassment at the plate on the mound he delivered. Do what you're paid to do, and leave the rest to the professionals.

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