Year In Review : 1923 National League

O ff the field...

President Warren G. Harding suddenly fell ill on July 28 th while returning from a trip to Alaska and was rushed to a San Francisco hospital where he died of a heart attack on August 2 nd . Harding's undeviating Republicanism and vibrant speaking voice led him far in Ohio politics. He originally served in the state Senate and as Lieutenant Governor, but unsuccessfully ran for state Governor later. Harding's career soared after he delivered the nominating address for President Taft at the 1912 Republican Convention and he was eventually elected to the Senate in 1914. Many local supporters began to promote Harding for the 1920 Republican nomination and he went on to win the Presidential election by an unprecedented landslide of sixty percent of the popular vote.

The second Ku Klux Klan movement in U.S. history was initiated stirring widespread controversy and racial violence. Professing itself nonpolitical, the Klan nevertheless controlled politics in many communities and in 1922, 1924, and 1926 elected many state officials and a number of Congressmen. Texas, Oklahoma, Indiana, Oregon, and Maine were particularly under its influence. Its collapse thereafter was largely due to state laws that forbade the wearing masks in public, which eliminated the secret element, and apparently from the declining interest of its members.

I n the American League...

Yankee Stadium debuted when "The House That Ruth Built" opened its doors on April 18 th to an announced attendance of 74,217. "The Babe" himself provided the "house warming gift" with a three-run home run that beat Howard Ehmke and the Boston Red Sox 4-1.

On May 25 th , Detroit Tigers legend Ty Cobb scored his one-thousand seven-hundred forty-first run to pass another legend, Pittsburgh Pirate Honus Wagner. "The Georgia Peach" went on to hold ninety separate Major League records when he retired in 1928.

The Cleveland Indians set an American League record on July 7 th after scoring in every inning against the Boston Red Sox. In eight innings (the home team did not bat in the ninth), "The Tribe" ran up twenty-seven runs, including thirteen in the sixth, for an embarrassing 27-3 win.

I n the National League...

On April 7 th , the longest National League opener (to date) took place with the Brooklyn Dodgers and Philadelphia Phillies battling head-to-head for a grueling, fourteen innings and a 5-5 tie.

A riot broke out in Chicago on September 16 th after umpire Charlie Moran made an "out" call at second base on Sparky Adams. Commissioner Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis was in attendance and shook his cane at the angry mob as Moran and the other officials were pelted by hundreds of empty bottles. After holding up play for over fifteen minutes, the game resumed with the visiting New York Giants winning 10-6.

Dolf Luque of the Cincinnati Reds finished his season in style after posting an 11-1 finale over the St. Louis Cardinals. Following the game, Luque returned to Havana with a Major League leading win-loss record of 27-8 which is still the best single-season mark ever posted (to date) by a Latin American pitcher.

A round the league...

Pitching legend Christy Mathewson became the president of the Boston Braves franchise after purchasing the club with New York attorney Judge Emil Fuchs and Bostonian James McDonough for a reported sum of $300,000. However, Braves Field remained in the custody of former owner James Gaffney and eighty-five minority stockholders.

The St, Louis Cardinals announced plans for their players to wear numerals on their uniforms, and number them according to the team's batting line-up.

Two members of the infamous "Black Sox Scandal", in which the 1919 World Series was "fixed" in favor of the Cincinnati Reds, attempted to sue their former team, the Chicago White Sox. Swede Risberg and Happy Felsch unsuccessfully sought $400,000 in damages and $6,750 back salary for conspiracy and injury to reputation. Both men, along with all Chicago players involved in the incident, had been banned from baseball due to their undeniable link to gamblers.

No games were played on August 3 rd following the death of President Harding in San Francisco. The entire major league schedule was also canceled one week later on the day of his funeral.

"People ask me what I do in the winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring." - Rogers Hornsby
1923 National League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

Cincinnati

101

Batting Average

St. Louis

.384

Doubles

Cincinnati

41

Hits

New York

223

Home Runs

Philadelphia

41

On Base Percentage

St. Louis

.459

RBI

New York

125

Runs

New York

121

Slugging Average

St. Louis

.627

Stolen Bases

Pittsburgh

51

Total Bases

New York

311

Triples

Pittsburgh

19

Pittsburgh

1923 National League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Brooklyn

33

ERA

Cincinnati

1.93

Games

New York

45

New York

Saves

New York

5

Shutouts

Cincinnati

5

Strikeouts

Brooklyn

197

Winning Percentage

Cincinnati

.771

Wins

Cincinnati

27

1923 National League

Team Standings

New York Giants

95 58 .621 0

Cincinnati Reds

91 63 .591

Pittsburgh Pirates

87 67 .565

Chicago Cubs

83 71 .539 12½

St. Louis Cardinals

79 74 .516 16

Brooklyn Robins

76 78 .494 19½

Boston Braves

54 100 .351 41½

Philadelphia Phillies

50 104 .325 45½

1923 National League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Base on Balls

New York

487

Batting Average

New York

.295

Doubles

St. Louis

274

Hits

New York

1,610

Home Runs

Philadelphia

112

On Base Percentage

New York

.356

Runs

New York

854

Slugging Average

New York

.415

Stolen Bases

Chicago

181

Triples

Pittsburgh

111

1923 National League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Complete Games

Brooklyn

94

ERA

Cincinnati

3.22

Fewest Hits Allowed

Chicago

1,419

Fewest Home Runs Allowed

Cincinnati

28

Fewest Walks Allowed

Cincinnati

359

Saves

New York

18

Shutouts

Boston

13

Strikeouts

Brooklyn

548



On April 17, 1923, the St. Louis Cardinals wore a uniform number that corresponded to the player's position in the batting order. The practice ended due to costs and the team did not wear numbers on a regular basis until the 1932 Cincinnati Reds took the field.

On September 17, 1923, George Kelly of the New York Giants became the first player to hit three home runs in three consecutive at-bats.

On October 10, 1923, the first World Series game was played in Yankee Stadium; however, the National League New York Giants won 5-to-4.

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