YEAR IN REVIEW : 1936 National League

Off the field...

Democratic President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was re-elected with a whopping 61% of the vote. His immense popularity around the country was attributed to his successful efforts in helping the American economy out of the depression with his New Deal programs. Later, he went on to provide strong leadership in the winning of World War II, and was the only president to be elected four times. At the turn of the millennium, Time Magazine selected him as a runner-up for Person of the Century.

"Dust Bowl" problems continued to plague the Midwest and U.S. prairie states. Initially caused by the over-planting in support of World War I, farmers were encouraged to grow more wheat by plowing and seeding areas in Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico, which were formerly used only for grazing. After years of adequate yields, livestock were returned to graze the areas, and their hooves pulverized the unprotected soil. Strong winds blew the soil into huge clouds, and in the succeeding years, from December to May, the dust storms recurred. As a result, miles and miles of crops and pasturelands were ruined and many farmers and their families experienced severe health problems.

In the American League...

New York Yankees second baseman Tony Lazzeri set several hitting records on May 24 th after hitting two grand slams, a third home run, and a triple for fifteen total bases in a 25-2 massacre over the Philadelphia Athletics. Lazzeri had appeared unstoppable after tallying seven home runs in four games and six in three games as well a Major League record eleven runs batted in a single game.

An up-and-coming outfielder named Joe DiMaggio tied several Major League records after hitting two home runs (for eight total bases) and two doubles (four long hits in a game) during a June 24 th outing between the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox.

During a July 18 th nightcap, the Chicago White Sox and Philadelphia Athletics combined to set an American League record for the most combined runs scored by two teams after posting a 21-14 final. White Sox outfielder Rip Radcliff tied an additional A.L. record with six hits (four singles and two doubles) in seven at bats.

In the National League...

Philadelphia Phillies catcher Earl Grace set an unwanted Major League record on April 26 th after granting bases to Brooklyn Dodgers shortstop Ben Geraghty twice on two separate interference calls (tipped bat).

Second baseman Stu Martin tied the major league mark of eleven assists in the first game during a June 6 th doubleheader between his St. Louis Cardinals and New York Giants.

On July 10 th , Chuck Klein of the Philadelphia Phillies hit four home runs (in five at bats) during a ten inning game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Forbes Field. At age thirty-six, Klein became the oldest player ever to hit four round trippers in a single game as well as first National League player in the twentieth century to do so.

Around the league...

After Baseball Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis took a voluntary pay-cut in 1933 (from $65,000 to $40,000) due to the Depression, Internal Revenue figures posted Branch Rickey as the highest paid man in baseball at $49,470. Rickey would later gain fame as the man who signed Jackie Robinson, breaking the silently upheld "color barrier" that had existed since the 1880s. By exploiting the Negro Leagues as a new source of talent, Rickey built a dynasty in Brooklyn that won the National League pennant seven times from 1947 through 1956.

After purchasing the fledgling Boston Braves, the team's owners asked a local newspaperman to choose a new nickname for the franchise based on suggestions made by the fans. After hundreds of entries, the moniker Boston "Bees" was selected. Unfortunately, it would never catch on and be changed back to the Braves after the 1940 season.

The baseball writers association voted for the first set of players to be named to the new Baseball Hall of Fame. The inaugural class included Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson, and Walter Johnson who each received the requisite 75% of ballots cast.

On April 29 th , the first professional baseball game in Japan was played as Nagoya defeated Daitokyo by a score of 8-5.

Baseball Almanac Top Quote

"He (Dizzy Dean) was supposed to be as fast as Walter Johnson and though he couldn't curve them and mix them up like the great Matty (Christy Mathewson), his assortment was better than most." - Norman Cousins in New York Times

1936 National League Player Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Pittsburgh
118
Pittsburgh
.373
St. Louis
64
St. Louis
223
New York
33
Pittsburgh
.453
St. Louis
138
Pittsburgh
122
New York
.488
St. Louis
23
St. Louis
367
Cincinnati
14

1936 National League Pitcher Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

St. Louis
28
New York
2.31
St. Louis
51
Cincinnati
St. Louis
11
Shutouts
Pittsburgh
4
Chicago
Chicago
Chicago
New York
Philadelphia
Chicago
Brooklyn
238
New York
.813
New York
26

1936 National League

Team Standings

New York Giants 92 62 .597 0
St. Louis Cardinals 87 67 .565 5
Chicago Cubs 87 67 .565 5
Pittsburgh Pirates 84 70 .545 8
Cincinnati Reds 74 80 .481 18
Boston Bees 71 83 .461 21
Brooklyn Dodgers 67 87 .435 25
Philadelphia Phillies 54 100 .351 38

1936 National League Team Review

Hitting Statistics League Leaderboard

Pittsburgh
517
Pittsburgh
.286
St. Louis
332
Pittsburgh
1,596
Philadelphia
103
Pittsburgh
.349
Pittsburgh
804
St. Louis
.410
St. Louis
69
Pittsburgh
80

1936 National League Team Review

Pitching Statistics League Leaderboard

Chicago
77
New York
3.46
Fewest Hits Allowed
Chicago
1,413
Fewest Home Runs Allowed
Cincinnati
51
Fewest Walks Allowed
Pittsburgh
379
St. Louis
24
Chicago
18
Brooklyn
651
baseball almanac flat baseball

baseball almanac fast facts

On April 14, 1936, Eddie Morgan appeared in his first Major League game as a pinch-hitter and simultaneously became the first player to hit a pinch-hit home run with the first pitch ever seen during a debut game.

On July 10, 1936 , Chuck Klein of the Philadelphia Phillies became the fourth Major League player to hit four home runs during the same game.

Did you know that Joe Medwick's league leading 64 doubles in 1936 is also the National League record for doubles hit during a single season?

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