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Series Wrapup

Story

The Chicago White Sox replaced two-time defending champion Boston at the top of the American League standings in 1917, finishing nine games ahead of the second-place Red Sox.  With both Shoeless Joe Jackson and former Athletics star Eddie Collins members of their everyday lineup, the White Sox became the league's most formidable team.  Jackson batted .301 and finished among the league leaders with 75 runs batted in, 91 runs scored, 17 triples, and a .429 slugging percentage.  Collins finished near the top of the league rankings with 91 runs scored, 53 stolen bases, 89 walks, and a .389 on-base percentage.  Jackson and Collins helped the White Sox score a league-leading 655 runs over the course of the regular season.

While the White Sox featured the junior circuit’s highest-scoring offense, they also allowed the second-fewest runs in the league.  Ed Cicotte served as the ace of the staff, leading all A.L. pitchers with 28 wins, a 1.53 ERA, and 346 innings pitched.  He also finished second in strikeouts (150), third in complete games (29), and fourth in shutouts (7).    

The White Sox subsequently faced the New York Giants in the World Series, defeating their National League counterparts in six games.  Pitcher Red Faber starred for Chicago, posting three of his team’s four victories.  Yet, the manner in which the Giants lost to Chicago aroused some suspicions as to the legitimacy of the outcome.  A key play in the final game involved New York third baseman Heinie Zimmerman chasing Eddie Collins across an unguarded home plate.  Immediately afterward, Zimmerman, who batted just .120 during the Series, denied throwing the game or the Series.  Within two years, though, Zimmerman and his corrupt teammate Hal Chase both found themselves suspended for life, not so much due to any one incident but to a series of questionable actions and associations.

Although Chicago was the American League’s most well-balanced team, Boston had arguably the junior circuit’s top pitching staff.  Right-hander Carl Mays won 22 games and finished second in the league with a 1.74 ERA.  Babe Ruth placed second among A.L. pitchers with 24 wins, compiled a 2.01 ERA, and led the league with 35 complete games.  Had it not been for Boston’s mediocre offense (they finished fourth in the league with 555 runs scored), they likely would have captured their third straight league championship.

Led by Ty Cobb, the Detroit Tigers finished a close second to the White Sox in scoring.  Cobb topped the circuit with a .383 batting average, 225 hits, 44 doubles, 24 triples, 55 stolen bases, 335 total bases, a .444 on-base percentage, and a .570 slugging percentage, while also placing second with 102 runs batted in and 107 runs scored.  Unfortunately for Cobb, the Tigers finished fourth in the league, 21 ½ games behind first-place Chicago.

Other notable events from around the league and players who distinguished themselves over the course of the season included:

• Cleveland's Ray Chapman accumulated a major league record 67 sacrifice hits.

• Three weeks before two members of the St. Louis Browns’ pitching staff tossed no-hitters against his team, White Sox hurler Ed Cicotte threw a no-hitter against the Browns on April 14.

George Mogridge of the Yankees threw a no-hitter against Boston on April 24.

• Ernie Koob of St. Louis tossed a no-hitter versus the White Sox on May 5.

• Just one day later, on May 6, Bob Groom of St. Louis threw another no-hitter against the White Sox.

• On June 23, Boston's Babe Ruth walked the first Washington Senators batter of the game.  After arguing the call, Ruth was ejected by the home plate umpire.  Ernie Shore relieved Ruth on the mound and, after the Washington base runner was thrown out attempting to steal second base, Shore retired the next 26 batters in order.

• Detroit’s Bobby Veach led the American League with 103 runs batted in.

• New York’s Wally Pipp hit nine home runs to win his second straight A.L. home run title.

• After winning at least 25 games, compiling an ERA below 2.00, and striking out more than 200 batters in each of the previous seven seasons, Walter Johnson “slipped” to 23 wins, an ERA of 2.21, and 188 strikeouts.  Yet, he still managed to lead the league in strikeouts for the seventh time in his career.  

• Ty Cobb batted safely in a league-high 35 consecutive games.

Batting

TM G AB R H RBI AVG 2B 3B HR SB CS TB OBP SLG OPSLG GIDP SF SH
BOS 1655 5048 556 1243 476 .209 198 64 14 105 1611 .348 .259 .628 310
CHA 1669 5057 657 1281 535 .169 152 81 18 219 1649 .384 .216 .639 235
CLE 1787 4994 584 1224 475 .175 218 64 13 210 0 1609 .301 .220 .547 0 0 255
DET 1682 5093 639 1317 535 .175 204 77 25 163 1750 .303 .233 .564 193
NYA 1650 5136 524 1226 445 .198 172 52 27 136 0 1583 .304 .242 .568 0 0 188
PHA 1652 5109 528 1296 457 .201 177 62 17 112 0 1648 .370 .251 .659 0 0 205
SLA 1795 5091 511 1250 425 .173 183 63 15 157 0 1604 .316 .214 .582 0 0 166
WS1 1703 5142 543 1238 462 .214 173 70 4 166 1563 .315 .267 .594 179

Pitching

Team G W L IP SO BB BF H HR ERA ER R GC SH SV WP BK
BOS 208 90 62 1421 509 413 5689 1197 12 22.540 347 453 115 15 7 29 1
CHA 268 100 54 1425 517 413 5701 1236 10 20.450 342 462 78 21 21 12 4
CLE 285 88 66 1412 451 438 5640 1270 17 41.880 396 542 73 19 22 20 2
DET 266 78 75 1396 516 504 5622 1209 12 23.500 397 577 78 20 15 18 1
NYA 248 71 82 1410 571 427 5568 1280 28 37.910 417 558 87 9 6 20 2
PHA 249 55 98 1367 516 562 5818 1310 23 56.600 496 688 80 8 8 37 2
SLA 298 57 97 1387 429 537 5761 1320 19 70.770 493 675 66 12 12 35 1
WS1 255 74 79 1413 637 537 5721 1217 12 65.770 432 567 84 20 10 42 3

Fielding

Team ID G TC PO A E Fld% InOuts SB CS CS% PB
BOS 1551 6559 4266 2110 183 .972 0 0 0 0 22
CHA 1578 6250 4253 1793 204 .942 0 0 0 0 10
CLE 1612 6656 4238 2176 242 .929 0 0 0 0 12
DET 1550 6413 4186 1993 234 .953 0 0 0 0 21
NYA 1539 6510 4231 2054 225 .941 0 0 0 0 15
PHA 1536 6432 4093 2088 251 .947 0 0 0 0 17
SLA 1604 6511 4131 2099 281 .921 0 0 0 0 20
WS1 1584 6386 4246 1889 251 .945 0 0 0 0 22

West

Central

East

Awards

Silver Slugger

Gold Glove

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Tagged:
1917 World Series, American League, Babe Ruth, Bob Groom, Bobby Veach, Carl Mays, Chicago White Sox, Eddie Cicotte, Eddie Collins, Ernie Koob, Ernie Shore, George Mogridge, Hal Chase, Heinie Zimmerman, Joe Jackson, New York Giants, Ray Chapman, Red Faber, Ty Cobb, Wally Pipp, Walter Johnson

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