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Series Wrapup

Story

Despite winning 104 games, the Chicago Cubs failed to capture their fourth consecutive National League pennant in 1909.  Led by Honus Wagner, the Pittsburgh Pirates posted an extraordinary 110-42 record over the course of the regular season, to finish 6 ½ games ahead of the second-place Cubs.  In helping the Pirates score a league-leading 699 runs, Wagner topped the senior circuit in six different offensive categories, including batting average (.339) and runs batted in (100).  Meanwhile, teammate Fred Clarke led the league with 80 walks and finished second with 97 runs scored.  Pittsburgh infielder Tommy Leach led the N.L. with 126 runs scored.  

The Pirates also featured a much-improved pitching staff that included Howie Camnitz and Vic Willis.  In easily his finest season, Camnitz posted a 1.62 ERA and finished 25-6, to tie for the league lead with a winning percentage of .806.  Willis surpassed 20 victories for the fourth straight year for the Pirates, finishing the campaign with a record of 22-11 and an ERA of 2.24.      

Yet, the hero of Pittsburgh’s seven-game World Series triumph over the Detroit Tigers turned out to be 27-year-old rookie Babe Adams, who compiled a record of 12-3 and a 1.11 ERA in limited spot-starting duty during the season.  Adams won Games One, Five, and Seven to finish the Series with a record of 3-0 and a 1.33 ERA.  In the process, he held the great Ty Cobb to just one hit in 11 trips to the plate.  Cobb found himself being badly outplayed by Honus Wagner during the Fall Classic.  The Tiger star batted just .231, while Wagner posted a .333 batting average in his final World Series appearance.  

Although the Cubs failed to advance to the World Series for the first time in four years, their pitching staff remained the best in baseball.  Mordecai Brown finished 27-9, to top the senior circuit in victories.  He also compiled a 1.31 ERA and led the league with 342 innings pitched and
32 complete games.  Orvall Overall went 20-11 with a 1.42 ERA.  Ed Reulbach gave Chicago a third outstanding starter, winning 19 games and compiling an ERA of 1.78.  Only the magnificent campaign turned in by Pittsburgh deprived the Cubs of an opportunity to win their third straight world championship.

Still, the National League’s finest pitcher played for the third-place Giants, who finished 18 ½ games behind the Pirates with 92 victories.  Christy Mathewson posted a league-best 1.14 ERA that remains the fifth-lowest mark ever compiled.  He also finished 25-6, threw 275 innings, tossed eight shutouts, and completed 26 of his starts.

Other outstanding performers, notable events, and points of interest from around the league follow:

• Chicago’s 104 victories represent the most wins ever by a second-place team.

• Pittsburgh’s Forbes Field and Philadelphia’s Shibe Park became the first all-concrete-and-steel stadiums to open.

• Christy Mathewson’s and Howie Camnitz’s identical 25-6 records tied them for the National League lead with a winning percentage of .806.

Red Ames of the Giants pitched an Opening Day no-hitter for nine innings, before finally losing to Brooklyn 3-0 in 13 innings.

• Brooklyn catcher Bill Bergen posted the lowest batting average ever by an everyday player – a mark of .139 over 112 games.

• The Cubs defeated Boston a National League record 21 times during the season.

• The Phillies were rained out of games a record 10 straight days.

Jimmy Sheckard collected a National League record 46 sacrifice hits for the Cubs.

• The Cardinals committed a record 17 errors in a doubleheader on July 3.

• Cincinnati's Bob Bescher swiped 54 bases, to win his first of four straight National League stolen base crowns.

Batting

TM G AB R H RBI AVG 2B 3B HR SB CS TB OBP SLG OPSLG GIDP SF SH
BRO 1510 5056 442 1158 370 .176 176 59 16 141 1500 .274 .225 .532 173
BSN 1586 5017 428 1121 338 .210 125 43 14 135 1374 .303 .262 .573 182
CHN 1538 4999 632 1227 496 .216 203 60 20 187 0 1610 .323 .279 .633 0 0 246
CIN 1623 5088 606 1273 507 .212 159 72 22 280 1642 .363 .264 .685 209
NY1 1661 5208 622 1327 510 .200 173 68 26 234 0 1714 .318 .253 .601 0 0 149
PHI 1579 5034 514 1228 417 .165 185 53 12 185 1555 .307 .214 .590 236
PIT 1564 5128 701 1332 585 .199 218 92 25 185 0 1809 .297 .256 .574 0 0 217
SLN 1611 5108 583 1242 479 .192 148 56 15 161 0 1547 .325 .232 .580 0 0 121

Pitching

Team G W L IP SO BB BF H HR ERA ER R GC SH SV WP BK
BRO 185 55 98 1384 594 528 5594 1277 32 43.450 477 627 126 18 3 26 2
BSN 224 45 108 1371 414 543 5645 1329 23 50.670 487 682 98 13 6 46 8
CHN 212 104 49 1410 680 364 5554 1094 6 43.060 272 389 111 32 11 30 2
CIN 240 77 76 1406 477 510 5697 1233 5 63.060 394 599 91 10 8 33 1
NY1 224 92 61 1440 735 397 5702 1248 28 36.300 364 547 105 16 15 42 0
PHI 238 74 79 1392 612 472 5590 1190 23 28.610 377 519 89 17 6 34 0
PIT 236 110 42 1402 490 320 5438 1174 12 44.470 322 448 93 21 11 14 0
SLN 246 54 98 1379 435 483 5725 1368 22 80.800 523 728 84 4 4 52 1

Fielding

Team ID G TC PO A E Fld% InOuts SB CS CS% PB
BRO 1460 6337 4131 1924 282 .947 0 0 0 0 7
BSN 1502 6515 4099 2076 340 .915 0 0 0 0 22
CHN 1487 6425 4224 1957 244 .956 0 0 0 0 7
CIN 1550 6445 4201 1935 309 .898 0 0 0 0 21
NY1 1584 6679 4306 2066 307 .938 0 0 0 0 13
PHI 1511 6359 4140 1978 241 .920 0 0 0 0 21
PIT 1486 6355 4201 1927 227 .952 0 0 0 0 10
SLN 1523 6427 4118 1988 321 .910 0 0 0 0 9

West

Central

East

Awards

Silver Slugger

Gold Glove

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Tagged:
1909 World Series, Babe Adams, Bill Bergen, Bob Bescher, Christy Mathewson, Ed Reulbach, Forbes Field, Fred Clarke, Honus Wagner, Howie Camnitz, Jimmy Sheckard, Mordecai Brown, Orval Overall, Pittsburgh Pirates, Red Ames, Shibe Park, Tommy Leach, Ty Cobb, Vic Willis

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