|World Series (4-2)
||Philadelphia Athletics over New York Giants|
The New York Giants returned to the top of the National League standings for the first time in six years in 1911, finishing 7 ½ games ahead of second-place Chicago with a record of 99-54. Stealing a modern record 347 bases, the Giants had one of baseball’s top offenses. Catcher Chief Meyers batted .332, while Josh Devore, Fred Snodgrass, and Fred Merkle all placed among the league leaders in steals, with 61, 51, and 49, respectively. New York’s top offensive player, though, was second baseman Larry Doyle, who hit 13 home runs, knocked in 77 runs, scored 102 others, batted .310, and led the league with 25 triples.
The Giants also had the National League's best pitching staff, which featured the formidable duo of Rube Marquard and Christy Mathewson. Marquard went 24-7 in his first full year in the rotation and topped all N.L. hurlers with 237 strikeouts. Meanwhile, Mathewson finished 26-13, with a league-leading 1.99 ERA, 307 innings pitched, and 29 complete games.
However, Mathewson and the Giants stumbled against the Philadelphia Athletics in the World Series. The A’s defeated New York in six games, with Mathewson losing his final two decisions after winning Game One. Philadelphia outscored New York by a combined margin of 27-13, with the A’s pitching staff holding the Giants’ lineup to a feeble .175 batting average.
The second-place Cubs might well have repeated as National League champions had star second baseman Johnny Evers not suffered a nervous breakdown in May. Nevertheless, Cubs outfielder Frank “Wildfire” Schulte won the first National League Chalmers Award for keeping his team in the pennant race for most of the year. In addition to establishing a new 20th-century record by hitting 21 home runs, Schulte led the league with 107 runs batted in, 308 total bases, and a .534 slugging percentage, while batting .300 and placing among the league leaders with 105 runs scored, 173 hits, and 21 triples.
The Pirates, who finished a distant third in the league, 14 ½ games off the pace, were led by Honus Wagner, who won his final batting title at age 37 with a mark of .334. Meanwhile, rookie sensation Grover Cleveland Alexander led Philadelphia to a fourth-place finish. The 24-year-old right-hander compiled a record of 28-13, to lead the league in victories. He also posted a 2.57 ERA, struck out 227 batters, and led all N.L. pitchers with 367 innings pitched, 31 complete games, and seven shutouts.
Other outstanding performers, notable events, and points of interest from around the league follow:
• The Polo Grounds was ravaged by a fire and subsequently had to be rebuilt.
• Boston finished the campaign with a home record of 19-54, the worst in the 20th century by a National League team.
• Helen Britton became the first woman to own a major league team when she purchased the St. Louis Cardinals.
• Three Finger Brown's 13 saves set a new relief record.
More From Around the Web
On September 4, 2006, in a Labor Day game at Fenway Park, Ca ...
On September 4, 1998, the New York Yankees reach the 100-win ...
On September 4, 1993, Jim Abbott of the New York Yankees thr ...
- 1911 World Series, Bob Bescher, Chief Meyers, Christy Mathewson, Cliff Curtis, Cy Young, Frank Schulte, Fred Merkle, Fred Snodgrass, Honus Wagner, Jimmy Walsh, Johnny Evers, Josh Devore, Larry Doyle, Mordecai Brown, New York Giants, Pete Alexander, Polo Grounds, Rube Marquard