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Baseball celebrated one of its most magnificent years ever in 1941 with the rivalry between Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams heating up, Joltin’ Joe of course going on his magnificent 56 game hitting streak while the Splendid Splinter bravely playing in a meaningless doubleheader on the last day of the season in Philadelphia with his average teetering right at .400, going 6 for 8 to bring his final total to .406, the last man to date to eclipse the magical .400 level.  Brooklyn won its first National League pennant since 1920 and faced for the first time the cross-town rival Yankees in what soon became an annual event in October.  Everything was so peaceful and serene, that is until all hell broke lose on December 7th, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and forever changed how we would look at ourselves and the world in general.

For the Pirates, the team also celebrated this special year with a first division finish led by a DiMaggio of their own in Vince DiMaggio who led the club with 21 homers and an NL 4th best 100 RBI’s.  Shortstop Arky Vaughan, topped the team with a .316 average and dramatically hit 2 homers in the mid-summer classic at Detroit’s Briggs Stadium, only to be one upped by Williams who would hit the dramatic game three run winning shot with 2 out for a 7-5 American League victory.

Unfortunately for Vaughan he did not get along with the fiery manager Frankie Frisch, which led to Arky’s departure a year later.  As for Frisch, he had a single seemingly insignificant moment in 1941 that turned into one of the most revered pieces of American art in the history of this country.  On rainy Tuesday afternoon in Brooklyn on August 19th, Frisch was tossed from the second game of a doubleheader, when he walked onto the field with an umbrella to protest the game being played in such in climate weather.  It inspired Norman Rockwell to paint his classic portrait capturing the moment.

1941 also marked the departure of the other half of the legendary brother duo, the legendary Lloyd Waner who was dealt to the Braves on May 7th for pitcher Nick Strincevich as well as legendary reliever Mace Brown who was sold to the Dodgers in April.
The team itself got off to another poor start as they stood at 14-22 by the beginning of June, before getting things back together.  Although they slid a little offensively falling to third in the league in runs dropping from 809 to 690, they were able to reduce their team ERA from 4.36 in 1940 almost a full run down to 3.48. with Max Butcher, whom the Bucs got from the Phillies two years earlier for the legendary Gus Suhr, leading the way at 17-12 with a 3.05 ERA.  Pittsburgh also picked up Dutch Dietz from the Reds in August, who won 7 games, mostly in relief, down the stretch to finish the year 7-2-2.33, effectively replacing Brown.

Yes 1941 was truly special the whole way around, but with the advent of war ball 12 months later, the game certainly changed dramatically, as men traded in their flannels for the Green and camouflage of Uncle Sam.

Baseball celebrated one of its most magnificent years ever in 1941 with the rivalry between Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams heating up, Joltin’ Joe of course going on his magnificent 56 game hitting streak while the Splendid Splinter bravely playing in a meaningless doubleheader on the last day of the season in Philadelphia with his average teetering right at .400, going 6 for 8 to bring his final total to .406, the last man to date to eclipse the magical .400 level.  Brooklyn won its first National League pennant since 1920 and faced for the first time the cross-town rival Yankees in what soon became an annual event in October.  Everything was so peaceful and serene, that is until all hell broke lose on December 7th, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and forever changed how we would look at ourselves and the world in general.

For the Pirates, the team also celebrated this special year with a first division finish led by a DiMaggio of their own in Vince DiMaggio who led the club with 21 homers and an NL 4th best 100 RBI’s.  Shortstop Arky Vaughan, topped the team with a .316 average and dramatically hit 2 homers in the mid-summer classic at Detroit’s Briggs Stadium, only to be one upped by Williams who would hit the dramatic game three run winning shot with 2 out for a 7-5 American League victory.

Unfortunately for Vaughan he did not get along with the fiery manager Frankie Frisch, which led to Arky’s departure a year later.  As for Frisch, he had a single seemingly insignificant moment in 1941 that turned into one of the most revered pieces of American art in the history of this country.  On rainy Tuesday afternoon in Brooklyn on August 19th, Frisch was tossed from the second game of a doubleheader, when he walked onto the field with an umbrella to protest the game being played in such in climate weather.  It inspired Norman Rockwell to paint his classic portrait capturing the moment.

1941 also marked the departure of the other half of the legendary brother duo, the legendary Lloyd Waner who was dealt to the Braves on May 7th for pitcher Nick Strincevich as well as legendary reliever Mace Brown who was sold to the Dodgers in April.

The team itself got off to another poor start as they stood at 14-22 by the beginning of June, before getting things back together.  Although they slid a little offensively falling to third in the league in runs dropping from 809 to 690, they were able to reduce their team ERA from 4.36 in 1940 almost a full run down to 3.48. with Max Butcher, whom the Bucs got from the Phillies two years earlier for the legendary Gus Suhr, leading the way at 17-12 with a 3.05 ERA.  Pittsburgh also picked up Dutch Dietz from the Reds in August, who won 7 games, mostly in relief, down the stretch to finish the year 7-2-2.33, effectively replacing Brown.

Yes 1941 was truly special the whole way around, but with the advent of war ball 12 months later, the game certainly changed dramatically, as men traded in their flannels for the Green and camouflage of Uncle Sam.

By Pirates Encyclopedia
 

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Tagged:
Arky Vaughan, Dutch Dietz, Frankie Frisch, Gus Suhr, Joe DiMaggio, Lloyd Waner, Mace Brown, Nick Strincevich, Ted Williams

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