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  • Writer's pictureKirk Jenkins

Back in Philadelphia for Game 2 of the (Simulated) 1924 Negro League World Series

It’s October 4, 1924, and we’re back at the Baker Bowl in Philadelphia for (Simulated) Game 2 of the Negro League World Series, matching two of the best teams in Negro League history, the Kansas City Monarchs and Hilldale. Both in the real world and our simulation, Kansas City comes in with a 1 game to none lead. Today, we’ll see William Bell taking the mound for Kansas City, while Hilldale counters with Nip Winters. Remember I mentioned Bullet Rogan, complete-game winner for Kansas City last time, was one of the best hitters on the club? Today he’s starting in center and hitting third.

Once again, Newt Allen got things off to a quick start for the Monarchs, leading off the game with a triple hooked into the right field corner. Allen scored on George Sweatt’s ground ball.

There were no further baserunners until the Hilldale half of the third, when pitcher Nip Winters doubled to right-center. Bell managed to get Otto Briggs on a fly ball to right to end the threat. It looked for a moment like Hilldale was in for a big inning in the bottom of the fourth. Frank Warfield got things started with a base hit to right and Biz Mackey crushed one to dead center that looked like it was ticketed for a two-run homer. But Bullet Rogan raced back to the fence and managed a gorgeous leaping grab, his glove over the fence, dragging the ball back onto the field of play.

The Monarchs mounted a mild threat in the top of the fifth when Dobie Moore led things off with a single and Nip Winters lost Frank Duncan to a walk. But with two on and nobody out, Winters got New Joseph, pitcher William Bell and Newt Allen on a ground ball and two pop ups.

The Monarchs threatened again in the top of the sixth. George Sweatt led off with a base hit to right. After Bullet Rogan flew out to center, Heavy Johnson slammed a fly ball to Hilldale center fielder George Johnson which Johnson managed to misplay into a two-base error, leaving men on second and third. After Winters got Hurley McNair on strikes, Hilldale opted to put Dobie Moore on, loading the bases on an intentional walk. But manager Frank Duncan shut things down, popping up to shortstop Biz Mackey.

So after burying Hilldale last time, as the game came to the bottom of the eighth, it looked like the Monarchs were on their way to winning a 1-0 gem. With one out, Bell hung a slider to opposing pitcher Nip Winters, and Winters didn’t miss, crushing one over the right field fence.

The ninth passed quietly, and we headed into our first extra inning game of the series. In the top of the tenth, the Monarchs’ Newt Allen reached on an error by Biz Mackey. With two outs, Bullet Rogan singled him to second, but Hilldale got Heavy Johnson on strikes to end the inning.

The Monarchs broke through in the top of the eleventh. After Hurley McNair was out on a ground ball, Dobie Moore and Frank Duncan had back-to-back singles, with Moore advancing around to third. Duncan was caught trying to steal second for the second out, but Winters lost Newt Joseph to a walk. With that, Hilldale manager Frank Warfield brought in Script Lee to replace Winters. Lee walked pinch hitter John Donaldson to load the bases. Newt Allen followed that by slamming a drive into the left field gap. By the time left fielder Clint Thomas had come up with the ball, Allen was on third with a double and a one-base error, and all three runners had scored. Warfield had seen about enough of Script Lee and opted to bring in Wilbur Pritchett to pitch. Pritchett gave up a base hit to George Sweatt, scoring the fourth run of the inning, and another base hit to Heavy Johnson before closing the inning out with a ground ball from Heavy Johnson.

The Monarchs brought in Yellowhorse Morris in the bottom of the eleventh to try for the save. It didn’t start out well – Frank Warfield led off with a double to right-center. But Yellowhorse got Hall of Famers Biz Mackey and Louis Santop back-to-back. He walked Clint Thomas to put men on first and second, but he struck out Judy Johnson to end the game and hand the Monarchs a 2-0 lead in the series.

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