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  • Writer's pictureKirk Jenkins

It’s Cy Young vs. Iron Joe McGinnity in Game 1 of the (Simulated) 1904 Series

We’re at New York’s Polo Grounds on an October afternoon for Game 1 of the (Simulated) 1904 World Series: the Boston Americans versus the New York Giants. The rules remain the same: all games are simulated with Strat-o-Matic® 2020’s computer game. The computer manages both teams.

Although I have noticed that my laptop seems to be allergic to relief pitchers. But I digress.

For Game 1, Giants’ manager John McGraw is sending Hall of Famer Iron Joe McGinnity to the hill. Boston manager Jimmy Collins counters with Hall of Famer Cy Young.

After a quick first inning, the Americans – that sounds so weird to say – broke through with their first run in the top of the second. Chick Stahl had a one-out walk. After Hobe Ferris lined out, Duke Farrell singled Stahl over to third. The run then scored in pretty much the most embarrassing possible way – with pitcher Cy Young at the plate, New York catcher Jack Warner (no, not that one – the other one) misplayed a low strike for a passed ball and the first run of the game.

The Giants answered in the bottom of the fourth in the most emphatic way possible, as first baseman Dan McGann hit a booming 400-foot-plus home run over the right-center field fence.

Threats were few and far between after the bottom of the fourth. In the bottom of the sixth, Art Devlin led off by hitting a looping fly which Boston left fielder Kip Selbach misplayed into a two-base error. But after that, it was pop out, ground out, strikeout, inning over. Cy Young led off Boston’s seventh with a base hit, but Kip Selbach, Candy LaChance and Freddy Parent followed: pop out, fly out, fly out. George Browne led off the New York seventh with a sharp base hit, but then Sam Mertes flew out and Billy Gilbert grounded into a 6-4-3 double play.

In the bottom of the eighth, Jack Warner led off the New York attack with a sharp base hit. After a ground ball from pitcher Joe McGinnity advanced Warner to second, Art Devlin doubled him in for the Giants’ second run. Boston catcher Duke Farrell was charged with an error when he dropped an easy foul popup by Bill Dahlen. Dahlen made the most of the opportunity, singling Devin in for the Giants’ third run. Dan McGann singled Dahlen around to third and Hall of Famer Roger Bresnahan plated another run for the Giants with a sacrifice fly. George Browne walked and Sam Mertes then scored the fourth run of the inning with a solid base hit.

So as the game moved to the top of the ninth, a pitcher’s duel had suddenly become a 5-1 Giants lead.

Duke Farrell led things off with a double in the center-right gap. After pinch hitter Lou Criger popped out, Kip Selbach walked and Candy LaChance was hit by a pitch, loading the bases. The Americans’ second run scored on a passed ball with Freddy Parent at the plate. Alas (for Boston fans), Parent then struck out, and Iron Joe ended the game by getting Buck Freeman on a lazy fly ball.

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