Friday, January 22, 2010

PTWSW #40: The 1943 New York Yankees

Manager: Joe McCarthy
Record: 98-56
Ballpark: Yankee Stadium
Owner: Jacob Ruppert Estate
GM: Ed Barrow
Coaches: Earle Combs, Art Fletcher, Johnny Schulte

Future Hall of Famers: Bill Dickey, Joe Gordon

All-Stars: Tiny Bonham, Spud Chandler, Bill Dickey, Joe Gordon, Charlie Keller, Johnny Lindell

Team Leaders, Batting

Billy Johnson, .280
OBP: Charlie Keller, .396
SLG: Charlie Keller, .525
OPS: Charlie Keller, .922 (AL leader)
2B: Nick Etten, 35
3B: Johnny Lindell, 12 (AL leader)
HR: Charlie Keller, 31
RBI: Nick Etten, 107
BB: Charlie Keller, 106 (AL leader)
SB: Snuffy Stirnweiss, 11

Team Leaders, Pitching

Spud Chandler, 20 (AL leader)
SO: Spud Chandler, 134
ERA: Spud Chandler, 1.64 (AL leader)
IP: Spud Chandler, 253
CG: Spud Chandler, 20 (AL leader)
SHO: Spud Chandler, 5 (AL leader)
K/BB: Spud Chandler, 2.48 (AL leader)
SV: Johnny Murphy, 8


Oldest Player: Jim Turner (b. August 6, 1903)

Youngest Player: Tommy Byrne (b. December 31, 1919)

First to Leave Us: Tiny Bonham (d. September 15, 1949)

Last Survivor: Tommy Byrne (d. December 20, 2007)

First in Majors: Rollie Hemsley (debut April 19, 1928)

Last in Majors: Tommy Byrne (final game September 21, 1957). Byrne actually played his last game in the World Series that year.

First to Play For the Franchise: Bill Dickey (August 15, 1928)

Last to Play For the Franchise: Tommy Byrne (September 21, 1957)

Pre-union Team: The 1938-40 Indians had four: Oscar Grimes, Rollie Hemsley, Roy Weatherly and Bill Zuber.

Reunion Team: The 1950-51 Tigers had three: Hank Borowy, Charlie Keller and Aaron Robinson. Tiger manager Red Rolfe, a former Yankee, evidently wanted to give guys from his old organization a chance.


Spud Chandler, AL MVP

Season Summary

America was at war, and many of baseball's biggest stars were serving in the U.S. Armed Forces rather than playing ball. The Yankees lost Joe DiMaggio, Phil Rizzuto, Red Ruffing and Tommy Henrich to Uncle Sam, but they carried on to win a third straight AL pennant. The race was tight between the Senators and Yankees through early July. The Yankees then went on a 15-2 run and it was never in doubt after that. They won the pennant by 13.5 games.

The Bombers' home run attack was the AL's most potent as usual, as was their 108 team OPS+. They were just barely outscored on a per-game basis by the speedy Senators though, who stole 142 bases to the Yankees' 46. Their pitching staff, led by MVP Spud Chandler, allowed the fewest runs per game and showed remarkable control: a league-leading 1.34 K/BB ratio, the fewest walks per game, the fewest hit batsmen and only 20 wild pitches, third-best in the AL. Their DER was also tops.

The World Series was a rematch of the previous year: Yankees vs. Cardinals. Last year St. Louis had handled the Yankees in just five games; this time New York would return the favor. The only win the Cardinals could get was in Game 2. Chandler continued his season-long mastery with complete game victories in both the opener and the clincher. He allowed only one earned run between the two starts.


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