Saturday, January 2, 2010

PTWSW #32: The 1935 Detroit Tigers

Manager: Mickey Cochrane
Record: 93-58
Ballpark: Navin Field
Owner: Walter O. Briggs and Frank Navin
Coaches: Del Baker, Cy Perkins

Future Hall of Famers: Mickey Cochrane, Charlie Gehringer, Goose Goslin, Hank Greenberg

All-Stars: Tommy Bridges, Mickey Cochrane, Charlie Gehringer, Schoolboy Rowe

Team Leaders, Batting

Charlie Gehringer, .330
OBP: Mickey Cochrane, .452
SLG: Hank Greenberg, .628
OPS: Hank Greenberg, 1.039
2B: Hank Greenberg, 46
3B: Hank Greenberg, 16
HR: Hank Greenberg, 36 (AL leader)
RBI: Hank Greenberg, 170 (AL leader)
BB: Mickey Cochrane, 96
SB: Jo-Jo White, 19

Team Leaders, Pitching

Tommy Bridges, 21
SO: Tommy Bridges, 163 (AL leader)
ERA: Tommy Bridges, 3.51
IP: Schoolboy Rowe, 275.2
CG: Tommy Bridges, 23
SHO: Schoolboy Rowe, 6 (AL leader)
K/BB: Schoolboy Rowe, 2.06 (AL leader)
SV: Chief Hogsett, 5


Oldest Player:
Firpo Marberry (b. November 30, 1898)

Youngest Player: Hank Greenberg (b. January 1, 1911)

First to Leave Us: Clyde Hatter (d. October 16, 1937). Hatter's demise at the age of 29 was reported as a heart attack, but teammate Marv Owen claimed he actually drank himself to death.

Last Survivor: Elden Auker (d. August 4, 2006). The 27 men who played for Detroit in 1935 were a surprisingly long-lived bunch. After Hatter, none died for another 23 years (Schoolboy Rowe on January 8, 1961). Five of them made it to the 21st Century: Chief Hogsett, Ray Hayworth, Frank Reiber, Billy Rogell and Auker.

First in Majors: Goose Goslin (debut September 16, 1921)

Last in Majors: Schoolboy Rowe (final game September 13, 1949)

First to Play For the Franchise: Charlie Gehringer (September 22, 1924)

Last to Play For the Franchise: Hank Greenberg (September 29, 1946)

Pre-union Team: The 1930 Washington Senators had four: Alvin Crowder, Carl Fischer, Goose Goslin and Firpo Marberry.

Reunion Team: No team had more than two. If you're curious, they were the 1938 Senators, 1938-39 White Sox, 1940 Browns, 1942 Browns and 1944 Reds.


Hank Greenberg, AL MVP

Season Summary

The Tigers won primarily with offense. Their 6.05 runs per game average was over half a run better than the second-best Yankees. Their 109 OPS+ led the league, as did each of their team slash stats. Their run prevention wasn't the league's best, but it was pretty darn good. Their 110 ERA+ was good for third in the AL, their strikeout-to-walk ratio and runs allowed per game were second-best and their DER was also a third-bester.

The Bengals got off to a slow 2-9 start, and by June 25 they'd only climbed their way into the middle of the standings: fourth place with a 33-28 record. They caught fire after that, going 52-16 over their next 68 games. By the end of that stretch it was September 7 and the Tigers had a ten-game lead. From there on they coasted, finishing the season on an 8-14 run. Only a three-game lead remained when it was all over.

Their World Series opponent was the Cubs. Chicago won Game 1, but the Tigers stormed right back to win the next three. They did it despite losing Hank Greenberg, their best hitter, to a fractured wrist after Game 2. Following another Cub victory in Game 5, Detroit won Game 6 in dramatic fashion. The game was tied going into the bottom of the ninth. With two out and Mickey Cochrane on second, Goose Goslin singled off Larry French to drive in the winning run.

The franchise would be dealt a sad misfortune before the year was over. Barely a month after his Tigers finally brought a World Series title to Detroit, longtime owner Frank Navin died of a heart attack.


Baseball Reference
Baseball Almanac
Google News Archives

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