69 years ago, rookie Boo Ferriss won his 8th
Sixty nine years ago, one year after D Day, the Boston Red Sox beat the Philadelphia Athletics 5-2 at Fenway Park. For rookie Boo Ferriss, it was his eighth straight victory in eight starts to begin his Major League career. It tied an American League record.
Ferriss went the distance and scattered 14 hits, which brought a laugh from the 92-year-old baseball legend.
“Fourteen hits! My gosh, I must have been lucky,” Ferriss said this morning. “I must have gotten some double plays at the right time or something.”
He didn’t need much luck. During that eight-game winning streak, he threw four shutouts. And, he beat every other team in the American League.
April 29: Beat Philadelphia 2-0.
May 6: Beat New York 5-0.
May 13: Beat Detroit 8-2.
May 18: Blanked the White Sox 2-0.
May 23: Beat the St. Louis Browns 4-1.
May 27: Shutout the White Sox on a one-hitter, 7-0. (He had allowed only three runs in his first 54 innings.)
May 31: Defeated Cleveland 6-1.
June 6: Beat Philadelphia again, 5-2.
Ferriss says he has little recollection of the game 69 years ago today.
“You give up 14 hits, you try to forget,” he said.
Here’s what young folks who follow baseball today won’t believe: Three days before on June 3, he came on to pitch a scoreless ninth inning and save a 4-3 victory over Detroit.
Says Ferriss, “I had forgotten that.”
Ferriss also hit safely in his first four games and did not give up a run until his 23rd inning as a Big Leaguer. The term “rookie sensation” could have been invented for him.
Ferriss, however, remembers his ninth start much better than the eighth one. That’s when his streak ended at Yankee Stadium despite an outstanding performance by the rookie from Shaw.
It rained steady and hard on June 10, 1945, at Yankee Stadium, but the Yankees weren’t about to call a rainout with such a big crowd on hand to watch the Red Sox rookie pitching star
Again, Ferriss went the distance. This time, he was a 3-2 loser.
“What I remember most is I had a chance to drive in the winning runs late in the game and I hit a long drive to left-centerfield,” Ferriss said. “The center fielder (not Joe DiMaggio, who was at war) made a diving catch to save the game for them.”
Ferriss finished that season with a 21-10 record on a seventh place team. The Red Sox were 11 games over .500 when he pitched, 23 games under .500 when he did not.