1925 Pirate Replay, April 23: Bucs Lose 10-9 Slugfest to Cubs

The Pirates and Cubs banged away at each other throughout their game at Forbes Field.  There were only six scoreless half-innings in the entire game, as the Pirates battled back from a four-run deficit to tie the game.  They couldn’t take control, though, and the Cubs won, 10-9, with a run in the top of the ninth.

Neither starter lasted long enough to qualify for a win and both were let down by their defenses.  The Pirates’ Ray Kremer came out after just two and two-thirds innings and the Cubs’ Guy Bush after four and two-thirds.  Kremer allowed five runs, three of them unearned, and Bush allowed six, two unearned.

Chicago scored in each of the first four innings.  They got one in the first on an infield hit, an error by first baseman Al Niehaus and a ground out.  Two more unearned runs followed in the second, both scoring on a two-out error on shortstop Glenn Wright.  Kremer finally left with two out in the third after a run-scoring single by his former teammate, Charlie Grimm.  Babe Adams relieved and allowed another RBI single, this one to Cubs’ shortstop Ike McAuley.

The Cubs’ fielders weren’t flawless, either.  The Pirates had taken a brief, two-run lead in the bottom of the first.  Clyde Barnhart and Max Carey led off with walks, and moved up on a sacrifice.  Both scored when Pie Traynor bounced back to the mound and catcher Gabby Hartnett couldn’t handle the throw home.  They got another one in the third, but could have had more.  Barnhart and Carey led off with singles, and Moore doubled to score Barnhart.  The Bucs didn’t get any more, though, partly because Carey got picked off third.

The third inning run brought the Pirates to within 5-3, but the Cubs added two more unearned runs off Adams in the top of the fifth.  Both scored when Kiki Cuyler muffed Barney Friberg’s long, two-out fly ball to right.  That made it 7-3.

The Pirates started a comeback in the bottom of the fifth.  Moore drove in Carey with a triple, then scored on a sacrifice fly by Traynor.  With two out, the Bucs got another run when Wright doubled and Cuyler singled, closing the gap to 7-6.

The Cubs got one of those runs back in the top of the sixth when Jigger Statz led off with a triple and scored on a fly ball.  They ran the score to 9-6 when Hack Miller belted a home run to center off Lou Koupal, who’d entered the game after manager Bill McKechnie sent up a hitter for Adams.

The Pirates came back again, though, off Cubs’ reliever Vic Keen.  In the bottom of the seventh, Wright tripled to drive in Moore, who’d walked.  Cuyler then singled to close the gap back to one, 9-8.  They tied the game in the eighth when Earl Smith, batting for Koupal, launched his first home run of the season.

McKechnie went with Don Songer in the top of the ninth, but he gave up a one-out triple to McAuley, who had three hits in the game.  Catcher Bob O’Farrell followed with an infield hit to short, putting the Cubs up, 10-9.

Against Sheriff Blake in the bottom of the ninth, the Pirates managed only a two-out single by Cuyler.  Niehaus grounded out to end the game.

Songer took the loss, his first decision in the big leagues.  The Pirates dropped to 3-6.  Cuyler had three hits.