The Pirates appeared to be coasting to a win over St. Louis at Forbes Field, but a six-run eight inning cost them in a 10-9 loss. Even one of baseball’s rarest plays couldn’t bail them out. The game was their first in four days and only their third in nine days. Their Tuesday game against the Cards was rained out and Wednesday’s game was postponed due to cold weather.
The Bucs jumped on Cards’ starter Allan Sothoron for four runs in the bottom of the third. A double by Eddie Moore, a walk and a single by Pie Traynor brought in one run. An error by third baseman Les Bell made it 2-0, then an Al Niehaus single and a groundout combined with another error put the Pirates up 4-0.
St. Louis quickly got three back off Emil Yde in the top of the fourth. With two out and runners at second and third, Moore booted a ground ball to let in two runs. A pinch hit single by Ray Blades and another single by Ralph Shinners brought in a third.
With Sothoron gone for the pinch hitter, the Cards sent out Pea Ridge Day for the bottom of the fourth. Day got his nickname because he grew up at the site of an important Civil War battle in Arkansas, but he put up only a brief fight in this game. Singles by Max Carey, Kiki Cuyler and Moore brought in a run and led the Cards to send out lefty Bill Sherdel. A sacrifice fly by Glenn Wright put the Pirates up, 6-3.
The Bucs extended their lead by three more against Sherdel in the fifth. With one on, Cuyler tripled, and Moore and Barnhart both doubled. That made it 9-3.
Yde hung on into the eighth, although he ultimately gave up 15 hits. Neither team was terribly efficient in this game, as each stranded a dozen runners. St. Louis got a fourth run in the sixth when Rogers Hornsby beat out a grounder to third with two out and the bases loaded, but Yde escaped further damage.
Things finally came apart in the eighth. The first three batters reached against Yde on a walk and two infield hits. Bill McKechnie turned to Babe Adams, but Adams failed to record an out. Hornsby singled in two runs, Jim Bottomley beat out an infield hit to load the bases back up, and Bell hit a three-run triple. That chased Adams with the score 9-9, but Johnny Morrison gave up yet another infield hit, to Chick Hafey, putting the Cards up, 10-9.
The Pirates had a chance in the bottom of the eighth. Al Niehaus hit a one-out single, but got thrown out trying to stretch it into a double. Earl Smith then followed with a single that went for naught.
In the top of the ninth, Wright turned a rarely seen feat. Vic Aldridge took over on the mound and started the inning by walking Jimmy Cooney and Hornsby. With the runners going, Jim Bottomley lined to Wright at short. Wright stepped on second to force Cooney and chased Hornsby back toward first, tagging him out for an unassisted triple play.
Wright’s play did no good, though, as the Cards’ fifth pitcher of the day, Flint Rhem, set the Pirates down in order in the bottom of the ninth.
Adams took the loss to drop to 1-2. Moore and Niehaus each had three of the Pirates’ 15 hits, with Moore getting two doubles. St. Louis had 20 hits, with Shinners getting four and Bell three. The Pirates are now 6-10.