1925 Pirate Replay, September 10: Pirates Survive Late Rally to Extend Division Lead

The Pirates took a big lead in the opener of their five-game series in St. Louis, then had to survive a ninth-inning rally to pick up a 9-5 win.  With the Giants off, the Pirates’ lead in the NL edged back to eight games.

For most of the game, Vic Aldridge kept the Cards in check.  With the help of three double plays, he faced only the minimum 18 batters over the first six innings.  Aldridge didn’t allow a hit until Ray Blades led off the bottom of the seventh with a double.  Heinie Mueller followed with an RBI single and Aldridge walked the dangerous Rogers Hornsby and Jim Bottomley to load the bases with nobody out.  He escaped further damage by fanning Chick Hafey and getting Les Bell to ground into double play number four.

By that time, the Pirates had piled up a 9-0 lead.  Cards’ starter Allan Sothoron retired the Bucs’ first nine hitters, but Max Carey started the fourth by reaching on an error.  He later scored on a Clyde Barnhart double.

The Pirates took a big lead in the fifth.  With runners at the corners and two out, one run scored on an error by Cards’ catcher Bob O’Farrell.  Walks to Carey and Eddie Moore followed to load the bases; Moore back in the lineup for the first time in five days.  Sothoron hit Kiki Cuyler to force in one run, then Barnhart singled to drive in two more.  That finished Sothoron, but Pie Traynor greeted reliever Leo Dickerman with an RBI single.  Barnhart was thrown out at third on the play, but the Bucs led, 6-0.  All of the runs off the unfortunate Sothoron were unearned.

The lead stretched to 7-0 when Glenn Wright led off the sixth with his 18th home run of the year.  It became 9-0 in the seventh after Moore walked and Barnhart doubled him to third.  Traynor brought one run in with a sacrifice fly and Wright singled to drive in a second.  That gave Wright 111 RBIs on the year.  Barnhart has 106.

After St. Louis made it 9-1 in the seventh, Aldridge retired the side in order in the eighth.  The ninth didn’t go as well.  A single and two walks loaded the bases with nobody out.  Aldridge didn’t escape this time, as Bottomley smashed a grand slam, cutting the lead to 9-5.  After a ground out, Aldridge issued his seventh walk of the game.  Bill McKechnie had seen enough at that point and turned to Tom Sheehan.  He got a ground out and popup to end the game.

Aldridge allowed only four hits and his record improved to 13-6.  Barnhart had a single and two doubles to go with his three RBIs.