1915 After whiffing in his first 3 AB’s, Walter Johnson wins his own game with a deep hit to CF in the bottom of the 10th. Washington defeats Cleveland, 2-1. The Nats move above the .500 mark for good.
1931 The Nats are allergic to home plate as they tie another record of dubious distinction. Washington strands a record tying 15 men on base in a 6-0 home loss to the Tribe. This record will stand until 1994. The Indian’s Wes Ferrell is credited with the victory, even though he gives up 10 hits.
1942 The Sens mash 20 hits off 6 different St. Louis pitchers in an 11-10 slugfest victory at Sportsman’s Park. The Browns Vern Stephens nearly wins the tilt for St. Louis by himself by collecting 5 safeties, including a homer and a pair of doubles.
1946 Getting a measure of revenge after enduring a sweep in Cleveland yesterday, the Nats return the favor today, winning both ends, 2-1 and 8-4. Batting as a pinch hitter, Indians P Bob Lemon hits his first ML home run of Early Wynn in the second game. Lemon will hit 37 home runs in his career, second all time among pitchers, behind the 38 from former Indian and Senator P Wes Ferrell. Walt Masterton is the game one victor, while Wynn gets the decision in the nitecap.
1963 This is why it has been said that baseball was designed to break your heart. P Joel Horlen of Chicago goes from the precipice of making history to a loss with two swings of the bat. Horlen carries a 1-0 lead and no-hitter into the bottom of the 9th. Horlen retires Jim King on a ground ball for out number one. Chuck Hinton steps into the box and hits a seeing eye single up the middle to break Horlen’s no hit bid. With the no hitter gone, Borlen bears down and gets Bobo Osborne to ground out for the second out. One out away from sending the Senators home with their 67th defeat of the year, Horlen makes his only mistake of the game to Don Lock. Lock gives himself a belated birthday present by blasting a game winning, 2-run homer for the stunning 2-1, Senator victory.
1969 At last, the Senators are able to do what every other American League team has done so far this year: Win at Seattle’s Sick’s Stadium. With the contest knotted at 2-2 in the the top of the 8th, Ken McMullen and Bernie Allen homer back-to-back off Gene Brabender to put away the pesky Pilots, 4-2. Joe Coleman walks 5, but strikes out 8 in a gutty, complete game effort.
Today we have a trio of birthdays of players who all began playing in other organizations and ended their major league careers as “Single Season Senators”. As usual, in alphabetical order, the birthday boys are…
Walter Easu Beall B Jul. 29, 1899 D Jan. 28, 1959
Washington, DC native Walter Beall first played in the majors with the New York Yankees in 1924. Pitching in parts of the 1924 through 1927 seasons in New York, his most active year would be 1926 when he’d play in 20 games and finish the season with a 2-4 record.
He’d return to the majors in 1929 with the Washington Senators, appearing in 3 games, pitching 7 innings, departing with a 1-0 record and an ERA of 3.86 to mark the end of his major league career.
Samuel Morrison Dungan B Jul. 29, 1866 D Mar. 16, 1939
Born just 1 year after the end of the Civil War, Sam Dungan would first play in what we now know as the National League in 1892 with the Chicago Colts. Playing in Chicago in 1892, 1893 and a portion of 1894, he’d be traded to the Louisville Colonels where he’d finish the 1894 season.
Dungan wouldn’t play again in the majors until 1900 when he played in 6 games for the Chicago Orphans.
In 1901, the inaugural season of the rival American League, Dungan would play for the Washington Senators. Primarily an outfielder, but also filling in at 1st base, Dungan would play in 138 games and hit .320 in his final season.
Donald Ralph Wert B Jul. 29, 1938 Still Living
Don Wert was originally signed by the Detroit Tigers in 1958. Primarily a 3rd baseman, Wert would appear in a Tigers uniform from 1964 through 1970. He’d be named to the 1968 All Star team and play in 6 games of the 1968 World Series that saw the Tigers defeat the St. Louis Cardinals.
Wert was a part of the infamous trade, made after the 1970 season, that brought him along with Elliott Maddox, Denny McLain and Norm McRae to the Senators in exchange for Ed Brinkman, Joe Coleman, Jim Hannan and Aurelio Rodriguez.
Beset with back problems, Wert was placed on the disabled list due to a back strain on March 30th, and would not be activated until April 20th. Wert would appear in only 20 games for the Senators and go 2 for 40 at bat. Assigned to AAA Denver on June 15th, Wert refused the assignment and was released by Washington on June 18th of 1971. He’d never appear in another major league game.