The 1918 World Series featured the Boston Red Sox, who defeated the Chicago Cubs four games to two. The Series victory for the Red Sox was their fifth in five tries, going back to 1903.
The 1918 Series was played under several metaphorical dark clouds. The Series was held early in September due to the World War I "Work or Fight" order that forced the premature end of the regular season on September 1, and remains the only World Series to be played entirely in September. The Series was marred by players threatening to strike due to low gate receipts.
There were also rumors of a "fix", but there was no solid evidence and, with the war dominating the news, nothing came of it. It would be another season before baseball's relationship with gambling would erupt in a major scandal. Pete Alexander of the Cubs did not play in the Series.
The Chicago home games in the series were played at Comiskey Park, which had a greater seating capacity than Weeghman Park, the prior home of the Federal League Chicago Whales that the Cubs were now using and which would be rechristened Wrigley Field in 1925. The Red Sox had played their home games in the 1915 and 1916 World Series in the more expansive Braves Field, but they returned to Fenway Park for the 1918 series.
Game 1 of the 1918 World Series marked the first time "The Star Spangled Banner" was performed at a major league game. During the seventh inning stretch, the band began playing the song due to the fact the country was involved in World War I. Though the song was not named the national anthem until 1931, this game marked the first time it was played in any venue. The winning pitcher of Game 1 was none other than Babe Ruth, who pitched a shutout.
1918 would be the last Red Sox World Series Championship until 2004. The drought of 86 years was often attributed to the Curse of the Bambino. The alleged curse came to be when the Red Sox traded the superbly talented but troublesome Babe Ruth (who was instrumental i...