1916 World Series
In the 1916 World Series, the Boston Red Sox beat the Brooklyn Robins (a.k.a. Dodgers) four games to one.
Casey Stengel shined on offense for the Robins in the 1916 Series but the Red Sox pitching core ultimately proved too much for the denizens of Flatbush. The Sox's Babe Ruth pitched thirteen shutout innings in Game 2, starting a consecutive scoreless innings streak that would reach 29 in 1918. As with the 1915 Series, the Red Sox played their home games at the larger Braves Field, and it paid off as they drew a then-record 42,620 people for the final game.
Brooklyn fielded some strong teams under their manager and namesake Wilbert Robinson in the late 1910s. The Robins, also interchangeably called the Dodgers, would win the pennant again in 1920, but the American League teams were generally stronger during that interval. It would be 39 years before the Dodgers would win their first World Series title in 1955. The series had the longest game in World Series History until Game 3 of the 2005 World Series.
Another World Series newcomer, the Brooklyn Robins (later known as the Dodgers) had paved their way to the 1916 Fall Classic with solid hitting by Zack Wheat and standout pitching from the arm of Jeff Pfeffer, a twenty-five game winner. They also boasted two World Series veteran acquisitions in Rube Marquard and Jack Coombs who had made several postseason appearances with the Giants and A's. The deck appeared stacked in their favor, but the returning World Champion Red Sox would have something to say about that. Brooklyn manager Wilbert Robinson felt that starting two lefthanders would give his team an upper hand, so he nominated veteran Marquard and another standout, Sherry Smith for Games 1 and 2 in Boston. Once again, the Red Sox turned to the cross-town Braves Field in favor of Fenway Park to handle to ever-increasing World Series crowds. The Robins' Marquard went up against the 1915 opener's loser, Ernie Shore in what first appeared to be a standoff. The Red Sox were up 2-1 through six innings with neither pitcher flinching. That was until both clubs started a scoring frenzy. First, the Red Sox knocked Marquard for three runs in the seventh (forcing the veteran to be pulled in favor of Pfeffer) and one more in the eighth. Brooklyn answered back with four runs of their own in the ninth, but Shore, who had pitched a complete game, cinched the rally and held on for the 6-5 win.
Sherry Smith and another young lefty nicknamed "The Babe" went at it for Game 2 in what has been dubbed as both a "double masterpiece" and a 'hitters nightmare". Through thirteen innings, both had allowed only six hits and one run each. In the bottom of the fourteenth, Dick Hoblitzell set the stage for a dramatic finish by drawing his fourth walk of the game. Duffy Lewis followed suite by sacrificing Hoblitzell into scoring position at second. With all his pieces in place, Red Sox manager Bill Carrigan prepared to checkmate his opponent by sending in Mike McNally as a pinch-runner and Del Gainor as a pinch-hitter. Gainor stepped up and delivered, driving in Hoblitzell and sealing Boston's 2-1 victory.
Robinson turned to another Series veteran for Game 3, but this time he chose a right-hander in Jack Coombs. In the first World Series game ever to be played at the newly constructed Ebbets Field, he combined with relief from Jeff Pfeffer, to pitch a 4-3 triumph that put his team back into play. Boston came back the very next day with a counter attack from Dutch Leonard who threw an eight hitter in a 6-2 reply. Larry Gardner backed him up by adding his second home run in two days with a three run blast.
Series veteran Ernie Shore returned in Game 5 for the Red Sox and shut the door on the Robins with a 4-1, Series deciding victory. The Beantown Bombers had joined the ranks of baseball's elite as back-to-back World Champions without ever playing a single postseason game in their own house. One of Brooklyn's few standouts, an outfielder named Casey Stengel (who batted a Series leading .364) would go on to become one of the most successful postseason managers in the history of baseball. Unfortunately for Brooklyn fans, it would be with the New York Yankees and four of his wins would be over the Dodgers.