1903 Bill Dinneen Game 2 Boston 3 Pitts 0 Game Score 90
1905 Christy Mathewson Game 1 Giants 3 Boston 0 Game Score 85
1906 Ed Walsh Game 3 White Sox 3 Cubs 0 Game Score 94
1907 Mordecai Brown Game 5 Cubs 2 Detroit 0 Game Score 74
1908 Orval Overall Game 5 Cubs 2 Detroit 0 Game Score 87
1909 Babe Adams Game 7 Pitts 8 Detroit 0 Game Score 78
I was watching game 6 of the 1993 World Series. I thought about game 5 of the series which Curt Shilling pitched a shutout against the Blue Jays who were otherwise scoring about 8 runs a game in the series. I thought it was one of the most underrated World Series pitching performances in history.
Then I thought why don’t I do a series on the best World Series pitched games for each series. Then I could have an election for the best World Series pitched game of the decade. So I will pick the best pitched game of each World Series and you guys will pick the best pitched game of the decade.
If any of you question my pick for best pitched game of a particular World Series I will consider it, but If it is close I will be going with my choice. A little more of my thoughts below:
1903 Bill Dinneen Game 2 Boston 3 Pitts 0. Dinneen threw two 3-0 nothing shutouts in the series. He also threw one in game 8 the last game. Normally I like to pick the games at the end of the series more as I believe the pressure builds as the series goes on. However, I was a lot more impressed by Dinneen’s stats in game 2.
1905 Christy Mathewson Game 1 Giants 3 Boston 0. When picking this series, I wanted to pick one of Mathewson’s games. Mathewson had a game score of 86 in game 3, but had a walk. I went with this game because he didn’t walk anyone.
1906 Ed Walsh Game 3 White Sox 3 Cubs 0. Ed Walsh hadn’t really become the great player he would at this point of his career. However, the Cubs probably thought he was much too good already with this pitching performance.
1907 Mordecai Brown Game 5 Cubs 2 Detroit 0. It was the only shutout of the series. After the first game tie, Detroit score 1 run in three straight games before this game 5 shutout ended the series.
1908 Orval Overall Game 5 Cubs 2 Detroit 0. Detroit was shutout the last two games of the series after winning game 3. Brown had a shutout in game 4, but Overall pitched better in game 5.
1909 Babe Adams Game 7 Pitts 8 Detroit 0. Mullin pitched a great game for Detroit in game 4. I chose Adams game because it was game 7 and he pitched on two days rest. He also won three games in the series.
I asked my friends from Bill James Online Readers Post to vote for the best pitched game of the decade and Ed Walsh was the easy winner. I voted for him too.
In a way 1906 was Walsh’s coming out season, but he wasn’t all the way there. He was third on the team in innings pitched, but the top 3 were real close to each other. Walsh showed his potential leading the team in strikeouts and the league in shutouts with 10. However, he might have been a bit inconsistent as he was 7-13 in games he didn’t pitch a shutout. He also had the most walks per 9 innings pitched of the top 5 pitchers on the team. Doc White who pitched a lot less innings had a better ERA and a better won loss record at 18-6.
The White Sox just used their best four pitchers in the World Series. Frank Owen who led the team in innings pitched just relieved for six innings in game 2. However, looking at his regular season stats he was the least pitcher of the four. Walsh’s great game came with the series tied at one game apiece. Jack Pfiester only allowed 6 base runners in a complete game. That was 3 more than Walsh allowed, unfortunately for Pfiester all three scored in the sixth inning. The runs scored as George Rohe hit a three-run triple with two outs. Walsh struck out 12 batters which was unusual in those games.
Two days later, Walsh for some reason pitching ahead of game 2 pitcher Doc White in the rotation pitched game 5 with 1 day of rest. He was not nearly as effective giving up six runs in six innings. However, he left with the lead and Doc White pitched 3 scoreless innings to save the game, then pitched a complete game victory the next day to win the series in an upset for the White Sox.