October 16, 2012
With the first game of the World Series only minutes from beginning, Connie Mack just shocked players on both sides by sending out little used Howard Ehmke to warm up to pitch! The 35-year old Ehmke has been kicking around the majors since 1915, when he debuted in the old Federal League. He only pitched 11 times this season, and actually missed a late season road trip because Mack didn’t think he’d be useful. He’s pitched less than 13 innings in the past two months! What on earth could Mack be thinking? Will he use the submariner to confuse Cubs hitters, then bring in Lefty in the 2nd inning? Or has the old man lost it, and think his best chance for Game 1 victory is with a pitcher who’s started one game since August 7th? I can tell you one thing…Joe McCarthy has to be every bit as confused as we are. Just a few days ago, he said, “The Athletics have four pitchers who have earned the respect of their own league’s batsmen, and…they are Grove, Walberg, Earnshaw, and Quinn. If Connie Mack’s calculations take in any other pitchers than these four, save for relief duty, no one has heard about it.”
First pitch is at 2 p.m. Oh boy, this should be interesting! As former umpire and current sportswriter Bill Evans just turned and said to me, “Surely Mack is kidding. He wouldn’t dare tempt fate by using a lame-arm pitcher with a half-dozen able-bodied stars sitting on the bench.” *
*Quote from Connie Mack: The Turbulent and Triumphant Years, which I will be using quite heavily as a source throughout this project. An excellent book.