Fenway Park was Boston’s new baseball palace and the 1912 World Series between the Red Sox and New York Giants would be one to remember—even an extra game. Now, a photo from that rare afternoon when the two clubs battled to a tie in front of over 30,000 fans has made its way to market.
The photo shows the first run of the second game of the World Series being scored and includes an action image of one of baseball’s all-time great pitchers, who threw 11 innings that day—all for naught.
RMY Auctions is offering the rare Central Press Association photo—with the original caption still pasted to the back—in its May Collectors Auction.
Taken from a vantage point atop the stands on the right field side, the 6 ½” x 8 ¼” photo was taken in the bottom of the first inning. It shows Larry Gardiner of the Red Sox hitting a ground ball to Larry Doyle, the Giants second baseman as Giants starter Christy Mathewson looks on from just in front of the pitcher’s mound. Steve Yerkes hustles home as Doyle prepares to throw the ball to first baseman Fred Merkle.
It was the start of a long afternoon. After the Giants grabbed a 6-5 lead in the top of the tenth inning thanks to Merkle’s triple, Tris Speaker belted a Mathewson pitch deep to center. Giants third baseman Buck Herzog made contact with Speaker in an attempt to prevent him from scoring on an inside the park home run. The relay throw to the plate was dropped by catcher Art Wilson—the Giants’ fifth error of the day—and Speaker scored to tie the game. On to the 11th they went, but by that time, the autumn sun was fading fast.
The two teams were still tied 6-6 after 11 innings and 2 hours and 36 minutes when the game was called because of the impending darkness. Instead of picking up where they’d left off the following day, the rule at the time was to simply call it a no-contest and add another game to the schedule, so the Red Sox and Giants actually played eight games with the Red Sox winning four games to three and one declared a tie.
The last game was played a week after the infamous tie, with the Red Sox winning 3-2 in 10 innings to take the series. In all, four of the seven games had been decided by one run.
The photo is one of several hundred in the auction, which runs through June 5 at RMYAuctions.com.