Lajoie: One day in July: Douglass Smith’s debut with Red Sox

From Jeff Lajoie at the Greenfield Recorder on July 10, 2019, with mention of SABR member Michael Foster:

As Kevin Herlihy drove over the Millers Falls Bridge and cut right onto Newton Street around lunchtime on Wednesday, he couldn’t help but notice the sizable painting on the base of the wall to his left. The Greenfield resident’s eyes locked on the date listed at the bottom: July 10, 1912 — exactly 107 years to the day.

“I’m like, ‘Holy cow, it’s like a Field of Dreams moment,’” he recalled Wednesday night. “It was bizarre.”

Indeed, Wednesday marked 107 years since the Major League Baseball debut of Millers Falls’ Doug Smith. The 20-year-old Turners Falls High School alum pitched three innings for the Boston Red Sox in a 9-2 loss to the St. Louis Browns at Fenway Park on July 10, 1912. He allowed just one run in those three frames, closing out the game, yet Smith never stepped foot on a MLB field again.

Herlihy was unaware of that history when he drove past the mural that depicts the piece of Franklin County sport history on the footing of the Central Railroad bridge. A self-proclaimed Red Sox and baseball junkie, he was intrigued by the story which was depicted in artist Marco Correia’s 2017 mural.

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Originally published: July 12, 2019. Last Updated: July 12, 2019.