Turbow: Ted Williams and the 1941 All-Star Game

From SABR member Jason Turbow at The National Pastime Museum on June 12, 2017:

Ted Williams didn’t exactly come from nowhere in 1941. He had led the league in RBIs as a rookie two seasons earlier, and started the All-Star Game in 1940, but still he was still seen as little more than a “lean, nervous, 22-year-old,” at least according to one contemporary account.

Despite potential jitters and lack of girth, Williams went on to record one of the greatest offensive seasons in Major League history that year, augmenting a .406 batting average with a Major League–leading 37 homers and 147 bases on balls. If there was a moment when he truly exploded into the national consciousness, it came during that season’s All-Star Game, held on July 8 at Detroit’s Briggs Stadium. Surrounded in the American League’s starting lineup by four future Hall of Famers, and with another four on the bench—plus starting pitcher Bob Feller—Williams was buffeted by luminaries.

Still, it was the National League that took control of the game, with Pittsburgh’s Arky Vaughan connecting for two-run homers in the seventh and eighth innings—becoming the first player ever to go deep twice in the Midsummer Classic—to propel his squad to a 5–3 lead entering the ninth.

Read the full article here: https://www.thenationalpastimemuseum.com/article/ted-williams-and-1941-all-star-game

Originally published: June 12, 2017. Last Updated: June 12, 2017.