Pivotal World Series Plays
1938 - Harnett Leaves Dizzy in Too Long
1938 World Series - Game 2: New York Yankees @ Chicago Cubs
Cardinals great Dizzy Dean suffered a broken toe in the 1937 All-Star Game when Earl Averill hit a line drive off Diz's right foot. When he returned to St. Louis, Dean had his foot examined. Discovering a broken big toe, the doctor put a splint on it and told him to stay off it. After about a week, however, a rest­less Diz had the splint removed and resumed pitching with a very sore toe. To ease the pain, he unconsciously altered his smooth pitching motion and hurt his arm. His famous fast ball vanished, never to return. After winning 12 games before the All-Star break, Diz won only one afterward.
Dean's arm was still sore when he reported for spring training in 1938. So St. Louis traded him to the Chicago Cubs for two pitchers, Curt Davis and Clyde Shoun, outfielder Tuck Stainback, and $185,000. Sore-armed Dizzy labored valiently for the Cubs during the 1938 season. Pitching in only 13 games, he went 7-1 with a 1.81 ERA as Chicago won the pennant by two games over the Pittsburgh Pirates. As luck would have it, their opponent would be the same New York Yankees they had played in '32.
C Gabby Hartnett, who took over as manager from Charlie Grimm during the season, called on Diz to start Game Two. The Yankees had won the first game 3-1 as Red Ruffing outdueled Bill Lee. Dean's opponent was Lefty Gomez. So the game could be billed as "Dizzy vs. Goofy."

Dizzy Dean gets Tommy Henrich to pop out in the first inning.
28-year-old Diz pitched valiantly for the 42,108 at Wrigley Field. One writer characterized his effort like this: "Here was a new Dizzy Dean ... Gone was the overhand fireball he once threw for the St. Louis Cardinals. In its place was a sidearm slow ball that all but broke the Yankees' backs as they swung futilely." He gave up two cheap runs in the second when SS Billy Jurges and 3B Stan Hack ran together to turn Joe Gordon's grounder into a double that scored two runs. But he clearly tired as the game went on. In the seventh, the Yankees went down in order, but all three batters hit the ball hard. Joe DiMaggio hit a loud foul to left before grounding out. Lou Gehrig and Bill Dickey then sent long flies into the outfield.

Joe DiMaggio smashes a long foul off Dizzy.
The Cubs still led 3-2 going into the eighth. In today's baseball, Diz would be patted on the back and congratulated for giving the home team seven great innings. The setup man would have pitched the eighth and the closer, the ninth. However, no such strategy existed in 1938. Pitchers were expected to "finish what they start." So Diz gave up a two-run homer to SS Frank Crosetti – far from the Bronx Bombers' power leader (only nine HRs in 1938) – into the left field bleachers to give the visitors a 4-3 lead.
Amazingly (by today's standards), Diz returned to the mound for the ninth but left after giving up a two-run homer to Joe DiMaggio. The crowd gave him a standing ovation for holding the mighty Yankees to seven hits. However, the Cubs lost 6-3 on their way to being swept.