Pivotal World Series Moments
Yankees Explode, Nehf Implodes in 8th
1923 World Series Game 6: New York Yankees @ New York Giants
The Yankees, determined to thwart the Giants' attempt to win three World Series in a row from them, won Games 4 and 5 to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven World Series.
Giants manager John McGraw started southpaw Art Nehf, pitching on just two days rest. Nehf gave up a homer to Babe Ruth in the first inning before hurling six scoreless innings "with terrific speed and a side-breaking curve," allowing only one more hit. Mean­while, the Giants pecked away at Yankee starter Herb Pennock, scoring single runs in the first, fourth, fifth, and sixth innings.

L-R: Art Nehf, Herb Pennock, Wally Schang, Everett Scott
Just when it looked like the Series was headed to Game 7, the Yankee bats came alive in the eighth. The inning started innocuously with 3B Aaron Ward hitting "a feeble fly" to 1B George Kelly. Then C Wally Schang reached base on a fluke play. Schang tried to escape an errant pitch coming at his ear. But the ball hit the bat and looped over third base for a single.
SS Everett Scott smashed a single past Kelly, sending Schang to third. Then Nehf, "his face literally as white as a sheet," walked Fred Hofmann, pinch-hitting for Pennock, on four straight pitches. When P Bullet Joe Bush, pinch-hitting for CF Whitey Witt, also walked to force in a run, McGraw brought in righthander Rosy Ryan, who led the National League with 45 appearances, compiling a 16-5 record. Nehf left the mound "with his head down, his shoulders bent."

L-R: Fred Hofmann, Rosy Ryan, Bob Meusel
Trying to salvage what he could from the wreckage, Ryan started by walking 3B Joe Dugan on four wild ones to force in another run to bring the Yankees within one, 4-3.
That brought up Ruth, who had walked and struckout since his homer in the first. With the Yankee fans on their feet cheering for a homer, a triple, or just a single, Babe struck out swinging on a curve down around his ankles.
With a chance to get out of the inning without further damage, Ryan threw a curve that LF Bob Meusel took for a strike. Meusel drove the next pitch on the ground slightly to the right of Ryan. Instead of making a stab at the ball to at least slow it down, Ryan turned away, and the ball went into centerfield. The runner on third, Hinkey Haines running for Hofmann, scored easily. CF Bill Cunningham fielded the ball and threw to third to try to get Ernie Johnson, running for Bush. The throw went straight toward 3B Heinie Groh but took a big hop. Heinie jumped for it, but the ball rolled to the grandstand. Johnson scored, and Dugan also crossed the plate. Three runs on one pitch!
Wally Pipp grounded out to end the five-run inning. Yankees 6 Giants 4

L-R: Bill Cunningham, Heinie Groh, Wally Pipp, Sad Sam Jones
Sad Sam Jones took the hill for the Yankees and shut down the Giants in the eighth and ninth with just one harmless single to end the Series.
The Giants had won three games in the 1922 World Series against the Yankees with eighth-inning rallies. Now the Yankees turned the tables on them to lock up the '23 championship.
"Yanks Win Title; 6-4 Victory Ends $1,063,815 Series," New York Times, 10/16/1923, p. 1
Babe: The Legend Comes to Life, Robert W. Creamer (1974)