1935 Baseball Season

Late in the 1935 baseball season, both defending pennant-winners were leading comfortably when the surprising Chicago Cubs put on a 21-game winning streak that propelled them into first place; they finished at 100-54, four games ahead of the Cardinals and 81/2 up on New York.

Joe Medwick
Joe "Ducky" Medwick
led the National League
in total bases (365) and
runs produced (235).

Chicago led the National League in runs scored and fewest runs allowed. Billy Herman topped the league in hits with 227, scored 113 runs, and batted .341 (tied for third-best in the league behind Pirates shortstop Arky Vaughan at .385 and St. Louis' Ducky Medwick at .353).

The infield corners were held down by 18-year-old Phil Cavarretta (a .275 average) and 25-year-old Stan Hack (a .311 average). Outfielder Augie Galan drew 87 walks, stole a league-best 22 bases, led in runs scored with 133, and batted .314 with 41 doubles. Catcher Gabby Hartnett, the National League's MVP, hit .344.

Chicago's deep, balanced pitching staff included Larry French and Bill Lee, who tied for fourth in ERA at 2.96, 20-game winner Lon Warneke, and Charlie Root. Lefty Roy Henshaw and righty Tex Carleton made six pitchers in double figures in wins.

The Dean brothers went a combined 47-24 with Dizzy leading all National League pitchers in wins, innings, complete games, and strikeouts. Cy Blanton and Bill Swift were one and two in ERA at 2.59 and 2.69 for also-ran Pittsburgh.

The career of baseball's greatest player, Babe Ruth, came to a close in 1935. Ruth was released by New York and moved to the Boston Braves, a team that finished with the worst record (38-115) since the Philadelphia A's went 36-117 in 1916. He retired 28 games into the season, batting .181 with six homers; in one final display of the old Ruthian form, the Babe hit career homers number 712, 713, and 714 in a game against Pittsburgh on May 25.

He retired with a .342 lifetime average, tenth on the all-time list. He led the league in runs eight times, home runs 12 times, RBI six times, and bases on balls 11 times. He had a career on-base average of .474 and a .690 slugging mark -- figures that would lead any league most years.

Detroit took the American League pennant with a 93-58 record, three games better than the Yankees at 89-60. MVP Hank Greenberg was the Tigers' big banger, hitting .328 with 121 runs, 46 doubles, 16 triples, and 36 home runs (tied for the league lead with Jimmie Foxx); he drove in 170 runs, 51 more than runner-up Lou Gehrig.

Charlie Gehringer was fifth in hitting at .330 and scored 123 runs, second only to Gehrig. Outfielder Pete Fox batted .321 and scored 116 runs.

As a team, Detroit scored 919 runs, 101 more than the second-place team. Tommy Bridges, Schoolboy Rowe, and Eldon Auker all recorded ERAs below 4.00 and, together with 36-year-old General Crowder, gave the Tigers four pitchers with between 16 and 21 wins.

In Boston, Lefty Grove made a comeback to finish 20-12 with the American League's lowest ERA, 2.70; teammate Wes Ferrell led the American League with 25 wins. Washington's Buddy Myer took the batting crown at .349, one point ahead of Cleveland's Joe Vosmik, who led the league in hits with 216, doubles with 47, and triples with 20.

The Tigers began the 1935 World Series down 1-0. When Greenberg left game two with a season-ending injury, things looked bleak. Bridges, Rowe, and Crowder won games two, three, and four, however; and, after losing to Warneke 3-1 in game five, Detroit clinched the 1935 World Series on Bridges's second win, 4-3.

In the top of the ninth of the final game, with the score tied three-all, Hack led off with a triple but stayed put as shortstop Bill Jurges, pitcher French, and Galan failed to drive him in. When the Tigers won the game in the bottom of the inning, Cubs skipper Charlie Grimm was widely second-guessed for having let the pitcher bat.

Check out the next page for some of the headlines from the 1935 baseball season.

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The 1935 baseball season marked the end of legendary Babe Ruth's career. Learn about this and other headlines from the year below.

Lefty Gomez, Yankees Fall Short

Had Lefty Gomez finished with a won-lost record of 15-12 rather than 12-15, the Yankees would have won the 1935 American League flag by one percentage point. As it was, the Yankees still conceivably could have won had they and the Tigers both made up all of their contests that were postponed and played a full 154-game schedule.

Dean Brothers Do It Again

Dizzy Dean and brother Paul won 47 games between them for the 1935 Cardinals, nearly equaling their sibling record of 49 victories set the previous year. However, they each lost to the Cubs on consecutive days in late September to scotch the last chance for the Cards to catch the red-hot Bruins.

The Babe Bows Out

Though Babe Ruth was 40 years of age in 1935 and woefully out of shape, he could still hit, especially when he had to think about nothing else. But baseball then required that half the game be played in the field, and there was simply no place Ruth could be stationed without hurting himself and the team. In his last game, he injured his knee and had to leave in the first inning.

Buddy Myer Wins 1935 American League Bat Title

Buddy Myer won the 1935 American League batting title (.349) by going 4-for-5 on the season's final day, while Cleveland's Joe Vosmik was protecting what seemed a safe lead by sitting out the first game of a doubleheader. Alarmed when he learned of Myer's outburst, Vosmik played the second game but went 1-for-4 and lost the crown by a point.

Wes Ferrell Wins 25, Hits .347

A lame arm mixed with a hot temper caused Wes Ferrell to be shipped to the Red Sox by the Indians. Ferrell came back to have his finest all-around season in 1935. He led American League pitchers in wins with 25, complete games with 31, and innings pitched with 322. Ferrell batted .347.

Find even more highlights from the 1935 baseball season in the next section. 

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Following are more headlines from the 1935 baseball season, including the Detroit Tigers' victory in the World Series.

Phil Cavarretta Racks Up Records

Phil Cavarretta set six season batting records for teenage players in 1935. He never played a day in the minors but probably should have. His lack of development reduced him to a bench-warmer by the late 1930s. During World War II, he became a regular again.

Lou Gehrig: Only 119 RBI

Although Lou Gehrig didn't win the Triple Crown in 1935, as he did in '34, he still had reason to smile. The Iron Horse led the league in runs (125), walks (132), and on-base percentage (.466). He also knocked in 119 runs, but amazingly, it was his lowest output between 1927 and 1937 (during that 11-year stretch, Gehrig averaged 153 RBI per year).

Lots of Light, Little Action

Only three runs were tallied in the first night game in major league history, played on May 25, 1935, in Crosley Field, as scores remained scarce in contests played under the lights throughout the 1930s.

Gabby Hartnett Shines at Plate

The most multitalented catcher of his era, Gabby Hartnett had more power than Mickey Cochrane and was clearly superior to Bill Dickey defensively. In 1935, Hartnett was third in the National League in batting average (.344) while leading all of the loop's backstops in assists and fielding average.

1935 Detroit Tigers Go All the Way

The 1935 World Series triumph rendered the Browns the only American League team that was still in search of its first championship. Hank Greenberg and Tommy Bridges were the lone members of the 1935 club still in Bengal livery when Detroit copped its second title in 1945.

Frank Navin Dies After 1935 World Series

Frank Navin became president of the Tigers in 1911, two years after Detroit had won three straight pennants, and was convinced that with Ty Cobb on the team there would be many more flags. Unluckily for Navin, the Tigers didn't win again until 1934, and his park (built in 1912) was seldom filled. Navin died in 1935, after seeing the ball club win its first World Series.

Pete Fox Tops Series Hitters

Pete Fox was known by some followers of the game as "Single X" -- not only to distinguish him from Jimmie Foxx ("Double XX") but also because he was primarily a singles hitter. In the 1935 World Series, Fox went the extra mile, spearheading all batters with a .385 average and ten hits.

Find highlights from the 1935 baseball season on the next page.

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During the 1935 baseball season, 40-year-old Babe Ruth retired just 28 games into the season. The "Babe" still holds major league records to this day. Find highlights from the 1935 baseball season below.
  • The Tigers repeat in the American League, and Chicago takes the National League flag.

  • Detroit wins its first World Championship in six games.

  • The Tigers' Pete Fox leads all Series batters with ten hits and a .385 BA.

    Lefty Gomez
    Lefty Gomez was the first
    pitcher to win two
    All-Star games.

  • Lefty Gomez becomes the first pitcher to win two All-Star Games.

  • Tommy Bridges wins two CG victories for Detroit in the 1935 World Series, including the finale.

  • Lon Warneke wins the Cubs' only two victories in 1935 World Series and gives up just one run.

  • Cubs catcher Gabby Hartnett is the National League MVP.

  • Hank Greenberg wins the American League MVP Award.

  • Boston pitcher Wes Ferrell rebounds from a sore arm to top the American League in wins with 25.

  • Ferrell leads the American League in CGs (31) and innings (322).

  • Ferrell ties the major league record for pitchers by banging out 52 hits.

  • Tommy Bridges leads the American League in Ks (163) and wins (21).

  • Lefty Grove, now with Boston, leads the American League in ERA (2.70).

  • Dizzy Dean again paces the National League in wins (28).

  • Dean leads the National League in CGs (29), Ks (182), and innings (324).

  • Arky Vaughan tops the National League at .385.

  • Vaughan tops the National League in OBP (.491), SA (.607), and walks (97).

  • Washington's Buddy Myer wins the American League bat crown by a single point over Cleveland's Joe Vosmik (.349-348).

  • Released by the Yankees, Babe Ruth signs a three-year contract with the Braves.

  • On May 25, Ruth hits three homers vs. Pittsburgh at Forbes Field, then retires a few days later.

  • Ruth retires with a .690 career SA and 2,056 walks -- still major league records.

  • Ruth retires with major league records in homers (714), RBI (2,209), OBP (.474), and extra-base hits (1,356) (all since broken).

  • On May 24, Reds beat Phils at Crosley Field in Major League Baseball's first night game.

  • Tigers owner Frank Navin dies shortly after seeing his club win its first World Series.

  • The Braves go 38-115, totaling the most losses ever by an National League team in a 154-game schedule.

  • The Braves have the worst road record in modern Major League Baseball history -- 13-65.

  • The Braves' Ben Cantwell, the National League win pct. leader two years earlier, goes 4-25.

  • Cantwell is the last pitcher in major league history to lose 25 games.

Find more highlights from the 1935 baseball season in our final section.

To learn more about baseball, see:



Following are more highlights from the 1935 baseball season, including the first home run at a night game by Cub Babe Herman.

  • Hank Greenberg's 170 RBI top the majors by 40 and the American League by 51.

  • The Cubs win 21 straight games, setting a record for most consecutive wins without a tie.

  • Vern Kennedy of the White Sox no-hits Cleveland on August 31.

  • The American League wins the All-Star Game 4-1.

  • William Wrigley of the Cubs is the first owner to allow all of his team's games to be broadcast.

  • On July 5, Al and Tony Cuccinello become the first brothers on opposing teams to homer in the same National League game.

  • On July 10, Cub Babe Herman hits the first homer in a night game.

  • The Tigers' $6,544.76 1935 World Series share is the highest prior to 1948.

  • Wally Berger of the cellar-dwelling Braves leads the National League in homers (34) and RBI (130).

  • Ducky Medwick leads the National League in total bases (365) and runs produced (235).

  • Chicago's Augie Galan tops the National League in runs (133) and steals (22).

  • Galan is the first player to play an entire 154-game season without grounding into a double play.

  • Lou Gehrig paces the American League in runs (125) and walks (132).

  • Jimmie Foxx leads the American League in SA (.636) and ties Hank Greenberg for the American League homer crown (36).

  • After selling most of their top talent, the A's finish last in 1935.

  • After the 1935 season, the A's sell Foxx and Johnny Marcum to the Red Sox for $150,000.

  • Joe Vosmik leads the American League in hits (216), doubles (47), and triples (20).

  • Hank Greenberg leads in total bases (389) and runs produced (255).

  • Cub Phil Cavarretta, age 19, compiles 82 RBI and plays in the 1935 World Series.

  • Len Koenecke of the Dodgers is killed by the pilot in a fight on a private plane.

  • On Sept. 29, Pirate Pep Young becomes the first non-pitcher since 1893 to whiff five times in a game.

  • Cleveland sends Monte Pearson and Steve Sundra to the Yankees for Johnny Allen.

  • Cardinals catcher Bill DeLancey is felled by TB.

  • Babe Herman tops the National League in doubles with 57, a record for National League second basemen.

  • Cincinnati's Ival Goodman tops the National League in triples with 18.

  • Bill Lee of the Cubs wins 20 games and tops the National League in win pct. (.769).

  • Pirates Cy Blanton (2.59) and Bill Swift (2.69) finish one-two in ERA.

  • Boston's Billy Werber wins his second straight steals crown (29).

  • Detroit leads the majors in both batting (.290) and fielding (.978).

  • The Cubs' middle infielders, Babe Herman and Billy Jurges, both lead the National League at their respective positions in all major fielding departments.
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