The 1940 baseball season was filled with incredible highs and tragic lows. Opening Day 1940 was the only Opening Day no-hitter in American League history, the Cincinnati Reds won the 1940 World Series, and Willard Hershberger succumbed to pennant-race pressure by committing suicide.
Find the highlights from the 1940 baseball season below.
- Detroit Tigers temporarily break the Yankee dynasty and cop the American League flag.
- Cincinnati Reds score second straight National League flag.
- The Reds win their first untainted World Championship in seven games.
- Bucky Walters and Paul Derringer both collect two CG wins for the Reds in the 1940 World Series.
- Forty-year-old catcher Jimmy Wilson, playing for injured Ernie Lombardi, is unlikely 1940 World Series hero, hitting .353.
- Sub outfielder Jimmy Ripple hits .333 with six RBI for Reds in 1949 World Series.
- The Reds win the National League flag by 12 games, the largest margin in the National League since 1931.
- Frank McCormick is National League MVP -- the third-different Red in three years to win award.
- Hank Greenberg wins the 1940 American League MVP Award.
- Joe DiMaggio takes second-consecutive American League bat crown as he collects a .352 BA.
- Bob Feller pitches the only American League Opening Day no-hitter on April 16 vs. Chicago.
Brooklyn's Tex Carleton no-hits Cincinnati on April 30.
Johnny Mize was also
known as "The Big Cat."
- Johnny Mize tops the National League in RBI (137) and homers (43).
- Feller's 27 wins top majors.
- Tigers win pennant by edging Cleveland by 1 game and New York by 2 games.
- Indians nicknamed "The Cry Babies" when they go to club owner Alva Bradley and demand he fire manager Ossie Vitt.
- Alva Bradley retains Ossie Vitt as manager.
- On Sept. 27, Detroit no-name Floyd Giebell beats Cleveland's Feller 2-0 to clinch flag.
- Feller's 261 Ks are the most by any pitcher in major league since 1924.
- Greenberg tops the American League in homers (41) and RBI (150).
- After the season, Greenberg becomes first major leaguer to enlist in the armed services in preparation for World War II.
- Cub Stan Hack tops the National League in BA at .317, the lowest in National League history to this juncture by leader.
- The National League wins the All-Star Game by a score of 4-0 at St. Louis.
- The National League also beats the American League 2-1 in an impromptu All-Star Game on St. Patrick's Day for the benefit of Finnish Relief Fund.
To learn more about baseball, see:
- 1939 Baseball Season
- 1941 Baseball Season
- Baseball History
- How Baseball Works
- How the Baseball Hall of Fame Works
- How Minor League Baseball Teams Work
- Babe Ruth