Slaughter's Mad Dash

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This article is about the event in the 1946 World Series. For the Canadian television game show, see The Mad Dash. For the Xbox launch title, see Mad Dash Racing.

The Mad Dash, or Slaughter's Mad Dash, refers to an event in the eighth inning of the seventh game of the 1946 World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Boston Red Sox.

Background[edit]

The game was played in Sportsman's Park in St. Louis, Missouri on October 15, 1946. After Red Sox center fielder Dom DiMaggio drove in two runs in the top of the eighth, the score was tied at 3. DiMaggio pulled a hamstring during the play and was forced to leave the game, so Leon Culberson replaced him in center field when the St. Louis half of the inning began. St. Louis outfielder Enos Slaughter led off with a single, but neither of the next two batters was able to reach base safely nor advance the runner. Cardinal outfielder Harry Walker stepped to the plate and, after the count reached two balls and one strike, the Cardinals called for a hit-and-run.

The play[edit]

As the runner started, Walker lined the ball to left-center field, where Culberson fielded the ball. As he threw a relay to shortstop Johnny Pesky, Slaughter rounded third base, ignored third base coach Mike González's stop sign, and continued for home plate.

What exactly happened when Pesky turned around is still a matter of contention. Some claim that Pesky, assuming that Slaughter would not be running home, checked Walker at first base instead of immediately firing home, while others contend that Pesky was so shocked to see Slaughter on his way to score that he had a mental lapse that accounted for the delay. Whatever the reason, the delay and a weak and rushed throw home allowed Slaughter to score just as Red Sox catcher Roy Partee caught it up the line from home plate.

The run put the Cardinals ahead 4–3 and proved to be the winning run of the decisive game 7.

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