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On This Date in Sports July 9, 1940: All-Star Blanking

in collaboration with the Sportsecyclopedia.com

 

In the first All-Star Game shutout, the National League blanks the American League 4-0 at Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis. The American League was held to three hits by Paul Derringer and Bucky Walters of the Cincinnati Reds. Whit Wyatt of the Brooklyn Dodgers and Larry French of the Chicago Cubs, with Carl Hubbell, finish the game ninth inning. Max West of the Boston Braves supplies he offense with a three-run home run in the first inning.

It was the eighth mid-summer classic, and the first played in St. Louis. The American League had dominated the first decade of All-Star play, winning five of seven games after the yearly tradition started in 1933. The managers from the 1939 World Series were in charge at the All-Star Game as Joe McCarthy of the New York Yankees led the American League, while Bill McKechnie of the Cincinnati Reds led the way for the National League All-Stars. 

Each manager chose one of his starters to open the All-Star Game on the mound as Paul Derringer, while Red Ruffing of the Yankees made the start. Each had their regular catcher as Ernie Lombardi of the Reds started behind home plate for the NL, while Bill Dickey of the Yankees started for the AL. In the first inning, Derringer pitched around a walk to Ted Williams of the Boston Red Sox. Ruffing was not as fortunate as Arky Vaughn of the Pittsburgh Pirates, and Billy Herman of the Chicago Cubs led off with a pair of singles. Next up was Boston Braves right fielder Max West who hit a three-run homer to give the National League a 3-0 lead. 

Moments after hitting his home run, Max West was hurt, slamming into the wall, trying to steal a double away from Luke Appling of the Chicago White Sox. Bill Nicholson of the Cubs replaced West in right field as Derringer retired the next two batters. Red Ruffing pitched three innings, allowing three runs on five hits. Bill McKechnie had his pitchers go to innings. Bucky Walters was perfect in his two innings of work, while Wit Wyatt and Larry French each allowed one hit. Bobo Newsome of the Detroit Tigers allowed just one hit against the NL, pitching the middle innings. 

Bob Feller of the Cleveland Indians came into pitch in the seventh inning. He allowed the National League to score a fourth run in the eight as Harry Danning singled home his Giants teammate Mel Ott.  Their teammate Carl Hubbell took the mound for the ninth inning, Hubbell walked Lou Finney of the Red Sox with one out but retired the next two, including Joe DiMaggio to end the game on a flyout to left field.