June 23, 1931 – 23-0 over Boston in Doubleheader
The Indians were originally scheduled to face the Red Sox at League Park on Tuesday afternoon, June 23rd 1931. The game originally scheduled for May 11th was postponed due to threatening weather, and June 23rd became a traditional doubleheader consisting of Games 59 and 60.
Game 59 was something of a pitcher’s duel for the first 6 innings. In the bottom of the 6th the Indians broke the ice when Johnny Hodapp got caught in a pickle attempting to steal second. Ed Morgan was able to score from 3rd before the Sox tagged Hodapp out.
The Tribe scored 8 runs on 9 hits in the bottom of the 8th. Ultimately, Clint Brown threw a 5-hit shutout for the Tribe while the Indians manufactured thirteen runs in the final three innings.
In the second leg of the doubleheader, pitcher Willis Hudlin was even more brilliant. He threw a complete game 1-hit shutout. No Boston baserunner ever made it past first.
Earl Averill hit 7 for 10 combined over the two games, with 4 RBI. His two-run double to right field in the bottom of the third basically put the game out of reach for the scuffling Red Sox.
They hit 15 for 27 with runners in scoring position–always a recipe for success. Perhaps most interesting is the fact that the Tribe scored 23 runs in the two games combined with no home runs.
How often have the Indians put up consecutive double-digit scores in consecutive shutouts? Twice. 87 years later, the 2018 Indians beat the White Sox 12-0 in Game 73 and the Tigers 10-0 in Game 74. With the decline of double-headers, the likelihood of seeing a repeat of 1931 seems infinitesimally small.