As I'm heading off to St. Louis Tuesday, I checked the National Weather Service forecast for the area. And it wasn't too bad with highs in the 80s. There was a link to the 10 hottest days in recorded history in the area. The record for St. Louis is 115 on July 14, 1954. The second hottest day was on July 18, 1954 when the mercury reached 112.
The Cardinals didn't have a home game on July 14, but they were home for a doubleheader on Sunday July 18 against the Phillies. And boy it must have been a fun day at Busch Stadium.
In the opener, the Phillies came from behind twice to win in 10 innings, 11-10. The Cardinals used seven pitchers in the game and the Phillies used four. The game took 3:31 to play. Not counting a 78-minute rain delay. And now there was another game to play.
But there were two problems. One was that since the doubleheader started during the day, it had to finish in daylight under the rules of the day. Also, it was going to keep raining. So, you've got 112-degree heat combined with thunderstorms. Wow, sounds like fun. Still over 18,000 people showed up.
In the second game, the Phillies grabbed an early 8-1 lead which they took in to the top of the fifth. Cardinals manager Eddie Stanky figured that the best way to avoid a loss was to stall. Stanky changed pitchers twice in the fifth inning. Eventually, the benches started yelling at each other. Finally, Phillies first baseman Earl Torgeson and Cardinals catcher Sal Yvars got into it and started fighting. And then, the benches cleared
Finally, home plate umpire Babe Pinelli tired of Stanky's antics and he ordered the second game forfeited to the Phillies.