The Tigers bounced back in game three of the 1908 World Series at West Side Grounds in Chicago behind a complete game by George Mullin. The Tigers’ right-hander was 17-13 in the regular season with 26 complete games.
Jack ‘The Giant Killer’ Pfiester took the hill for Frank Chance. Pfiester was a 12-game winner in 1908 and led the National League in ERA in 1907 (1.15) but finished ninth in the NL with a 2.00 ERA in 1908. Pfiester received his nickname because of his dominance of John McGraw’s New York Giants, 15-5 lifetime record.
Jack Pfiester gave up eight runs, seven earned, on 10 hits in eight innings in the game three loss.
The Tigers won game three 8-3 despite committing four errors.
The Cubs hit into three double plays and were caught stealing three times by Tigers’ catcher Ira Thomas.
Game Three – West Side Grounds, Chicago – Monday, October 12, 1908
- Cubs Manger – Frank Chance
- Tigers Manger – Hughie Jennings
Tigers Starting Lineup
- Matty McIntyre – LF
- Charley O’Leary – SS
- Sam Crawford – CF
- Ty Cobb – RF
- Claude Rossman – 1B
- Germany Schaefer – 2B
- Ira Thomas – C
- Bill Coughlin – 3B
- George Mullin – P
Cubs Starting Lineup
- Jimmy Sheckard – LF
- Johnny Evers – 2B
- Frank Schulte – RF
- Frank Chance – 1B
- Harry Steinfeldt – 3B
- Solly Hofman – CF
- Joe Tinker – SS
- Johnny Kling – C
- Jack Pfiester – P
Top of the First
Jack Pfiester retired Matty McIntyre on a groundout to Johnny Evers to start the game. Charley O’Leary reached on an error by Harry Steinfeldt at third … a misplayed line drive. Sam Crawford sacrificed O’Leary to third and Ty Cobb followed with a single to center that plated O’Leary … and gave the Tigers the early lead. Claude Rossman grounded out to third to end the inning.
The Tigers scored one unearned run on one hit and an error.
Bottom of the First
Jimmy Sheckard struck out to start the inning. George Mullin retired Johnny Evers on a foul out to left field. Frank Schulte reached on a two-out single to left. With Frank Chance at the plate, Ira Thomas threw out Schulte attempting to steal second to end the inning.
1-0 Tigers, after the first inning in game three of the 1908 World Series.
Top of the Second
The Tigers did not get the ball out of the infield and went down in order. Pfiester retired Germany Schaefer on a ground out to third, Thomas grounded out to second and Coughlin grounded out to second in his first at bat of the series to end the inning.
Bottom of the Second
George Mullin retired the Cubs in order. Chance popped out to second base. Both Steinfeldt and Hofman struck out to end the inning.
1-0 Tigers, after two innings
Top of the Third
Pfiester retired the Tigers in order for the second consecutive innings. Mullin grounded out to third, McIntyre popped out to Frank Chance at first base and Charley O’Leary fouled out to Johnny Kling to end the inning.
Bottom of the Third
Joe Tinker led off the third with a single to right center. Ira Thomas threw out Tinker trying to steal second with Kling at the plate. Kling ended up grounding out to first for the second out of the inning. Mullin then struck out Pfiester to end the inning.
1-0 Tigers, after three innings
Top of the Fourth
Sam Crawford led off with a single to center. Ty Cobb grounded into a 4-6 force. Rossman popped out to Johnny Evers and he doubled off Cobb at first base to end the inning.
Bottom of the Fourth
The Cubs took the lead in the fourth. After Sheckard struck out to start the inning, Johnny Evers walked. Ira Thomas appeared to pick off Evers from first base but Claude Rossman could not handle the throw. Evers advanced to second on the error and scored on a single to center by Frank Chance. With the game tied at one, Chance stole second with Steinfeldt at the plate. Steinfeldt reached on a throwing error by third baseman Bill Coughlin. Frank Chance scored and gave the Cubs the lead. Steinfeldt advanced to second on the error. Solly Hofman tripled to left and plated Chance. Joe Tinker grounded out to short to end the inning.
The Cubs scored three runs on two hits and three Tigers errors.
3-1 Cubs, after four innings
Top of the Fifth
Jack Pfiester retired the Tigers in order once again without a ball leaving the infield. Schaefer popped out to short, Thomas grounded out to short and Coughlin struck out to end the inning.
Bottom of the Fifth
Johnny Kling reached on an error by Charley O’Leary to start the inning. Pfiester could not get the bunt down and struck out when he fouled off his third bunt attempt. Jimmy Sheckard grounded into a 4-3 double play to end the inning.
3-1 Cubs, after five innings
Top of the Sixth
The Tigers big five-run sixth inning started with a walk to the pitcher. Pfiester walked Mullin and gave up a single to Matty McIntyre. O’Leary reached on an attempted sacrifice bunt back to the mound. With the bases loaded and no outs, Sam Crawford singled to center, Mullin scored. With the bases loaded and no outs, Ty Cobb followed with an infield single to short. McIntyre scored and tied the game. Rossman singled to right and the Tigers took the lead when both O’Leary and Crawford scored. Germany Schaefer hit what appeared to be a sacrifice fly to center but Solly Hofman threw out Ty Cobb at the plate. Ira Thomas doubled to right center and plated Rossman with the fifth run of the inning. Coughlin grounded out to second to end the inning.
The Tigers scored five runs on five hits.
Bottom of the Sixth
With his team down 6-3, Johnny Evers grounded out to third to start the inning. Frank Schulte grounded back to the mound for the second out. Chance followed with a single to left. Chance swiped second but Steinfeldt struck out to end the inning.
6-3 Tigers, after six innings
Top of the Seventh
George Mullin popped out to short to start the seventh but Pfiester walked McIntyre and retired Charley O’Leary on a sacrifice bunt to Frank Chance. McIntyre advanced to second on the play. Sam Crawford flied out to center to end the inning.
Bottom of the Seventh
Solly Hofman singled to right to start the inning. Mullin struck out Joe Tinker. And Johnny Kling hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
6-3 Tigers, after seven innings
Top of the Eighth
The Tigers broke the game open in the eighth. With his team up 6-3, Ty Cobb doubled to left off of Jack Pfiester to start the inning. Rossman reached on a bunt single, Cobb advanced to third. Germany Schaefer followed with a fly out to right, Frank Schulte threw home and kept Cobb from scoring but Rossman advanced to second on the play. Pfiester walked Ira Thomas and loaded the bases with one out. Bill Coughlin hit a sacrifice fly to left, Cobb tagged and scored the Tigers seventh run of the game. George Mullin singled to right. Rossman scored and Thomas advanced to third. Matty McIntyre grounded out to Harry Steinfeldt at the hot corner to end the inning.
The Tigers scored two runs on three hits.
Bottom of the Eighth
Del Howard pinch-hit for Jack Pfiester to start the eighth and grounded out to second. Sheckard grounded out to second as well and Johnny Evers flied out to center to end the inning.
8-3, Tigers after eight innings
Top of the Ninth
Game one starter, Ed Reulbach started the ninth for Frank Chance and the inning ended with a very rare play by modern standards. Reulbach retired O’Leary on a pop fly to Chance at first base to start the inning. Crawford flied out to center for the second out but Cobb reached on a single to left and promptly stole second and third with Rossman at the plate. Reulbach ended up walking Rossman. With Germany Schaefer at the plate, Rossman stole second. The inning ended when Ty Cobb was thrown out trying to steal home.
Bottom of the Ninth
George Mullin completed the game by retiring three of the four batters he faced in the ninth. Schulte and Chance both flied out to center. Harry Steinfeldt singled to left with two outs and stole second but Solly Hofman grounded out to short to end the inning and the game.
Final in Game Three – Cubs 3, Tigers 8
- WP – George Mullin
- LP – Jack Pfiester
- Time of Game – 2:10
- Attendance: 14,543
Game Four: Mordecai ‘Three Finger’ Brown (Cubs) vs. Ed Summers (Tigers)