1934 in a Box

1934 Giants











Giants Checking In:  Joey Amalfitano, San Pedro, CA

Jackie Brandt, Omaha, NE

Chuck Hiller, Johnsburg, IL

Willie Kirkland, Siluria, AL

Ken MacKenzie, Gore Bay, Ontario, Canada

Andre Rodgers, Nassau, Bahamas

Leon Wagner, Chattanooga, TN

Bill White, Lakewood, FL


Giants Checking Out:  Les German, Baltimore, MD

Charlie Hickman, Taylortown, PA

Dick Johnston, Kingston, NY

John McGraw, New Rochelle, NY

Parke Wilson, Hermosa Beach, CA



Record:  93-60, 2nd in the National League, 2 games behind St. Louis

Pythagorean Record:  95-58, (760 runs scored, 583 runs allowed) 1st in the National League

General Manager:  Bill Terry (de facto)

Manager:  Bill Terry (3rd season, 239-180, .570, through 1934)

Ballpark:  Polo Grounds V    Attendance:  730,851 (1st in the National League)

Full House:  Sunday, September 16, vs. St. Louis, 62,573 (doubleheader)

Friends & Family:  Friday, April 20, vs. Boston, 3,000

Park Factors:  Batting – 98, Pitching – 95  (Over 100 favors batters, under 100 favors pitchers)


Days in First Place:  180, last on Wednesday, September 26

Best Month:  April, 8-3, .727

Worst Month:  September, 13-14, .481

Largest Margin of Victory:  beat Philadelphia, 21-4, August 4 at the Baker Bowl

Largest Margin of Defeat:  lost to Chicago, 15-2, June 22 at Wrigley Field

Longest Winning Streak:  5, April 17 to April 21, May 28 to May 30, June 9 to June 14, and August 17 to August 20

Longest Losing Streak:  5, September 23 to September 30

Longest Game:  12 innings, September 6, beat Chicago, 2-1, at the Polo Grounds; and September 13, lost to St. Louis, 2-0, at the Polo Grounds

Loved to Face:  Cincinnati, 16-6, .727

Hated to Face:  St. Louis, 9-13, .409


Most Home Runs:  Mel Ott, 35

Highest OBP:  Mel Ott, .415

Highest OPS+:  Mel Ott, 168

Most Stolen Bases:  Jo-Jo Moore, 5

Highest Position Player WAR:  Mel Ott, 7.3

Different Batting Orders:  50


Most Innings Pitched:  Carl Hubbell, 313

Most Strikeouts by a Pitcher:  Carl Hubbell, 118

Best Starter ERA+:  Carl Hubbell, 168

Best Reliever ERA+:  Jack Salveson, 111

Highest Pitcher WAR:  Carl Hubbell, 7.2

Complete Games:  68

Shutouts:  12


Career Best Seasons:  Jo-Jo Moore, Jack Salveson

Career Worst Seasons:  Hank Leiber


Received MVP Votes:  Jo-Jo Moore (3rd), Travis Jackson (4th), Mel Ott (5th), Bill Terry (7th), Carl Hubbell (9th), Hal Schumacher (9th)

All-Stars:  Carl Hubbell*, Travis Jackson*, Jo-Jo Moore, Mel Ott, Bill Terry*  (*=starter)


Rookies:  Slick Castleman, Hank Leiber, Al Smith

Say Hello To: Joe Bowman, George Grantham, Fresco Thompson

Say Goodbye To:  Hi Bell, Joe Bowman, Watty Clark, George Grantham, Lefty O’Doul, Homer Peel, Blondy Ryan, Jack Salveson, Fresco Thompson, George Watkins


Playing Time:

Youngsters (25 or under):  1,840 PAs (31.0%);  459.1 IP (33.5%)  P Jack Salveson, 20, is youngest

Prime (26-29):  1,355 PAs (22.8%);   219.1 IP (16.0%)

Past-Prime (30-33):  1,464 PAs (24.7%)   595 IP (43.4%)

Old Timers (34+):  1,275 PAs (21.5%)   96.1 IP (7.0%)   P Dolf Luque, 43, is oldest



Memphis Bill (Terry)

Stonewall (Travis Jackson)

Master Melvin (Ott)

Blackie (Gus Mancuso)

The Gause Ghost (Jo-Jo Moore)

Lefty (Francis O’Doul)

Blondy (John Ryan)

Harry the Horse (Danning)

Mickey (Phil Weintraub)

Boots (George Grantham)

Tommy (Fresco Thompson)

Meal Ticket (Carl Hubbell)

Prince Hal (Schumacher)

Fat Freddie (Fitzsimmons)

Tarzan (Roy Parmelee)

Hi (Herman Bell)

Watty (William Clark)

Slick (Clydell Castleman)


Key Transaction:  On February 16, 1935, the Giants released Lefty O’Doul. One of John McGraw’s great mistakes had been trading O’Doul to the Phillies in 1928. O’Doul would win two National League batting titles before the Giants got him back in 1933.

Top Prospects:  Catcher Harry Danning, 22 years old in 1934, had appeared in three games in 1933 for the Giants as a pinch hitter and late-inning replacement. He would break camp with the Giants in 1934. Outfielder Hank Leiber, also 22 in 1934, had 10 plate appearances with the Giants in 1933, but would finally come up and stick with the Giants midway through the 1934 campaign.


1934 home and road uniforms, courtesy of the National Baseball Hall of Fame database, “Dressed to the Nines,” at www.exhibits.baseballhalloffame.org/dressed_to_the_nines/database.htm


Minor League Affiliates:  Nashville Volunteers of the Class A Southern Association

Jacksonville Jax of the Class C West Dixie League



Memorable Quotation:  On January 24, Giant manager Bill Terry sat with the press in New York before heading down to Miami for spring training. He was asked about the Giants’ chances, and on their competition. After commenting on the Cubs and Cardinals, he was asked about the Dodgers. “I was just wondering,” said Terry, “whether they were still in the league.” What he said was offered as a joke, and thought so little of at the time that it was only reported by two of the nine metropolitan dailies, but it would become one of the major sports stories of the year.


What Went Right:  The Giants played very well, and had a five-game lead with three weeks to play.


What Went Wrong:  With four games left to play, they still lead by 2½. Unfortunately, they had to play that team Terry had joked about in January. New York baseball fans at that time did not generally travel to the rival’s park, but they would make an exception for special circumstances. The 1934 schedule concluded with the Dodgers playing a two-game series at the Polo Grounds. Terry found his friendly bleachers filled with hostile fans. The Dodgers won both games while St. Louis concluded a 21-7 September with a four-game sweep of the Reds. Bill Terry had earned his epitaph.


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