New York Yankees
1 Oct 1941 – 6 Oct 1941
| Bill McGowan (AL), Babe Pinelli (NL), Bill Grieve (AL), Larry Goetz (NL)|
Umpire: Bill McGowan Yankees: Joe McCarthy (mgr.), Bill Dickey, Joe DiMaggio, Joe Gordon, Phil Rizzuto, Red Ruffing
Dodgers: Leo Durocher (mgr.), Billy Herman, Joe Medwick, Pee Wee Reese
Red Barber and Bob Elson
1943 World Series, 1937 World Series, 1938 World Series, 1949 World Series, 1939 World Series
The 1941 World Series matched the New York Yankees against the Brooklyn Dodgers, with the Yankees winning in five games to capture their fifth title in six years, and their ninth overall.
The name "Subway Series" arose for a World Series played between two New York City teams. The series was punctuated by the Dodgers' Mickey Owen's dropped third strike of a sharply breaking curveball (a suspected spitball) pitched by Hugh Casey in the ninth inning of Game 4. The play led to a Yankees rally and brought them one win away from another championship.
The Yankees were back after a one-year hiatus, having won 13 of their last 14 Series games and 28 of their last 31.
This was the first Subway Series between the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees (though the Yankees had already faced the crosstown New York Giants five times). These two teams would meet a total of seven times from 1941 to 1956 — the Dodgers' only victory coming in 1955 — with an additional four matchups after the Dodgers left for Los Angeles, most recently in 1981.
1941 World Series Wikipedia
AL New York Yankees (4) vs. NL Brooklyn Dodgers (1)
†: postponed from October 3 due to rain
Pinch-hitter Lew Riggs' single scored Cookie Lavagetto in the seventh as the Dodgers pulled to within 3-2. Then they threatened in the ninth with hits by Joe Medwick and Pee Wee Reese, before Yankee pitcher Red Ruffing was able to get Herman Franks to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Dolph Camilli's single off relief pitcher Johnny Murphy in the sixth broke a 2-2 deadlock. Whit Wyatt gave up a pinch single to George Selkirk leading off the ninth, but nailed down a complete-game victory.
With the veteran Fitzsimmons dueling young southpaw Russo, there was no score into the top of the seventh. With two outs, Russo lined a drive off Fitzsimmons' knee that broke his kneecap. The ball caromed into Pee Wee Reese's glove for the third out, but Fitzsimmons was forced from the game. Hugh Casey, who came out to pitch in the eighth for Brooklyn, promptly gave up four hits and two runs, and Russo hung on to win, 2–1.
With two out, two strikes and no runners on base in the ninth, the Yankees rallied. First Tommy Henrich swung and missed, which would have ended the game, but Dodger catcher Mickey Owen failed to catch the ball and Henrich reached first base. Owen recollected the incident:
Joe DiMaggio followed with a single and Charlie Keller hit a double to drive in Henrich and DiMaggio and take the lead. Bill Dickey would follow up with a walk and, along with Keller, score on a Joe Gordon double to make the final score 7–4.
Meyer Berger of The New York Times covered the events in "Casey in the Box", a poem derived from the 1888 classic "Casey at the Bat".
In the fifth inning, Wyatt and DiMaggio almost came to blows on the mound as DiMaggio returned to the dugout after flying out.
1941 World Series (4–1): New York Yankees (A.L.) over Brooklyn Dodgers (N.L.)