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White Sox-Giants World Tour: Nov. 16, 1913

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A two-city doubleheader closes out the tourists' stay in California

Ping Bodie in 1914
Ping Bodie in 1914
Library of Congress
Nov. 16 in Oakland, Calif: White Sox 12, Giants 8

The final of four days in the Bay Area started early, as the White Sox and Giants opened a doubleheader at Oaks Park in the morning at 10:30.

Only about 3,000 fans showed up, likely because of church commitments, and the teams played a groggy brand of baseball. The Sox trailed 3-0 after the first, 4-1 after two, and 5-3 after the third, but a six-run sixth put them firmly in front. If the teams wanted to keep to a tight schedule, 26 hits, six errors and 11 walks wasn't the way to do it.

Native Californian Ping Bodie made a brief cameo appearance for the Sox. Bodie -- whose birth name was Francesco Stephano Pezzolo -- was one of the first Italian-Americans to establish himself as a big leaguer. His uncle thought that an Italian might be ridiculed, so he Americanized his first and middle name to Frank Stephen, and then adopted the name of a town in which e once lived as his surname. Per his SABR bio, "Ping" was how people described the way the ball sounded off his 52-ounce bat.

Bodie was a showman, and the inspiration for Ring Lardner's Jack Keefe -- cocky as hell, but he made enough mistakes, both on the field and with his malapropisms -- that allowed him to laugh at himself, too. He would've been a natural for the tour, but he instead planned to use the offseason to establish himself as a vaudeville performer.

As it turns out, he did neither. A Chicago Tribune article from Oct. 16, 1913, says stage fright forced Bodie to skip out of town before he had to commit to a Chicago show, and a $500 guarantee with the theater. He fled to San Francisco, and he was only available for a cameo.

After the game, the teams took a ferry across the bay for a 2:30 p.m. start at Recreation Park.

Nov. 16 in San Francisco: White Sox 4, Giants 2

About 8,500 fans awaited the teams in the finale of their California leg, and they were rewarded with a much tighter game. The Sox jumped on a wild Jeff Tesreau for two runs in the first. Reb Russell gave up the lead in the fourth, but when Hal Chase put the Sox back ahead with an RBI single in the sixth, Russell held the line for good.

The Sox played errorless ball after getting away with two mistakes in the front end, and they were able to secure the doubleheader sweep to knot the series at 14-14-1.

After the game, the teams traveled to Oregon, but Christy Mathewson did not join them on the trip. He couldn't convince himself to stomach the idea. From G.W. Axelson's gamer: "At the departure tonight two well-known tourists were missing, Christy Mathewson and Chief Meyers. Both wanted to go on the trip, but Meyers could not arrange his business affairs and the wet water of the Pacific scared Matty."

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