World Series Game 4: The 10 most decisive moments in MLB history

From Frank Chance to Brett Phillips, the 10 most decisive plays in World Series Game 4 history.

Oct 24, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Tampa Bay Rays right fielder Brett Phillips (14) celebrates
Oct 24, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Tampa Bay Rays right fielder Brett Phillips (14) celebrates / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Two iconic moments, one from long ago, the other from nearly yesterday, share honors as the most decisive in the history of World Series Games Four.

The history of Game Four heroes is largely a collection of part-timers thrust into the spotlight by circumstances, and enjoying a single moment of everlasting glory. That’s true of both of the players who share the No. 1 spot.

Only two members of the Hall of Fame, Chicago Cubs legend Frank Chance and Giants pitcher Carl Hubbell, make the list.

The Arizona Diamondbacks and Texas Rangers will try to write some history of their own as they play Game Four. But as they do, it might be fun to look back on the best moments from past Series.

This article focuses on the 10 most decisive moments from World Series Games Four. The standard of measurement is Win Probability Added, a relatively new statistic that calculates the extent to which the play in question influenced the game’s outcome.

You can keep an eye open for installments looking at the 10 most decisive moments from World Series Games 5 to Game 7. For tonight, here are the 10 most decisive moments of Game 4 throughout the years.

t-9. Johnny Logan, 1957 Milwaukee Braves. Game 4 of the 1957 Series was a back-and-forth affair. The American League champion New York Yankees scored first only to see that lead erased on Milwaukee’s four-run fourth highlighted by Hank Aaron’s three run home run.

That held until the top of the ninth, when Yankee Elston Howard produced a three-run home run of his own off Warren Spahn. When Hank Bauer touched Spahn for another home run in the top of the 10th, the Yankees had a clear path toward a three-games-to-one Series lead.

 But the Braves, trying to win the franchise’s first World Series since 1914, had one last rally in them. In a famous incident, pinch hitter Nippy Jones was ruled to have been hit by a Tommy Byrne pitch when plate umpire Augie Donatelli – who had initially said Jones had not been hit – found a shoe polish stain on the ball and overturned himself.  Facing Bob Grim, Red Schoendienst sacrificed pinch runner Felix Mantilla to second, bringing up Logan. The Braves shortstop yanked a double inside the left field line that scored Mantilla with the tying run, and scored the winner himself when Eddie Mathews followed with a home run. Logan Win Probability Added: 42 percent.

t-9. Frank Chance, 1910 Chicago Cubs. Player-manager Chance’s Cubs were all but through. Losers of the first three games of the1910 Series tor Connie Mack’s American League champion Philadelphia Athletics, they trailed 3-2 against 23-game winner Chief Bender as the bottom of the ninth opened at Chicago’s West Side Park.

Then Frank Schulte drove a two-base hit into right field and Solly Hofman sacrificed that tying run over to third. The next batter was Chance, who at age 33 was approaching the end of a tumultuous on-field career that had included leadership of the 1907 and 1908 World Series champions.

Chance may have been aging, but he had enough juice to slam Bender’s 0-1 pitch into the vastness of the old yard’s center field for a triple that brought home Schulte with the tying run. In the 10th, the Cubs walked off Bender with their only victory in a five-game A’s Series triumph. Chance Win Probability Added: 42 percent.