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The New Haven Register sports department is celebrating our 200th birthday by sharing 200 of the most interesting stories relating to sports in Greater New Haven over the past 200 years. Check back daily for historical updates.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

1901 Yale baseball team beats Christy Mathewson, New York Giants

Associated Press

Yale would finish the 1901 baseball season with a 20-8 record, which placed it a rather ordinary fourth among teams in the Eastern Collegiate league.

But it was an early April victory over the National League’s New York Giants that stood as the signature victory. Yale won the game 5-4 with four runs in the top of the ninth, a comeback that came against a 20-year old rookie named Christy Mathewson.

Yale’s schedule was sprinkled with major league opponents back then, and a spring trip south included a loss to the Baltimore Orioles, managed by John McGraw, and a 4-3 loss to the Philadelphia Athletics (Nap Lajoie had a single for the A’s).
The trip ended at the Polo Grounds on April 12. It was still two weeks before the start of the National League season, and the Giants had only been practicing a short time. It showed against Yale. Poor base running and situational hitting plagued the Giants, who would go on to finish near the bottom of the NL, a full 37 games behind Pittsburgh in the standings.

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