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The story of how the Yankees clinched their first ever championship

The first Yankees’ World Series title required a little help to get them over the line.

World Series - Chicago Cubs v Cleveland Indians - Media Day Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

The Yankees had some crazy moments that helped them win World Series games in their early championship runs. The 1927 World Series ended on a wild pitch. In Game 4 from 1941, the Dodgers dropped what would be a game-ending third strike, only for the batter to reach base. The Yankees came back and won the game, and then the series the next day.

When the Yankees won their first ever World Series, nothing quite as crazy as that happened. However, they needed a comeback, and got a pretty big assist to get them there.

Going into Game 6 of the 1923 World Series, the Yankees were one win away from beating the Giants and clinching their first ever championship. Game 6 got off to a perfect start when Babe Ruth homered in the top of the first. The lead didn’t last, though, as the Giants plated a run in the bottom of the inning to tie it. They then went on to score several more runs over the next few innings to build up a 4-1 lead late in the game.

Going into the top of the eighth, Ruth had been the only Yankee on base, with a home run and a walk. Giants’ starter Art Nehf was still in and cruising. He got Aaron Ward to fly out for the first out of the eighth, and was just five outs away from forcing Game 7.

The Yankees then finally got their first non-Ruth baserunner when Wally Schang singled. Everett Scott added another single, moving Schang to third. Nehf then walked a pinch-hitting Fed Hoffman. The Yankees now had more people on base than hits and walks in the rest of the game combined.

Bullet Joe Bush was sent up as a pinch hitter, and he too drew a walk. A run scored and it was now 4-2. After walking in a run, Nehf was removed from the game. The Giants brought in Rosy Ryan. However, Ryan then proceeded to walk Joe Dugan, bringing home another run. Suddenly, the Giants’ lead was down to one, and the bases were still loaded.

Coming up with the bases loaded was Babe Ruth. After having been the whole of the Yankees’ offense for most of the day, naturally Ruth struck out. With two outs in the inning and the Yankees still down a run, the inning was left up to Bob Meusel. On the second pitch of the at bat, Meusel singled and drove in two runs.

Dugan attempted to go from first to third on the play, and ended up with more than he set out for. Giants’ centerfielder Bill Cunningham made an error on the throw, allowing Dugan to score. The Yankees had just one hit going into the inning, and were now six out away from a championship.

The Yankees brought in Sad Sam Jones to pitch, and he got those six outs, allowing just one hit and no runs in the process. The Yankees clinched their first ever World Series. They didn’t win their next one until 1927, but we all know what’s happened since then.

If not for a complete collapse in the eighth inning, the Giants probably go on to force Game 7. The Yankees were the better team in the series to that point, as the two games they lost were both only by one run. That being said, who knows what happens in Game 7.

If not for the Giants losing the plate, the Yankees might only have 26 championships—who knows, maybe less. Thankfully we never have to know.