July 17, 1941: DiMaggio streak ends
Submitted by BTGrimes on Tue, 07/17/2012 - 9:00am
56 it is
CLEVELAND, OHIO - The Cleveland Indians put an end to Joe DiMaggio's consecutive games hitting streak on this date in 1941, making 56 an iconic number in the world of baseball.
The streak captivated the nation for weeks, and drew a record-breaking 67,468 fans to Cleveland Municipal Stadium on a Thursday night to watch the New York Yankee slugger try to extend his streak.
It was stopped at the hands of two relatively unknown Cleveland pitchers, left-hander Al Smith and right-hander Jim Bagby, and all-star third baseman Ken Keltner who made two dazzling plays to rob DiMaggio of hits. Had Keltner not made those plays we could very well be talking about a 73 game hitting streak. After going hitless on July 17th, DiMaggio went on hitting in 16 more consecutive games.
How remarkable is DiMaggio's record? To this day no one has surpassed Wee Willie Keeler's second place mark... except DiMaggio.