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Despite a mediocre season with frequent off-days, the Crimson nine has firmly entrenched itself in second position in the league standings with seven wins and two defeats. Two encounters with Yale must be surmounted if the Varsity is to gain undisputed possession of the championship. In all games played this year the Mitchellmen have won 12 and lost 11.
With Yale trouncing the Tigers, who had previously triumphed over the Crimson, it is apparent that a close struggle will ensue June 22 and 23, when the two leading teams of the Eastern League tangle. By virtue of its double victory over Dartmouth Thursday which toppled the Indians from first place to third, the Varsity must be given at least a 50-50 chance of trimming the Elis, who now rest in first position with seven triumphs and two losses.
Most encouraging is the discovery of a new winning pitcher, Slim Curtiss, star twirler on last year's Freshman nine. For some reason Coach Fred Mitchell had not allowed the slender righthander to start a single game until two weeks ago. His victory over Columbia Saturday morning, May 28, was the only Crimson win in a disastrous four-game weekend.
The following Monday, Curtiss lost a tough decision to Brown 4-2 although holding the Bruins to six scattered hits, and last Thursday allowed the hard-hitting Big Green but five base knocks to win 4-2. With only a one day rest Curtiss started the Tufts game Saturday. Until tiring in the ninth, he gave the Jumbos four hits for a single run. Because of his brilliant performances in the last two weeks with three victories and a lone defeat, Curtiss is certain to start one of the all-important Yale encounters.
Captain Tom Bilodeau, a major disappointment at bat this season in comparison to last year's average which led the League, has apparently struck his stride and is batting .400 in the past three games, including a home-run smash in the first Dartmouth game with two on base to tie the score.
Lupe Lupien continues to lead the Crimson attack and is hitting at a fast .361 clip. The rise in the Varsity potency at the plate is evidenced by the jump this week in the team batting average in League contests from .226 to .252. Behind Lupien is Frankie Owen in the clean-up position with .324, while lead-off man Art Johns is clouting the ball at an even .300. Falling from first place to fifth in league fielding, the Mitchellmen hold a mediocre .229 percentage.
During the past week the team has been suffering with numerous afflictions. Al Colwell, regular catcher, who has been the victim of a complex in not being able to throw the ball back straight to the pitcher, was out of the Dartmouth games with illness. In the Tufts game his throw was much improved, and he is expected to be at top form for the Blue next week.
Ed Ingalls had four exams last week, which gave the big righthander slight chance to rest, while Lupien had a gainful tooth infection, keeping him from sleep. Because of an examination Thursday afternoon, Dick Grondahl was unable to play in the first contest with Dartmouth, and Dave Shean was one of the lineup Saturday with the grippe. Fort several weeks Art Johns has been troubled first with a spiked heel and then with a trick knee which has slowed the second saoker down considerably.
With only two games, Indiana on Wednesday and the Graduates Saturday, before the Yale encounters, the Crimson should be in top physical condition and able to start their best lineup: Colwell behind the plate, Lupien on first, Johns at second, Bilodeau at short, Grondahl in the hot corner, Frankie Owen in right, McTernen in center, and Shean covering the left garden.
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