Renowned pitcher Sain dead at 89

Nov 8, 2006 - 7:32 AM CHICAGO (Ticker) - Johnny Sain, who formed one-half of the most renowned pitching combinations in major league baseball history, died on Tuesday. He was 89.

The Chicago Tribune reported on its website that Sain passed away in a nursing home in Downers Grove, Illinois, after a long illness.

A four-time 20-game winner and three-time All-Star, Sain became part of baseball lore along with teammate Warren Spahn while pitching for the Boston Braves.

In 1948, Sain went 24-15 and finished second in the MVP voting. Sain pitched nine complete games in 29 days in September, teaming with Spahn to lead the Braves to the National League pennant.

Because the pitching duo was so brilliant and due to the lack of depth on the Braves' staff, it inspired the slogan "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain" as Boston charged to the pennant.

Sain capped off that streak by beating Bob Feller and the Cleveland Indians, 1-0, in Game One of the World Series, which was won by the Indians in six games.

The righthander compiled a 135-116 record in an 11-year career that was shortened by World War II.

He later became a highly regarded pitching coach for the Kansas City Athletics, New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins, Detroit Tigers, Chicago White Sox and Atlanta Braves.

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