DiMaggio double can't dig Yanks out of trouble

DiMaggio double can't dig Yanks out of trouble

NEW YORK, May 19, 1941 -- The city never sleeps, but the Yankees have been in a slumber early this season.

They snoozed through another lackluster loss on Monday afternoon, this one to the lowly last-place St. Louis Browns by a score of 5 to 1 before a quiet crowd of 5,588 fans at Yankee Stadium.

A day after pounding the Browns, the Yankees were the ones slogging through a ballgame that once again gave them a losing season's record at 16-17 and kept them 6 1/2 games behind the first-place Cleveland Indians.

Joe DiMaggio's run to 56: Rewriting the record

Things started out poorly and didn't improve. A Joe Gordon error helped lead to a three-run first inning for the Browns, and the Yankees couldn't muster much of anything with the bats.

New York was mostly flummoxed by St. Louis pitcher Denny Galehouse, who gave up only four hits, including a Bill Dickey home run in the eighth inning that accounted for the Yankees' only run, and a Joe DiMaggio double in the seventh. DiMaggio is a small brightness in New York's recent rough patch, having raised his batting average from .304 to .328 over the last five games.

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To add insult to Monday's ineptitude, New York also committed two errors and hit into a double play, and pitcher Marius Russo walked five Browns batters and threw a wild pitch.

The good news? There will be a game on Tuesday.

On May 15, 1941, Joe DiMaggio began his legendary 56-game hitting streak. In celebration of the 75th anniversary of that seemingly unbreakable record, we'll be doing a day-by-day account of the momentous feat.

Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.