Friday, December 16, 2011

Game 17, Saturday, April 26, 1924

The first week of the season, the Seattle Indians' bats were just awful enough for last place. For whatever reason, reasons probably having more to do with the Angels pitchers starting strong than anything else, it took a train ride to the still-in-winter confines of Bonneville Park in Salt Lake City before Seattle started finding the ball with any consistency. Wade Killefer stated during spring training he thought the Indians would have a good hitting team that year. That is what started to emerge during the second week of the season.

Spring training began for pitchers and catchers in the hot springs at Elsinore on March 2, 1924, followed by all players reporting on March 9 in lovely San Bernardino where they headquartered at the classic Stewart Hotel. The team left Riverside County just before the start of the season to stay in Los Angeles and complete spring training.

The results of the first two weeks was a 3 and 10 record at the hands of good pitching in LA and good hitting in SLC.
The Salt Lake Bees were a club that would feature the two best hitters in the Pacific Coast League that year, Duffy Lewis and Lefty O’Doul, anchoring a lineup that would lead the PCL in batting at .327,  and that power proved to be the dominant factor in that series.  But, against Sacramento, Seattle started to finally put it all together.

The Seattle bats were finally waking up for good on the train ride home to Seattle’s Coast League Park, as Dugdale Field was referred to in many of the news reports of the 1924 season. When the players had converged in San Bernardino for Spring Training, they left off-season homes in such places as Texas, Missouri, and the Bay Area. After a little over a month, they had moved spring training to Los Angeles before starting the season against the Angels. Then, finally, after a week in Salt Lake in late April, they were in what for many was a home away from home, the Rainier Valley of Seattle.

Ray Rohwer continued to be an on-base machine, now having reached first base in 13 consecutive trips to the plate. He hit a home run, a triple, and put across 2 RBI’s in this game, a remarkable display of power for a hitter who had walked in 4 straight trips to the plate the previous day. Ray Rohwer had gone straight to the Pittsburgh Pirates from the University of California, although his playing time had been interrupted by service in World War 1. I’m not sure how, still need to investigate, he was allowed to play for California in the 1920 season in spite of the fact he graduated in 1917. Rohwer hooked up with Pittsburgh in 1921 as a 26-year old rookieRohwer had gone to spring training in Texas for the Pittsburgh Pirates with his brother Claude, after both finished playing for the University of California. Ray was able to stick with Pirates for 1922 after showing some promise in spotty appearances in 1922. The after-the-fact highlight for Rohwer, and baseball history, was his go-ahead RBI single in the first ever baseball game broadcast on radio, on August 5, 1921. Rohwer came in to hit for first baseman Charlie Grimm, and lined a single, and also added a run to seal the deal. Unfortunately, he added an error in right field in the top of the ninth, but the Pirates still won 8-5 over the Phillies. The first game was actually a re-broadcast of sorts. It was on KDKA, the pioneering radio station in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The game was called by KDKA’s regular announcer, Harold Arlin.

Ray Rohwer could always hit, unfortunately for him, he was trying to break into the best hitting club in the National League in 1922 (the regular top four outfielders for Pittsburgh collectively batted .342 that year, with Max Carey’s .329 being the worst!). Left-handed hitting Rohwer was mostly used as a late-inning pinch hitter against right handed pitchers, but did get 28 starts among his 53 games that year. Although he finished 1922 with a .295 batting average (one of 11 Pittsburgh position players to hit at least .290), on July 1, following a double header, Ray was hitting .386 with a .446 on-base percentage and a .627 slugging percentage for an overall OPS of 1.072.  Over a four game stretch he went 12 for 19. However, a slump followed, and on July 21, Rohwer lost any shot of getting the right field spot when left-handed hitting Reb Russell showed up from the Minneapolis Millers, completing a remarkable return to the majors for the former White Sox pitcher who had injured his arm in 1919. Russell came back from that injury as a power hitting outfielder, joining Carson Bigbee and Hall of Famer Max Carey in creating a formidable outfield for Pittsburgh. Clyde Barnhart also filled out the fourth outfielder spot, making Rohwer more valuable as a trading commodity than a fifth outfielder, especially since he was probably a 27-year old, what you see is what you get who wanted to get back out west. Rohwer was traded to Seattle on December 6, 1922, along with the first pitcher  in Seattle to be called “Sherriff”, John Fred Blake, cash and a player to be named later for infielder Spencer Adams. Adams was considered a prized prospect, but would spend most of his career going from one team to the next, not spending consecutive years in any location until he was 31, at Nashville in the Southern Association. Rohwer was considered a good hitter, but the Seattle Daily Times article on the trade wondered if his fielding would be good enough to make it in the PCL.

Claude had been invited to Spring Training to possibly be the Pirates answer for third base. But in spring training 1922 they decided to give that shot to a young prospect they had paid $10,000 for, although he had projected to be a second baseman or shortstop. The young prospect, Pie Traynor, could hit, but his defense was suspect, and they still had Rabbit Maranville, a great and mercurial personality, if not shortstop, already. So, on the opening day of the 1922 season, Ray Rohwer found himself starting the bottom half of a double header against Cincinnati, only to be pulled before getting an at-bat, Claude Rohwer was playing shortstop for the Charleston Pals of the South Atlantic League, and at third base for Pittsburgh was the young prospect Claude lost out to, Pie Traynor. Traynor would go on to have a Hall of Fame career and generally be viewed as the National League’s premier third baseman between the Deadball era and World War II. Claude had a short career in the PCL, playing third base for Sacramento along with Ed Hemingway. My blind hope/curiosity suggests that Hemingway might be a second cousin or so of the other E. Hemingway. They are about the same age. I think at this time, Spring of 1924, Ernest is probably off in Paris or Pamplona preparing to be important. Claude would return, like the other Rohwer brother, to Dixon.

Meanwhile back in Seattle on a Saturday afternoon, across the board the hot hitting continued, and in an excellent sense of foreshadowing, the Indians pulled it out in the late innings. The pitcher on this day for the Senators was, like Rohwer, a former member of the Pittsburgh Pirates named Moses Yellowhorse.

It’s a curious thing to think about: why do some of us love a game so much? We dedicate hours, days, lives to the minutia and incidentals of some far away or at best parallel universe. Often times, as sports fans of an intellectual bent, we cannot even display great insight to our own form of play, this interaction with distance. Certainly some of this has to due with the element of play in the human psyche. Boyish, or girlish, or just adolescent, acts of self-definition. Some theories of art look at the impact of peak shift experiences on the individual exploring the plastic work. That is, what is it about a static object that incites engaged participation? I think that type of approach explains, also, the ‘art’ of baseball, or any sport. Many players, observers, reporters and critics have noted the theater of sport. Going back to the Roman Circus or Greek Olympics, sport was often lumped in with the various cultural activities of a celebratory nature. This was also true across America. We can attribute that somewhat to the post-Renaissance influence of classical societies, but I think this is more an accurate description of human tendency, rather than a fixed operation of particular origin. In short, the harvest festivals had sporting contests at their center, or at least near the center. In most circumstances it was a safer version of the hunt, or a more public exhibition of thrashing. And there was baseball. Baseball, as it grew into its oversized jacket as the American Pastime and then into the pastoral landscape of fogged collective memory, was nearly always a part of the community and its rejoinders of atonement, a process which in the industrial and advertised landscape that was always becoming, the Twentieth Century, became the moments in the days just past the harvest, where we  find and fix the happenstance participants of a given time to a given space, that is to say we create myth’s from the substance as much as the essence of reality. Much like we remember where we last hunted a deer or the angle of the sun when the berries ripened, it is the forthcoming winter absence that seeks to gather collectively before we sink into the winter hive, and this festival, this gathering, is where we remember the significant moment of play, the winning comeback in the bottom of the eighth.  Thus, an essential component of our fanaticism is the way in which it allows us to passively experience our hunter/gatherer past through both a satisfaction of the curiosity impulse implicit in the hunt, and the peak shift experience essential to the kill.

Another element essential to the development of fanaticism, one that runs parallel and is part and parcel of the fan, is the dual role in which re-imagination plays along with the experience factor: the apprehension of identity, or identifying with the players. The key there is what part of our identity the players, managers, or game itself, the game experience, with which we identify. Which brings us to Moses Yellowhorse and Ed Delahanty, two players connected for the purposes of this argument solely through the manner in which I identified with them at a certain age of my own life. Ed Delahanty was the first baseball player whose story I found inexorably fascinating. I was in middle school, in Olympia, and had run across his story in a book about the 50 greatest players of all time. For some reason, the irascible drunk who disappears after getting thrown off a train and trying to cross a trestle at Buffalo at night spoke to me. There was something in that irrational act, that lack of ending, with which I connected. The same with Yellowhorse. Much like the author of the book The (Baseball) Life of Moses Yellowhorse, Todd Fuller, I simply saw the name Yellowhorse and immediately recognized someone as probably being a fellow American with Native heritage. But, the story is much richer than that, because this is 1922, and Moses Yellowhorse was the first full-blooded Native American to play Major League Baseball. In 1922, its not really heritage as I see it, its life as a Pawnee, being lived. The world was not historical, but rather one of sharing experiences with those who are not part of the pastoral past, a world that ran fully against that notion and had to be brought into it through conflict; a world not populated with characters, but people with wounds, pride, and a child who could probably hunt by simply hurling a rock at a bird. He grew up on, and would return to, the Pawnee reservation, and went to school, and played baseball for, the Chilocco Indian Agricultural School. Yellowhorse came under the wing of former Yankee (Highlander) interim manager/player Kid Elberfeld, who by 1920 was in his mid-40s and managing the Little Rock Travelers of the Southern Association. Moses’ blazing fastball would get him to Pittsburgh in 1921, and he’d pitch 126 innings before an injury and alcohol would relegate him to the minors. His drinking partner was his roommate, the previously mentioned Rabbit Maranville. Moses would eventually kick the booze in 1945 and become a leader in his community.

In this 1924 game, Yellowhorse’s career is coming near its end as far as professional ball would go. He would only appear in 10 games that year, then two more in 1926 for Omaha. I highly recommend Todd Fuller’s book on Moses Yellowhorse. It uses poetry, prose, personal narrative, history and biography to tell this unique man’s unique story.

8,000 Seattle Fans See Tribe Rally And Beat Solons, 7 to 6
Going Into Eighth Inning Four Runs Behind, Local Team Chases Yellowhorse From Game With Fierce Attack.

REFUSING to be beaten even though the Sacramento team had them 6 to 2 when they went to bat in the eighth inning, the Seattle team staged a great rally in its half, drove in five runs with six terrific hits, a hit batsman and a base on balls, defeated Sacramento 7 to 6 and won its fourth straight home victory over the Solons.
            A crowd estimated at 8,000, one of the largest Saturday crowds in the history of Seattle baseball, saw the thrilling rally.
            Ted Baldwin’s home run over the right garden wall with Ray Rohwer on first base put the finishing touch to Mose Yellowhorse, chased him from the game with a tie score. Whereupon Lefty Vince came on, hit Tobin, walked Carl Williams and was hit for the winning single by Billy Lane.
Ray Rohwer, Seattle left fielder, contributed a triple, a home run and a single in his last three times at bat, and was given a base on balls in his first trip to the plate.
            He has now stepped to the plate thirteen consecutive times and reached first base on every attempt.
            Four hits, two of them triples, and a base on balls Thursday-
            Four consecutive bases on balls Friday-
            A base on balls and three consecutive hits Saturday-
            That is Rohwer’s record.

Figured Game Lost
            The 8,000 fans on hand figured the game gone when the Solons landed on Wheezer Dell in the sixth and seventh for five runs, which, with the one they had scored in the fourth, game them a five-run lead.
            But Ray Rohwer boosted one over the fence to start the seventh. He had already scored a run in the fith when he hit the center field fence for three bases and rolled in on Ted Baldwin’s double.
            Yellowhorse got them out in the seventh without further damage, but the eighth was-oh, so different.
            Cliff Brady started the fight by singling to left.
            Sammy Crane, who had already hit safely twice, doubled to left center.
            Brick Eldred singled sharply to right, Brady scoring.
            Elmer Bowman hit one hard right at Hemingway, however, and was doubled up with Eldred.
            Two out, three runs to go to tie. It didn’t look exactly encouraging.
            Ray Rohwer came up to try and do something for his thirteenth straight trip to first. He singled to right and Crane came over.
            Ted Baldwin got hold of a fast one on the outside corner and over the right field fence it went. The score was tied.
            Mose Yellowhorse left the pitching mound in bad order and Lefty Vinci came in.
            Lefty hit Tobin in the leg. Then he walked Carl Williams.
            Sensing that break Wade Killefer sent speedy Jimmy Welsh in to run for Tobin.
            Billy Lane, with three and two on him, and the runners under way, singled across second, scoring Welsh and putting Williams on third.
            Vinci also departed and Lefty Canfield retired the side with the Indians one run to the good.
            Carl Williams blanked the Solons in their half of the ninth and the fourth straight was on the winning side of the ledger.

One Hit, All Hit.
            It was the same story yesterday as it has been all week.
            When one Indian hits they’re e all liable to start right after him.
            Yesterday they wasted four hits, more than they had wasted all week, but it took some great playing  to stop them as long as Yellowhorse did.
            For instance, the Tribe was off on one of its rallies in the fifth. Rohwer opened with that long triple and scored when Ted Baldwin doubled over McNeeley’s head. Frank Tobin, who had received a big bunch of carnations from the Seattle local of the plumbers union, “Big Tob” being a member of the Sacramento local, hit one squarely on the nose to right field. Siglin made a marvelous stop and throw to first to nail him. Billy Lane followed with an equally hard-hit ball to left field that Merlin Kopp made a great catch on. Hemingway and Mollwitz had turned in some fine plays before that, too.
Dell Starts Well.
            Wheezer Dell started as though he would need only one run to win.
            For three innings he mowed the Solons down without a hit. Frank Tobin helped him out of his few difficulties with some great throwing. He stopped Hemingway stealing in the first and nipped McNeeley off of first in the third with a snap throw.
            Kopp’s double, a sacrifice and Schang’s single broke the ice and put the Solons ahead in the fourth, the first time all week that they had been in the lead.
            Dell had two out in the sixth before trouble overtook him. Hemingway singled and Siglin and Schange doubled for a pair of Solon tallies.
            Three more came over in the seventh inning and caused Dell’s retirement in favor of Greg.
            Crane booted a slow hopper from Mollwitz’s bat, and then was caught out of position on a hit-and-run play when McNeeley pushed a lazy single through short. Cooey McGinnis tripled to the left-field fence, scoring the pair and counted himself on Yellowhorse’s long fly to Lane.
            Gregg came on, put out the side and retired in favor of “Papa” Frank Osborne, who tried to celebrate the arrival of a nine pound boy in his St. Joseph, Mo., home by pinch-hitting. McNeeley made a fine catch of his long line drive.
            Then came Carl Williams, with the score tied, and the Solons were stopped dead and Texas Carl gets the credit for the win.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Some things

I'm still working on the post for the next game. My router was broken. Here's a few diversions. Click on each picture to be taken to a link to a particular story.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Game 16, Friday, April 24, 1924

On Friday, April 25, 1924, the Seattle PCL ball club played the 16th overall game in what was their third series of the year. In the PCL of the time, a given series between teams lasted Tuesday/Wednesday to Sunday/Monday, so this was also the third week of the season. Generally, there were 7 games to a series, minus rain-outs, train delays, etc.

The Indians made it three straight against the Sacramento Senators, winning by a score of 9 to 1 behind the strong pitching of George Steuland, some great leadoff hitting from center-fielder Billy Lane, a massive home run from big first baseman Elmer Bowman, and the good eye of Ray Rohwer, who went 0 for 0, yet managed a 1.000 OBP. 

This is the game where the Indians pulled themselves out of the PCL basement and began their long climb towards catching the first place San Francisco Seals. They tied the Solon victory total at six, but thanks to poor weather in Salt Lake, the Indians had played a game less than Sacramento, thus eeking out a lead over that now last place team by the percentages, the Seattle 6-10 record being a .375 winning percentage compared to the .353 of the 6-11 team on the losing side of this days game. This is an essential feature of the Coast League of the time. Practically, each team will end up playing a differing number of games over the course of a season, between 196 and 210 usually. The main difference will be winning percentage, not overall wins and losses.

Ray Rohwer had a unique if not an extraordinary game, going 0-0 with 4 walks. He was in the middle of a three game stretch where he would get on base in 13 consecutive plate appearances. I’m not sure if there is an accurate PCL record for this time, when it was classified as a AA league, but 13 is a pretty good stretch. Hitting streaks were pretty well accounted for, but an on-base streak was not looked upon as kindly, and, without really knowing at all, I would guess Rohwer’s streak to be one of the better in PCL history. The longest such streak in MLB history is 17.

Rowher was born in Dixon, California in 1895. The Rohwer family, Jacob and Lena were his parents, were quite productive, accounting for at least four members of the 1916 Dixon Dairy City baseball team. In the picture to the right, Hans Rohwer is in the upper left, Ray is in the middle on the right, Eggert Rohwer is in the middle on the end, and Claude Rohwer is in the lower row in the middle. Ray would be the only one of these to make the major leagues. Ray went on to star at the University of California, graduating in 1917. Following that he went to officer training in France during World War I where he received a Lieutenant commission in August 1918. I’m not sure about college eligibility rules related to WWI, but it seems he came back to play some games in 1920 at Berkeley. From there he went to the Pittsburgh Pirates for parts of 1921 and 1922, and was then traded to Seattle. He would continue to have a great year in 1924, but would be traded in the off-season prior to 1925 for third basemen Frank Brazill from Portland. Eventually, he would wind up his career with Sacramento, near his hometown, retiring after 5 ½ years there in 1931. 

Rohwer, or rather the Rohwers, still played baseball though. I found a box score from a Woodland newspaper from 1933. It details a game between the Dixon Packers and Woodland Oaks, and Ray Rohwer was still making a difference with his bat. The 3-4-5 hitters were Claude, Ray and Eggert Rohwer, and they helped the Packers take this particular Valley League contest that day by a score of 3-2. At least one other brother, Otto, also played baseball for the UC Bears, being listed on the team in 1925-27. Otto later became a lawyer and was president of the Sacramento Chamber of Commerce when they sued in 1944 to keep the Sacramento ball club from being sold to out of town interests. 

As a total aside, but to provide complete coverage on all known professional baseball players in the US with a last name of Rohwer, I know the guy to the right is related, probably a Rohwer cousin since he was in high school in Spokane while Claude and Ray were competing against each other in the PCL (I don’t have the exact information but rather genealogical references), there is also a Ted Rohwer who was a half-back at Washington State University from 1926-28 (see right). He had pitched in two games in the minors in Illinois in 1930. For his collegiate endeavors, Ted Rohwer was elected to the WSU Hall of Fame in 1989. 

Claude Rohwer, who also left the University of California to serve in WWI, and was invited to Pittsburgh Pirates training camp in 1922 only to lose the third base job to fellow prospect Pie Traynor, was done with PCL ball by 1924, became Commander of the Dixon American Legion post by 1932, and died in car accident in 1940. Ray lived until 1988, passing away in Davis, California. Even though having a game with no at-bats but four walks is unique, Ray had an even more unique game on August 23, 1927, when his Sacramento team was visiting Los Angeles. Ray went 0-0 again, but had 4 sacrifice hits, 1 walk and 1 HBP.

Also of note here is supposedly only the third ball ever hit out over the right field fence by a right handed hitter. I’ve been looking for a picture of the field from that time to gauge an idea of the size of the park. Also, I haven’t been able to find a game description of either Kamm’s or Meusel’s home runs, but I’m searching. Once again, hot off the presses of the Seattle Daily Times, from one of up to seven daily editions, a transcription of a dusty, faded day:

Indians Continue To Bunch Their Hits To Beat Sacramento
Bowman Drives Out Homer Clearing Right Field Wall for One of Longest Blows in Seattle’s History

THREE straight for the Seattle tribe of Indians is the score today in this first series at home with Sacramento as the result of a finely pitched ball game turned in by George Steuland and some more lusty hitting by his mates. The score was Seattle, 9; Sacramento, 1.
     Steuland now ranks with Suds Sutherland for the honor of the best pitched games of the year. Suds held Los Angeles to one run in the Sunday doubleheader there.
     Steuland pitched a beautiful game. And his mates backed him up in perfect style, nary a bobble occurring behind him while a snappy double play he engineered with Sam Crane and Bowman in the first inning helped him out of one of the two holes he got into by putting the first man on base.

Stingy With Hits
     The big Dakotan allowed but six hits. Kopp singled as first man up and was snagged in that aforementioned double play. Cochrane walked in the second, but he got no further,   Mollwitz and McNeeley lifting towering flies.
     Hughes singled as second man in the third inning, but Kopp lofted to Ray Rohwer and Claude Rohwer fanned on three pitched balls, two beautiful tantalizing curves and a fast one through the heart.
     Steuland balked the only run in for Sacramento in the fourth. Siglin walked, advanced on an infield out and then Cochrane also walked, Mollwitz forced Cochrane, Siglin taking third and the pair started a double steal. Steuland gave Mollwitz a big lead, stopped his pitch and threw to get Siglin, who was allowed to score unmolested. McNeeley grounded out to end that trouble.
     Steuland retired the side in the fifth, seventh and eighth. He had two men on from singles in the sixth, but fanned Mollwitz for the third out. Cochrane and McNeeley singled in the ninth, but Schang, sent in as a pinch-hitter, lofted to Ray Rohwer and the victory was won.

Just One Hit Wasted
     For the third straight game the Indians made every hit but one count. Eldred’s long double to right was wasted in the third inning. The nine other Indian bingles figured in the run getting some way.
     Bill Hughes, who was chosen to take the punishment by Manager Charley Pick, was hit for a single by Billy Lane in the first inning. Cliff Brady bunted foul on the first ball, then with the Solon infield expecting him to bunt again, singled sharply to left field. Crane did bunt and the two midgets advanced a base each.
     Brick Eldred sent a long fly to Cochrane, on which Lane scored and Brady took third. Then came the hit de luxe, Bowman’s homer over the right center field fence.
     Seattle fans who have attended baseball games in Coast League park regurlarly for years have seen just three balls hit over that fence by right-handed hitters- Bob Meusel, when he was with Vernon; Willie Kamm when he was with San Francisco and then Bowman’s yesterday. There have been flies dropped over the fence close to the foul line, but Bowman’s drive cleared the Shell Oil Company’s sign in right center, traveling on a line and clearing the wall with yards to spare. It was some drive.
     Hughes pitched nice ball from then on to the seventh, only Eldred’s double and bases on balls to Bowman and Rohwer in the third and a walk to Rohwer in the sixth marring his work.
     The Indians came back with another of the irresistible rallies in the seventh. Steuland was out when Lane doubled to left. He stole third and scored when Koehler threw into left field.
    Brady then walked and Sam Crane singled. Eldred forced Crane. Brady reaching third and scoring when Claude Rohwer kicked Bowman’s ground ball. Hughes walked Ray Rohwer for the fourth time and Ted Baldwin, whose hitting eye had been missing all week came through with a looping single to right, scoring Brick and Bowman.
     Steuland’s line single to center, Lane’s blow to left, Brady’s sacrifice and Crane’s double would the Indian scoring in the eighth.

Fans Following Play
     Another good week day crowd was on hand and with good weather on tap today and tomorrow the Coast League park is going to be taxed to the limit.
     It has been many years since Seattle has boasted of a club with a scoring record of 120 runs in sixteen games, a fielding record of only seventeen errors in sixteen games, eight of which have been played perfectly.
     And, with good pitching apparently on the road following the showings of Sutherland, Gregg, Plummer and Steuland the outlook is promising to say the least.

Lane and Rohwer Stand Out
     The work of Billy Lane and Ray Rohwer since the team returned home has been little less than phenomenal.
     Wednesday Lane hit three doubles, drew two walks and scored three runs.
     Thursday he singled twice, doubled and sacrificed, scoring two runs in five trips to the plate.
     Friday he singled twice, doubled and scored three runs.
     That makes his total nine hits, five of them doubles, and eight runs for the three games.
     Ray Rohwer on Wednesday sacrificed, singled and scored a run in four trips to the plate.
     On Thursday he tripled twice, singled twice and walked in five trips beside scoring twice.
     And yesterday he walked every time he came up, four in all.
     His record shows five hits, two of them triples, five bases on balls and a sacrifice hit as well as three runs.
     Yesterday he handled six fly balls in left field too.
     No wonder they’re winning games.

The images of the Rohwer brothers are from the Dixon Public Library's digital archives and exhibitions. Follow the pic's to link to that. Support Public Libraries!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Game 15, in which the Seattle Indians improve to 5-10

For their 15th game of the year, the Indians sent out Bill Plummer to the mound, only to have him injure his arm and come out of the game early. Plummer, whose son Bill would go on to back up for Johnny Bench and later manage the Seattle Mariners, started pitching in the PCL at the age of 19 with Portland, then moving to Seattle for a small part of the 1923 season. In 1924, he had come out of spring training as, going by this article and previous ones, the best pitching option for the Indians. He would pitch 130 innings in 1924, followed by 142 in 1925. He sat out 1926, and then tried one last comeback on August 16, 1927 at the age of 25. He lasted 5 and 2/3 innings that day against the San Francisco Seals.

This game gave the Indians their 5th win of the year, Plummer his third. Sacramento pitcher Bill Prough took the loss. This was to be Prough’s last year in the PCL. From 1914 to 1924, he pitched nearly 3300 innings in the PCL with Oakland and Sacramento, going 175-192 with a 3.04 ERA. Overall, he had 18 minor league seasons, throwing 4676 innings in 642 games, with 269 wins and 252 defeats. Those numbers are incomplete, but only slightly since his first year with Iowa’s Keokuk Indians need to be counted up. You can add 1 major league game onto Prough’s stats, as he pitched 3 innings on April 27, 1912, for the Cincinatti Reds. He went out to the mount that day with another guy getting his cup of coffee, Hanson Horsey. Their efforts were part of a 23-4 beating at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Sacramento Pitchers Again Maltreated By Killefer’s Larrupers

Lane, Eldred and Rohwer Account for Eleven Base Knocks-Plummer Forced to Quit With Sore Arm.

ANOTHER victory resulted for the Seattle Indians yesterday when they made all but one of seventeen hits count and defeated the Sacramento Senators, 11 to 5. It was the second straight victory of the home series for the Indians, and was witnessed by a good-sized weekday crows.
     The victory was not without cost, however, for Bill Plummer, the youngster who had already accounted for two of the Indian four winning games, was forced to retire at the end of the seventh inning with a sore elbow.
     So long as Plummer felt right the Senators were helpless. Earl McNeeley, Solon center fielder, was the only man to find Plummer’s delivery safely for three innings. His speed was terrific and he shot through several balls that broke a full foot and broke fast, too. His control was splendid, too, and he looked even better than he did the day he beat the Angels for Seattle’s first victory.
     Plummer’s arm commenced to go bad in the fourth, however. He was found for two scratch singles, but with the bases full and the count three and two on Cochrane he curved one through the heart of the plate for a strike out and ended that trouble.
     He might have escaped trouble in the fifth except that Ted Baldwin made an excusable error on a chance shot his way by McGinnis, following which Merlin Kopp spanked one over the right field wall, scoring McNeeley and McGinnis ahead of him.
     Kopp drove in the other two Solon runs in the seventh but he was mighty lucky. He was falling away from a curve ball and hit in self defense, the ball dropping in right field for a double. Mollwitz had singled and McNeeley doubled ahead of Kopp’s blow.
     Manager Killefer sent Carl Williams in to finish the game. Plummer looks like the best Indian pitching bet so far and no chances were taken with him.

Indians Bunch Their Blows
     The way the Indians are bunching their blows is a caution. In two games at home they have wasted just one hit each.
     It was the same way in training season. Let some one of them start a rally and they were as apt to bat all the way around as not. That’s what makes for winning baseball clubs.

Sand Blowers Connect
     It was the sand blowers again who delivered the knockout punches for three of Col. Charles Pick’s hurlers.
     Lane delivered to singles, a double, and a sacrifice fly and scored twice.
     Cliff Brady delivered two singles, two sacrifices and scored a run.
     Brick Eldred delivered four singles, drove in three runs and scored one himself.
     Ray Rohwer delivered two triples, two singles and two runs, besides driving in another counter.
     For your information a “sand blower” in the parlance of the Indian training camp, is a human being built so closed to the ground that when he takes a deep breath and expels it with force the sand flies.
     Lane, Brady, Eldred and Rohwer can all walk under a bar held five feet six inches off the ground-hence the title.

Score in First Five Cantos
     In every one of the first five innings Indian runs pattered across the plate.
     Bill Lane started the first inning by pushing a bunt down the first base line and beating it out. Brady sacrificed and after the midget center fielder had taken third on Crane’s long fly to center, Eldred delivered his first pinch blow, Lane scoring.
     Ray Rohwer punched a rousing triple to left center off Bill Prough to open the second. Ted Baldwin walked and after Earl Baldwin had fanned Bill Plummer delivered a sacrifice bunt which scored Rohwer and moved Ted Baldwin along to second. He was picked off of that bag by a quick throw from Schang.
     The Solons got Lane out finally in the third, after that player had reached first base safely six consecutive times in two days, but Cliff Brady gave the Indians a start with a clean single over second.
     Prough kicked Crane’s chance, then threw badly to catch Brady and both of them were safe. Eldred’s single to left scored Brady. Crane and Eldred moved up on a double steal and Crane scored on Bowman’s terrific line fly to Kopp. Ray Rohwer crashed out his second triple of the day, scoring Eldred.
     Three more trickled over in the fourth. Bill Plummer began it with a rousing double to right center. Schang threw to catch him at second and nobody covered, the ball going to center field and Plummer to third. Lane doubled to left and was sacrificed along by Brady. Crane doubled to left center, scoring Lane, and scored himself on Brick Eldred’s third consecutive run producing bingle, Daka Davis, claimed by the Solons from San Francisco when the Seals asked waivers on him, did the pitching following Plummer’s blow.
     Vinci, a young left-hander, stepped onto the mound in the fifth and was greeted with two more runs. Rohwer hit the first ball he threw to right for a single. Ted Baldwin forced Rohwer and Earl Baldwin was hit by a pitched a pitched ball. Plummer filled the bases with a scorching single off Siglin’s bare hand. Lane’s long fly to center allowed Ted Baldwin to score and Earl Baldwin to take third from where the latter runner scored on Brady’s single to center.
     The last counter came in the eighth when Earl Baldwin doubled to left scoring Rohwer, who had singled and gone to second while Ted Baldwin was forcing Eldred at third.
     Eldred earned Rohwer’s hit for him by yelling, “I have it,” in the midst of the Sacramento infield, as a result of which no one touched Rohwer’s high fly until it hit the ground.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Game 14, home opener against the Sacramento Solons

The Seattle Indians finally headed home after being away from town for a couple of months, first for Spring Training in San Bernardino and then followed by two dismal weeks to open the 1924 Pacific Coast League season. The season started first in Los Angeles and then went via train to Salt Lake City. The hometown opening day started with a rather massive and circuitous parade through downtown Seattle to the Indians home field. According to the article below, a record 14,000 fans attended the opening day game. As one of the stories put it, “IT was a “Whoop-la” “Atta Boy” day for fair at the Seattle ball yard yesterday afternoon when Radiant Red Killefer’s newly laundried Redskins took Curly Colonel Charley Pick’s bewildered Sacramento Senators and mopped up the diamond with them to the merry old tune of 9 to 2.” It’s nice to see some of the same language used today originated in the jazzy newsprint patois of the time. Its also nice to see the brutality of the society reflected in its usage of terms like Redskin, Indian, etc. The casualness of it highlights the complexity of race in the emerging America. The stands were so crowded for opening day “you couldn’t have gotten a boy-and a really small boy at that-into the grand stand with a jimmy.”

Charles Thomas Pick was born April 12, 1888, in Brookneal, Campbell County, Virginia, and he passed away on June 26, 1954 in Lynchburg, just to the north of Campbell County. Brookneal was initially founded in the early 1800s by descendents of the first white settlers of Campbell County, some were named Brook, and others Neal. John Brook's land was across the Staunton River from Patrick Henry's, and it was on Brook's side of the river that a tobacco warehouse was built, across the river from Henry's farm. It was here that Brookneal developed. Pick's younger brother Lewis was also born in Brookneal. Lewis would grow up to become a Lieutenant General and Chief Engineer of the Army Corp of Engineers. Both Pick City, North Dakota and Pickstown, South Dakota were named for Lewis A. Pick. Charlie Pick died in Lynchburg of a heart attack on Thursday, June 26, 1954. At the time of his death, Charlie had been Attendance Officer for the Rustburg School Board. Pick played in the American Legue for Washington and Philadelphia, and then in the National League for Chicago and Boston. In 1918, he split his time between the San Francisco Seals and the Cubs. The 1918 Cubs have come under suspicion for possibly having thrown that year's World Series. Please note, Charlie Pick probably had the best series of any hitter with more than 10 at-bats.

The Seattle Daily Times presented the action via a new ‘long range camera’ it called Aunt Eppie. I have searched for what camera this was, but have not gathered any solid information. I think the name is based on a character from a comic than ran on the sports pages by Fontaine Fox, called Funny Folk. I have presented one of the comics below. Fox was one of the earliest of America’s syndicated comic artists, with his work appearing from the first decade of the 1900’s into the 1950s. 

I’ve also included, in addition to the pictures from Aunt Eppie, a rendering in caricature from the front page of that day’s Sports Section of the Seattle Daily Times, done by Parker McAllister. McAllister was new at the Times, and would go on to be the main staff artist for the Sunday magazine section for over 40 years, producing over a 1,000 watercolor illustrations highlighting the history and natural wonders of Washington State. At this time, he was presenting almost daily pen-and-ink highlights of local teams and events. 
 The game itself featured some decent hitting from the Indians, and finally a decent pitching performance after the team had been slaughtered by the big bats in the band box of Salt Lake City. The anonymous newspaperman places the key to the Indians' success on 'bunching' their hits together. Reading through a lot of the game descriptions and box scores, the Indians used a lot of sacrifice hits and smart baserunning. It looks like from the Aunt Eppie supplied images that Killefer managed the offensive game from the 3rd base box. One interesting thing to point out about Sacramento’s pitching lineup that day was the inclusion of Charlie Hall. He had broken into professional baseball in 1904 with the earliest version of Seattle’s PCL club. From Ventura, his real name was Carlos Luis Hall, and he was considered by Connie Mack to have been the best relief pitcher of his time. I'll try to dig up more about him. One of the myth's of baseball is that its internationalization/integration occurred in the late 1940s. In reality, the invisible line of racial segregation was constantly smudged. Carlos is one of many examples. While uncommon, think of two of the veterans on the Solons' pitching staff for this series, a Mexican American from Ventura and the first full-blooded Native American player in Major League history, 'Chief' Moses Yellow Horse. Both had big time experience, and Hall, like his Manager Charlie Pick, had won a World Series with the Boston Red Sox. This isn't to say America wasn't a segregated country, it's saying reality is more complicated than myth, and far more interesting.

Tribes Barrage of Doubles Too Much For Foe
Sacramento Pitching Fails to Stop Indians-Six 2-Base Hits Figure in Run Getting-Record Crowd Satisfied

FOURTEEN THOUSAND Seattle fans saw their baseball team humble Sacramento 9 to 2 here yesterday afternoon and went home declaring they’d come again if that was the type of baseball they were going to be given.
       The Indian bats were much in evidence. Eleven base hits, six of them doubles, and only one of them wasted, was the Indian harvest off the pitching of Pitchers Thompson, Charley Hall and Canfield. Nine runs resulted from those hits, two bases on balls and an error.
       Back of that setting of doubles Harvey Sutherland, obtained from Portland in exchange for Harry Gardner, pitched beautiful ball for six innings. The Solons were pecking away at him, to be sure, but when men got on base the hitting suddenly stopped. He weakened in the seventh; might have pulled through had Manager Killefer cared to take a chance, but Wade, mindful of what happened to his pitcher at Salt Lake, led him out and had Vean Gregg finish.
       One ball was enough for Gregg to end the seventh, Crane and Brady staging one of the their snappy doubles. Three of the next six men to face him fanned, and no more damage resulted.
     The Indians let it be known right from the start that they were out to win.
      Thompson, a clunky left-hander, was the Solons’ first pitcher. He pitched to three men.
       Bill Lane drove a double down the third base line. Cliff Brady, after trying to sacrifice twice, worked Thompson for a base on balls. Sammy Crane likewise tried to bunt twice, both attempts going foul; then worked Thompson into a hole and, with the hit-and-run-play on, singled to left center, Lane scoring and Brady taking third. That was all for Mr. Thompson, and the venerable Charley Hall, who broke in here in Seattle in 1903, came into the picture.
       The bunt game still looked good to Boss Killefer, and Eldred twice tried to score Brady and move Crane up a base, his attempts, too, rolling foul each time. That situation failed to dismay Eldred, however, and he singled to left, scoring Brady.
       Elmer Bowman made his bow to Seattle fans with a neatly placed bunt down the third base line, advancing the pair.
       Hall started to walk Rohwer, but pitched the ball too close in on the fourth ball. Ray figured he had a hit in his system, but the ball went straight at Siglin.
       Paddy threw home, trapping Crane. The captain wiggled back and forth and finally was tagged sliding back to third. Eldred had been on third once, but started back, and he too was tagged out sliding into second.

Big Inning Staged
       Nothing exciting happened then until the Indian half of the fifth. Then everything happened at once.
       Lane started with another double to left. Brady sacrificed him to third. Crane was walked, whereupon Brick Eldred smacked a slow ball to left center for two bases, Lane scoring and Crane taking third.
       Elmer Bowman hit the left field bleacher fence with another double, scoring two more.
       Rohwer singled to right, scoring Bowman, and took second on the throw-in.
       Charlie Hall gave way to Bill Hughes, Ted Baldwin greeting him with a blow off McGinnis’ gloved hand that put Rohwer on third. He and Baldwin then scored when Kopp dropped Sutherland’s long fly. Kopp first misjudged the ball, then dropped it as he ran backwards on it. Lane walked, but Brady ended the inning with a line drive into Kopp’s hands.
       Six runs on five hits, three of them doubles.

       There were still more doubles left in the Indian bat bag. Lane and Brady contributing, Billy’s blow being his third of the two-base variety. And another run came over in the eighth.
       Sutherland’s troublesome inning was the seventh. McNeeley singled to left and advanced on a short passed ball. McGinnis beat out a hit to Bowman when Sutherland didn’t cover in time. Kopp bounced a hit off Sutherland’s hand, which seemed to unsteady the Indian hurler, and Claude Rohwer walked, filling the bases. Siglin singled another run home in the person of Merlin Kopp, whereupon Manager Killefer decided Suds had done a good day’s work and sent in Vean Gregg. Koehler hit the first ball he threw into a double play, Crane to Brady to Bowman.

Fans Deeply Impressed
      The victory seemed to deeply impress the big crowd.
      The snappy infield play, the evident earnestness of the Indians and the hard hitting bore out what had been said of the Seattle 1924 Pacific Coast League entry.
       Big Elmer Bowman, about whose hitting the fans have been wondering, spanked two squarely on the nose. His first one all but tore Claude Rohwer’s bare hand off. It whirled the Sacramento infielder completely around. He was sacrificed along and showed that he was alert by snagging third when Ted Baldwin’s hard drive to Kopp had that fielder off balance.
       His next trial came in the big inning, his double to left hitting the left field bleacher fence on a short hop. It was base hit of the 100 per cent pure variety.
       Of the other new men, Cliff Brady had a fine day. He walked, sacrificed neatly twice, doubled to left, and flew out in the five trips to the plate.
      He was mixed up in two double plays. He leaped into the air and pulled down McNeeley’s hard smash in the second, doubling Mollwitz off first and then figured as the pivot man in the double killing that ended the Solon rally in the seventh.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Getting ready for the home opener, 1924

As the Seattle Indians came off a disaster of an opening road trip, going 3-10 in a swing through Los Angeles and Salt Lake City, they got some good news concerning aging starter Vean Gregg (who would parlay his season that year into a brief return to the majors). Gregg was one of the last pitchers, and maybe the final across the major and minor levels of professional MLB-associated ball,  to be granted a waiver to use a spitball (although the last pitcher to legally throw a spitball in an MLB game was Burleigh Grimes in 1934, not sure about the minors). I don't see Gregg's name on the list of pitchers at the MLB level who were legally allowed to continue throwing the spitter after Ray Chapman's death in 1920. That may have been purposeful, I would have to look into his signing in the off season to see if it was an issue. That may have hampered his return to the majors at age 40.

One of the more interesting features of this article is its descriptions of the players' reactions to playing at Bonneville Park in Salt Lake City. I've never seen exact dimensions on that stadium as it was in the 1920's, but it's interesting to read into the strategy and frustration players had there. The photo to the left is from the J. G. Preston Experience blog. Judging from the height of the players in the outfield, the left field wall was not only close in, but quite high. Looking at the manager Red Killefer's remarks below, the strategy employed by the hitters makes complete sense. Tony Lazzeri, the first player to hit 60 home runs in a season, must have had some opposite field power to swat the ball over that size of a fence. Ray Rowher and Jim Welsh both homered in the Salt Lake series, Welsh four times, and both were left handed batters. Sam Crane and Earl 'Red' Baldwin each had homer's as right handed batters, and the game narrative indicates Crane's was over the left field wall. Certainly, it seems that the Bees' hitters knew how to use the wall to create doubles. The thing I found most interesting was the large number of putouts by the catchers in every game, rather than the first baseman. There must have been a large area behind home plate which allowed catchers a better chance to catch popups. The catchers for Seattle were credited with 39 putouts for the SLC series out of a possible 150 (that may be off if someone took first on a K, and even with a tag or the occasional out at home, that still means a lot of popups, so why??? I ask....and SLC went to their half of the ninth only 2 of the 6 games, so that's 39 putouts by a catcher in 50 innings [x 3 outs]). That's fully 26% of possible outs made by the catcher.

Finally, the article also mentions the nifty new uniforms given out by team trainer Adolph Schacht. He was Athletic Director at the Seattle Elks Club by 1918, trainer for the Indians, refereed boxing matches for over 20 years in the Seattle area, and was, by at least 1933, also the trainer for the Chicago White Sox, though he maintained a home in West Seattle, and acted as a trainer in the off-season for the West Seattle Athletic Club. Schacht died in January of 1942, just as he was getting ready for the White Sox spring training that year in Pasadena. Follow that last link to read the story, which details some of his experiences in and involvement in Seattle baseball and athletics in general. The article refers to Jumbo Elliott's one year with the Seattle Indians, 1926, where he went 26-20, throwing 367 innings with a 2.55 ERA.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Week Two Review: Seattle v. Salt Lake City

The Seattle Indians finished the second week of the season week of the 1924 Pacific Coast League season running their record down to 3 wins and 10 losses. Following their 2-5 start at Washington Park in Los Angeles, they went 1-5 at the bandbox called Bonneville Park against the Salt Lake City Bees. They would leave Salt Lake City to head back to Seattle for their home opening series against Sacramento. The Seattle club hit the ball well, but the Bees were just a better hitting team. They were a good enough hitting club that a young Tony Lazzeri batted 7th most of the week, while Lefty O’Doul, soon to give up pitching, batted at the bottom of the order on his pitching day. Every single pitcher the Indians used in week two gave up at least 5 earned runs.
            The hottest hitters of the week for Seattle were right fielder Brick Eldred and third baseman Ted Baldwin. Batting cleanup, Brick hit .455 for the week, going 10 for 22 in the six games, including 4 doubles, and scoring 10 runs. Baldwin batted 7th usually, and went 10 for 26 with 2 doubles and a sacrifice hit. He had continued the hot bat he had in Los Angeles, bringing his average down to .386 in 10 games. The other hot bat was Jimmy Welsh, who homered in all 4 games he saw time in, one as a pinch hitter in the first game of the series and 3 more in each of the last three games of the series after replacing Elmer Bowman at first base. Overall, Welsh was 6 for 15, scoring 4 runs. This gave him a .320 average for the year in 8 games as a utility player. Welsh would have a good 1924 season, his second with the Indians, and be purchased in December by the Boston Braves. There he would get to play with a trio of aging Hall of Famers, including shortstop/manager Dave Bancroft, Rube Marquard, and Casey Stengel. Welsh would play in Stengel’s final game in May and Marquard’s final game in September. Welsh played against Bancroft, who had been traded to the Giants on May 17, 1930, which would also be Welsh’s last year in the majors. Incidentally, Stengel had broken into the majors in 1912 along with Welsh’s Seattle coach and   fellow utility infielder George Cutshaw. Of course, Stengel didn’t get to the Hall of Fame for his hitting.

Totals for week 2:
·         Billy Lane, CF for all six games, batted first all six games. 6 for 21 at the plate including 2 doubles. Now hitting .282 on the season, going 13 for 46 in 13 games and putting 10 runs on board.
·         Cliff Brady, 2B for all six games, batted second for six games as well. Brady continued a slow start, going 5 for 24 with 1 double and 1 sacrifice, putting 3 runs on the board. For the year he was hitting .231 after playing all 13 games with a 12 for 52 performance at the plate, and contributed 7 runs.
·         Sam Crane, SS for all six games, and entrenched as the #3 hitter. The Indians team captain maintained his hitting consistency, going 8 for 25 with 3 doubles and a sacrifice. He did have 3 errors for the week. His 5 runs gave him 6 for the season in 11 games, and his season average stood at .319 after two weeks, going 15 for 47.
·         Brick Eldred, RF for all six games, batted cleanup all games. Eldred brought the hottest bat to the best spot, going 10 for 22 for the week with 4 doubles and 10 runs. This put him at an even .400 for the season, getting 18 hits in 45 at bats in all 13 games, with 15 runs to boot.
·         Elmer Bowman, 1B for three games. Bowman hit in the fifth spot, but gave way to the hot bat of Jimmy Welsh later in the week. His 3 for 12 performance for the week put 4 runs on the board, but dropped his season average down to .282, with 10 runs in 10 games.
·         Jimmy Welsh, 1B for three games. Welsh took Bowman’s spot in the field and hitting order, hitting 4 home runs during the week. He started off the week with a pinch hit home run batting for team captain Sam Crane in the 8th inning of the first game of the series. He followed that with one home run in each of the final 3 games of the series. For the week Welsh was 6 for 15, and for the season 8 for 25, a .320 average with 7 runs scored in 8 games overall.
·         Ray Rowher, LF for all six games, hit 6th in all the games as well. He was 8 for 24 for the Bees series, with 3 doubles, a home run and a sacrifice hit as well. The 4 runs he scored gave him 11 for the year, batting .300 on 15 for 50 hitting over all 13 games.
·         Ted Baldwin, whose mother named him Henry, was 10 for 26 for the week, scoring 2 runs to go with a .384 average with 2 doubles and a sacrifice thrown in for good measure. That gave him a .386 average for the two week old season, with 6 run and 17 hits in 44 at bats.
·         Frank Tobin and Earl Baldwin split the catching duties and the eighth spot in the order. Earl Brucker, a young catcher who got into his first minor league game during the week also made an appearance, going 2 for 2 with a double and a home run in the first game of the series ending Sunday double header. Tobin was 3 for 10 for the week with a sacrifice hit, dropping his average for the year to .381, hitting 8 for 21 in 6 games overall with five runs scored. Baldwin was 3 for 11, with 2 doubles and a home run. That gave him a .250 average on 7 for 28 hitting in 8 games. Brucker would one day manage the Reds for a week, sandwiched in between Luke Sewell and Rogers Hornsby in 1952, and later be instrumental in bringing auto racing to El Cajon after an attempt to build a spring training camp for the Tigers failed. As a catcher, he would finally make the majors in 1937, at the age of 36, and play until 1943.
·         Other position players to see time that week were Frank Emmer, Frank Osborne and George Cutshaw. Emmer was the backup SS and 3B. Osborne was a utility outfielder who had been used as a relief pitcher 4 times in the opening week in Los Angeles, and Cutshaw would see occasional action, but was also Manager Red Killefer’s bench coach.

     The pitchers were uniformly slaughtered throughout the week. Percy Jones made two appearances, starting the week and finishing in relief. He had 8 2/3 innings total with 10 earned runs, 4 walks, 2 strikeouts, 4 hit batters and 2 wild pitches. Those numbers closely parallel his 1920 season with the Cubs. Bill Plummer, father of the future Mariner’s manager (his wife was sister of Seattle teammate Earl “Red” Baldwin), was 1-1 in two long relief appearances, giving up only 5 earned runs in 11 1/3 innings with 5 walks, 5 strikeouts, and 2 hit batters. Suds Sutherland was 0-1, losing his only start of the week, but also the pitcher to go the distance during the week. He gave up 9 earned runs with 4 walks, 5 strikeouts and 1 hit batter. Vean Gregg was still winless, getting a no decision in an otherwise loss in which Gregg gave up 5 earned runs in 4 1/3 innings. Victor Pigg had 1 relief appearance and 1 start, giving up 9 earned runs with 4 walks and 4 strikeouts. George Steuland went 7 2/3 innings in one long relief appearance, giving up 7 earned runs with 5 walks, 7 strikeouts and a hit batter. Wheezer Dell only lasted 4 1/3 innings in his start, giving up 12 earned runs with a walk and 2 strikeouts. Lastly, Jim Bagby, a 31 game winner for the 1920 World Series champion Cleveland Indians, lasted 2/3 of an inning in one start, giving up 7 earned runs while striking out two. On a side note, his teammate Elmer Bowman had a two cup of coffee career in the majors. In the first of those two games, he got one pinch hit appearance against Bagby in 1920. His last cup of coffee was later that season against Black Sock Lefty Williams.