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  • December 5th

    December 5, 1916: Len (Who Dat?) Schulte Is Born.

    "Don't stop now! Please Tell me more
    about the Browns career of Len Schulte!!"

    OK, maybe Len Schulte didn't do all that much, but he was a Brown once and, this morning, he helps us fill in a fairly blank page in the club's recorded and most easily accessible history.

    Len Schulte was born on Tuesday, December 5, 1916 in St. Charlies, Missouri. He began his brief big league career on September 27, 1944 with the St. Louis Browns, going hitless in his single official time at bat. He did draw a walk in his other plate appearance. The following year, 1945, Len got into 119 games as a utility infielder for the Browns, playing 71 games at 3rd base, 37 games at 2nd base, and 14 games at shortstop. He collected 106 hits for a .247 average, but showed no power. Of his total hits, 89 were singles and 16 were doubles. 1 triple found its way to the wall, but zero homers sprang from his porous, shock-absorbing bat.

    By 1946, Schulte was finished after going 2 for 5. The return of talent from World War II, even for the Browns, gave the club better choices for its roster, and so, the 29-year old Schulte was ingloriously cut. He would never make it back for another day in the big leagues.

    Born as "Leonard Bernard Schultehenrich" with a name about as memorable as his career, Schulte died on May 6, 1986 in Orlando, Florida at the age of 69. It should be noted that Len's older brother, Ham Schulte, also had a short-term big league career. Ham played a full season as an infielder with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1940, hitting only .237 as an infielder in 120 games. That one year was also the only shot that Ham ever got at the big leagues. I'm not sure if it was World War II or that .237 BA that got Ham, but one or the other did.

    a Len Schulte reference link ...

    December 5th Deaths. 1951 outfielder Cliff Mapes died on this date in 1996 at the age of 74. Mapes joined the Browns from the Yankees in a July 31, 1951 trade for Lou Sleater *, Bobby Hogue, Kermit Wahl, and Tom Upton. Mapes hit .274 in 56 games for the '51 Browns, but was later traded on Valentine's Day of 1952 to the Detroit Tigers for pitcher Gene Bearden.

    The trade of Mapes to the Browns did two things for the Yankees: (1.) it opened a space for the return of Mickey Mantle; and (2.) it freed up uniform # 7 for Mantle's use. Mapes had been #7 with the Yankees, but he will be remembered by few for that trivial fact beyond the well-informed walls of this St. Louis Browns forum.

    Cliff Mapes Hit .248 In Career
    That Included 2 World Series
    Appearances With The Yankees.

    * Sleater Trade Mystery. MacMillan's Baseball Encyclopedia shows this trade as reported above, but it does not resolve well with lefty Lou Sleater's individual record in the same Seventh Edition volume. Sleater's individual record shows him going 1-9 with the 1951 Browns and making no appearances with the '51 Yankees. The trade section of Volume 7 does show Sleater going from the Browns to the Senators in 1952, along with infielder Freddy Marsh, in exchange for infielder Cass Michaels. That trade is reported for May 12, 1952. h

    No different light is shed on this mystery by any of the other trade and record sources in my memory, my library, or the web. So, if Sleater was traded to the Yankees on July 31, 1951, why does he never appear in a game for New York that same year? Was he hurt? Or was the Sleater part of this trade somehow voided? There is no explanation in MacMillan's of Sleater being moved back to St. Louis by New York, even though he obviously remains Browns property at the start of the 1952 season. If anyone has an explanation here, please post it on this thread.

    Jim Duggan, a cup-of-coffee 1st baseman, also died on this date in 1951 at the age of 66. Duggan went 0 for 4 in his only big league start with the 1915 Browns.

    Death reference link ...

    To make up for today's gripping material, it is my wish that all of you will find something interesting to do today. :atthepc
    Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-05-2004, 04:11 PM.
    "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


    • December 6th

      December 6, 1882 & 1965: Variations On A Theme.

      Lou: "Who's On First? And What's The Name of The Catcher?"

      Bud: "Yes, Who's Usually On First, But What's on Second! Rowan's Playing for Who Today! And The Catcher is Crossin!"

      Lou: "Wait Just A Minute, Bud! If He's Crossin' Behind The Plate, Doesn't That Make It Kind of Hard For Him To Catch The Pitches? And Who's Catching Anyway?"

      Bud: "Who's Not Catching! - Who's Ordinarily On First, but today He's Rowan!"

      Lou: "What? Rowin'? This Browns Team Has Got Catchers That Cross? And First Sackers That Row? - What Is This - The American League or the Yale Regatta?"

      Bud: "What's neither. What's On Second!"

      Births: Dave Rowan / Born 12/06/1882. Talk about your one-month wonders! Dave Rowan was born as "David Drohan" in 1882 in Elora, Ontario. As a 29-year old rookie back in 1911, the guy finally made it to the big leagues as an all-lefty first baseman with the Browns and - what a firecracker career he had! From May 27th through June 22nd, the 6'11'', 175 pound first sacker got into 18 games and, did he ever make the most of them! Rowan didn't have much power, but he went 25 for 65 for a .385 BA and a SA of .431. His 25 hits included only 1 double and 1 triple, but he scored 7 runs and knocked in 11. After 06/22/11, Rowan disappears from the Browns and the big leagues for good. Was the sudden cutoff due to injury, replacement, personal problems? We will never know without deeper research.

      Dave Rowan died in Toronto on 7/30/55 at the age of 72. We're thinking of you this morning, Dave. That was quite a month you had back in 1911.

      Deaths: Frank Crossin / Died 12/06/65 in Kingston, PA at the age of 74. From Rowan to Crossin, we go from one-month wonder to makes-you-wonder. In a Browns career that lasted from 09/24/12 to 08/08/14, Crossin appeared in 55 games as a back up catcher and pinch hitter. He went 17 for 116, with only 1 double, 1 triple, and 0 homers. He scored 2 runs and also knocked in only a paltry 2. That output translated into a .147 BA and a SA of only .172. Whereas, we must wonder why Rowan went so soon, we also have to wonder - how did Crossin last so long?

      Frank Crossin was born in Avondale, PA on 06/15/1891. Judging from his death in nearby Kingston, PA, we are left with only simple conclusions. In geography and baseball, Frank Crossin was never destined to go far.

      Your baseball playing still took you further than most, Frank. This morning we pay tribute to you as a part of the history that is the St. Louis Browns. :atthepc

      Today's reference link ...
      Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-06-2004, 07:53 PM.
      "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


      • December 7th

        December 7th: Another Milestone Day.


        Albert Sayles "Hobe" Ferris
        was born on Friday, December 7, 1877 in Providence, RI. Hobie began his big league baseball career on April 26, 1901 with the Boston American League club. Ferris played nine seasons for two different clubs, ending his major league playing career as a Brown after playing for St. Louis during the 1908-09 seasons. Ferris hit .270 and .216 as an infielder for the Browns, finishing his career with a BA of .239. He died in Detroit on March 18, 1938 at the age of 60.

        Dennis Ward "Denny" Galehouse was born on Thursday, December 7, 1911 in Marshallville, Ohio. He began his big league career on April 30, 1934 with the Cleveland Indians. Galehouse 15 seasons for 3 different teams, ending his big league playing career in 1949. Galehouse was a St. Louis Brown righthanded pitcher from 1941-47. (See material of December 3rd for further information on Denny's career.) Galehouse finished with a record of 109-118 and an E.R.A. of 3.97. His record as a Brown was 50-58. Denny Galehouse died in Doylestown, Ohio on October 14, 1998 at the age of 86, and closing hard on 87.


        Bobo Newsom: Baseball's
        Most Traveled Warrior.

        Louis Norman "Bobo" Newsom
        passed away on December 7, 1962 in Orlando, Florida at the age of 55. For a man who died at a relatively young age, he had done a lot baseball-living in his time. Born on Sunday, August 11, 1907 in Hartsville, South Carolina, Newsom enjoyed what may have been the only day in his life where he spent a whole 24 hours in one place. The life of the Bobo was to be a life on the move.

        The 20-year big league veteran began his MLB baseball career on September 11, 1929 with the Brooklyn Robins. Before his big league career ends in 1953, Newsom will have played for 9 of the then existing 16 big league clubs, including multiple tours of duty with several teams. Newsom was a Brown on three separate occasions, but he was a Washington Senator five different times.

        Newsom will finish his league career with a record of 211 wins, 222 losses, and an E.R.A. of 3.98. The real story of Bobo Newsom will be his longevity and resilience - and almost never-ending demand by certain clubs as that one final piece of their pitching puzzle. The following is a timeline on Bobo's big league clubs, with his tours of duty added to each:

        (1.) Brooklyn Robins/Dodgers: 1929-30; 1942-43
        (2.) Chicago Cubs: 1932
        (3.) St. Louis Browns:1934-35; 1938-39; 1943
        (4.) Washington Senators: 1935-37; 1942; 1943; 1946-47; 1952
        (5.) Boston Red Sox: 1937
        (6.) Detroit Tigers: 1939-41
        (7.) Philadelphia Athletics: 1944-46; 1952-53
        (8.) New York Yankees: 1947
        (9.) New York Giants: 1948

        Today's reference link ...
        Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-07-2004, 05:06 AM.
        "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


        • December 8th

          December 8, 1941: Pearl Harbor Bombs Browns Move To LA.
          One day after Pearl Harbor, American League owners deny permission to St. Louis Browns owner Don Barnes to move his financially bleeding franchise to Los Angeles. Much as the few loyal Browns fans hate to see it, many do not blame Barnes for wanting to move. The Browns have been failing at the gate for several years now and sorely losing their competition for the hearts of St. Louisans to the same town Cardinals. Attendance figures for 1941 show the Browns drawing only 176,240 fans to the Cardinals' 633,645.

          We will never know how a move of the Browns to Los Angeles would've felled the dominos of other franchise relocation, but these results seem logical as probabilities: (1.) The Browns would not have remained alone on the West Coast for long. Team travel would have been made much easier and more economical by the presence of two clubs in the far west. We also know from history that a dual move of the Dodger and Giant franchises to Califormia in 1958 would be argued earlier as the most common sensible approach to opening up the big leagues as a coast-to-coast operation. (2.) Assuming the Browns did well in LA (and that is a mighty big assumption), some other club would have soon followed them to San Francisco.

          Today's Birthdays:

          Jimmy Austin

          Jimmy Austin was born on Monday, December 8, 1879 in Swansea, Wales. He began his big league baseball career on April 19, 1909, with the New York Highlanders. Austin played for 18 seasons, spending most of that time with the Browns. The versatile infielder and mentor ended his playing career in 1929 with a career BA of only .246, but his value to the Browns was very much on the side of his game wisdom. Austin died in Laguna Beach, California on March 6, 1965 at the age of 85.

          Sam Zoldak

          Lefty Sam Zoldak was born in Brooklyn, NY on Sunday, December 8, 1918. Sam began his MLB career on May 13, 1944, with the St. Louis Browns. He played for 9 seasons on 3 different teams and ended his big league play in 1952 with a career pitching record of 45 wins, 53 losses and a 3.54 E.R.A. Zoldak was a rookie hurler for the 1944 Browns AL championship club with no W/L record, but later was 9-6 with the 1948 World Series Champion Cleveland Indians after posting a 2-4 record with the Browns earlier that same season. Zoldak was traded by the Browns to the Indians on June 15, 1948 for lefty Bill Kennedy and that ever-popular other player in these transactions - $100,000 cash. Zoldak passed away in New Hyde Park, NY on August 25, 1966. He was 47 at the time of his death.

          Hank Thompson
          Birth Name: Henry Curtis Thompson Bats : Left
          Born On: 12-08-1925 Throws : Right
          Born In: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Height : 5-09
          Died On: 09-30-1969 Weight : 174
          Died In: Fresno, California First Game: 07-17-1947
          College: None Attended Last Game: 09-30-1956
          Nickname: None Draft: Not Applicable

          2nd baseman/utility infielder Hank Thompson broke into the big leagues on July 17, 1947 as the first black player in the history of the St, Louis Browns. Hank batted .256 with 0 homers in 78 times at bat for the '47 Browns. It was also his only season in St. Louis. - Over his 9-year career (1947, 1949-1956), Thompson batted .267 with 129 homers. - Hank Thompson was 43 when he died in 1969.

          Today's reference links ...

          Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 09-30-2005, 04:44 PM.
          "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


          • December 9th

            December 9, 1947: Go, Johnny, Go - For Cash! The Cleveland Indians acquire infielder Johnny Berardino from the St. Louis Browns today. The deal first turns as an exchange for outfielder Catfish Metkovich and $50,000 cash from the Indians. Because of a broken finger that is discovered upon delivery, the Browns will soon return Metkovich to Cleveland. To make up for the cancelled player, the Indians will add another $15,000 to complete the transaction. When all is said and done, the Browns get what they really wanted - and Catfish Metkovich gets a cash figure on his true market worth. At the end of 1952, Berardino will drop baseball as well as the 2nd "r" in his name, and start a successful acting career in Hollywood, mainly as a television soap opera star. Life as a Brown couldn't have hurt Beradino too much in his preparation for that second career.

            December 9, 1936: Let There Be Light!

            The American League approves seven night baseball games for the St. Louis Browns during the 1937 season. Will the Browns see a way to win more often when the games are played at night? Will more fans come to see the club at those games scheduled at the end of the normal working day? Stay tuned and find out. :radio

            Births On This Date.

            Bird Wayne "Bert" Blue was a back-up catcher for the 1908 Browns and Athletics. He went 9 for 24 (.375) for St. Louis before moving to Philly, where he finished the season and his MLB career with a 12 for 42 (.286) mark. Blue was born on December 9, 1877 in Bettsville, Ohio. He died in Detroit, Michigan on September 2, 1929 at the age of 51. Like so many others, we don't know the reasons behind Blue's short-lived career without deeper research.

            Charles Roy "Curly" Brown was a 3-6 record lefty pitcher for the 1911-13 Browns. He also played the 1915 season with the Cincinnati Reds, adding 2 more losses to his career 3-8 record. Brown was born on December 9, 1888 in Spring Hill, Kansas. He died on June 10, 1968 in the town of his birth at the age of 79.

            Joseph Paul "Joe" DeMaestri hit .226 in 81 games in 1952, his only season as a Browns infielder. For his career (1951-61) Joe hit .236 for the White Sox, Browns, Athletics, and Yankees. Demaestri was born on December 9, 1928 in San Francisco, California. Demaestri is 76 years old today, December 9, 2004.

            Happy 76th Birthday, Joe DeMaestri!

            Deaths On This Date.

            Branch Rickey Died On This Date in 1965.

            Wesley Branch Rickey, the famous "Mahatma" of MLB administrative history, was born on December 20, 1881 in Flat, Ohio. He died on December 9, 1965 in Columbia, Missouri at the age of nearly 84. Rickey was a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University who held a degree in Law. Rickey began his career as a catcher for the Browns, in 1905. He hit only .239 for his 343 at bats over four separate seasons, but his real contribution to the game was to come later through his genius vision, his shrewd, penurious business practices, and his courage to oppose the color line.

            John Geoffrey "Jeff" Heath was born on April 1, 1915 in Fort William, Ontario, Canada. He died on December 9, 1975 in Seattle, Washington at the age of 60. The lefty batting, righty throwing outfielder hit .293 for a career that spanned 14 seasons (1936-49). In his two seasons as a Brown (1946-47), Heath hit .275 and .251.

            Today's Reference Links ...

            Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-10-2004, 04:15 AM.
            "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


            • December 10th

              December 10, 1948: Water, Water, Everywhere. The 16 big league clubs are sailing on an ocean of potential talent in this post-WWII halcyon era of minor league baseball. 58 leagues and 438 clubs were in operation during the 1948 season. On the surface of things, you would think that even the Browns would've filled their talent fishing nets with some real keepers in that vast Sea of Hope, but it didn't work that simply in the reserve clause era. Wealthy clubs, like the Yankees, could afford to tie up some of the best talent and keep it in the minor leagues rather than release it to other clubs. Wealthy clubs, notably the Yankees, also understood that clubs like the Browns, Senators, and Athletics were operating on thin financial ice. When one of those poor clubs did come up with a talent that the Yankees desired, acquiring same was just a matter of waving enough money under their noses. In effect, clubs like the Browns practically became Yankee farm clubs at the major league level.

              One other interesting note about this date in 1948: when the minor leagues ask for curbs on MLB television games into their areas, the MLB clubs ignore the issue. How bizarre! When was the last time you ever heard of MLB avoiding a time-critical issue?

              Births On This Date

              Charles Jessamine "Charlie" Shields , a member of the Browns' first 1902 pitching staff, was born December 10, 1879 in Jackson, TN. He died on August 27, 1953 at the age of 73 in Memphis, TN. Shields was 3-0, with a 3.30 E.R.A. in his brief partial season with the Browns. For his career, Shields was 7-13 with a 4.27 E.R.A.

              Patrick Henry "Pat" Newnamwas born on December 10, 1880 in Hempstead, TX. He died on June 20, 1938 in San Antonio, TX at the age of 57. Newnam's two-year MLB career was spent with the 1909-10 Browns, In 123 total games, he batted .213.

              Arthur Carle "Art" Griggs was born on December 10, 1883 in Topeka, KS. He died on December 19, 1938 in Los Angeles, CA at the age of 55. Griggs hit .280 for the 1909 Browns and .236 for the 1910 club. Over his career at several positions (1909-18), Griggs hit .277.

              Verdo Wilson Elmore was born on December 10, 1899 Gordo, Alabama. He died in Birmingham, Alabama on August 5, 1969 at the age of 69. Elmore hit .176 in 17 trips to the plate for the 1924 Browns as a right fielder, and that's pretty much the whole story of his rather brief MLB career. One things he did that's memomrable? All three of his big league hits were doubles.

              Deaths On This Date

              John Thomas "Jack" Tobin died on December 10, 1969 in St. Louis at the age of 77. The native St. Louisan was born on May 4, 1892 and is remembered by Browns fans as the good-hitting right fielder for the great 1922 Browns club. Tobin hit .331 for the almost-champion '22 Browns. He even had better years, batting .352 in 1921 and and .341 in 1920. His career (1914-27) record with four clubs, but mostly with the Browns (1916-25) produced a .309 lifetime BA and 1,906 hits. Tobin was a lefty all the way. A few more players like Jack Tobin in our past could have resulted in a much better win history for the St. Louis Browns.

              Today's reference links ...

              Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 06-20-2005, 06:18 AM.
              "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


              • December 12th

                December 11, 1929: Another Browns-A's Swap.

                Wally Schang Traded Today.

                The Browns trade catcher Wally Schang to the Philadelphia Athletics for 3rd baseman Sammy Hale. Schang had some good years for the Browns during his 4 seasons with the club (1926-29), but hit only .237 in 94 games in 1929. Hale will go on to hit .274 in 47 games at 3rd base and 15 more as a pinch hitter for the 1930 Browns before retiring from baseball. Schang's return to the A's reunites him with his original club (1913-17). Schang will hit .174 in limited service with the 1930 A's and .184 with the 1931 Tigers before making his own exit from baseball. Schang's last three seasons in his 19-year big league career are not up to par with his talent level. Schang was a career .284 hitter.

                December 11, 1927: Saddest Day In Browns History.

                Greatest Brown Sold Today!

                Some of you may disagree, but this is the one transaction in club history that I rate as our saddest moment in time. Today the Browns sell George Sisler, the greatest player in franchise history, and one of the greatest ballplayers of all time, to the Washington Senators for a mere $25,000 freakin' dollars. I don't care if those were big bucks in 1927, Sisler was priceless to the Browns, even when he was old and infirm. Can you imagine the Cardinals doing something like this with Stan Musial during the latter years of his career? I can't.

                Coincidentally, I just picked up my copy of the new George Sisler biography by Rick Huhn yesterday. It's called "The Sizzler: George Sisler, Baseball's Forgotten Great." I ordered mine through Barnes and Noble, but you will find it listed on Amazon.Com.

                Births on This Date in History

                Clarence Eugene "Gene" Wright: 12/11/1878. A pitcher with a 4-6 record for the 1903-04 Browns.

                Walter Henry Meinert: 12/11/1890. Went 3 for 8 as a 1913 Brown in his only big league year.

                George David "Slick" Coffman: 12/11/1910. Was 2-2 as a pitcher for the 1940 Browns. Had a 4-year (1937-40) career record of 15-12.

                Deaths on This Date In History

                James Leroy "Sunny Jim" Bottomley: 12/11/1959. Dead at age 59, the great Cardinal Hall of Fame 1st baseman played his last two years in the big leagues with the 1936-37 Browns. He also took over for Rogers Hornsby as manager of the Browns for the last 79 games of 1937.

                Clifford Bryson "Cliff" Fannin: 12/11/1966. Dead at the early age of 42, Cliff Fannin was a career Browns pitcher, winning 34 and losing 51 between 1945 and 1952.

                Career Brown Cliff Fannin Died Young.

                Today's Reference Links ...

                Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-11-2005, 03:17 AM.
                "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                • December 12th

                  December 12, 1983: Big Jim Weaver Dead at 80.

                  Typical Day in The 1930's: Brownie Brain
                  Trust Contemplates Next Personnel Decision.

                  On a date which almost reads like a blank page in St. Louis Browns recorded history, Jim Weaver dies today in Lakeland, Florida. They called him "Big Jim" for a very good reason. At 6'6" and 230 pounds, Weaver was one of the biggest guys in the big leagues back in the late 1920's and through most of the 1930's. Born James Dement Weaver, the native of Obion County, Tennessee came into this world on Wednesday, November 25, 1903. He began his big league baseball career on August 27, 1928 with the Washington Senators. In 3 relief appearances that year, the big righthander posted a 1.50 E.R.A. over 6 innings of work, but was involved in no decisions. Over the course of his career, Weaver would hurl for 8 seasons and work for 6 different teams.

                  Weaver's career would close the books in 1939 on his record of 57 wins, 36 losses, and an E.R.A. of 3.88. That .613 winning percentage was not too shabby an accomplishment - especially when you consider the teams he pitched for. Other than a brief 2nd season with the Yankees, Weaver labored for the likes of the Senators, Browns, Cubs, Pirates, and Reds. How a man posts that kind of W% toiling in those yards is not a feat to be dismissed.

                  Big Jim doesn't have much of a Browns history, but he did have two stints of service with the club. To start the 1934 season, and I'm not sure how he was acquired, Weaver went 2-0 in 6 starts, with a 6.41 E.R.A. On May 15, 1934, he was put on waivers by the Browns and picked up by the Cubs. Jim then went 11-9 for the the 1934 Cubs before moving over to the Pirates and going 14-8, 14-8, and 8-5 over the next 3 seasons (1935-37).

                  The Browns purchased Weaver's contract from the Pirates in January 1938, but they only gave him one starting opportunity. After Weaver is blasted for 7 runs in 7 innings, he is sold to the Reds on April 25, 1938. He will finish out the year with Cincinnati and go 6-4 as a spot starter and reliever.

                  What are we to conclude about the reasons for Weaver not sticking with the Browns twice? Granted, our opinions are only conjectural since we don't have all the facts. Maybe the Browns just didn't need any pitching help back in the 1930's.

                  Today's reference link ...
                  Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-12-2004, 10:10 AM.
                  "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                  • December 13th

                    December 13, 1949: A .300 Hitter's Reward.

                    Welcome Back, Ray Coleman!

                    Breaking in with a .280 BA in his 1946 rookie season, Browns 3rd baseman Bob Dillinger follows that mark with steady improvement, going .294, .321, and .324 over his next three full seasons. His 207 hits lead the American League in 1948. He also leads the league in stolen bases for 3 straight years (1947-49) with 34, 28, and 20. If these totals seem low, remember, - this was not a running era.

                    So, what's Dillinger's reward for all this productivity and promise? Today he finds out as the Browns send him and temperamental outfielder Paul Lehner to the Philadelphia A's for a reported $100,000 and infielders Frankie Gustine, Bill DeMars, and outfielders Ray Coleman and Ray Ippolitto. Dillinger will play just a half-season in Philley before being swapped to Pittsburgh.

                    The trade for Ray Coleman marks his return to the Browns.

                    December 13, 1948: Browns Get Lollar from NY.

                    After a year in New York with the Yankees, hurler Red Embree is traded, along with young catcher Sherm Lollar, pitcher Dick Starr and $100,000, to the Browns. Embree will slump to 3–13 in St. Louis after having his only winning MLB season in New York. Lollar is the prize in this deal. He will catch in the majors through 1963. The Yankees receive pitcher Fred Sanford and catcher Roy Partee. Partee is ticketed for the minors, but Sanford will help the Yanks as a starter/reliever in 1949.

                    December 13, 1930: Sisler Career Reaches End.

                    George Sisler (2nd from right, back row)
                    The First HOF Induction Class in 1939
                    (Minus Ty Cobb, Who Was Late for Photo)

                    The magnificent 15-year big league career of George Sisler ends today as the Boston Braves release him. A lifetime .340 hitter who twice led the American League with averages above .400, Sisler will be among the first players elected to the new Baseball Hall of Fame, and he will be enshrined with that first induction class in 1939.

                    Today's Reference Link ...
                    Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-13-2004, 04:20 AM.
                    "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                    • Originally posted by Bill_McCurdy
                      [SIZE=2][B]December 13, 1948: Browns Get Lollar from NY.

                      After a year in New York with the Yankees, hurler Red Embree is traded, along with young catcher Sherm Lollar, pitcher Dick Starr and $100,000, to the Browns. Embree will slump to 3–13 in St. Louis after having his only winning MLB season in New York. Lollar is the prize in this deal. He will catch in the majors through 1963.
                      Not for the Brownies tho, who moved him after the '51 season to the White Sox. At Comiskey Park Sherm Lollar became as much an institution as ... well, as Comiskey Park.


                      • December 14th

                        December 14, 2004: Remembering ...

                        ... "Those were the days, my friend. ... We thought they'd never end."

                        Births On This Date

                        December 14, 1873: An Original Brown Born Today., John Joseph Anderson, the original 1st baseman of the first 1902 Browns club was was born today in Sarpsburg, Norway. Anderson's family later immigrated to the USA where he apparently grew up with a love and a talent for baseball.

                        The righthander played most of the Browns' first two seasons (1902-03) at 1st base, hitting .284 each year. Anderson also played a handful of games in the outfield during each of his two Brownie seasons.

                        In his 14-year big leaue career (1894-1908), Anderson played for a number of clubs as a consistent performer. He compiled 1,841 career hits and a .290 BA for his total effort. Anderson died on July 23, 1949 in Worcester, MA at the age of 75. This morning we honor his memory as a St. Louis Browns original.

                        December 14, 1897: Syl A. Simon Met A Pieman ... Sylvester Adam Simon was born today in Evansville, Indiana. Who was Simon? The answer's simple. He was just another cup-of-coffee Brown who got into 24 games as a middle infielder for the 1923-24 clubs. He managed to squeak out 8 hits in 33 total at bats before leaving the big league scene forever after his two brief (but long enough) seasons. Simon passed away on February 28, 1973 in Chandler, Indiana. He was 75. Simple as that.

                        December 14, 1905: A Winless '35 Browns Pitcher. Robert George "Lefty Bob" Weiland was born today in Chicago. Weiland had a 62-94 record with several clubs in a career that spanned from 1928 to 1940. In his one season as a 1935 Brown, Weiland was 0 and 2 with a 9.56 in 14 games. Lefty left this world in Chicago on November 9, 1988 at the age of nearly 83.

                        December 14, 1909: Jim Walkup's Natal Day. James Elton Walkup was born today in Havana, Arkansas. After playing college ball at the University of Arkansas, Walkup racked up 6 years in the big leagues from 1934 t0 1939. Except for 7 games and 1 loss as a Detroit Tiger at the tail end of the '39 season, all of Jim's work was for the Browns. He finished his career with a record of 16 wins, 38 losses, and a 6.74 E.R.A. Walkup died on February 7, 1997 in Danville, Arkansas at the age of 87.

                        December 14, 1914: Another One-Year Brownie. Russell Dixon "Rusty" Peters was born today in Roanoke, Virginia. The utility infielder had a 10 year career (1936-47) that ended with the Browns and his best offensive performance (16/47, . 340 BA). Peters left the big leagues after 1947 with a .236 career BA in only 1,222 official at bats. He died in Harrisonburg, VA on February 21, 2002 at the age of 88.
                        Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-14-2004, 08:52 AM.
                        "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                        • December 15th

                          December 15, 1927: Browns Dump Ken Williams.

                          Ken Williams Beat Out Babe Ruth &
                          Led The AL in HR's With 39 in 1922.

                          The Browns have decided to clean house on their ancient stars. Two days following the sale of George Sisler to Washington for $25,000, the Browns today sell "Sisler's Brother" on offense, slugging outfielder Ken Williams, to the Boston Red Sox for $10,000. At 38, Williams will hit .303 in 462 AB's for the 1928 Red Sox, but his home run production will drop to 8.

                          Today's reference link ...
                          Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-15-2004, 04:51 AM.
                          "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                          • December 16th

                            December 16 (Actually 15), 2004: A Day Early. This Is Spooky Some of you may know that one of my other fond incarnations into baseball is my voluntary service as the Board President and Executive Director of the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame. Well, that job was forcing me today to think about how I was going to keep the string going on these daily Browns history posts since I will be in Dallas on December 16th and away from internet access. The answer seemed obvious. - I planned to simply post what I could find a day in advance of leaving Houston on December 15th.

                            Here's where the purpose of my trip and the need for a December 16th post run unexpectedly together. Call it coincidence. I call it spooky. And here's the background to this curious convergence of events:

                            On November 12, 2004, former Brown Debs Garms was one of our two posthumous inductions into the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame. Garms didn't make it in because of his service as a Brown. What put him into our state hall with the selection committee more than anything was the fact that he won the 1940 Nationnal League batting championship as a Pittsburgh Pirate with a .358 BA in only 358 official plate appearances. That fact, plus his .293 lifetime BA, got him in. We're not quite up to Cooperstown standards in the matter of honoring some of our older Texas baseball people, but our list does begin with Tris Speaker and Rogers Hornsby.

                            At any rate, we inducted Garms in front of 600 strangers without knowing anything about the existence of his surviving family. We had tried to find some trace of them prior to the banquet, but our limited resources for doing this kind of detective work had turned up nothing.

                            Wouldn't you know it? The Garms family surfaced in the wake of media coverage given to our banquet statewide - after the fact. It turns out that Debs Garms is survived by a son and two grown grandchildren and that all of them live in the greater Dallas area. - Our banquet, as am I, is based in Houston - some 260 miles to the south of Dallas.

                            I called the son of Debs Garms when I got his number. Of course, we were both disapointed that we didn't know about each other prior to the banquet. I learned that he and I are just about the same age and that we share many of the same childhood memories of baseball. We talked for a good half hour.

                            To make a long story short, I am going to Dallas today (Wed., Dec 15th) with another member of our board. Tonight we are putting on a mini-banquet dinner with the Dallas-Fort Worth members of the board to specifically honor the memory of Debs Garms in the presence of his family. Garms's son will be receiving the plaque and artwork of his father that he would've gotten back in November - had we known about each other. If nothing else, tonight's plan says this much about the people of our TBHOF. - We are dedicated to the idea that life and the bestowing of due honor is not stationary. Life is, as Hemingway once said, "a moveable feast."

                            When I went to my resources for posting December 16th news here a day early, here's the only item I could find on short notice:

                            December 16, 1984: Debs Garms Dies at 76.

                            Debs Garms Honored Again
                            Today, December 15, 2004.

                            Debs C. Garms died in Glen Rose, Texas today at the age of 76. Garms was born on June 26, 1907 in Bangs, Texas.

                            On November 12, 2004, Debs Garms was posthumously inducted into the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame, joining seven previously recognized former Browns in our state baseball honors program - Rogers Hornsby, Sam West, Bob Muncrief, Tex Shirley, Dizzy Dean, Jerry Witte, and Frank Mancuso.

                            An alumnus of Howard Payne University, Garms launched his professional career with Abilene of the West Texas League in 1928. Then a third baseman, he played infield with future major leaguers (all Browns): Jack Burns, first base; Lin Storti, second base; and Jim Levey, shortstop.

                            Debs made his major league debut with the Browns on August 10, 1932. Before he got there, he paid his dues at the lower levels of professional baseball. In addition to Abilene, minor league stops included Spartanburg and Augusta (South Atlantic), Topeka (Western) and Wichita Falls-Longview (Texas). Moved to the outfield at Wichita Falls, he batted .284 in 34 games for the ’32 Browns. He remained with St. Louis until optioned to San Antonio (Texas) early in the 1935 season.

                            Garms produced big numbers in the 1936 Texas League campaign and was dealt to the Boston Braves. Debs was with the Braves for three seasons and then traded to Pittsburgh in 1940, where he enjoyed his greatest year. He won the National League batting title with a .355 batting average and became the third native Texan (to that point in time) to lead a major league in hitting. In 1916, the immortal Tris Speaker had won the American League crown with a .386 average. Rogers Hornsby had paced the National League hitters seven times in the 1920s.

                            In 1938, with the Boston Bees, Garms broke pitcher Johnny Vander Meer's string of 21 1/3 hitless innings, which included two consecutive no-hitters before Debs stopped the Reds pitcher’s bid for a third with a single in the fourth inning in the game at Boston.

                            Garms was cut by the Cardinals after batting .336 in 74 games in 1945. Over the period of his career, he participated in 1,010 major league contests. His big league career average was.293, but he never returned to the majors after 1945. The professional career of Debs Garms was completed with San Diego of the Pacific Coast League in 1946.

                            One interesting family note deserves mention. Debs Garms was named for Eugene V. Debs, who, on three occasions, was an unsuccessful socialist candidate for President.

                            Also going into the Texas Hall in 2004 were Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell of the Houston Astros; pitcher Kenny Rogers of the Texas Rangers; the late Rube Foster, founder of the Negro National League; Lamar University’s 963-win baseball coach, Jim Gilligan; and long-time Houston Astros game telecaster, Bill Brown.

                            Today's reference link ...

                            God willing, we'll see you here again on Friday, December 17th, with fresh information about that date in Browns history. I'll be back from Dallas by then. If you'd like an account of how things go in Dallas, let me know.
                            Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 06-26-2005, 10:06 AM.
                            "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                            • December 17th

                              December 17, 1924: Shocker Traded to Yankees!

                              Browns Surrender 4-Time 20-Game
                              Winner to The New York Yankees!

                              What were they thinking? Today the Browns pull the first major plug on their greatest roster in history by trading ace righthander Urban Shocker back to the New York Yankees. The Browns originally acquired Shocker from New York on January 22, 1918 in a trade involving several players and cash. Today the now proven winner returns to New York in exchange for pitchers Milt Gaston, Joe Giard, and Joe Bush.

                              After going 6-5 in his 1918 first season in St. Louis, Shocker became the heart of Brownie pitching success for the following 6 seasons. During this period, he racked up 4 straight 20-game-win years from 1920 to 1923 with 20, 27, 24, and 20 wins. Shocker's league-leading total of 27 in '22 brought the Browns to within one game of toppling the champion Yankees. Now, as will be the case so often in years to come, Shocker becomes early evidence to an adage that will only grow more powerful overs the years: Those who prove themselves as Yankee-Killers are destined to become Yankees themselves! Shocker will never win 20 games for the Yankees, but he will be a strong contributor on both of the New York pennant winners in 1926 and 1927.

                              Perhaps the Browns thought they were the ones acquiring the "Killer." After losing to the Browns on June 12, 1922, Joe Bush had beaten the Browns 17 straight times, but he and the other Yankees acquired today will never compensate for the loss of Shocker.

                              After pitching only three innings for the Yankees in 1928, Shocker will retire due to failing health that leaves him fatigued. He will soon die of complications arising from what was then inadequately described as "athlete's heart" on September 9, 1928. He is only 38 at the time of his death.

                              Had it been available, today's medicine may have been able to accurately diagnose Shocker's problem as arterial blockage and saved his life with bypass surgery, but we'll never know for sure. All we can know is that the state of early disease detection was not better back in the good old days.

                              December 17, 1920: AL Spitballer Exemption Day.

                              The American League agrees to allow pitchers who used the spitball in 1920 to continue using it as long as they are in the league. The National League will do the same. There will be 17 designated spitters in all, eight in the NL and nine in the AL. For the NL, the wet-guys are: Bill Doak, Phil Douglas, Dana Fillingim, Ray Fisher, Marvin Goodwin, Burleigh Grimes, Clarence Mitchell, and Dick Rudolph. For the American League, the wet-one are: A.W. Ayers, Slim Caldwell, Stan Coveleski, Red Faber, H.B. Leonard, Jack Quinn, Allan Russell, Urban Shocker, and Allen Sothoron.

                              Among the AL group, only Shocker and Sothoron have earned their water wings as members of the St. Louis Browns.

                              Deaths on This Date

                              Walt DeVoy
                              Birth Name: Walter Joseph DeVoy
                              Nickname: None
                              Born On: 03-14-1886
                              Born In: St. Louis, Missouri
                              Zodiac: Pisces
                              Died On: 12-17-1953
                              Died In: St. Louis, Missouri
                              Cemetery: Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis, Missouri
                              College: None Attended
                              Bats: Right
                              Throws: Right
                              Height: 5-11
                              Weight: 165
                              First Game: 09-13-1909 (Age 23)
                              Last Game: 10-03-1909
                              Draft: Not Applicable

                              Right fielder/1st baseman Walt DeVoy played 19 games for the 1909 Browns and was then gone for good from big league baseball. DeVoy batted .246 (16 for 79) with no dead ball era taters to his credit. - Walt DeVoy passed away in 1953 at the age of 67. - BCT/GB, Walt DeVoy!

                              Henry Levai "Hank" Severeid (12/17/68): Died in San Antonio, TX at the age of 77. Severeid was the greatest hitting catcher in Browns history. From 1915 to 1925, Hank hit over .300 five times. His bat and glove were a major part of the great 1921-22 Browns clubs.

                              Jim Park
                              Birth Name: James Park
                              Nickname: None
                              Born On: 11-10-1892
                              Born In: Richmond, Kentucky
                              Zodiac: Scorpio
                              Died On: 12-17-1970
                              Died In: Lexington, Kentucky
                              Cemetery: Lexington Cemetery, Lexington, Kentucky
                              College: Kentucky Agricultural & Mechanical College
                              Bats: Right
                              Throws: Right
                              Height: 6-02
                              Weight: 175
                              First Game: 09-07-1915 (Age 23)
                              Last Game: 07-11-1917
                              Draft: Not Applicable

                              Pitcher Jim Park had a 3-season, all-Browns MLB career (1915-1917) in which he won 4, lost 5, and recorded an ERA of 3.02 in 42 games and 122 innings of work. - Jim Park was 79 when he died in 1970.

                              Frederick Raymond "Fritz" Ostermueller (12/17/57): Died in Quincy, IL at the age of 50. Fritz was a 15-year big league pitcher (1934-48) who went 3-6 as a Brown (1941-43). His career record was 114-115 with a 3.99 E.R.A.

                              Today's Reference Links ...

                              Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-17-2005, 03:59 PM.
                              "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


                              • December 18th

                                December 18, 1903: Ban Johnson Gets Raise; Some Rules Change.

                                AL Boss To Get Fatter Paycheck.

                                The American League met today to deal with several items of business. Ban Johnson is re-elected American League president and given a raise to $10,000. The American League also votes to allow coaches at 3rd base and 1st base at all times. * Until now, only one coach was permitted on the field, except in situations where there were two or more base runners. The American League also institutes the "foul strike" rule currently in use by the National League since 1901: a foul will be counted as a strike unless there are already two strikes. Then, of course, it's just a foul ball, but the batter may still be retired for an out - if the ball is caught on the fly.

                                * The common sense coaching rule change noted here took place 101 years ago. You have to wonder when common sense will prevail again and allow clubs to do away with those "coaching boxes" they draw on the field. From what I've seen, they are a waste of perfectly good chalk.

                                Births on December 18th

                                Samuel Richard "Dick" Coffman was born on December 18, 1906 in Veto, Alabama. The righthanded Coffman was 27-40 in 5 seasons as a Brown from 1928 to 1932. His (1927-45) career record was 72-95. Coffman died in Athens. Alabama on March 24, 1972 at the age of 65.

                                Clarence Calvert "Sam" Covington was born on December 18, 1894 in Henryville, Tennessee. "Sam" was 9 for 60 (.150 BA) in 20 games as a 1st baseman for the 1913 Browns. He also saw very limited action for the 1917-18 Boston Braves and finished his short career with a BA of .178. Covington died on January 4, 1963 in Denison, Texas at the age of 68.

                                Skelton Le Roy "Buddy" Napier was born on December 18, 1889 in Byromville, Georgia. Napier was 1-2, with a 4.97 E.R.A. as a righthanded pitcher for the 1913 Browns. His 4-year mark for 4 non-consecutive seasons played from 1913-1921 was 5-6, 3.92. Napier died on March 29, 1968 in Hutchins, Texas at the age of 78.

                                Deaths on December 18th

                                James Robert "Jim" McLaughlin died on December 18, 1968 in Mount Vernon, Illinois at the age of 66. McLaughlin's entire big league career consists of one official time at bat for the 1932 Browns. He was 0 for 1 with 1 R.B.I. - Draw your own speculative conclusions on how McLaughlin got his ribbie. Oh well, Jim batted 1.000 on his R.B.I. production per times at bat. That's not too shabby as a major league memory. - McLaughlin also was a native St. Louisan. His birthdate is January 3, 1902.

                                George Jasper "George" Caster died on December 18, 1955 in Lakewood, California at the age of 48. As a righthanded pitcher for 5 years (1941-45) as a Brown, Caster won 24 and lost 25. His (1934-46) career mark was 76 wins and 100 losses with a 4.54 E.R.A. Caster was born on August 4, 1907 in Colton, California.

                                Today's reference links ...


                                Have a nice Saturday-Before-Christmas, everybody! Hope you have your dadgum holiday preparations mostly or completely behind you with a week to go. I don't, of course
                                Last edited by Bill_McCurdy; 12-18-2005, 07:04 PM.
                                "Our fans never booed us. - They wouldn't dare. - We outnumbered 'em." ... Browns Pitcher Ned Garver.


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