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Jim Furtado
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Connie Mack Newsbeat

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-2-2015

Milwaukee Journal, September 2, 1915:

The sale of J. Franklin Baker, former third baseman of the Athletics and “Home Run King” of the American league, will be announced today unless Connie Mack refuses to go through with the deal discussed yesterday.
The sale of Baker is part of the plan devised by American league magnates to strengthen the Yankees and boost the game in New York, where interest has fallen off, due to the poor showing of the Giants and the tumbling fortunes of the Yankees. More than one American league club will continue to the upbuilding of the Yankees, but Baker is the only player known to have been settled upon for transfer so far.

I’m sick of these hopeless welfare clubs like the Yankees demanding handouts from more successful, better-run organizations.

Anyway, the Baker sale didn’t actually happen until February 1916, and it was for a reported $37,500 instead of the $15,000 mentioned in this article.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: September 02, 2015 at 08:04 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: connie mack, dugout, history, home run baker, socialism

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Apprenticeship of Connie Mack – The Hardball Times

I have to wonder how the six-year-olds today look at Mack’s statue when they attend Phillies games. Here stands a man born during the Civil War, whose playing career spanned the Gilded Age and the Gay ’90s, and whose managerial career started in 1894 and carried through the first half of the 20th century. Still, it’s been more than six decades since the A’s left for Kansas City, so small fry today would likely be unimpressed by the statute of the gaunt old man waving his scorecard. I think kids would probably look at him as a remote historical figure like, say, General Pershing or William Howard Taft.

Jim Furtado Posted: August 18, 2015 at 07:48 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: connie mack, history

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 7-2-2015

Pittsburgh Press, July 2, 1915:

Persistent rumors to the effect that Connie Mack’s holdings in the Athletics were for sale and that he had named his price to a syndicate which has the approval of Ban Johnson, president of the American league, were emphatically denied by the manager of the Mackmen.
[Mack:] “My interest in the Athletics is not for sale at any price, but any time my partners are dissatisfied with the way I’m running my ball club, or the American league does not like what I’m doing and want to drive me out of the city, they can do it easy enough. But it will be a care of driving me out, for I don’t intend to quit. I’m here to stay, and I’ll win just as sure as I’ve won before.

Yep, that’s pretty much exactly what happened. Mack won back-to-back world championships in 1929 and 1930 and only sold the team because he didn’t have enough money to make it through the 1955 season.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: July 02, 2015 at 09:47 AM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: connie mack, dugout, history

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-23-2015

Pittsburgh Press, April 23, 1915:

If J. Franklin Baker goes through with his determination to play with the Upland [Pennsylvania] team of the Delaware County league it will in all probability mean that he will never be permitted to play in organized baseball again.

“Baker can’t make a fool out of me,” said [Connie] Mack, “and if he thinks that he can have a little jaunt in the Delaware County league and then at his pleasure report to me and expect to find a place on my team, he has made the mistake of his life.
“Baker made a solemn statement to the public in which he said he was quitting baseball because he didn’t like traveling. Yet, in the face of this, he signs a contract with Upland. He will return to Trappe [Maryland] after playing his game with Upland, I have read.

“I went from Philadelphia to Trappe once, and I want to tell you that it was the hardest, weariest trip I ever took. I would much prefer to take a ride to St. Louis than to Trappe.

I get the impression that Baker was lying when he said traveling was the problem. Seems to me he probably saw how terrible the Athletics were going to be for the next few years, didn’t want to deal with it, had enough money to walk away, and didn’t want to embarrass Mack in the process.

As for the Trappe to Upland jaunt, it’s nearly two hours by car in 2015, so I can’t imagine how long the drive would have taken in 1915. 4-5 hours maybe? Mack’s right; that would not have been a fun commute.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 23, 2015 at 09:53 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: connie mack, dugout, history, home run baker



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