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Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-6-2014

[Salem, Oregon] Daily Capital Journal, May 6, 1914:

“A war with Mexico would prove a great baseball hardship,” said [Frank] Chance. “...To my mind nothing else could spell ruin for the Federal league so certainly.”
...
“In case of a war a club either will have to win a pennant or at least be in the fight all the way to make any money…[When the Yankees played there,] Countless thousands were collected around every bulletin board in Philadelphia. They preferred to get their baseball that way because they had the additional lure of all the latest bulletins from Mexico…And conditions in Philadelphia simply reflect the mind of the public elsewhere.”

My gut reaction was that Chance was crazy, but I did the math and I can’t say he was wrong.

The United States officially entered World War I in April 1917. Attendance that year was down 16.8% in the AL and down 23.0% in the NL. In 1918, attendance was even lower: Down 26.8% from 1917 levels in the AL, down a further 28.5% in the NL.

In 1919, with the end of the war, American League attendance was up 94.1% over 1918 figures and NL attendance was up 91.0%.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 3-12-2014

Frank Chance on the essential qualities of a good ballplayer, from the Toledo News-Bee, March 12, 1914:

Clean living is the first essential for a ball player…Be moderate in your smoking, don’t drink and go to bed early.
...
Get all the education you can. That is as necessary for a ball player as for a doctor or lawyer. The best students make the best ball players.

Natural ability is a most valuable asset for a ball player. Few players without natural ability ever develop into professionals and those with it are the sure stars in whatever company they play.
...
Individual stars who ignore the other eight men on the team are worse than worthless. They are disorganizers. Every player must work in harmony with every other player on the team.

I thought I might have a future as a ballplayer until he got to the part about natural ability. Also, the first graf in the quote is a good example of the Oxford comma’s importance.

The Robby Hammock District (Dan Lee) Posted: March 12, 2014 at 07:52 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, frank chance, history

 

 

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