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Friday, January 20, 2012

THT: Jackson: Thinking big in Big D in 1950

During the late 1940s, the Cotton Bowl, located in Dallas’ Fair Park, had been expanded to more than 75,000 seats, largely because of ticket demand for SMU football games during the Doak Walker era. Some Dallas people were boasting that the Cotton Bowl now held more people than Yankee Stadium. Perhaps that was what put the idea in Dick Burnett’s head to stage a baseball game there.

Great article, both for its richness of detail and the sheer novelty of what it describes.  With all the staging of football and hockey games and what-not at baseball parks in recent years, I think it’s time that baseball was reciprocated.  Time for a Rangers series in the Cotton Bowl!

BDC Posted: January 20, 2012 at 12:57 PM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, minor leagues

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   1. TerpNats Posted: January 20, 2012 at 07:22 PM (#4041635)
Some other offbeat venues have hosted baseball over the years. Many are aware that the original minor-league Miami Marlins had Satchel Paige pitch a game held at the Orange Bowl (hey, what goes around comes around!). I believe the Syracuse Chiefs played a game or two at Archbold Stadium, the fabled Syracuse University field that hosted its last game in 1978 and was replaced by the Carrier Dome in 1980.

In 1939, before Gilmore Field was ready, the Hollywood Stars played a few games at nearby Gilmore Stadium, a football facility, using a screen similar to what the Dodgers would use at the Memorial Coliseum -- only in this case, it was in right field, not left.

Bob, if the Stars get good enough to host a Winter Classic game, would you prefer it be played at Rangers Ballpark or Cowboys Stadium? (The Cotton Bowl would be nice, but I think some Stars fans would like to see a game held in the 817 area code.)
   2. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: January 20, 2012 at 08:29 PM (#4041667)
Anybody here who likes 50's rockabilly / country / western swing should check out that double-CD set of performances from the Big D Jamboree radio show that came out a few years ago - "Live, from the Sportatorium in Big D, Dallas, Texas."
   3. TerpNats Posted: January 20, 2012 at 09:02 PM (#4041689)
So the Sportatorium was used for something other than the Von Erichs?
   4. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 20, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4041720)
How would you like to see a game with a starting lineup like this?

Home Run Baker 3B (age 64)
Duffy Lewis LF (age 61)
Charlie Grimm 1B (age 51)
Tris Speaker CF (age 62)
Charlie Gehringer 2B (age 46)
Travis Jackson SS (age 46)
Ty Cobb RF (age 63)
Mickey Cochrane C (age 47)
Dizzy Dean P (age 40)
   5. AndrewJ Posted: January 20, 2012 at 10:04 PM (#4041721)
As I posted on another BBTF thread some time ago, Gordon McLendon was not only present for Bobby Thomson's 1951 homer, he was also at the Dallas Trade Mart on November 22, 1963 when JFK was shot. McLendon owned Dallas radio station KLIF and returned to the studios to anchor live coverage of the assassination, much of which can be found here...
   6. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 20, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4041729)
A radio station in Kansas when I lived there ran a lengthy portion of JFK assassination coverage each year on November 22nd. I don't remember whose coverage it was, but it was from a Dallas station. It was very strange to turn on the radio and hear the anchor talking about how the president had been shot, etc., and be able to tell immediately that it was historical coverage rather than something happening live (before any details had been brought up, obviously). The style of newscasting had changed that much. I fear that the average anchor today would dutifully try to sound horrified, but would be clearly gleeful underneath, not for any political reasons, but because of the juicy story that would drive the narrative and news cycle for months.

Anyhow, this is a really good article. Clicking on it and reading it is a good idea. I like the idea of re-creating the situation, too. What HOFers would be good invitees for a similar "game" in 2012? (I can't say "HOFers and clear future HOFers," because there's no longer any such thing as the latter.)
   7. vortex of dissipation Posted: January 21, 2012 at 12:57 AM (#4041763)
Home Run Baker 3B (age 64)
Duffy Lewis LF (age 61)
Charlie Grimm 1B (age 51)
Tris Speaker CF (age 62)
Charlie Gehringer 2B (age 46)
Travis Jackson SS (age 46)
Ty Cobb RF (age 63)
Mickey Cochrane C (age 47)
Dizzy Dean P (age 40)


Cobb let Speaker play center while he played right. That's respect...
   8. Howie Menckel Posted: January 21, 2012 at 01:12 AM (#4041768)

Bob Schieffer was a cub reporter at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in 1963.
His tale basically is that all the real reporters hit the road for the Kennedy assassination news, and he was left answering the phones when Lee Harvey Oswald's mother called asking for a ride to Dallas to see her son, under the circumstances.

He answered the bell, and the rest is history....

   9. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 21, 2012 at 07:26 AM (#4041791)
As I posted on another BBTF thread some time ago, Gordon McLendon was not only present for Bobby Thomson's 1951 homer, he was also at the Dallas Trade Mart on November 22, 1963 when JFK was shot.

Gordon McClendon was a hell of an interesting character. He was associated with a whole host of right wing loonies in the 60's like General Edwin Walker, and was madder than a March hare politically, but his media innovations and his baseball work have to rate him at least a solid chapter in the game's history.
   10. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: January 21, 2012 at 08:36 AM (#4041797)
I don't remember whose coverage it was, but it was from a Dallas station.

Probably KLIF, Gordon McLendon's station (see above). I have quite a bit of audio and video from various stations/networks from that day, and recently re-mastered the original source tapes (mostly inserting digital copies of the songs played before the news bulletins) from KLIF that day. I played them on my own radio show last November 22, something I've done for many years now.
   11. BDC Posted: January 21, 2012 at 01:19 PM (#4041904)
if the Stars get good enough to host a Winter Classic game, would you prefer it be played at Rangers Ballpark or Cowboys Stadium?

The Stadium is a fun place for a game, but the colossal TV screen dominates the experience, and the roof would be closed, so it would be like any other hockey arena only 5 or 6 times bigger. The Ballpark, though, would be crazy fun, especially if we get a "blue norther" of a cold front ...
   12. Mike Webber Posted: January 21, 2012 at 01:23 PM (#4041908)
nice article, recommended reading.
   13. Dr. Vaux Posted: January 21, 2012 at 01:40 PM (#4041918)
Probably KLIF, Gordon McLendon's station (see above). I have quite a bit of audio and video from various stations/networks from that day, and recently re-mastered the original source tapes (mostly inserting digital copies of the songs played before the news bulletins) from KLIF that day. I played them on my own radio show last November 22, something I've done for many years now.


That's terrific.
   14. puck Posted: January 21, 2012 at 02:03 PM (#4041928)
Anybody here who likes 50's rockabilly / country / western swing should check out that double-CD set of performances from the Big D Jamboree radio show that came out a few years ago - "Live, from the Sportatorium in Big D, Dallas, Texas."


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