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Thursday, September 30, 2021

50 Years Ago Baseball Left Washington In A Chaotic Stampede

After Bobby Murcer grounded out to Grzenda for the second out, Horace Clarke came up to bat. “I wasted some time, kicking dirt around, and Horace stood in that batting circle taking those practice swings,” Grzenda recalled. “And I yelled, ‘Come on, let’s go!’ I looked around, and it was over. They came over the fence, and there was actually dust flying. There were hundreds that came over the fence. It looked like a herd of cattle coming in those old movies, when they stampede.”

Did a now-aged turnstile-jumper with little respect for authority lead the stampede? We may never know.

The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 30, 2021 at 09:33 PM | 11 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: alcohol, fan behavior, forfeits, riots, washington senators

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   1. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 01, 2021 at 04:58 PM (#6042873)
Since this article was submitted yesterday, but belatedly approved with its original time stamp, making it yesterday’s news, I’ll give a bump for some Hot Topics exposure. One part of the article even highlights an issue dear to the BBTF community:
Matthew Daly recalled that he and his twin brother, Brendan, 9 years old, were dropped off by a family member to watch the game and were upset when fans stormed the field.
It used to be a lot harder to get your children taken away.
   2. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: October 01, 2021 at 05:57 PM (#6042887)
I attended the Browns game the week they announced they were leaving. Same scene, people ripping seats out, destroying the stadium. The game was interrupted about a half dozen times with people running on the field. Surprised that wasn't a forfeit either.

Was there much of an attempt to keep the Senators in DC? Or in the burbs?
   3. Der-K's tired of these fruits from poisoned trees Posted: October 01, 2021 at 07:14 PM (#6042902)
AG#1F, I read that and though -- wait, wait, wait -- he is not that old! 'Cause I thought of the St. Louis Browns. 'Cause I am an idiot.
   4. Howie Menckel Posted: October 01, 2021 at 11:24 PM (#6042945)
what a time to be alive and a kid in the 1970s (and I must be missing some):

MLB
Seattle Pilots become Milwaukee Brewers
Washington Senators became Texas Rangers

NBA
San Diego Rockets become Houston Rockets
Cincinnati Royals become Kansas City-Omaha Kings become Kansas City Kings
Buffalo Braves become San Diego Clippers

ABA
Los Angeles Stars become Utah Stars
Dallas Chaparrals become San Antonio Spurs
Carolina Cougars become Spirits of St. Louis
New Orleans Buccaneers become Memphis Pros/Tams/Sounds
Memphis Sounds almost become Baltimore Hustlers/Claws
New Jersey Americans become New York Nets
Washington Capitals become Virginia Squires

NHL
California Golden Seals become Cleveland Barons
Kansas City Scouts become Colorado Rockies
Cleveland Barons sort of become Minnesota North Stars

made the next edition of each [insert sport here] Digest and the Topps cards new sets all that much more interesting, for sure
   5. TJ Posted: October 02, 2021 at 10:27 AM (#6042964)
I loved the 1974 Topps baseball set that had duplicate cards for the Padres players. One gave their team name as San Diego, the other as Washington AL because if the rumors of an impending move. This would just be a historical card collecting quirk if HOFer Wille McCovey was not a Padre at the time.
   6. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: October 02, 2021 at 01:02 PM (#6042983)
what a time to be alive and a kid in the 1970s (and I must be missing some):


Yep -- the WHA, for one, which had like 8 different iterations of the Toronto Toros, just for starters.

OK, actually only 2. But still. Lots of franchise shifts, folds, etc., beginning with the Miami Screaming Eagles not even making it to Day One & becoming the Philadelphia -- later Vancouver -- Blazers instead.
   7. Howie Menckel Posted: October 02, 2021 at 01:08 PM (#6042985)
also the WFL - the Toronto Northmen, who became the Memphis Southmen
   8. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: October 02, 2021 at 01:08 PM (#6042986)
Carolina Cougars become Spirits of St. Louis


After starting out as the Houston Mavericks.

Los Angeles Stars become Utah Stars


After starting out as the Anaheim Amigos.

Washington Capitals become Virginia Squires


After starting out as the Oakland Oaks.

Also, the Pittsburgh Pipers became the Minnesota Pipers after the Minnesota Muskies moved south following the league's first season. to become the Floridians. After a season, the Pipers returned to Pittsburgh as the Condors. Both the Floridians & Condors folded a couple of seasons later.

The ABA's only expansion team, the San Diego Conquistadors, later became the San Diego Sails. Who folded during the last season, as did the Utah Stars.

Pretty sure the ABA had to be the only league whose first 2 champions, Pittsburgh & Oakland, pulled up stakes & moved before the next season.

   9. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: October 02, 2021 at 01:10 PM (#6042987)
Good call on the WFL, which had plenty of in-season chaos as well.

World Team Tennis also started during the '70s.

Almost certainly a fair amount of pro soccer movement, too.
   10. Howie Menckel Posted: October 02, 2021 at 01:35 PM (#6042990)
forgot that I got Soccer Digest as well! only 6 issues a year, though
   11. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: October 02, 2021 at 04:48 PM (#6043025)
the Miami Screaming Eagles not even making it to Day One & becoming the Philadelphia -- later Vancouver -- Blazers instead

And then the Calgary Cowboys!

The Screaming Eagles are a interesting story. There had never been a pro hockey team in any league south of Virginia at that time (the owners of the Sabres were awarded an AHL franchise in 1970 and they wanted to put it in South Florida, but the league said no), and there wasn't anything resembling a decent hockey rink in Miami in 1972. Per Wiki: "(The owner) developed a unique plan to build an arena within the walls of four office buildings to create what he called the Executive Square Arena. This new arena was to have been a showcase for the new league. The WHA had even planned to open their season in Miami on October 6, 1972 by hosting the Winnipeg Jets in the new arena. But the plans started to fall apart when construction of the proposed arena was halted. Dade County cited failure to comply with a zoning ordinance which requires one parking spot for every four seats in the arena."

The "Executive Square Arena" idea fascinates me; why hasn't anyone else tried it over the last 50 years?

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