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Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-7-2020

Toledo News-Bee, April 7, 1920:

[Pitcher] Tommy Long joined the Louisville club at the beginning of last season and performed so well that the scouts began bidding for “that kid southpaw.” They are still bidding, but Long wants to stay in the minors another year. Here’s his logic:

“Last season was my first real year in baseball. No one is more alive to my greenness, to my shortcomings, to my lack of polish, than I. Nearly anyone can get a trial with the majors, but only a comparative few can stick. Those who are not fit can’t survive. I don’t want to go up until I feel sure I can stick, and I know it will be much easier for me to make good in 1921 than in 1920.”

That’s remarkably self-aware and admirable of him. I wish I could tell you that Tom Long made it to the big leagues in 1921 and spent a decade mowing down big leaguers, but he didn’t. Long’s MLB career consists of one game for the ‘24 Dodgers in which he allowed two hits, two walks, and two runs in two innings. He spent most of 1924 in the Southern League, getting knocked around as a member of the Mobile Bears. Long disappears from the record in 1925 and 1926 before making one final professional cameo with Lincoln in the Western League in 1927. I don’t know what happened - maybe he blew out his arm or something.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:25 AM | 25 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, history

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   1. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:26 AM (#5937232)
Some good position players on today's Birthday Team, though I've got a couple of them playing out of position. Doerr never played any position other than second base, so he's locked in there. Beltre has 23840 career innings at third base and 15 career innings at other positions, so he's at third. Ronnie Belliard plays shortstop because, with Ganzel at first base, there's nowhere else for Belliard to play. And McGraw plays right field because that's the position he played most, other than 3B/SS.

C: Ben Petrick (0.5 WAR)
1B: John Ganzel (10.0 WAR)
2B: Bobby Doerr (51.1 WAR)
3B: Adrian Beltre (93.6 WAR)
SS: Ronnie Belliard (20.8 WAR)
LF: Bobby Del Greco (3.8 WAR)
CF: Bobby Mitchell (1.3 WAR)
RF/Manager: John McGraw (45.7 WAR)

SP: Oral Hildebrand (19.7 WAR)
SP: Eduardo Rodriguez (13.4 WAR)
SP: Brett Tomko (10.7 WAR)
SP: Ricky Bones (6.9 WAR)
SP: Tom Phoebus (6.8 WAR)
RP: Josh Hader (6.7 WAR)

Fun name: Buck Redfern
   2. Tom Nawrocki Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:34 AM (#5937237)
Ben Petrick was the hot Rockies catching prospect whose career was derailed by Parkinson's disease. He hit .322/.406/.491 through his first two partial seasons (245 PAs), but just .228/.304/.477 thereafter in 519 PAs.
   3. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:35 AM (#5937239)
Birthday anagrams:
Adrian Beltre -> Alert Brained
Oral Hildebrand -> Doer In Hardball
Ricky Bones -> Icky Boners
Tom Phoebus -> Oomph Tubes, also Hobo Septum
   4. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:42 AM (#5937242)
I genuinely can't remember if I've mentioned this before, but I bailed on my first attempt to stream classic sports 24/7, mostly because I was running it from a 10-year-old server in my basement that wasn't great when I built it. I just didn't have the resources to do it right.

I've solved that problem and am now streaming full baseball games 24/7 here: Emergency Baseball Supply. I've got a playlist that's around 301 hours long and growing, so there's very little chance you'll see the same game over and over.

Right now it's showing the crazy Cardinals-Pirates marathon game from July 2015. After this is over, it's a TWIB from 1982, then the Bucky F. Dent game and Game Six from the '91 Series.
   5. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 07, 2020 at 10:42 AM (#5937243)
Thank you Dan! The need for emergency baseball supply grows every day.

BTF poster "crict" has been doing a daily blog tracking the 1949 Quebec Provincial League, an unoffiliated "outlaw" league that picked up a lot of players who had previously left the majors for Mexico, been banned from returning by commissioner Chandler, and then left Mexico when the league stopped paying inflated salaries.

Still in the preseason, we have heard that the Farnham team is going to continue signing mostly African-Americans. In 1948 they had multi-sport star Fred Thomas who had been on a Canadian college basketball team that beat the Harlem Globetrotters, would soon be the first black player in the Eastern League when the Indians assigned him to Wilkes-Barre, and a few months after that became the first black player on the Toronto Argonauts.

Today's topic is "joueur-mystère" Tony Ross. He was a star for the Sherbrooke Athletiques in 1948 and was reported to be age 31 with many years of experience at AAA at least. It was noted at the time that there was no record of anyone like that named Tony Ross, and looking back, he did only exist in 1948. There's a pretty clear photo of him at the link, from the Sherbrooke newspaper La Tribune so maybe the mystery of Tony Ross can finally be solved.
   6. Starring RMc as Bradley Scotchman Posted: April 07, 2020 at 11:53 AM (#5937268)
Petrick (323/417/565) was the starting catcher on my 2000 Strat team.
   7. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 01:46 PM (#5937310)
useless. meaningless, and inexplicable trivia: in the 50 seasons since they won the WS in 1969, the Mets are 38-12 in opening day games (even though they are slightly below .500 overall in that span)
   8. Karl from NY Posted: April 07, 2020 at 02:16 PM (#5937322)
Could that be an artifact of of a top-heavy pitching rotation? Seems that for all the franchise's other foibles, the Mets have usually had at least one all-star SP, from Seaver to Gooden to Leiter to Santana to the current crop.

Another theory: Shea was said to have a notoriously difficult hitter's-eye backdrop. Maybe in the first game of the season, the Mets tended to be significantly more familiar with it.
   9. Itchy Row Posted: April 07, 2020 at 02:20 PM (#5937327)
Seaver and Gooden has six opening day wins each for the Mets, and Santana and Glavine had three each. Glavine wasn't at his peak anymore with the Mets, but in his three opening day wins for them, he gave up a total of four runs in 18 innings.
   10. SoSH U at work Posted: April 07, 2020 at 02:29 PM (#5937332)
Another theory: Shea was said to have a notoriously difficult hitter's-eye backdrop. Maybe in the first game of the season, the Mets tended to be significantly more familiar with it.


Only about 20 of those games would have been at Shea.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 07, 2020 at 02:30 PM (#5937333)
I've solved that problem and am now streaming full baseball games 24/7 here: Emergency Baseball Supply. I've got a playlist that's around 301 hours long and growing, so there's very little chance you'll see the same game over and over.

Very cool

Thanks!
   12. frannyzoo Posted: April 07, 2020 at 02:50 PM (#5937342)
Thanks Dan for Emergency Baseball Supply. Your doing this also had me check mlbtv.com and they've opened archives for 2018/2019 to free viewing of all games, both home and away (and condensed). Too late to catch trash can banging, but many hours of quarantine time to be spent there.

This also features the two/four-split screen, which works a hell of a lot better than it does when trying it live (at least in my experience).
   13. crict Posted: April 07, 2020 at 04:38 PM (#5937387)
Thanks Crispix, glad you're enjoying the provincial League blog. The BR entry for Tony Ross is of course only for his Provincial League stay. I searched yesterday for 1948 PCL players that have had also played in the AA and International League. No clear match.

Today's news is about Claro Duany. I grew up in Sherbrooke, and 40+ years after his departure there were still stories about his long homeruns. There was also a rumour he was jailed for murder in Cuba, which doesn't seem to be true.

Blog is here.
   14. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 07, 2020 at 04:43 PM (#5937388)
No problem, it's interesting! Got any book recommendations?

So Tony Ross's Provincial League stats are only 1948 despite Sherbrooke boss Roland Gladu reporting in April 1949 that he'd be back. Must have gotten a better offer elsewhere.

There can't be too many players who played in all three AAA leagues before 1948, were born in 1916 or 1917, disappeared from the stats in 1948 and then reappeared again in 1949. Hopefully all the other stuff about his background was true.
   15. crict Posted: April 07, 2020 at 04:46 PM (#5937389)
He played about 20 games in 1949 with Sherbrooke and was let go. I don't think BR has much stats for the 1949 Provincial League.

I worked with the assumption he was with the PCL in early 1948, but maybe not. I believe he arrived in June 1948, so he could have a statline for 1948. Also, even if his stated background is true, he might have been a "less than" player in the AA or IL.
   16. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: April 07, 2020 at 05:51 PM (#5937409)
Four short days until opening day of the CPBL in Taiwan. Pick a team!
   17. Itchy Row Posted: April 07, 2020 at 06:10 PM (#5937421)
Four short days until opening day of the CPBL in Taiwan. Pick a team!
The top story on cpblstats.com is "Rakuten Monkeys to Have Robot Mannequins in Stands as Fans" so there's my answer.
   18. Walt Davis Posted: April 07, 2020 at 06:36 PM (#5937427)
Around the b-r sim league for Apr 7:

Former Giant star Madison Bumgarner made a triumphant return to San Francisco with a throwback, 11-inning complete game 1-0 win. Bumgarner's performance is the longest complete game in the majors since god only knows when. Bumgarner struck out 8 and gave up just 4 hits and no walks on 116 pitches. With two out in the 11th, Kevin Cron singled and Stephen Vogt drove him home with a double off of Trevor Gott. The Giants wasted a masterful performance of 10 innings of shutout ball by Kevin Gausman. (Did Sean turn on the 1970 settings?)

The Dodgers held onto first place with a 4-1 win in St Louis. Walker Buehler (2-0) held the Cardinals to 1 run over 6 innings and the Dodgers' bullpen took ovver from there with Caleb Ferguson earning his 2nd save. Mookie Betts continued his hot streak with a home run (4) and a double while Gavin Lux added his 2nd home run of the year.

Marcus Semien hit his league-leading 7th and 8th home runs and Sean Manaea improved to 2-0 with 8.1 innings of 1-run ball as the A's (9-3) held onto first place in the AL West with a 5-1 win over the last-place Angels. Justin Upton hit his 6th HR of the year for the Angels.

Pittsburgh pulled into a 4-way 2nd-place tie in the NL Central with a 2-0 win over the Cubs at PNC Park. A scoreless tie until the 8th, the Pirates got a lead off hit off of Yu Darvish which was enough for David Ross to bring in Trevor Megill (who is 6'8"!!). Megill proceeded to give up a walk, a wild pitch and a 2-run single to Josh Bell. Megill on the year has 4 IP, 9 H and 5 BB so an excellent managing job there by virtual Rossy.

Eddy Alvarez's 10th-inning home run helped the Marlins break their 3-game losing streak and cling to first place in the NLE with a 8-7 extra-inning win over the Nats. The Braves kept pace with a 3-0 win over the Padres with Max Fried pitching 8 shutout innings and Luke Jackson picking up his first save.

The Yanks lost 5-4 to the O's despite Stanton's 6th HR but still lead the ALE by 2 games. The White Sox, 2-1 winners over the Ms, and the Indians, 2-0 winners over the Twins, continue to battle it out atop the ALC.

Some league-leaders: Semien with 8 HR, Chase Anderson with a 0.00 ERA (10.1 IP), Lindor with 1.3 WARpos and Bumgarner with 1.1 WARpit.

Gerrit Cole has 30 Ks and 0 BBs in 19.2 IP ... and a 4.58 ERA. Take that FIP!
   19. crict Posted: April 07, 2020 at 08:13 PM (#5937453)
Today's topic is "joueur-mystère" Tony Ross. He was a star for the Sherbrooke Athletiques in 1948 and was reported to be age 31 with many years of experience at AAA at least. It was noted at the time that there was no record of anyone like that named Tony Ross, and looking back, he did only exist in 1948. There's a pretty clear photo of him at the link, from the Sherbrooke newspaper La Tribune so maybe the mystery of Tony Ross can finally be solved.


An update on the Ross mystery. I've now seen a newspapers call him a former Toronto Maple Leafs third baseman. That's much more precise. A good candidate is Tony Castano, who played with the 1944 and 45 Maple Leafs, played in the '39 PCL. No American Association though. He played in Mexico from 46 to 49, so he would have played with Gladu and a bunch of the Provincial League players. But I don't remember Ross beng described as Latin American, and I'm not sure the photos match up. Ross, Castano. Are those different guys?
   20. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 07, 2020 at 11:31 PM (#5937485)
Aha! 31? He would have been 5 years older than that! Clearly some of the info about "Ross" would not be true.

It could be him. The nose and chin are similar... the eyes are not.
   21. crict Posted: April 08, 2020 at 07:40 AM (#5937508)
The age difference is not bothering me, baseball players have always made themselves younger. For instance, his Sherbrooke manager, Roland Gladu, shaved 2 years from his age, a fact that was discovered only in the 1990s.

If it wasn't for the picture, I'd say case closed: description fits pretty well, he played with Gladu in Mexico, there is room in his stats for a stint in the league, etc. And his stats profile matches too: no power, speed.
   22. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 08, 2020 at 10:05 AM (#5937531)
I looked up Claro Duany and found a story about him getting into a fight in-game with Mickey Owen in the Mexican league. Mickey Owen, a guy who left to play in the Mexican league and still expected to be able to avoid racial integration. What a jerk.
   23. Ron J Posted: April 08, 2020 at 10:25 AM (#5937534)
#21 Rollie Sheldon is an interesting example. He just left a stint in the Marines out of his bio to look young enough to be "interesting prospect". Came clean once he had established himself.
   24. puck Posted: April 08, 2020 at 09:01 PM (#5937736)
Geez, teh justice system is slow. I was browsing around and saw a story about Josh Hamilton being indicted for "injury to a child" and I thought again?? But it was the incident from last September that was posted here.
   25. Walt Davis Posted: April 08, 2020 at 09:48 PM (#5937743)
baseball players have always made themselves younger

In the dark ages, Rob Neyer did a piece on players who had fibbed, providing all(?) of the known historical cases at that time. In my often crappy memory, he was trying to address the question of whether Latin players lied about their ages a lot (the Pujols rumors) ... which I recall he thought he did and I sent him a longish note pointing out to him that wasn't what his data really showed. (To be fair, if you put a cutoff around the start of the baseball draft, I suspect the list was heavily tilted away from N American players.)

Anyway, the relevant point here is that there were rather a "lot" of players in his list who got away with lying about their age in the first few years after the war. Which made lots of sense in most of the cases he cited -- if you were in the army for ages 18-20, the scout wouldn't know. My guess on Rob's question is more along the lines of "many players would lie if they thought they could get away with it" and "sometimes the circumstances -- war, crappy Dominican record keeping, greedy buscones -- provide both more motivation and greater chance of success."

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