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Thursday, June 06, 2019

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 6-6-2019

There’s been a Tubby Spencer sighting!

Seattle Star, June 6, 1919:

Meet [Salt Lake City manager] Eddie Herr’s catchers. Tubby Spencer is from the big show and Butch Byler is a University of Washington boy. Both are good receivers; in fact, Spencer is ranked with the best mask men in the league. Spencer was with Detroit in the American league for a couple of years. He hits the ball hard and far when he connects.

Spencer has become a bit of a Dugout mascot over the years - when he wasn’t diving through plate glass windows for a sandwich, getting kicked out of cities, or quitting baseball to become a lumberjack and/or hobo, he was an itinerant backup catcher. The link is worth clicking IMO, just for a photo of Spencer and Byler in their uniforms. Looks like Salt Lake may not have had a logo on their uniforms in 1919. They just had an American flag.

In other news, Babe Ruth may be out for a while after injuring his knee diving into third base.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: June 06, 2019 at 10:04 AM | 14 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: dugout, history, tubby spencer

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: June 06, 2019 at 10:05 AM (#5848967)
A bunch of good infielders on today's Birthday Team. The starting rotation is less impressive: Jim Devlin, a guy (Carl Willey) who relieved almost as often as he started, an active player with fewer than 200 career innings, and two relief pitchers.

This would be a really good team if they could trade some of that infield depth for starting pitching.

C: Bill Dickey (58.4 WAR)
1B: Mark Ellis (33.6 WAR)
2B: Ed McKean (38.7 WAR)
3B: Anthony Rendon (23.2 WAR)
SS/Manager: Bud Harrelson (20.3 WAR)
LF: Wild Bill Wright (0 WAR, Negro Leagues star)
CF: Bill Lange (23.1 WAR)
RF: Merv Rettenmund (20.0 WAR)

SP: 1870s Jim Devlin (32.9 WAR)
SP: Jeremy Affeldt (9.8 WAR)
SP: Matt Belisle (7.3 WAR)
SP: Carl Willey (6.5 WAR)
SP: Joey Lucchesi (0.9 WAR)
RP: Joe Pate (3.6 WAR)
RP: Junichi Tazawa (2.3 WAR)

Bench infielder: Tony Graffanino (15.1 WAR)
26th Man: Steve Fireovid (0.9 WAR)
Spare pitcher/Spare bat: Brooks Kieschnick (1.4 WAR)
Writer: Dan Daniel
   2. Davo Posted: June 06, 2019 at 10:07 AM (#5848970)
DBacks outfielder Tim Locastro got hit by another pitch last night. That gives him 10 on the year....in 67 plate appearances!
   3. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: June 06, 2019 at 11:02 AM (#5848996)
Bud Harrelson was a terrible manager and would most likely be replaced by Dickey around July or so...
   4. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: June 06, 2019 at 11:13 AM (#5849005)
I hadn't heard of the Seattle Star newspaper. Not that I'm a big Seattle history fan, but I've been here long enough to pick up a lot of stuff.

Who's the worst manager ever? Maury Wills has to be in the running.
   5. Itchy Row Posted: June 06, 2019 at 11:41 AM (#5849018)
Wikipedia says the Seattle Star went out of business in 1947 and "In 1919, it became vehemently anti-Japanese, especially toward Japanese-Americans who lived in its vicinity."

I don't see anything specifically about Japan in the 6/6/1919 paper, but the Star did refer to itself as "An American Paper that Fights for Americanism."
   6. SoSH U at work Posted: June 06, 2019 at 11:46 AM (#5849025)
"In 1919, it became vehemently anti-Japanese, especially toward Japanese-Americans who lived in its vicinity."


It's Anti-Asian Media Month here in the Dugout.

   7. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: June 06, 2019 at 11:47 AM (#5849026)
Who's the worst manager ever? Maury Wills has to be in the running.


In my, lifetime? My vote goes to Vern Rapp. Not only was he terrible at the proverbial "Xs &Os;," he wasl also, by all accounts, a true Richard Cranium.

All-time, I'd guess Rogers Hornsby, for the same reasons.
   8. Itchy Row Posted: June 06, 2019 at 12:17 PM (#5849040)
Page 17 didn't open for me earlier, but it does have an article about a school for Asian children that's a little hard to read.

The best headline is on page 5- THINK LANDRU EROTIC MANIAC
   9. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 06, 2019 at 12:33 PM (#5849062)
Wikipedia says the Seattle Star went out of business in 1947 and "In 1919, it became vehemently anti-Japanese, especially toward Japanese-Americans who lived in its vicinity."

I don't see anything specifically about Japan in the 6/6/1919 paper, but the Star did refer to itself as "An American Paper that Fights for Americanism."
I'm amazed that no one has thought to relaunch the paper - with that branding these days, it would probably have a higher circulation than all them other librul rags combined within about six months. Money is being left on the table here, people,
   10. Tom Nawrocki Posted: June 06, 2019 at 01:13 PM (#5849096)
In my, lifetime? My vote goes to Vern Rapp. Not only was he terrible at the proverbial "Xs &Os;," he wasl also, by all accounts, a true Richard Cranium.


Vern Rapp managed for only one full season, during which his team won 12 more games than it had the season before. I don't doubt that he was a bad person, but if you're looking for the worst manager, I'd start with guys whose teams lose a lot of games.

Preston Gomez seemed like a terrible manager to me, but he kept getting jobs. Arguably his best managerial work was with the 1970 Padres, who went 63-99.
   11. Mike Webber Posted: June 06, 2019 at 02:13 PM (#5849134)
In the Tuesday dugout Dan Lee wrote
"I don’t know what got into Johnston in 1919, but he hit .219/.278/.287 in 762 plate appearances between 1916-1918. Doc hit .297/.346/.390 between 1919-1921."


I thought I knew the answer, Tris Speaker took over the Indians about then (actually the 79th games of the 1919 season) and he was a big platoon guy so Johnston probably stopped playing against LHP.

So I looked this morning and I was wrong.

What actually happened was for 3 years, Johnston a lefty batter actually began to hit lefties. Maybe there was some platoon effect, but it looks like he just figured something out. Or maybe it's a sample size thing.

In 1921 Johnston did not start a game against a LHP all year, and only had 27 PA against them. He did have a .348 batting average versus LHP that season.


Splits for Johnston's career without 1919-1921
 Split           G GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
 vs LH Starter 137 130 565 494 48 117 14 7 1 36 22 0 35 57 .249 .269 .300 .569
 vs RH Starter 554 528 2288 2034 269 506 81 40 8 189 82 6 144 185 .264 .284 .340 .624


Splits for 1919-1921
I Split         G GS PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
 vs LH Starter 90 72 322 278 29 91 13 6 0 31 12 5 16 18 .335 .332 .417 .750
 vs RH Starter 277 267 1097 972 133 280 48 14 5 107 25 11 67 46 .298 .316 .382 .698 


Hopefully that's straight enough to read. His Playing time vs LHP was slightly higher in this period, 22.6% of PA's vs 19.8% over his career.

His raw numbers were up vs RHP in this period, but this was a time when the league scoring began to increase. His OPS+ numbers were basically in line with his career numbers.

   12. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: June 06, 2019 at 04:46 PM (#5849198)
1B: Mark Ellis (33.6 WAR)


I knew Mark Ellis was a good player for a little while, but I was amazed to see him as a 33 WAR player. So much of it was defense -- he would have been a bad choice as a 1B is real life. Even at age 37, his b-dWAR was 0.7 in 73 games.
   13. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: June 06, 2019 at 05:00 PM (#5849204)
I looked up Mark Grudzielanek to see if he also has 33.6 WAR. No, only 26.5.

Still more than Prince Fielder.
   14. Hank Gillette Posted: June 07, 2019 at 12:13 AM (#5849292)
In other news, Babe Ruth may be out for a while after injuring his knee diving into third base.


Ruth was the starting pitcher for the Red Sox on June 5, and was removed for a pinch runner in the third. Boston scored two runs in the third, and relief pitcher Carl Mays made the lead hold up, pitching the final six innings. Ruth was credited with the win.

The Babe indeed did not play in the next game, but played left field on June 7th, 1919. He had four plate appearances with a three-run homer and a walk and was relieved in left field sometime after his last at bat.

In reading about Babe Ruth, one of the things I have noticed is that the severity of his injuries were often exaggerated when first reported.

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