September 22, 2017

1925 All-Star Game: Junior Loop Shames Nationals In 19 to 5 Beating

January 24, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

JUNIOR LOOP SHAMES NATIONALS IN 19 TO 5 BEATING Heilmann and Hale Contribute Four-Baggers in Fierce Assault RUETHER SUSPENSION UPHELD PHILADELPHIA, July 14.—As if the legion of walking wounded among American League players wasn’t large enough, junior circuit czar Ban Johnson dealt another blow by refusing to reinstate Washington Senators southpaw Dutch Ruether to good […]

Touring The Bases With…Greg Pryor

August 26, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

A two-time All-American at Florida Southern College from 1969-70, Greg Pryor became the first FSC Moccasin to make it to the major leagues when he debuted for the Texas Rangers on June 4, 1976.  Pryor was a sixth round draft pick of the Washington Senators in 1971 and spent parts of six seasons in the […]

Harvey vs. Scherzer is Like Deja Vu All Over Again

August 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Tomorrow’s bout between the New York Mets and Detroit Tigers at Citi Field would most likely be ignored outside of New York and Michigan but for the anticipated match-up of two of the game’s best pitchers—24-year-old phenom Matt Harvey and 28-year-old all-but-guaranteed-to-win-the-AL Cy Young Award, Max Scherzer.  Granted the Tigers don’t have anything clinched yet, […]

Ben Chapman and Jackie Robinson

April 20, 2013 by · 23 Comments 

(Editor’s Note: This article first appeared on Seamheads.com in March 2010. With the release of “42” I thought it appropriate to re-post it—ML). Ben Chapman or “Chappy” as I was instructed to call him, (see my previous article for my introduction to him) was born and reared in the Deep South during a time when […]

Lonely at the Top–Jeffrey Loria’s Vision for Baseball in South Florida

March 21, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Jeffrey Loria’s lawsuit against the only two remaining season ticket holders in the Miami-Dade area has sparked a debate about the worst owners of professional baseball teams over the years. Charlie Comiskey was an early favorite in the race based on his penurious handling of payroll that some have argued was the reason for the […]

Hal Keller Remembered

June 8, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Hal Keller, former catcher for the Washington Nationals and baseball executive for the expansion Washington Senators and Seattle Mariners, died this week at the age of 85. Hal was a local product, born in Western Maryland–Middletown to be exact–and started his career at Hagerstown, MD playing in the baseball organization just down the road in […]

The Glory Days: Stocking the Angels and Senators

June 1, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

On December 14, 1960, an expansion draft was held to stock the Los Angeles Angels and Washington Senators. The eight American League teams were required to pull seven players apiece from active rosters (as of August 31, 1960) and eight additional players from their 40-man rosters and make them available for the draft. The Senators […]

Why Davey Johnson Is So Unhappy

May 10, 2012 by · 4 Comments 

One thing about Bryce Harper’s steal of home a few days ago, it brought a smile to the face of his manager Davey Johnson. Johnson has otherwise found too little to smile about during the first month of the 2012 season, despite the overall good performance of his team. Davey was a hitter. That is […]

The Fleeting Baseball Memories of Bill Whitby

May 2, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

For baseball players who get only a handful of games or less at the major league level, it must be terribly frustrating to wonder about the what ifs. Reaching the pinnacle of professional baseball for a few fleeting moments before it goes away forever is the ultimate in mixed emotions. Bill Whitby got to experience […]

Bill Veeck Day

April 24, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Today is Bill Veeck Day. It is the day that Paul Dickson’s biography of Bill Veeck is officially released, the day “Sport Shirt Bill” is back with us once again. Like a bad penny, he has returned. It is something he himself said often, as he bounced between Wrigley Field and Comiskey, forever part of […]

Catching Up With Former Yankee Johnny James

December 9, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

If there is anything more difficult in baseball than making it to the major leagues, it is making the roster of a successful team. Thus imagine the upward climb that pitcher Johnny James had as he worked his way through the New York Yankees farm system in the 1950’s, the golden age of the game’s […]

A Brief Interview With Pete Craig

November 25, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Hockey is the most popular sport in Canada, but every now and then, some of their youngsters get hooked on baseball. One of those kids was Pete Craig, who was born in LaSalle, Ontario. A large, 6’5 220 pound right-handed pitcher, Craig showed enough promise that he was signed by the Detroit Tigers in 1963 […]

First Division Finish

September 29, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

No, the Nationals are not headed for the playoffs, and yes, the smug fans up the coast will shake their heads in bemusement at the joy we share at finishing in the top half of the 30 Major League baseball teams. But remember and cheerish that grin, because the Nationals don’t just “hear that train […]

The Clark Griffith Monument

June 30, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

In 1956 a monument was dedicated to Clark Griffith outside old Griffith Stadium just months after the former owner of the team and stadium died.  His passing was marked by every major newspaper, his funeral attended by every official of the game.  He was recognized as a giant of the game whose place in Cooperstown […]

The Memorial Day Brawl of 1932

May 29, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Administrative duties have kept me from writing much lately, so I thought I’d dust off an article I wrote for Memorial Day 2009. Enjoy! Twelve years after the Black Sox scandal decimated the White Sox and led to lifetime bans of eight players, a postgame brawl with umpire George Moriarty on Memorial Day 1932 could […]

A Good Luck Charm for Casey Stengel

March 26, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

If it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings; the New York Yankees incredible run of 5 consecutive world championships didn’t start until an attractive soprano named Lucy Monroe sang the National Anthem. From 1949 – 1953, it was her wont to step to the microphone and perform her polished rendition of  “The Star Spangled […]

“Gorgeous George,” a Beauty

March 24, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Doling out compliments is not one of the first qualities that springs to mind when one thinks of Ty Cobb. Yet Cobb went way beyond that when he lauded George Sisler. Cobb called Sisler the “œnearest thing to a perfect ballplayer.” (5, Sizzler). Cobb didn’t exude praise, so there had to be a reason for […]

Red Ruffing: HOF Perseverance

January 8, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

How does a pitcher start his career 39-96 and end up in the Hall of Fame?  This is the amazing story of Charles  Herbert “Red” Ruffing.  He was born on May 3, 1905 in the tiny village of Granville, Illinois.  At an early age,  Ruffing dropped out of school and tended to a mine ventilation […]

The Last Game in Town

October 25, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

Sept. 30, 1971. Seventy years and 10,851 games into the story of American League baseball in the nation’s capital, the Senators, 38 games out of first place on the last day of the season, faced the Yankees in the final game in franchise history. The teams had split the first two games of the series […]

For a Few Dollars More

October 13, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Cliff Lee is the best hired gun since Clint Eastwood starting taking himself too seriously. The Texas Rangers, born the expansion Washington Senators in 1961, went almost fifty years without winning a post-season series. Then like poor campesinos faced with hired guns from the hacienda, they brought in Cliff Lee. Cue the music as Cliff […]

Touring the Bases With…Dave Baldwin

August 8, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The confrontation between batter and hitter defines baseball.  No one understands the scientific dynamic of those opposing forces better than Dave Baldwin, late sixties bullpen stalwart for the Washington Senators, a geneticist and engineer who studies batters and pitchers as mechanical and neurological entities.  His insights are fascinating and offer some important instructive insight into […]

An All-Star Team of ex-Major Leaguers in Their 90s

June 21, 2010 by · 3 Comments 

A recent quick visit to Wikipedia produced a list of the ex-major leaguers who are 90 and up, and from there it was an easy process to put together an All-Star lineup for these guys, practically all of whom starred in the ’40s. I’m offering it for consideration and debate: Catcher: Mike Sandlock, who spent […]

Around the American League With George Case: 1939-1946

June 21, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

A couple of weeks ago, I got to write the kind of story I love for my blog. The son of a former Washington Senators and Cleveland Indians outfielder named George Case emailed me to say he had a 37-minute DVD compiled from 8 mm color footage his dad shot of his career, which spanned […]

Lefty Brewer: A D-Day Hero

June 6, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

On this day, 66 years ago, baseball lost a true D-Day hero. Lefty Brewer, owned by the Washington Senators, died fighting for his country more than 3,000 miles from home. Francis Field, home of the St. Augustine Saints of the Florida State League, was a magical place during the summer of 1938. As the smell […]

When Cheney Ruled Washington

May 22, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

It was a cool September evening in 1962 when 4,098 citizens exercised their right to assemble, in anticipation of an appearance by the representatives of the nation’s capital. Not surprisingly, John Kennedy was the first to take his turn, though he turned out to be a minor figure in the night’s long drama. Later, a […]

Remembering Charlie “King Kong” Keller

May 1, 2010 by · 4 Comments 

Charles E. “King Kong” Keller was born on September 12, 1916 in Middletown, Maryland. An outfielder, Keller played baseball and basketball at the University of Maryland where he earned a degree in agricultural economics before signing with the New York Yankees in 1937. Keller played for the Newark Bears of the Class AA International League […]

Can’t Get No Satisfaction

March 26, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Five days in the Florida sun watching baseball without commuting on Metro, conference calls from hell, or stereo political rhetoric.  How can the crowds be so small down here when the grass is so green?

Walter Johnson in Weiser, Idaho in 1907

March 13, 2010 by · 2 Comments 

A few weeks ago I came across a book from the mid-’90s called Boise Baseball: the First 125 Years, by Arthur A. Hart. In one of the early chapters, Hart talks about Walter Johnson’s time spent playing in the semi-pro Idaho State League in 1907. Johnson was on the Weiser Kids: he was 19 years […]

More Interesting Research Finds

March 8, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

One of the pleasures of doing research for a book or article is the discovery of interesting facts that have nothing to do with what’s being researched, but demand attention.  Here are more interesting and odd research finds that I’ve discovered over the years. Famous Last Words October 19, 1912: When Philadelphia Athletics magnate Connie […]

A Proper Frame for Stephen Strasburg

February 28, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson left southern California in 1907 a shy young man who was uncertain why the Washington Senators thought he was going to be a star. Manager Cantillon had heard from scouts the kid was a unique talent-77 straight scoreless innings, 166 strikeouts in eleven games. Now, a century later, another […]

“Ted Williams and the 1969 Washington Senators, the Last Winning Season”

December 11, 2008 by · 3 Comments 

The author’s second book, Ted Williams and the 1969 Washington Senators: The Last Winning Season, is scheduled to be released by McFarland Publishing on February 24, 2009.