Tuesday, April 19, 2016

On This Date - 1942

On this date, April 19, 1942, The Nashville Vols hosted the Knoxville Smokies in a double headers.  The first game went long and the combined time of the two games was 5 hours and 12 minutes.

The Vols won both games, beating up on the Smokies in the first inning of the second game, scoring 9 runs.

The previous day the Vols beat the Smokies 6-4.  A nice way to start the season for the Vols.  The Smokies ended the 1942 season at the bottom of the Southern Association with a 61-88 record.  Nashville finished the regular season in second place with a 85-66 record, behind Little Rock (87-59).

The Arkansas Gazette - April 20, 1942

A tip of the hat to Skip Nipper, who writes the fabulous 262 Down Right blog,  for this story.

images from GenealogyBank.com

Friday, April 8, 2016

This Week In Baseball - 1924

92 years ago this week there was big league baseball happening in Knoxville.

The New York Yankees were finishing up spring training and on the 7th of April they faced the Brooklyn Robin, and beat them handily.

This Yankees team, which had won the World Series in 1923, finished second in 1924, just two games out of first place.  The Robins also finished second that season, just 1-1/2 games out of first place.
The Republican Journal - April 8, 1924

The next day, the two teams played another game.  It was a slugfest.  The minimal reporting shows different results in the final score.  One paper report a 19-12 match and others say that it ended in 20-12 score.

Augusta Chronicle - April 9, 1924

It is interesting to note that the papers refer to the Brooklyn club as the Dodgers.  They are recognized as being the Robins from 1914 to 1931.  They were the Dodgers in 1911 and 1912, then again from 1932 to present.  Yes, I know they started to play in Los Angeles in 1958.

Daily Illinois State Journal - April 9, 1924

What appears to be the bigger story is that Babe Ruth hit two home runs.  He'd knock in 46 in 1924.

Houston Chronicle - April 9, 1924
I have not yet checked the local Knoxville papers, but I assume that the game was played at Caswell Park, home of the Appalachian League's Knoxville Pioneers.  Knoxville finished in first place in the Appy League that season.

Times Picayune - April 9, 1924

Both major league teams started their official season the following week.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Maryville College hosts Johnson Bible College - 1918

Maryville College and Johnson Bible College first played each other in 1912.  It would appear that the first game was won by JBC by a score of 6-4.  MC won the next two games, (7-6, 12-2).

The first game with any sort of meaningful write up occurred on April 26, 1918.  Maryville won, as they would consistently do in future meetings.


What did the teams look like back then?  Glad you asked.

1918 Maryville College Baseball Team
image from Chilhowean (1919)

Johnson Bible College Newsletter - July, 1918
image from Johnson University

What do the teams look like now?  Again, glad you asked.

2016 Maryville College Scots
image from MCScots.com
Johnson University Royals
image from JohnsonRoyals.com

The teams take to the field in Maryville tonight at 6pm, 104 years since they first met.  The equipment and the names have changed, but it is still baseball.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Knoxville Sand-Lots Productive

The Evening Repository (Canton, Ohio) - August 14, 1930

    The scouts might have thought them good enough to play in professional ball, but it appears that only two of them made it.  At least I could only find two of them on Baseball-Reference.com.

    Here's a clipping about Claude Capps moving to the Reidsville Luckies in 1940.  He'd play for three teams in two different leagues that year.

    Greensboro, N.C., Record - March 13, 1940

    And one about Loy Atchley.  Baseball-Reference.com doesn't have a death date for Loy.  According to the Social Security Death Index he died on September 6, 1994, most likely in Knox County, TN.

    The Charlotte Observer - August 30, 1931

    articles from GenealogyBank.com

    Tuesday, February 23, 2016

    Knoxville Defeats Morristown - more of the story

    A few years ago I posted a short newspaper article about Knoxville College playing and defeating Morristown College. Today I found an article that has more than just the scores.

    The Negro Star (Wichita, Kansas) - May 1, 1925

    image from GenealogyBank.com

    Thursday, February 4, 2016

    University bbc refuses challenge of local colored bbc - 1875

    Not a shining day in UT base ball history.

    Public Ledger (Memphis, Tennessee) - March 30, 1875

    There was a bit more information in the local press.

    Press and Messenger (Knoxville, Tennessee) - March 31, 1875

    Public Ledger image from Chronicling America
    Press and Messenger image from GenealogyBank.com

    Tuesday, January 12, 2016

    The Appalachian League Black Book of 1949

    I came across a book title that was enticing. The Appalachian League Black Book.  What sort of secrets were hidden in there?  Off to WorldCat to see where this gem could be seen.  They had a listing for the book but no record that any library had it.

    Some snooping around shows that The Baseball Hall of Fame has a copy.  Surely there must be one closer than Cooperstown.  How about one of the cities where the Appy League played?  I found a copy in the Kingsport Public Library, just 93 miles away.  I contacted fellow SABR member and friend, Marshall Adesman, who lives in that area, asking him to take a few minutes to look at the book.

    He was able to go the next day and copied a few pages.  Thanks, Marshall.  I'll have to make a trip over to see the rest of it.

    Do who is this Karl Wingler, Baseball Historian and Statistician?  The Hall of Fame library lists that he compiled and edited the 1940 book, Who's Who In The Burley Belt League.  The 1940 US Census shows that there's a Carl Wingler, then age 21, that lived in Damascus, Washington county, Virginia.  The 1930 US Census shows that there's a Karl Wingler, then age 11, with the same family in the same town.

    According to a local newspaper in February of 1949, "Karl Wingler of Damascus, Va., who is the official record compiler for the Appalachian (League)..."

    The Kingsport Times-News - February 6, 1949
    image from ancestry.com

    In the February 8, 1940 edition of The Sporting News Karl is listed as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Burley Belt League.  A few months later, on May 9, 1940, in the same paper, he is promoting the Baseball Data Club, of which he is the president.  He is also listed as being the sports editor for the Washington County Forum, a weekly publication.

    In the mid 1940s Karl created a new way to rank pitchers.  Some called it the "Wingler System".

    The Sporting News - January 25, 1945

    The Springfield Republican, from Massachusetts, gave a more full explanation and results the prior week.

    The Springfield Republican - January 16, 1945

    In September of 1947 Karl is looking for a photo of Jiggs Donahue as a left handed catcher.  November of 1947 brings him wanting to compile the statistical history of the American League.  He's listed as writing a page for the April 13, 1949 edition of TSN about US Presidents tossing out the first pitch.

    By November of 1953 Karl is affiliated with the Heilbroner Baseball Bureau. 

    For me, his trail goes cold after that.  What a wonderful thing it would be to find his ledgers and notes.