The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas on April 7, 1954 · Page 11
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April 7, 1954

The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas · Page 11

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Blytheville, Arkansas
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Wednesday, April 7, 1954
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WEDNESDAY, APRIL ?, 1954 BLYTHEVILLE (AKK.) COURIER NEWS Questions Still Surrounding Shaky Franchise at Baltimore By JIMMY BRESLIX NEA Staff Correspondent ... BALTIMORE — (NEA) — The team with which Baltimore hopes to earn a perma- "neflt place in the American league is, when you get down to it, nothing more than a second-hand version of the beat- up St. Louis Browns, with the management supplied by the Philadelphia Athletics. Normally, this combination guarantees a club which will flounder in, or dangerously close to, the cellar. The Orioles do not seem ready to change this. Baltimore fans are hungry for major league baseball, however, and show it by gobbling up tickets at a terrific rate. . What will happen when this club ,they haven't seen— last year's St. Louis Browns— shows itself? IPT-"" JOB It took an army of workmen to get Memorial Stadium ready for the Orioles' openinf JVD . Apr 1 conservative Baltimore still put cash on the barrel head to see an outfit which by August figures to be far out of the race for anything but the basement? "We lost nine games and won dnly three," says Don Kellett, general manager of the Baltimore Colts of the National Football League. ••That isn't any sort of a season at all. Yet we have 16,500 season tickets sold for next fall already. As far as I'm concerned, this is an excellent sports town." ..."If the Orioles beat just two ciubs, the place will stay on this bender," says Sports Editor Jesse Linthicum. "I believe most of the people know what they have — a second division club. They're ready to go with it all the way. This is the greatest untapped sports town in the country." The concensus is that a sixth- place finish would keep the binge .going for one more year. Baltimore's population is more than a million, which would seem to back up the Chesapeake city's ability to support big league baseball. But critics build a solid case against the chances of success. They point to racing in and around Maryland. Baltimore is choked by race tracks—Pimlico, Laurel, Bowie, Delaware Park and Charles Town, to name the major •running horse open air gambling casinos, and not to mention the two or three night trotting establishments. "."Baltimore long has been a racing town. The tracks couldn't prosper without heavy Baltimore patronage, and horse players rarely bother themselves with such mundane things as baseball. -, ' The Baltimore Bullets, last-place team in the National Basketball •Association, took a bath. M The municipally-owned Memorial jBtadium, in which the Orioles will deploy, is another sore spot. At 1>est, the $2,600,000 rebuilding job vdone on it makes the plant nothing more than a glorified football -stadium. •; A huge upper tier and a small onezzanine have been added to the -original structure, and it took an ; army of workmen to get it ready !for tie Orioles' home opening April 15. The park seats 47,500, but no jnore than 19,000 will park themselves on normal ball park seats : with backs. The rest of the customers are going to sit on plain '.wooden planks strung along con- 'crete steps. The upper tier, parts •of which seem constructed for easy ..Conversation with passing airline ^pilots, has no roof. The seats there •are plain board benches. "" The lights, too, are a problem. 'The construction company says lighting equipment which formerly illuminated Braves Field in 3oston won't be completely installed until July 15. Meanwhile, the American Leaguers will have to get by with International League lights, .-which leave center field a bit murky. •' » * * The field will inspire some sort •of a Polo Grounds-type* home run 'derby for pull hitters, both foul lines measuring no more than 309 feet. : • Everybody is squawking about the schedule. Baltimore is listed as a western club so the Orioles open in Detroit and then go home. The White Sox come from Chicago to furnish the opposition and then double back to Cleveland. " But Clarence W. Miles, the lawyer-lobbyist who promoted the .•whole thing, says the Orioles are in Baltimore to stay. "„ /'We're here to build the big- •.gest farm system in baseball and ••a- winner," he insists. * There are brewery and realty "interests and a lot of stockholders, and a market for the franchise on the Pacific Coast and else:where, so no one can get hurt too Phil Cavarretta Got Sack Because His Cubs Didrit Win in the Spring By HARRY GRAYSON NEA Sports Editor NEW YORK — (NEA) — So spring training doesn't mean a thing, eh? Well, it did to Phil Cavarretta after 20 years in the Cub organization. The summary dismissal of Cavarretta once more calls attention to the ridiculous tren baseball's training season has taken. GOING FISHING? See Eddie For Refreshments BEER — BY BOTTLE OR CASE Nationally Advertised Liquors FISH TALES TOLD HERE (Lies Accepted) Eddie's Liquor Stort and Billiard Parlor 121 East Main The clubs have strayed a long way from its original purpose, which was to prepare the noble athletes for 154 championship games. Cavarretta walked the plank because the Chicago Nationals had looked horrible losing 15 of 20 exhibition games. So some baseball managers are now in the position of professional football coaches, who have to win exhibition games in the heat of August to stimulate the championship gate. As in the case of Marty Marion and the Orioles, Cavarretta was fired for telling the front office the truth. Owner Philip K. Wrigley took it for granted that his field marshal had given up when, before the training season started, he did not pick the Bruins to finish in the first division. * * * MAGNATE WRIGLEY KNEW as much about Cavarretta last October as he did on March 25, after he had finished the better and most important part of the training season. Stanley Hack, the new man, must now .quickly acquaint himself with what personnel there is. It's another case of the Cubs' front office making an improper decision too late. Casey Stengel was dead right whea he said that front offices of the poorer clubs should take stock of themselves instead of tieing the can to the harassed pilot. The reason the Cubs have finished in the second division seven consecutive times, thrice in the cellar, was because that was where they belonged. It was not the fault of Charley Grimm, Frank Frisch or Cavarretta. That's the same Grimm, by the way, who won three National League flags, four more in the American Association and who last season lifted the Braves from seventh to second and a National Leagufk attendance accord. * * * WHAT THE CUBS require is a farm system and some scouts. They came up with a handful of prospects after World War n, but Roy Smalley grew worse and fellows who looked like big pitchers were inconsistent. The Cubs' front office has been guilty of a long list of bad deals, one of the worst getting Branch Rickey off the hook when he unloaded Ralph Kiner and that fat contract. The Cubs' front office slept while boasting that they could draw more than a million in the afternoon with any old kind of an outfit. But with the miracle Braves taking the back-country play away, the Cubs last season for the first time suffered an appreciable decline in attendance, when it dropped below 800,000. That's why for the first time in history a manager got the sack for not winning exhibition games. During the summer months Bob Bondanza, San Jose State basketball player, works on the coffee plantation owned by his parents in El Salvadore, Central America. badly. And Baltimore is too busy getting into the swing of things for i this banner season to bother about the future. You can see that in the newspapers. They're writing about the "Lucky Yankees" already. Pony League Registration Tomorrow Registration of players who wish to participate in the "Y" Pony baseball league is scheduled to get under way tomorrow and will close April 17. Boys who are past the age limit specified by the Little League but who have not reached the age of 15 before January 1, 1954, are eligible to play in this league. The league will start play immediately after the beginning of summer vacation and will continue through most of the summer. Players attending Junior High School may register at school, as blanks will be distributed or made available through the Principal's office for all eligible students. Others, who are unable to register at Junior High, may obtain blanks at the "Y". Coaches of the four teams composing the league will have an opportunity to see most of the players in action during the next few weeks, as they play in a Junior High baseball league on Saturday mornings at Little Park. In this way, they will be able to evaluate the players and be in better position to select their teams when the bidding begins. The schedule of the Junior High league began Saturday morning with two games between teams captained by Gerald Snider, James Vickery, Eddie Perry and Dwaine Privett. Exhibition Baseball By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Boston CA) 10, Milwaukee (N) 5 Baltimore (A) 13, Chicago (N) 2 St. Louis (N) 9, Chicago (A) 2 Cleveland (A) 10, New York (N) 5 Philadelphia (N) 4, Detroit (A) 0 Philadelphia (A) 17, Pittsburgh (N) 10 Cincinnati (N) 18, Washington (A) 1 New York (A) 7, Greensboro (PL) 2 The six American Hockey League teams employed 19 different goalies this season. Every regular goaltender received one or more injuries which caused him to miss games. Chuck Davey On TV Tonight Meets British Champ In Oakland Fight OAKLAND, Calif. Ml — Chuck Davey, the educated southpaw from Lansing, Mich., renews his campaign for another crack at the welterweight title when he meets Gerald Dreyer of Pretoria, South Africa, in a 10-round fight tonigh at the Oakland Auditorium. The bout will be nationally televised starting, at 10 p.m., EST. Davey has been installed as a mild favorite to beat the former British Empire champion. Both are hard hitters. They have similar fighting styles, both being aggres sive and constantly throwing punches. In 45 bouts, Davey has scorec 26 knockouts. Dreyer has won 19 times by kayo. Each has lost four times. It is an important fight for both contestants. Davey hopes to use it as a springboard for another chance at Kid Gavilan's welter crown. Dreyer also is seeking a title shot. Utftft Jm BEAM WO*U» FINEST BOURBON SINCE 7795 KENTUCKY STRAIGHT BOURBON WHISKEY, 88 PROOF JAMES fi. BEAM USTLLINfi CO., CLEKMONT, KENTUCKY] This Pony Will Be Shown In Blytheville Thursdoy & Firday We Will Soon Have The Delicious Hampshire Manor Popcorn In Smaller Containers So We Are Closing Out Our Stock of Gallon Size Containers At V* PRICE Just 50c For A Gallon Of Delicious Cheese Coated Popcorn Liquors 106 N. Broadway Porty Foodf Phone 2868 Only Bums Have A Solid Lineup Terrific Battles Being Waged for Jobs On All Other Teams By JOE REICHLEE NEW YORK i*) _ The major league baseball season is only six days off but only the Brooklyn Dodgers have a guaranteed lineup for opening day. It isn't so much that the 15 other managers are confronted by problems. It's just that battles for positions have not vet been settled. For instance. Manager Eddie Stanky of the St. Louis Cardinals still hasn't come to a permanent decision regarding his regul- lar shortstop and first baseman. The principals are rookie Alex Grammas and Solly Hernus at shortstop and rookie Tom Alston and Steve Bilko at first. Grammas has been coming along nicely after a slow start and will open the season but Hemus is sticking in there. Alston is the superior fielder and so will draw the first day job but Bilko has been hitting more than a 100 points higher than the 6-5 negro. O'Connell vs Dittmer The Danny O'Connell-Jack Dittmer battle for the regular second base Milwaukee job is still raging. Two weeks ago, it appeared that O'Connell, the $200,000 acquisition from Pittsburgh, had won the job but since then D.ittmer has been coming fast wnile O'Connell's batting has fallen off to a whisper. Bobby Adams apparently has fought off the advance of rookie Chuck Harmon at third base with Cincinnati but the right field position is still being hotly contended for by rookie Wally Post and Lloyd Merriman, a returning serviceman. Rookie Curt Roberts appears to have a strangle hold' on the Pittsburgh second base job but four fellows players are battling for the left field berth. Westrum Rallies Wes Westrum's comeback has muddled up the New York Giants catching situation. Originally, manager Leo Durocher had designated rookie Ray Katt as his No. 1 backstop but Westrum's resurgence apparently has won | him the No. 1 rating all over again. Manager Steve O'Neill of the Philadelphia Phillies is so undecided about his right field position he has decided to alternate veteran Johnny Wyrostek .and Mel Clark, at least for the time being. Two sizzling battles for positions are being waged in the Boston Red Sox camp. Holdover first base- Yankees Can Be Beaten. But Rest of League Looks Weak By HARRY GRAYSON NEA Sports Editor NEW YORK — (NEA) — Not a few handicappers would like to pick again* the Yankees. The trouble is that they can't find a club to beat them. The American Learnt if that bad. ^ Casey Stengel is worried about Phil Rizzuto and Jerry Coleman. not to mention Mickey Mantle's knee. After a rest was prescribed, Coleman was retarded in training by a groin injury. The brass is concerned about Rizauto's srm and eyes, but that was the case fite years ago. and Little Scooter has since beaten an attack of ulcers. But he is now 35. Perhaps the most dangerous sign in connection with Rizzuto is that he says he never felt better. Like many another remarkable athlete, the great shortstop is at his best when complaining about not feeling too well. Watching a lot of players trying out with major league clubs made reteran baseball witters wonder what the minors looked like. . . . Perhaps the minors were improved by sending them up. , . , Art Ehlers deals with the Athletics as though he still ran them, and Baltimore citizens fear the Orioles will wind up the same way. • * * BOBBY BRAGAN LAST summer in the Pacific Coast League did a strip tease in a dugout and staged a sit-down strike in the third base coach's box protesting umpires' decisions. Bragan is a baseball entertainer man Dick Gernert is having his hands full trying to ward off rookie Harry Agganis, They'll probably divide the job. Ted Lepcio, a dark horse candidate for shortstop, has been doing such a whale of a job during Milt Boiling's enforced absence due to an injury, that he may open the season there. There still is little to choose between Dale Mitchell and Wally Westleke for the regular left field Cleveland post. Bucky Harris of Washington still hasn't made up his mind between Clyde Vollmer and Roy Sicvers for left field. Even Casey Stengel, the wise old manager of- the world champion New York Yankees must make a decision soon. He's got to decide who will open the season at first base. A month ago, the choice lay between Joe Collins and Eddie Robinson. Now, rookie Bill Skowron, with a tremendous batting display, has thrust himself into the battle. who makes sense like a younger edition of Casey Stengel. The manager of the Hollywood Stars came to the Pirates' Fort Pierce camp fresh from winning his second pennant in 11 months. His Twinks prevailed by eight lengths, his Almendares by the same bulge in the Cuban Winter League to make him the first imported pilot to win there- In five years with Port Worth of the Texas League, his Brooklyn farm clubs twice bounced down in front, twice ran second and tied for fourth. • Bragan, 36, switched to Hollywood "because my best friend in the Brooklyn organization was Branch Rickey." Bragan came to Fort Pierce seeking sufficient help to repeat in the Coast League, which isn't as funny as it sounds, for there were numerous bright prospects in the Pittsburgh party who had to be sent out. Mahatma Rickey knows where to send them. In Fort Worth, Bragan had a big hand in the development of Carl Erskine, Billy Loes, Bob Miliken and Dick Williams of the Dodgers; the Yankees' Irv Noren; the Orioles' Bill Hunter; the Cubs' Turk Lown and Dee Fondy; and the Pirates' Cal Abrams and Preston Ward. • * * DALE MITCHELL HAS to make { a fourth straight detente ot hta i left field assignment with tb« Cleveland club. It is no secret that tht Indian chiefs do not consider Mitchell a well - rounded ballplayer, even though the 32-year-old's lifetime average of .315 is second only to that of Ted William* ia the Amcrt- can League. Mitchell beat off Suite** Simpson in 1951. Jim Fridley In '88 an* Big Jim Lemon last trip. No fewer than seven tackled him this spring—Bob Kennedy, Lemon, Simpson, Wally Westlake, Dave Pope, Al Smith and Gale Wadt, the latter up from Port Worth. But Mitchell wasn't expected to succumb even to the weight of numbers, atlhough Westlake, divorced from the National League on grounds of non-support of the Pirates and Cardinals, hit .330 In part-time service last season. Larry Doby, the perennial problem boy, seems more relaxed and happy, but thl* could be an illusion. The stylish center fielder i* still regarded as a guy with a wonderful motor and a poor ignition system. In almost six years with the Yankees as a reserve catcher, Charlie Silvera has appeared in only IflO games. For players not 13 by January 1. 1954 and who are not HOW members of a Little Leajnic team. This registration must be made or you will not be eligible for the try-out* to b« held the first week In May. NAME phone Address ....».• Date Of Birth Mail or deliver this registration blank to: Albert Taylor. Ark-Mo Power Co. Local Offlca. 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