11 May 2014

sunday morning target dodgers - with a member of the infield and a yankee black armband for ray chapman

i don't know how long i will keep these posts going, but there are plenty more sheets to be shared.  here's another one featuring 15 men who wore the brooklyn/los angeles franchise's uniform between 1890 and 1990, including the dean of the los angeles dodgers and shortstop of the team of my youth, bill russell.
russell's name appears high on many of the 'softer' franchise career leader lists.  among los angeles dodgers, he is first in defensive war, first in games played, second in at bats, third in hits, fourth in doubles, first in singles, first in sacrifice hits, first in intentional walks (hitting 8th will do that for you), and, fairly obviously, first in outs made.  when you factor in the brooklyn players, russell still ranks pretty highly in those same categories.

joe beckwith
beckwith was a dodger double dipper and won a world series ring in 1985 with this next guy's brother.

ken brett
in another case of the 'wrong brother' history of the dodgers (see the martinez brothers, guerrero brothers, and the gwynn brothers, among others), ken, and not george, brett wore dodger blue.  the elder brett joined the dodgers in 1979 after a short stint in minnesota, and went 4-3 with 2 saves in 30 relief appearances for the club.  in one of those appearances, he was pinch-hit for by manny mota, who used the opportunity to set the record for career pinch hits.  brett was himself a good hitter, and was 3 for 11 at the plate as a dodger.  unfortunately, brett was hurt in spring training the following season, and the dodgers released him.  a few months later, ken would join brother george in kansas city for the last couple months of the 1980 season.

bill buckner
billy buck was squeezed out of the dodger outfield despite a .289 average in 773 games for the blue when the team acquired dusty baker and reggie smith to man the corner positions.  as a result, he was dealt to the cubs for center fielder rick monday (and reliever mike garman) prior to the 1977 season.  the cubbies moved buckner to first base and the rest, including his 1980 national league batting title and his error in game 6 of the 1986 world series for the red sox, is history.  buckner finished his career with 2,715 hits - a total surpassed by only 61 other players in the history of the game.

moose clabaugh
clabaugh had a prodigious minor league career spanning 16 seasons.  he hit 346 home runs while maintaining a .339 batting average in the minors, according to this thorough post.  in the majors, not so much.  the robins brought him up to the big leagues in 1926 following a 62 home run season in the low minors, but he hit only .071 (1 for 14) with his lone hit being a double.

bud clancy
clancy played first base for the dodgers in 53 games during the 1932 season.  he had previously played for the white sox (as evidenced by his uniform above) and later joined the phillies.  his timing as a member of the dodgers was good, because he was featured as a member of the team on his 1933 goudey card, which happens to be the oldest dodger card that i own.

wes covington
covington finished his major league career (which began in 1956 with the milwaukee braves) with a stint as a dodger in 1966 following an early season release from the cubs.  he hit only .121 in 37 games for the dodgers, but was a part of their world series roster and made his final big league appearance against the orioles in the fall classic.

bill f. hart
i believe we have a case of mistaken identity here.  william franklin hart pitched for the brooklyn grooms in 1892.  william woodrow hart was an infielder who played for the brooklyn dodgers from 1943-45, and is certainly the player pictured on the card.  there is a card for bill w. hart in the set, so we'll have to see what photo that card features if and when i get to that sheet.  in the meantime, i'll ignore the photo and note that bill f. hart was 9-12 despite a 3.28 era for the grooms in his lone season with the team; a season in which the grooms went 95-59.

alex kampouris
kampouris was the pride of sacramento, as vin scully might say.  he was born in sacramento, played minor league ball in sacramento, worked in sacramento after his baseball career was over, and died in sacramento.  in between stints with sacramento's pacific coast league team, kampouris played for the dodgers, among other big league teams.  he spent 2-plus seasons with brooklyn from 1941 to 1943, hitting .267 in 45 games as a backup second baseman to billy herman.

wayne lamaster
lamaster was traded from the phillies to the dodgers during the 1938 season.  he wound up 0-1 in his three appearances for the dodgers.

steve lembo
lembo was a backup catcher who appeared for the dodgers in a handful of games in 1950 and 1952.  while he didn't appear in a game for the team in 1951, he did spend time with the big club and was the bullpen catcher who warmed up ralph branca in the third playoff game against the giants.  lembo later became a scout for the team and signed, among others, tommy davis and john franco.

don newcombe
newk began his major league career in 1949 with a shutout against the reds.  he went on to win the rookie of the year award, and then won the first cy young award (along with the mvp) in 1956.  he wasa 123-60 for the brooklyn dodgers from 1949 through 1957 (including two seasons lost to military service), but was 0-6 for the los angeles dodgers in 1958, a record that prompted a trade to the aforementioned reds.  he retired after the 1960 season with a career .271 batting average, and later even played a year in japan as a fielder, not a pitcher.

danny richardson
richardson spent 1893 with the brooklyn grooms, hitting .223 in 54 games.  he had previously played for the new york giants from 1884-91 and the washington senators in 1892.

hank thormahlen
thormahlen was a teammate of babe ruth's in new york before he was traded to the red sox in the deal that sent hall of famer (and dodger double dipper) waite hoyt to the yankees following the 1920 season.  in fact, i believe that the photo used for thormahlen's card comes from the 1920 season, as he is sporting a black armband (maybe two black armbands?) on his left sleeve, and the yankees were one of several teams to do so that year in honor of ray chapman, the indians' shortstop who died after being hit by a pitch in a game against the yankees in august of that year.  thormahlen actually relieved carl mays, the yankee pitcher who hit chapman, in that game.  as for thormahlen's tenure with the brooklyn squad, he was with the robins in 1925 when he appeared in five games, starting two of them.  he wound up with an 0-3 record, but did hit a triple in his final big league at bat.

dick whitman
whitman was almost a dodger double dipper.  he began his big league career with brooklyn in 1946, and remained with the club through 1949, hitting .266 in 191 games during that span.  his contract was then purchased by the phillies, but they traded him back to brooklyn after two seasons.  unfortunately, whitman never made it out of the minor leagues during his second tour with the organization and so left my dodger double dipper criteria unfulfilled.  he did play in back-to-back world series, however - with the dodgers in 1949 and with the whiz kids in 1950 - falling to the yankees each time.

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