Newspaper Page Text
Baseball Swings Into Big Season Inaugural With Only Weather Out of Step
^ —■ ■ ■ ■ * - ■ ■■ ■ ■ ■ ' ■ ■■ -A - __^ Win. Lose or By FRANCIS E. STAN. The Red Sox Don't Talk Pennant These Red Sox, who are supposed to have the most murderous collection of sluggers in baseball, really aren’t so ferocious off the field. They were behaving nicely in Ma Shoreham’s parlor last night. There was a bridge game off in a corner and one of the boys, probably awed at the swank, even removed his hat. Ted Williams had rushed to catch an early movie. Dotty Lamour was playing, he had announced as he trotted off. The rest either had fastened themselves to lobby chairs or gone upstairs to read the new detective magazines. The Red Sox don’t talk about the pennant. They are one of the two clubs in the American League able to mention the 1940 flag without being led, en masse, to the nearest bughouse. Only the Red Sox and the Yankees are supposed to be in contention and over the winter and during the spring a lot of experts have swung over to the Boston side. But the Sox don’t talk about the World Series next October. Jimmy Foxx reports that his sinus is coming along nicely. "Wasn’t it cold in Florida before the first of March, too?" he was saying. Williams dis courses animatedly about gaily flowered sarongs and King Haakon and the fine winter the folks had back in San Diego. California. Even Joe Cronin, manager, shortstop and author of "We'll Beat the Yankees!" in the Satevepost, skirts flag talk. They're Just Waiting on the Pitchers There is a feeling, however, that Tom Yawkey’s seventh Red Sox Is a grim gang of galoots with their minds set on licking the Yankees. In some ways Mr. Yawkey has a better ball club than the world champions. The Red Sox have a better all-around infield and they pack more sheer power at the plate with a batting order that reads, down the line, Dominic Di Maggio, Cramer, Foxx, Williams, Cronin, Doerr, Tabor and Desautels. There is the impression that here is a team ready to declare itself, loudly and publicly, if it can be satisfied on one count—pitching. The Red Sox have a pitching staff composed of Mose Grove, who used to dawdle Dan'l Boone on his knee, and a lot of fellows named Joe. The Joes are, for the most part, young fellows and untested. Some of them are fresh from the minors and with fancy records. Herb Hash, for instance, won 22 and lost 6 for Minneapolis last year. Wilburn ' Butland won 19 and lost 10 for the same club. A brash kid southpaw , named Mickey Harris won 19 and lost 3, or something approximately as sensational, with Scranton. Too Bad, Moans Joe, About Yanks' Luck But Minneapolis and Scranton ana Louisville and Little Rock and San Francisco are off the major league path. The Hashes, Butlands, Harrises and, verily, little Di Maggio must prove themselves in big-time company. The Sox are about ready to accept young Di Maggio as quite a ballplayer, but they are withholding judgment on the pitchers. Yet let Hash and Harris for instance, make good and team with Grove end Emerson Dickman and this club which won't talk pennant might well win it. Cronin was making tracks for the newsstand when he was inter cepted last night. “I just want to glance at the news,” he explained. •‘I hear that Joe Di Maggio is out of the game. Isn't that too bad?” He didn't forget to wink. As a fellow who had proclaimed to the world that his Red Sox will beat the Yankees, how did Mr. Cronin propose to do it and with whom j in the pitching box? "Well,” sidestepped Joe, neatly, "some of our fellows have been having arm trouble. A lot was expected of Hash and Butland but they've been having a little trouble. So we don't know much about them.” 'We'll Let It Work Itself Out' This taken care of most adequately, how are the celebrated clinical eases of Pitchers Woody Rich and Jim Bagby, jr.? ‘‘Okay, I suppose,” answered Joseph. “You ought to set this fellow, Mickey Harris. Fresh from Scranton he comes, and is he fresh? He's the original city slicker. He's the fellow I was touting early in March in Tampa. Remember? He's a good looking left-hander.” Inasmuch as the season happens to be starting, is there any clue as to the four or five starting pitchers? “Well, Emerson Dickman was our relief pitcher last year. He looks 60 good now I'm going to start him. Thefe's Grove and Dickman . . . and j we ll let the rest work itself out. I see where Bucky Harris is gbing to start Sid Hudson in the second game against us.” It may well be that Cronin really doesn’t know how his pitching set up will work out. The rebuilding program started by Yawkey seven years ago has produced a heavy-hitting infield and a highly promising outfield but the pitchers have been slow coming along. They may be on the club this year with nobody as yet being able to separate the wheat from the chaff. Little Di Mag Is an Interesting Rookie Among the Aokies of the major league season. Dominic Di Maggio Is certain to rank high as a figure of interest. It was a fabulous record the youngest of the Di Mags compiled last year for San Francisco in the Pacific Coast League ... a great defensive mark, 239 hits made for 366 total bases, 164 runs scored and a .360 average. He is a strange, deceptive looking chap, this 22-year-old kid brother of Vince and Joe Di Maggio. He wears thick spectacles on and off the field. Mingling with the other players he looks small and boyish. He looks more like the batboy than one of the sluggers on the hardest-hitting ball club in the game. Yet Dominic has two of the requisites of a good, sharp hitter. He has the batting Stroke and the shoulders. His shoulders are all out of proportion to the rest of his physique. Here is where lies his power. In addition, he has speed afoot and a knack of running the bases. In these two respects he may outdistance Big Brother Joe. Despite an ankle which he sprained in his second game this spring and which still bothers him, Dominic has shown enough speed to become- the new lead-off hitter. Doc Cramer, after years in the No. 1 spot, is dropped to second while the sensational rise of Williams, who drove across 145 runs last year, Is promoted to the clean-up post. Cronin, who has been batting fourth, has no regrets as he opens a new campaign with himself batting fifth. “I’ll hit ninth,” he was saying, “if we keep adding power. And I’ll be glad to be down there.” Colonials at Maryland, G. U. at Navy Tomorrow Two baseball games are on to morrow’s collegiate sports schedule, with George Washington invading Maryland in the feature attraction. Georgetown's forces invade Annap olis for the annual diamond duel Vith the Midshipmen. Jim Kiernan, sophomore right hander, has been nominated for mound duty against the Tars, but no pitching selections were an nounced by Burt Shipley of Mary land or Ed Morris of George Wash ington. Forgets Bad Back, Rolls 300-730 GREEN' BAY, Wis. — Bert Smits had a sore back and de cided to quit for the evening al though he bowled 192 in his first game in a league series. A sub stitute was lined up, but at the last minute Smits decided to continue. The next game he rolled 12 straight strikes for a perfect 300 and topped it off with 238 for a 730 total. Spurns Trade of Reese for Medwick, McPhail Declares * Carrier Pigeon Now 10*1 in Derby; Rangers Get $ly200 Each and Bonus for Hockey Triumph By EDDIE BRIETZ, Associated Press Sports Writer. NEW YORK. April 16.—Larry MacPhail made everybody’s hair stand straight up today by say ing he could get Joe Medwick in an even-up trade for Pee Wee Reese, but isn’t interested. The coast rumor foundry now has Slip Madigan going into the fight promoting business in Los Angeles w’ith Ed Frayne, former aide to Czar Mike Jacobs Foi winning the Stanley Cup, the New York Rangers each will re ceive $1,200, plus a fat bonus . from Madison Square Garden. Carrier Pigeon, 30-1 a month ago, has been backed down to 10-1 in James J. Carroll's Derby future book. Andy K is 8-1 and Bimelech 2-1. Carroll says both Roman Flag and Mioland arc ' PC getting better support than Bimelech. Today’s guest star—Dan Par ker, New York Daily Mirror: “Bill Terry’s name is missing from the Sporting News’ fine new base ball register because he de manded compensation for being included in the book.” Humbert J. Fugazy, who tried to buck Tex Rickard years ago, wants to promote at Ebbets Field this summer with Bob Pastor as his ace. Pastor isn’t getting any work from Mike Jacobs and is ready to bolt. Ralph De John, Syracuse light-heavy, has moved into New York bag and baggage and swears he won’t stir until he gets a bout with Billy Conn. Branch Rickey is blasting the Shaughnessy playoff system in the minora to mingled cheers k Nats' Initial Set Is Rugged Test For Slab Crew Also Should Provide Line on Flag Chance Of Powerful Bosox By FRANCIS E. STAN. Given a break in the weather, major league baseball was to open today on eight scattered American and National League fronts and nq where was there a gaudier or more important inaugural slated than here at Griffith Stadium, The eyes of the Capital, of course, were on the Nationals—young, swift, ambitious and on the comeback trail. The eyes of the diamond world in general, however, were focused on the Red Sox—a murderous crew' picked in some quarters as destined to overthrow the mighty Yankees. An event of the last 48 hours has added import to the gala Griffith Stadium festival which was to be held today, providing the predicted showers hold off. The Yankees’ Joe Di Maggio is on the sidelines with a sprained knee. It may be two weeks before the slugger will be back in the game. This blow, together with Second Baseman Joe Gordon's pain ful. if not disabling, ankle injury and the loss of Outfielder Jake Powell, lying in a Kentucky hospital with a severe concussion of the brain, figure to hurt the Yankees in the early fight. Yankees Left-Handed Heavy. I In the meantime, what of the Red Sox? Foxx, Williams, Cronin & Co. are capable of making a lot of runs. They always have manufactured plenty. But can Bob Grove carry on? And will Jim Bagby, jr., and Woody Rich and Herb Hash pitch winning ball? Some of these questions were to be answered, starting today, as the Red Sox were to go against the Na tionals’ slab ace, Dutch Leonard, and the Griffmen were to face Grove. The Boston-Washington pairing was about the only good break the champion Yanks have received lately. Minus Di Maggio, they were slated to face only the lowly Athletics, but even in this series they may run into trouble Today in the Philadelphia opener for the champions they were to face Connie Mack's southpaw, Chubby Dean. With Di Magg:io and Poweil out, the Yanks’ remaining power is on the left side of the plate—Selkirk, Henrich and Keller in the outfield, and Rolfe and Dickey Of the able right-handers there is no outstand ing slugger. Not among Dahlgren, Crosetti and Gordon. Haynes, Hudson Question Marks. Sharing the spotlight today with the Nats-Red Sox and A's-Yankees openers were a pair of National League games. The Cincinnati Reds and the St. Louis Cardinals, who have divided expert opinion this spring, were to meet formidable rivals. The pennant-winning Reds, opening at home, were to entertain the Cub team they dethroned last year. The Cardinals, also opening at home, were pitted against the Pitts burgh Pirates, under the manage ment of Frankie Frisch. In the meantime, local interest centers around the Griffmen. Leon ard, winner of 20 and loser of only 8 games last year, apparently is set for another big year, but the Wash ington- problem is to find other hurlers to keep pace with the big knuckle ball exponent. Provided the weather permitted today’s game, light on the Washing ton pitching situation will be shed tomorrow when the Red Sox, still here, face young Joe Haynes. This hurler, along with Rookie Sid Hud son from the Florida State League, ! supposedly will be teamed with l Leonard by way of throwing right handed pitching against the enemy. Southpaws Saved for Champs. It is the plan of Manager Bucky : Harris to hurl the three right I handers against the hard-hitting Red Sox. a team loaded with right handed hitters. The two ranking southpaws of the club, Ken Chase and Joe Krakauskas, will be saved for later in the week, when the Nats go to New York to play the Yankees in a three-game series Win or lose, Leonard’s status is fairly certain. The fellow can pitch major league ball. But Haynes has yet to prove himself. As a rookie he did well, considering physical ail ments. But he wasn’t a big winner and now, going into his sophomore year, he must meet the test. What Hudson will do can only be con jectural. It’s a tremendous jump from*the Florida State League to the majors. Harris thinks he can make the jump. Until American League hitters have their say. this must be regarded as good enough. As for the two southpaws—Chase and Krakauskas—this also is a test year for them. and jeers. Brooklyn put out feelers for Dizzy Dean, but there was nothing doing. If the Chi cago Cardinals let Coach Jimmy Conzelman pick his own assist ants, one of them will be Chile Walsh, former St. Louis U. mentor. Tee hee department. Max Baer says he’ll stop Galento in May and then make Joe Louis jump out of the ring in September. O. K., but we can’t help remem bering the other time he fought Louis—when Jack Dempsey had to shove him oft his stool to get him out for the second round. When the hotel where the Min neapolis ball club stayed became plagued by skunks. Red Evans, ex-Dodger screwball, got a .33 rifle and gpnnd the opening FAR BETTER THAN BLITZKRIEGS — —.— 1 -- — ■" 4 —By JIM BERRYMAN 3 Tiger, Brown Hurlers Battle Old Outfits In Season Debut Tribe Opens in Chicago First Time Since '04; A's Eyes on McCoy B> the Associated Press. DETROIT, April 16.—Buck New som, Detroit's 20-game winner of last year, drew the mound assign- : ment today for the Tigers’ opening game against the St. Louis Browns.1 Newsom, a former Brownie, was to face Slicker Coffman or Vernon j Kennedy, both former Tigers. A capacity crowd of 45,000 was expected at Briggs Stadium, despite, a forecast of cool, cloudy weather. — Feller to Face Chisox. CHICAGO, April 16 Cleve- | land's Bob Feller, leading game winner of the American League last season, was to face the Chicago White Sox today as another pennant race got under way. The weather was chilly, with a possibility of rain. Southpaw Edgar Smith was Man ager Jimmy Dykes’ choice to oppose Cleveland, which was lo open the season in Chicago for the first time since 1904. A's Draw Big Assignment. PHILADELPHIA, April 16 (>T>).— Twenty thousand persons were ex pected at Shibe Park today to see Connie Mack’s 40th edition of the Athletics open the American League's campaign to dethrone the four-times champion New York Yankees. Cloudy weather and occasional light rain was forecast. Benny McCoy, high-priced second baseman, playing his first game with the A’s, was elected to lead off at the bat for the Mackmen, probably against the pitching of the Yanks’ Red Ruffing or Monte Pearson. Southpaw' Chubby Dean was nomi nated to start on the mound for the A's. under the building with bullets. Mike Jacobs denies Joe Gould will become his matchmaker, but things are in the air. Mike, va cationing in Hot Springs, prob ably will drop around to see Ownie Madden, former New York big shot, now in retirement there. Ownie used to be the No. 1 mem ber of the Braddock-Gould brain trust and still wields a lot of influence. It’s a good long shot that Gould's $104,000 suit against Mike never gets to court. Extra— Earl Housh, Oklahoma oil baron, shot two holes-in-one in two weeks. By the by, didn’t somebody out in Chicago say last winter the first move in the 1940 Cub shake up would be the release of Mrs. Dlagr? Frisch Tosses Bucs at Cards He Last Led to Flag; Giants Revamped for Title Chase By the Associated Press. ST. LOUIS, April 16.—'The Cardi nals, National League pennant win ners on paper, today were to begin the title drive on the diamond against the Pittsburgh Pirates, whose manager, Frankie Frisch, led St. Louis to its last championship. i League batting king, Johnny Mize, a convalescent, was to start at first base, but there was a possibility an ailing back would force his slugging Redbird mate, Joe Medwick, to miss the opener. Showers were forecast. Giants Using New Cast. NEW YORK, April 16 <£»).—'The New York Giants brought a new cast back to the old stand today to open the baseball season in Man hattan against the Phillies. New comers in the starting line-up are Johnny Rucker, sensational young center fielder; Mickey Witek at second base and Babe Young at first. In addition, Burgess White head has moved from second to third. Carl Hubbell was listed to do the pitching against Kirby Higbe. Al though showers threatened, a crowd of about 35.000 was expected. Bees in 65th Season. BOSTON, April 16 (/Pi —Weather permitting, the Bees were to launch their 65th season as Boston’s Na tional League baseball entry today against the Brooklyn Dodgers. The forecast, however, was unfavorable.' Manager Casey Stengel has nomi- I nated Bill Posedel. his most effective 1939 pitcher, as his opening game starter and the Dodgers were ex pected to counter with Whitlow Wyatt. Gov. Leverett Saltonstall of Mas sachusetts was scheduled to open the season by tossing the first pitch to Mayor Maurice J. Tobin of Bos ton. Cincinnati Baseball Mad. | CINCINNATI, Ohio, April 16 (JP).— ! A weather forecast of showers threatened to spoil the Cincinnati Reds’ opener today with the Chi cago Cubs. The prediction, however, didn’t stall a rush for 3,000 standing-room tickets. The 35,000 seats have been sold for months. Gov. John W. Bricker was to toss i out the first ball. - | Hollingsworth Gains Favor Impresses Manager Harris for Second Time; 10,000 Seats on Sale at Park Today As the Griffmen today prepared to start a new American League pennant race the boss man, Bucky Harris, was intrigued by the possibilities of a cast-off Na tional Leaguer. ... He is Pitcher A1 Hollingsworth, the southpaw who was procured a few days ago from the Brooklyn Dodgers on a 30-day trial. . . . Hollingsworth pitched batting practice before the rains came yesterday and at the conclusion of the drill Harris said: “He still looks good to me. I've seen him work out twice and both times he’s had something on the ball.” Prior to the stick drill the Nats posed for photographers. . . . In cluded was the official squad pose. . . . Somewhere there must be ball clubs with more photo genic faces. The Grifls this morning were rooting for no postponement of the opener with the Bed Sox. ... Last year the Washington inau gural was rained out. . . . The team went to Philadelphia and returned three days later to put on a belated opener here. . . . President Roosevelt failed to show for the first time since 1933 and Vice President John Nance Gar ner threw out the first ball. . . . The Nats lost to the Yankees, 6-3. Mr. Roosevelt is the luckiest President of them all for Wash ington clubs. . . . Only once, in 1937, did P. D. R. ever see the baseball Senators licked. ... All . other times they either won or he had to leave the park before the game was over. Thla morning there remained 8.000 reserved bleacher seats and 2.000 standing room tickets for sale. . . . Otherwise, the ball park is sold out. . . . It's been sold out for weeks, too. F. E. S. College Sports Baseball. Virginia, 2; Virginia Tech. 1. North Carolina. 14. V. M. I., 2. Roanoke 8: Lynchburg. 7. Washington and Lee. 9; William and Mary. 7. Wake Forest. 9: South Carolina. 3. Uosala. 7: John Marshall, 4. Western Kentucky. 12; David Lips comb. 1. Western Michigan Teachers. 7; Wiscon sin. 4. Tennis. Washington and Lee, 7: George Wash ington. 2. Johns Hopkins. 5: American U.. 4. V. M. I., 9: William and Mary, 0. Lacrosse. Washington and Lee. 7: Westchester Teachers. 0. Boilng. Superior Teachers. 6’/k: North Dakota 0.. 1 y». Sailing. Navy. 96: Rayerford, 48. ■--—■— -i RACES TODAY , HAVRE 4c GRACE . Special Penna. train leaves Union Sta tion 13:30 pm. 4ireet to Track. B. A O train leaves 13 noon. E. 8. T. FIRST RACE AT 8:30 F.M. M Buy on Merit /19401 LA/ULduUJU UIIN050R /NEUJ YORKER Individual Two-Tone Upholsterini Amaiinr Fluid Drive—Only 838.00 Snrprlsinc Trade on Tour Car PAUL BROS. w,a j222LJlBO!LSSt™JSBJUtLL Tribute Paid Rockne As Capital Joins in | Notre Dame Night Stuhldreher, Old Grid Star, Among Speakers Lauding Late Coach Some 200 alumni and friends of Notre Dame joined in celebration of Universal Notre Dame Night last night at the Shoreham Hotel, where, i between forkfulls, they heard the famous South Bend School and the i late Knute Rockne. its immortal football coach, extolled. Harry Stuhldreher. quarterback of the famed Four Horsemen back field and currently head football coach at the University of Wiscon sin, delivered the principal address. Dr. Maurice Sheehy, head of the department of religion at Catholic University, spoke of his association with Rockne, whose death he classed as a loss to every lover of sport. Brian Bell, witty veteran news paperman; Edward M. Curran, new local United States attorney: Dutch Bergman. Catholic University ath letic director: Representative Rob- ; ert A. Grant of Indiana and Dr.' Robert White, dean of Catholic University Law' School, were others who addressed the gathering. William D. Jones, president of the Notre Dame Club of Washington, was toastmaster at the banquet, which was climaxed by a transcrip tion broadcast from Detroit of ad dresses by Father Hugh O’Donnell, acting president of Notre Dame, and Elmer Lay den, present Notre Dame football coach and another of the Four Horsemen. Softies Seek Settos Carr Bros. ’ & Boswell softball team is booking games through Ralph Frey at Greenwood 1466-W between 5:30 and 7 o'clock. 5.50- 17_$6.25 6.00- 16_6.75 6.50- 16_8.95 7.00- 16_9.95 Including old tiros IS Months Unconditional Guarantee! cash »f cwsfflT mm All Clubs Except Yankees, Cards At Peak to Go Di Mag Out of Fourth Opener in 5 Years; Stu Martin Idles Bv JUDSON BAILEY, Associated Press Sports Writer. NEW YORK, April 16.—Menacing clouds cast the get-away of base ball's 16 major league clubs into gloom and uncertainty today, but all were chafing for the chance to spring into action. The weather, fair and cold throughout the East and Midwest over the week end, turned traitorous on the eve of the opening and not a single game was safe from the threat of the elements as the flag raising time approached. From every one of the inaugural sites came the same report—cola, cloudy and showers threatened. Whether any of the games were to be played depended largely on when the showers started—early or late nt the respective cities. The schedule called for theso eight openers: American League. National League. Boston at Wash. Chi. at Cincinnati N. Y. at Phila. Pittsbgli at St.L. Cleve. at Chicago Phila. at N. Y. St. L. at Detroit Br'klyn at Boston Yanks Start Under Handicap. In each case the games were listed as the first of a three-game series, and any interference in the lid-lifting today would merely post pone the ceremonies until tomor row, with the cast and scenery unchanged. If all eight games es caped trouble today upward of 150.000 fans were expected to be present to give their favorites a proper send-off. Naturally the debut of last year's champions was the chief spectacle in each league. The four times American League and world champion New York Yankees went to Philadelphia with out Joe Di Maggio and handicapped by other injuries. It was the fourth time in five years the great out fielder had been absent from an opening, so the fact that he was in New York nursing a twisted knee could hardly be considered ! vital. However, Red Ruffing was hit by a batted ball in practice yesterday, making his start also doubtful; Joe Gordon has been out of the line up for two weeks with a Charley horse and Reserve Outfielder Jake Powell is convalescing from a brain concussion. Manager Joe McCarthy planned | to use Monte Pearson if Ruffing was unable to play today, and Connie Mack countered with Lefty j Chubby Dean. Reds Yearn for Opening Win. At Cincinnati the Cincinnati Reds were ready to start the defense of their National League title In a game with the Chicago Cubs that was sure of a capacity crowd of approximately 35.000. Reserved seat tickets have all been sold for months, although the Reds have lost every opening game in the last eight years. Two of the finest hurlers in the senior circuit, Paul Derringer of the Reds and Bill Lee of the Cubs, were the mound choices. Aside from these two attractions, the annual test of President Roose velt's pitching prowess in the Boston Red Sox's appearance at the Nation * Capital was the day's best sideshow. When the Nationals’ No. 1 fan got through throwing, Dutch Leonard was scheduled to take over for a duel with Lefty Grove. The biggest turnout of the after noon was expected in Detroit, where Tiger officials prepared to handle a throng of 40.000 persons. Manager Del Baker of the Bengals listed Charley Gehringer for duty at sec ond base, a hopeful sign for Detroit fans, and planned to pitch big Buck Newsom against Vernon Kennedy of the St. Louis Browns. Big Turnout for Cards. The other American League tussle was to serve as young Bob Feller * springboard to a big year. The Chi cago White Sox relied on Ed Smith, a southpaw, to stop the Indians. St. Louis, butt of much abuse about the poor attendance at its baseball games during the season, has had the biggest opening day sale in history for the Cardinals’ debut against the Pirates. If the weather was agreeable the crowd was likely to be 18.000 or 20.000. But Manager Ray Blades had so many troubles he got little joy at this prospect.