Thursday, 31 July 2008

Spring Training, Thursday, April 22, 1954

Greco May Be Cap Yet
Tri-City Calls For Waivers

[Vancouver Province, April 22, 1954]
CLARKSTON, Wash.—Vancouver Capilanos won another ball game Wednesday, trodding on Larson air force base, 11-3. But that was item No. 5 in the news department. The big four:
1. Dick Greco has re-entered the Caps’ “outfield stake” race.
2. Seattle Rainiers have suddenly decided they like outfielder Bob Wellman and have decided to keep him, temporarily anyway.
3. Seattle won’t be sending us pitcher Pete Hernandez, but they’ve promised to ship along another.
4. The coast league club is sending catcher-outfielder Lloyd Jenney to Vancouver option. He’ll join the club here immediately.
The Greco story is intriguing. The muscular slugger and erstwhile WIL homerun king has said all along he wouldn’t report to the Tri-City Braves, who own his contract. Dick, whose wife is a British Columbia girl, want to play for the Caps and nobody else.
Eddie Taylor, Tri-City general manager, has been asking $3500 for Greco, for whom he paid $1500. The result was a stalemate, with the Caps unwilling to go that high and Greco refusing to report to Tri-City.
Finally, Greco appealed to Bob Abel WIL president who ruled as follows: Tri-City have 36 hours in which to ask for waivers on Greco. If nobody picks up the waivers, Greco will then present Taylor with his personal cheque for $3500 and obtain his release. Then, of course, he’d be free to sign with Vancouver.
There’s always the chance, though, that somebody might claim Greco. In that case, Taylor would probably have to withdraw the waivers and Greco would be right where he is now, on the suspended list.
The Caps will need Greco if they don’t get Wellman. The latter has been counted on as the club’s No. 4 hitter and power man, a position that Greco would fit just as well. If Vancouver ends up with both of them, that duo would create a lot of havoc with the city big bats. If they don’t get either they will still have protection in the garden with Arnie Hallgren, Danny Holden, Jenney and Bob Duretto available as flankers for K. Chorlton in centre.
General manager Bill Brenner said that his Seattle counterpart, Dewey Soriano, would not tell him who the pitcher is he’d send instead of Pete Hernandez, but it won’t be Lonnie Myers or Van Fletcher. It’s somebody who has never been in the WIL before, Brenner said.
Jenney, who is not a negro as was earlier reported, is said to be a good hitter, but the gen is that he can’t throw. A .367 hitter last ear with Tucson, he plays outfield, catches and can also play first base.
The Caps didn’t get much competition here yesterday, and most of the regulars left early. The air men play the Caps again here today.

Tyees Get Outfielder; Play Farmers Tonight
[Victoria Colonist, April 22, 1954]
Another player was acquired and a needed pitcher reported yesterday as Victoria Tyees went through their eighth day of spring training at Royal Athletic Park. And as far as could be learned last night, there was still no sign of Eddie Lake, who will be the club’s shortstop this season—if he gets here by opening day.
Latest acquisition is Joe Joshua, a 200-pound colored infielder-outfielder who comes to the club on option from the Seattle Rainiers. Joshua, who is due in today from Seattle, played for Tucson in the class “C” Arizona-Texas League last season and compiled an impressive record.
Appearing in 135 games, 120 as a shortstop and 15 as an outfielder, Joshua connected for 194 hits in 540 times at bat to post a .359 batting average. Among his hits were 29 home runs, nine triples and 32 doubles and he drove in 128 runs and scored 164. Another pleasing statistic shows evidence of speed in the fact that he stole 39 bases.
That was Joshua’s second season in the league. In 1952, playing with Phoenix, he had a .334 average with 145 hits in 434 times at bat. He scored 110 runs, stole 43 bases, drove in 87 runs, and hit 11 home runs, nine triples and 22 doubles. He also played in four positions—55 games at shortstop, 35 at first base, 16 at third base, and 11 in the outfield.
Acquistion of Joshua just about completes the Tyees’ roster, except for the pitching staff, although the club certainly wouldn’t turn down a standout outfielder who swings from the first-base side of the plate.
As matters now stand, manager Don Pries will have seven infielders and seven outfielders from which to choose when everyone has reported and it would appear that the Tyees are set except for pitching.
In addition to Pries, there are Steve Mesner, Ron Jackson, and rookies Primo Santini, Pepper Wesley and Jerry Parker for infield duty. Joshua will be used in the outfield, where Dain Clay, Tom Perez, Art Seguso, Armando Sanchez, Tom Keough and Jerry Kane are other candidates.
Of the above, only Parker hits lefthanded and it could be that the Tyees will field an all-right-handed batting order. On the other hand, there is versatility needed in minor league baseball. Both Joshua and Perez can play in the infield and Pries has done everything but catch for the club in three previous seasons. Both Sanchez and Kane can fill in acceptably as understudy for catcher Milt Martin so that the Tyees, if they wish, can go this season with only nine players outside of pitchers and not worry unduly about an injury to a regular.
Pitching, however, remains a problem. On hand are holdover Bob Drilling, Bill Prior and Berlyn Hodges, and newcomers Hal Flinn, Mike Kanshin and Don Smith, a rookie southpaw from Fairbanks, Alaska, who showed up yesterday. However, Portland Beavers will send help this week, probably in the persons of John Tierney and Bill Bottler, both of whom have seen service here previously. And the Tyees have the promise of another hurler from a WIL club before the opener at Vancouver next Thursday.
GAME AT 6:30
Tonight, the Tyees will meet Farmers Construction at Royal Athletic Park for the second time. They got into an argument Monday before coming out on top, 7-3. Game time is 6:30 and Pries will again give everyone in camp a chance to show his wares.


CLARKSTON, April 22 — Four Vancouver home runs—three of them by Danny Holden—helped the Western International Leaguers batter Larson Air Force Base of Moses Lake 8-3 in a seven inning exhibition baseball game Thursday.
Larson ....... 001 001 1—3 5 0
Lewiston ... 034 010 x—8 11 2
Dewitt, Scesa (3) and Ziemer, Nelson (3); Moen, Tompkins (6) and Lundberg.

KENNEW1CK, April 22 — Lewiston bunched its hits to beat Tri-City 8-4 in a Western International League exhibition game Thursday and take a 2-1 lead in their four-game series.
Al Heist, Lewiston centerfielder, homered in the first with none on base and also got a double and single in four other times at bat for batting honors. Rube Johnson, Tri-City catcher, hit a home run with one on in the first inning to tally two of his team's runs.
Chris Mezich, rookie pitcher from Seattle, took the mound for Tri-City in the fifth for his first professional baseball. He hit the first batter and next allowed a double but then settled down.
Lewiston .... 021 012 008—8 7 3
Tri-City ..... 220 000 000—4 7 3
Tisnerat, Kinsey (8) and Cameron; Richardson, Mezich (8), Guldborg (9) and Johnson and McCarroll (8).

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