Thursday, 31 July 2008

Spring Training, Tuesday, April 13, 1954

Calgary Wants Bob


[Vancouver Province, April 13, 1954]
Calgary’s muddled baseball situation should start improving almost immediately.
Bob Brown, honorary president of the Western International League, and of course long-time major domo here, came home Monday from a four-day field trip to the Alberta centre. He will be home just long enough to pack his bag—Calgary wants him to come back and get their house in order.
“They made me a whale of a proposition to come down there for 30 days and get things rolling,” said Bob. Their opening game is May 11 and I figure I can get away after that.”
Brown’s job would be to get their paper work organized, and to line up players. He’s already got some ideas on the latter, and says the club was promised help by the other teams in the league at the recent emergency meeting.
Otherwise, he says, Calgary’s overall picture is much improved over last year.
“They’ve got a lot of good committees organized,” he said. “They’ve named a business manager and a public relations man, and they’re out raising money.”
There’s talk of a new park, too, on the lines of the one just built in Winnipeg. It would house both football and baseball, but not this year, of course.
Player-wise, the Stamps aren’t entirely in the glue. Brown says they have 16 men on their reserve list and eight of those are good capable Class A players. Manager Gene Lillard has the vanguard in action at Porterville, Calif.

Brenner Gets Tough, Caps Start to Hit
[Vancouver Province, April 13, 1954]
Vancouver Capilanos’ hitting, which on the weekend too much resembled that of last year’s punchless crew, improved noticeably Monday, as the Caps took a 13-1 decision over a combined Pocatello-Lewiston team at Pocatello.
One of the reasons could have been that General Manager Bill Brenner suggested it better get better, or else.
* * *
Brenner told The Province that he gave the boys a bit of a tongue-lashing on Sunday, and when he pointed out that there were lots of replacements in camp his message apparently got through. First-baseman Ellis Daugherty and catcher Nick Pesut, each with two doubles, led the attack and made life simple indeed for Brenner, the pitcher.
Ken Richardson’s batting also perked up as Brenner coasted in with a 6-hitter in 70 degree weather.
* * *
DIAMOND DUST – In his general manager’s role, Brenner continued his weeding out process … Pitcher Harold King, unimpressive in his exhibition start, was sent out on option to Pocatello, a Pioneer League team … Caps will just drill at Clarkston, Wash., for a couple of days before playing Pocatello again, Thursday.

Deficit of $40,293 Shown By Tyees for Last Year As Attendance Drops 50,551
[Victoria Colonist, April 13, 1954]
Stockholders of the Victoria Baseball and Athletic Co. Ltd. Learned last night at their annual meeting that professional baseball in Victoria has an accumulated deficit of $119,119.68 since 1946, when the company was granted a franchise in the reorganized Western International Baseball League.
Biggest loss of all was shown for 1953 operations. The auditor’s report, combined by Gibbs & Jermain and presented to stockholders in the Chamber of Commerce boardroom by Lloyd Jermain, disclosed that the operating loss for last season was $40,293.98. Added to deficits for previous years, this brought the total losses to $119,119.68, leaving the club with a capital deficiency of $30,869.68. A total of $88,250 worth of stock has been sold.
Club assets were listed at $30,129.03 and total liabilities, including moneies advanced by several stockholders, wee listed at $60,998.71, a debit balance of $30,869.68.
Mr. Jermain attributed last season’s whopping deficit to an “alarming decrease in attendance.” His figured showed that the Tyees played to a record low of only 55,399 paying fans last season, a drop of 50,551 from the attendance of 105,950 in 1952.
Breaking down attendance figures into dollars and cents, the auditor’s report showed that the Tyees dropped a total of $28.444.10 in gate receipts from 1952 to 1953. Gate receipts at home last season amounted to $33,073.53, as compared to $56,371.50 for 1952 and for road games, the figures were $19,992.47 and $23,780.60 for 1953 and 1952, respectively. In addition, the Tyees benefited from an exhibition game in 1952 so that the aggregate decrease reached $28,444.10.
Operating expenses last season were $88,157.39. There was an additional amount of $1,339 for players and a loss of $1,446 in uncollectible debts, making the total cost $90,942.64. Net revenue was $50,648.66, leaving the aforementioned loss for the season of $40,293.98.
Mr. Jermain, however, paid tribute to the club’s effort to cut expenses last season and his figures showed that the 1953 cost of operation was $5,827.30 less than in 1952, despite the fact that players’ salaries showed an increase of more than $4,000. A large part of the saving was effected in traveling and hotel expenses—almost $4,000—and in equipment.
The auditors’ report was passed with a question and almost without a shudder.
Club president Arthur Cox in his report stressed that the near 50 per cent drop in attendance was the big reason for 1953’s “severe financial loss.” He also paid tribute to Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hew Fergusson-Pollok, the Cobble Hill fans who came to the rescue to the club last season by investing a total previously reported as $27,000.
“We couldn’t have finished the season but for them,” Cox said.
In outlining plans for the coming season, Cox said the club would be in no trouble this year if it could draw 100,000 fans, and expressed confidence that 1954 would see the 1952 attendance at least equalled.
He also said the club was training at home in an experiment to try and cut down on the training expenses and that it was handling its own concession and advertising sales and that increased revenue was expected here.
Speaking of the 1954 club, Cox said that a promising-looking team had been assembled without the expenditure of any money for playing talent and expressed confidence that Don Pries, the hustling, young and enthusiastic new manager, would give baseball a big boost this season.
Pries received a big welcome when he spoke to the stockholders for a few minutes while tabulations were being made on the voting for 1954 club directors.
A total of 11 shareholders were nominated, but the names of Stuart Keate, Fred Hutchinson and Frank Ireland were withdrawn by request before the vote. Cox, Johnny Johnson, Laurie Wallace, Fergusson-Pollok, Alex Straith, Ray Parfitt and Jim Lackie were elected. Fergusson-Pollok and Lackie are the only new directors, replacing Keate and E.D. LeLacheur.
In a meeting after the shareholders’ meeting, directors elected Cox to continue as president and Wallace to stay on as Secretary-Treasurer and Fergusson-Pollok as the new vice president.


KENNEWICK, (April 13)—A six-run outburst in the second inning propelled the Tri-City Braves of he Western International League to a 10-2 victory over Whitman Tuesday in the first of a two-game exhibition series. The same teams were scheduled to meet Wednesday in Walla Walla. The Braves jumped on starter Noel Aronson for a single run in the first inning on Terry Carroll's double and Len Tran's single, then produced six more tallies on five hits in the second frame.
Right fielder Ernie Hockaday started the big inning with a double, and collected another safety, a single, later in the inning.
Righthander Sid Aronson took over for Whitman in the third inning, and allowed but one pop fly single until the eighth. Len Tran's home run with Carroll aboard wound up the Tri-City scoring in that frame.
Whitman got its two runs in the eighth on Dick Fain's home run over the right field wall off Jess Dobernic, arid singles by Dick Allen and Dean Lodmell.
Fain picked up three of the six Missionaries' hits, getting a single and double in addition to his home run
Whitman ..... 000 000 020— 2 6 3
Tri-City .... 160 010 02x—10 11 2
N. Aronson, S. Aronson (3) and Hostetler; Hoodenpyl, Dobernic (6) and McCarroll, Johnson (6).

LINDSAY, Calif., April 13—Some timely hitting and brilliant pitching by John Conant and Jim Carveach proved the difference as the Edmonton Eskimos ran over the Fresno State College baseball team, 11-1, in a spring training game here Tuesday night.
Two hits, three walks and an error gave the Eskimos three runs in the first. In the fourth, third sacker Don King climaxed a three-run inning with a bases-clearing double.

FRESNO [Fresno Bee, April 14, 1954]—The Fresno State College Bulldogs will attempt to get back in the win column here tonight against the powerful Fort Ord Warriors after dropping an 11 to 10 slugfest to the Calgary Stampeders of the Western International League last [Tuesday] night in the Fresno State College Park.
It was the second, loss in a row to WI teams. Edmonton bounced the Bulldogs, 11 to 1, in Lindsay Monday night, and the Stampeders; managed by Gene Lillard, came from far back last night to edge the locals again.
Fresno will return to collegiate competition tomorrow [Thursday] afternoon when the Chico State College. Wildcats invade for a single afternoon game at 2 o'clock. Coach Pete Beiden will divide tonight’s pitching duties, between George Millhorn and Bob Doig.
Fresno’s ace lefthander Ted Wills continued to show improved form in the first four frames last night and Calgary made four unearned runs in the fifth. The Stampeders landed on relief ace Rudy Garcia for two runs on two hits in the seventh and then routed the little curve bailer with five runs on six hits in the eighth inning.
Hannah Finishes Up
Hard Hitting outfielder Jack Hannah finished up the mound duty for Fresno.
Lillard used Joe Mishasek, Don Chamber and Pete Papas for three innings each. Fresno made 14 hits but it was eight Calgary errors—four each by second sacker Don Hunter and shortstop Tom Dean—which led to a good share of the Fresno scoring.
Calgary .... 000 040 250—11 16 8
Fresno ..... 230 112 001—10 14 4

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