Monday, March 12, 2012

Lining Up at the Orchard, 1944

In this clipping from an 1944 early-season score card, we see the Brewer faithful lining up outside Borchert Field for Opening Day.

Dig the hats. Looking sharp, gentlemen.

1944 was a season of great change for the Brews. They returned from Spring Training with Charlie Grimm at the helm, but Jolly Cholly would get called up to the Chicago Cubs in May, leading him to look for a new manager.

They would choose Casey Stengel to take over as skipper. Team president Bill Veeck vehemently objected, but as Sport Shirt Bill was in the Marines at the time, he wasn't able to stop it.

Veeck needn't have worried. Casey stepped right in to Grimm's shoes (literally; he took the field wearing Charlie's jersey on his back) and guided the Brewers to a 102-51 record, an American Association pennant and the Little League World Series crown. Those fans lining up on Opening Day had no idea what fun they were in for.

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