Wednesday, November 27, 2013

1928 Brewers Pocket Schedule

"1928 Brewers Schedule"
by Paul Tenpenny
Copyright 2013 Tencentzports
Printed with permission of the Author

The 1928 Milwaukee Brews under Jack Lelivelt managed to finish the season in 3rd place with a 90-78 record.

The hard hitting team was led by outfielders Bunny Brief and Bevo LeBourveau with .309 and .399 averages respectively, while infielders Ivy Griffin, Otis Miller, Harry Strohm batted .325, .314 and .323 for the season. Catcher Bob McMenemy anchored the catching corps with a .341 average while pitcher Ernie Wingard hit .331 in 80 appearances along with leading the mound men with a league leading 24 wins.

This recently acquired 1928 schedule is a great find for a number of reasons. Early schedules like these are seldom seen, but one showing a uniform of the day is a research coup for us.

The Library reference just brings a huge smile to my face. Milwaukee is blessed with a wonderful library system. The Milwaukee Public Library has been a huge help in the research done by contributors. They have partnered with us, assisting with microfilm, providing display space for collections and allowing the local SABR chapter to do presentations. Most importantly, they have given us access to collections that normally would not be seen by the general public.

A case in point was allowing me to go through the very brittle 1913 Newspapers for my research on the 1913 jersey in my collection, without which I could not have been so certain of my authentication and the Milwaukee Brewers using its design for this year's Turn Back The Clock game.

Chance Michaels loves this one too because his mother happens to be a retired librarian.

I must agree with Milwaukee Brewer Outfielder Lance Richbourg (1924-26), "There is no friend like a book."

Lance swung a big bat while with the Brews, as his batting averages show us:
1924 .321
1925 .312
1926 .346
The inside panel shows both the Home and Away schedule:

The Outside panel includes a suggested reading list.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Ebbets Field Flannels Promo Code

Our friends at Ebbets Field Flannels have a special going on now through December 2, as part of "Small Business Saturday". This promo code:


will get you 20% off your order.

This is the perfect time to pick up your reproduction 1905 Brewers road cap or a road jersey, either in 1936 or 1947 flavors.

Friday, November 15, 2013

A Fan's Eye View, 1940s

These photos give a fan's eye view of a game at Borchert Field, some time in the 1940s. I don't know exactly when they were taken, but it looks like a slightly overcast day, before a full house. They were taken from the first-base side of the stands.

In the first, a right-handed Brewer better is captured in the middle of a mighty swing. This one is a bit blurry, so it's hard to make out specifics.

The second photo appears to have been taken later in the afternoon, based on the sun in the west. Brewers are gathered around the plate - a celebration? The fan in front of us has turned towards the camera, and he seems pretty pleased.

We can also see men standing on top of the park's roof, among a line of American flags, and bunting has been hung from the rafters. Perhaps this was Opening Day? A Junior World Series game?

The third photo is the best one of all. I saved it for last, although it was obviously taken before the game. The teams are lined up on the basepaths, Brewers along the third base line and the visiting club closer to us along the first base line. A marching band stands on the infield. Photographers kneel on either side of the plate, flanking a large floral arrangement..

This has to be a home opener - I might have thought it the 1944 All-Star Game, but the opposing players are all wearing matching uniforms (and jackets with numbers on the back!)

In the foreground, the visiting pitcher warms up. We get a good feel for the layout of the park in this one, with its bullpen mounds right about where you'd find an on-deck circle in a modern park. Behind the angled dugout in the background is a sign directing patrons to the rest rooms.

A very rare look at an afternoon at Borchert Field, from the perspective of the fans.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

A Little Bird Tells Me...

Friday, November 8, 2013

"The Patch"

"The Patch"
by Paul Tenpenny
Copyright 2013 Tencentzports
Printed with permission of the Author

A frequently talked about item from the collection of the late Bill Topitzes has surfaced and will be preserved and displayed in the MEARS Museum says its President, Troy Kinunen.

Bill Topitzes pictured on the right

Bill had a long history working with the Brews from the early forties until their departure after the 1952 season. "Greek" and this author often talked about an artifact we called "The Patch," but it was buried in a storage container along with other items while work was being done at his home. His failing health denied me the opportunity to verify its existence. When Bill passed away, I was concerned that it would be lost in the shuffle.

While visiting Troy in South Milwaukee yesterday, I was able to see it for the first time. (MEARS Auctions recently handled Bill's collection for his family.)

"The Patch" of course is an image of Owgust, the mascot of the Milwaukee Brewers.

1942 Milwaukee Brewers Score Card

While this version of Owgust showed up on the 1942 scorecard, partial glimpses of him on a team jacket fueled great interest among Borchert fans for decades.

1943 Milwaukee Brewers - see team jacket far left
(Author's Collection)

This team logo was introduced by president Bill Veeck as part of a uniform overhaul in 1942:

Well, I can report that the "Grail" exists!!!

An awe inspiring day for me to finally meet up with this precious artifact. MEARS was kind enough to provide a nice high-resolution photo for us.

(Courtesy of the Mears Museum)

While both Chance Michaels and I would love to personally own this piece of history, our sincere thanks to Troy Kinunen for sharing him with us and for a museum which will continue to preserve local baseball history for many years to come.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

"To The Brim" - Reproduction 1905 Brewers Cap

A wonderful new surprise from our friends at Ebbets Field Flannels - a reproduction of the Brewers' 1905 cap.
Milwaukee Brewers (AA) 1905 Ballcap



This hat is indeed a rarity: The only time we have seen the lettering go on the visor instead of the crown. Are you listening, current MLB teams? A new trend awaits.
  • American Association 
  • Horse hair buckram crown 
  • Satin taping 
  • Felt emblem 
  • Cotton sweatband 
  • Pillbox 
All Ebbets Field Flannels authentic ballcaps are made in the USA.

Outstanding. I've already ordered mine.

We've talked about this cap before, when looking at a 1905 team photo:

Milwaukee Public Library

1911 Spalding catalogue (Chicago Style top left)
The old-fashioned ringed pillbox cap was known at the time as "Chicago style".

Ebbets Field is right - the little "M" on the bill is very unique.  Keep in mind that this was long before cap logos themselves were commonplace, much less had a proscribed location on the cap. Center-front of the crown seems logical to us, but it took some experimentation before that was really established.

This was a sadly short-lived style for the Brewers, who soon returned to the jockey-style or "New York Style" caps that evolved into today's modern lids. Still, this is an opportunity for you to celebrate that style.

For a limited time, this cap is available for the introductory price of $32.00 - order yours today!