Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Brewer Sportraits: "Could It Be a Dud?"

Seventy years ago today, Milwaukee Sentinel cartoonist Lou Grant introduced us to the Brewers' would-be slugger:

Kobesky Major Investment

Edward Leonard Kobesky ... Stocky 200 pound Brewer outfielder ... A bit of a disappointment to Manager Cullup thus far but hot weather may bring him around ... Cost the Brewers $5,000 in April plus the $7,500 Woody Wheaton in a deal with Buffalo ... Bill Veeck had wanted him for a couple of years and finally landed him ... Ed Levy was part of the bait hung up to Manager Bucky Harris of the Bisons last December at the winter meeting ... no sale.

Kobesky didn't want to report to the Brewers after he learned of the deal ... "I had nothing against Milwaukee, in fact, it sounded good to me, but I didn't want to see the Buffalo club make a lot of money on me," he explains ... "Rudy Schaeffer finally sold me on the proposition" ... Started out as Cullop's cleanup hitter but has been in and out of the lineup because of his failure to bat anything like last summer.

Out of eight years in pro ball he has been in the .300 circle three times and one of those years he was at bat just 50 times ... Appeared on his way in 1942 with Buffalo when he clicked for .290 and drove in 75 runs ... The next campaign his average fell to .259 but still clubbed 18 homers and drove over 88 markers ... Last year he swung for .328 to finish second in the International and was also second in home runs with 26 ... Here's hoping he gets going like that at Borchert Field.

Kobesky has the odd nickname of Shovels ... acquired during his six years as a coal miner near his native Scranton, Pa. ... Likes to kid and rib a lot with his teammates and took his bench warming good naturedly ... When not playing he pitches batting practice and otherwise makes himself useful ... When he finally works himself into shape he will do the club a lot of good even if he is a little weak defensively.—THISTED.

(Clip this sportrait for your Brewer scrapbook.)
Wow. I don't think I've seen one of these Sportraits that wasn't effusive with praise for the hometown hero.

With all those glowing stats in his recent past, it's understandable that the Brewers had high hopes for their hefty new slugger. But it wasn't to be. He never found his footing at Borchert Field, and two days after this cartoon was published "Shovels" was sold back to the International League, this time the Jersey City Giants. "A Dud", indeed.

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