Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tuesday, May 29, 1951

               W  L  Pct GB
Vancouver ... 30  8 .789 —
Spokane ..... 25 15 .625 6
Salem ....... 18 19 .486 11½
Tri-City .... 15 20 .429 13½
Tacoma ...... 16 22 .421 14
Wenatchee ... 17 23 .425 14
Yakima ...... 15 21 .417 14
Victoria .... 15 23 .395 15

Vancouver Sets Baseball Record
SALEM, Ore., May 29 — Vancouver Capilanos Tuesday night set a Western International Baseball League record by scoring their 14th consecutive victory this season.
They defeated Salem Senators 8-5. Salem set the old mark of 13 straight in 1946, tied the following year by Vancouver.
Tuesday night's victory was largely the result of Charlie Mead's big bat. He accounted for a home run and two singles and batted in five runs.
Vancouver ...... 102 203 000—8 17 0
Salem ............ 400 000 010—5 16 0
Nicholas and Ritchey; Mishasek, Burak (3), Hemphill (7) and McKeegan.

TACOMA, May 29 — Tom Kipp, Tacoma Tigers southpaw, scattered five hits to lead the Tigers to an 8 to 1 victory over the Victoria Athletics Tuesday night.
Victoria ...... 000 000 001—1 5 3
Tacoma ...... 300 000 41x—8 12 1
Hedgecock and Marcucci; Kipp and Sheets.

WENATCHEE, May 29—Tommy Breisinger, Wenatchee southpaw, was stingy with hits but free with everything else as he hurled Wenatchee to a 7 to 4 triumph over Tri-City Tuesday night.
Tri-City tallied four runs in the eighth on a combination of two walks, one error, one hit batsman, three balks and a single by Artie Wilson.
Tri-City ......... 000 000 040—4 3 3
Wenatchee .... 021 110 20x—7 11 1
Nicholas and Cameron, Peterson (2); Breisinger and Len Neal.

Yakima .... 010 001 001 1—4 9 2
Spokane .. 100 002 000 0—3 10 3
Boemler, Delsario (7), Anderson (9) and Tiesiera, Brenner (9), Bishop and Nulty.

Phoenix Player Suspended, Fined
SANTA MONICA, Calif., May 29. (UP)—Phoenix ball player Eddie Graham was suspended and fined today by the Southwestern International League for trying to hit an umpire and threatening to use a baseball bat on him.
Graham, hotly protested a decision by umpire Nemo Herrero at Juarez, started swinging fists. He was restrained by teammates and removed from the game, but later when Mexican soldiers appeared, Graham seized the bat, apparently to defend himself or attack Herrero.

Official Scorer Flap
Sportingly Yours
Hey! How about this? The Lamesa, Texas baseball club of the Class C, West Texas-New Mexico league" has fired the official scorer.
Jay Haney, manager of the Lobos took that action recently. Bill Warren, a man who has scored Lamesa games since 1941 was the gent fired. Haney, in telling Warren that he was fired stated, "You're hurting the morale of the ballclub, all the players are dissatisfied and wish they were a road club."
At the time of this writing, Lamesa was in fifth place in the eight team WT-NM league. The little West Texas town has a population of approximately 18,000 people. Last year they averaged around 1,500 people a game, pulling 87,438 fans through the turnstiles for 71 home games. This year the attendance has dropped to 600 to 700 a game.
As Manager Haney was firing the official scorer, Lamesa club officials also went so far as to say, "Not a thin dime would be spent for ball players until attendance picked up at, the games." I doubt very much if that's a proper attitude for Lamesa officials, or for ..that matter, any club heads, to express publicly. Certainly the entrepreneurs would not get very far if the fans decided to boycott the team and not attend games. It could well happen if club owners disregarded the fans too often.
-Tucson Daily Citizen, Tuesday, May 29, 1951

The story was picked up by the AP's Hugh Fullerton, who used it in his national sports column. Other columnists weighed in, such as the one below.

-By Harold Scherwitz-

The novel step that the Lamesa club of the West Texas-New Mexico Baseball club took to save the players' morale (Mr. Printer, it's an "e" on the end of that word, not an "s") has such far-reaching implications that no baseball official scorer in his right mind (if any of them ever are) can afford to ignore it.
Of course, you've heard about it by now. The Lamesa club fired the official scorer. He was calling errors errors instead of base-hits. It was bad, said Dr. R. F. Nix, club executive secretary, and Manager Jay Haney,. for the players' morale. It was especially bad for Playing Manager Haney's morale. He was charged with three errors at second base in a game with Clovis, N, M. When the scorer hangs three errors on the manager, even when they are errors, he hardly could arrange for his departure more certainly if he went out and spit in the gentleman's left eye.
14 Errors in 3-Game Series
So it was with Bill Warren, the official scorer at Lamesa.
The Lamesa club's version of the affair has been made public. Mr. Warren was too tough on the players. He charged the Lamesa Lobos with 14 errors in a 3-game home series.
Although nobody yet has said they weren't errors—except Manager Haney in discussing the three opposition hits (Haney version) that showed up as errors against his name—you can see how Lamesa's morale was falling apart at the seams. And something had to be done. Did they get rid of the players who made the errors? Nope. Did they fall back on that old one, getting rid of the manager? Nope. They fired the scorekeeper.
We admit a lot of baseball scorers ought to be tarred and feathered, but before anybody guesses that maybe Bill Warren was one of these, here are some enlightening excerpts from the report of the affair printed in the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram:
"Haney gave Warren notice of his dismissal the next day after Haney was charged with three errors at second base.
"Haney told Warren that he didn't think he made any errors in the game, and that Warren's scoring was hurling the morale of the ball club and all the players are dissatisfied and wish they were a road club."
No other players have approached Warren about his decisions except Haney, The Lobos were charged with 14 errors in their last three home games. A number of fans told Warren that they didn't think he gave the Lobos enough errors.
"Warren, who has scored in Lamesa every season but one since 1941, charged Haney with one error when the Lobo manager went down on his knees fielding a routine ground ball between second and first and threw wildly past first.
"Haney told Warren that on that play he went over behind second base and 'went down on his belly to field the ball.'
"Warren has asked several spectators about the play but found none who agreed with Haney's version.
"Haney accused Warren of letting his ill feelings with Dr. K. F. Nix, executive secretary of the club, influence his scoring.
He told Warren that the story about the Clovis game which Eulis Kosson won, despite the six errors, should merely have said 'the Lobos won,' and made no mention of the errors.
"Dr. Nix had refused to pay Warren for working five exhibition games and was further angered when Warren brought his own soft drinks to the press box rather than pay the regular price for them at the concession stand.
"Nix and other club officials have bemoaned the lack of attendance at games and were quoted in the Lamesa Daily Reporter that not a thin dime would be spent for ball players until attendance picks up at the games.
"Crowds of from 600 to 700 have been turning out. Last season's average was around 1500 per game.
"Several of the ball players, notably First Baseman Mel Hicks, have threatened to leave the club unless the fans quit riding them. One fan commented that if they would play better baseball, they wouldn't be wolfed.
"Marvin Veal, sports-editor of the Lamesa Dally Reporter, has been named official scorer."
Note to new Scorer Veal: Call 'em as you sees 'em, bud. All they can do to you is throw you out of the park into a patch of cactus.
-San Antonio Light, May 31, 1951

I haven't found whether Warren was re-hired, but the Light ran a story in September where its sportswriter thanked "Bill Warren, part-time official scorer" for recent courtesies in Lamesa so my guess is he was brought back.

Having scored a few error-fests in my time for the Vancouver Canadians, I have a great deal of empathy for Mr. Warren.

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