News & Notes Western Canada Baseball

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Update :  30 July, 2020

Red Star   1963 is the main focus of today's update as Rich Necker searches out some individual photos of players of the era.

Red Star    Some twenty new photos grace the 1963 BC Photo Gallery and they include Barry Arnett, Steve Cohen, Ray Crosato, Wayne Frank, Bill Gillespie, John Haar, John Kochan, Ken Larson, Dave Lea, Norm LeClair, Ed Lorenz, Jim Marshall, Danny Miscisco, Bert Nichol, Stan Osadczuk, Ken Ross, Stan Stewardson, Gord Strongman, Larry Walker and Gordie Welbourne.

Pinoke McIntyreTony DeRosaRed Star   And, thanks to Lou DeRosa of Trail we have some additional photo updates - Reno Zanier in 1957, Pinoke McIntyre (left) and Primo Secco in the 1959 Gallery, Harvey Handley and Tony DeRosa (right) in 1960 and Frank Fritz and Les Schaeffer in 1963.

Lou also dug up a program from the 1952 Penticton club of the Okanagan Mainline League and one of the neat finds is the roster of the Trail Pontiacs of that season.

Red Star   There's also couple of new photos in the 1963 BC Snapshots, including one of Gord Strongman of Victoria. Of course the 1963 roster page gets expanded and there's even the beginning of game reports for the Okanagan Mainline League.

24 July, 2020

Red Star   We've managed to delve back into the treasure trove of material from Kim Mabee, daughter of the former Saskatoon player and manager Ralph Mabee.

In this post it's mainly individual photos as the additions.

Eddie BrownRed Star   In the Saskatoon Photo Galleries, 1948, 1949,  1950, 1951, 1952  we've added new photos of Eddie Brown (left), Jules Swick, Harry O'Brien, Stan Currie, Ray Hamilton, Gordie Howe, Jack Hannah, Bobby Sasseville, Sherman Watrous, Jean Ashley, Doug "Goose" Gostlin and George Tatum all from Saskatoon baseball.

There's also a neat photo of Doug Bentley scoring in the 1950 Snapshot page along with a much better and bigger version of a photo showing Saskatoon stars Bobby Garcia and Charlie Beene in the 1951 Snapshots.   There's also a new picture of Andy Swota getting an MCP trophy from 1951.

 21 July, 2020

Red Star   Now back to the coverage of 1963 ball in the West.

Our Rich Necker has dug into the archives putting in countless hours scanning old newspaper issues to come up with game reports for various leagues in Alberta, Vancouver, Vancouver Island ball and the  BC Interior.

Ray CrosatoOf course, the roster page has been updated to reflect the additional players.

Among those on the Lower Mainland was hurler Ray Crosato (left) who is our poster boy for a strange editorial format of the Vancouver papers of the era - they seemed to dislike ears (so many of the individual photos are cropped substantially so readers rarely got to seen the players full face.) It happened in other papers as well, but not so regularly as in the Vancouver papers.

Red Star  In addition, the tournament page includes reports from some Alberta and Manitoba tournaments (Birtle, St. Paul, Peace River).

12 July, 2020

Joey JankolaRed Star   Joseph L. Jankola, known as Joey Jankola, during his baseball days passed away June 22nd at Sechelt, British Columbia.

Born in Trail, BC, Jankola was quite the pitcher, tossing one of the best-ever games in prairie history and, in an unusual turn of events, his obituary downplayed the achievement (noting he had simply pitched a seven-inning no-hitter during his career).

In 1952, May 20th, Jankoka fired a no-hitter for the Calgary Mercurys in a 19-0 victory over Standard in Chinook League play. Not just a no-hitter, nine innings and 24 strikeouts. Yes, 24 !

From the obituary notice : “Joe was a structural engineer/draftsman, a boat-builder, dreamer, collector, community advocate, and environmentalist long before it was popular. He was a family man, good provider, generous to fault, and a lover of nature and animals. Joe was a unique character, well-loved, and will be greatly missed by many.”

11 July, 2020

Red Star   To carry on with our research into 1963 prairie ball, Rich Necker has managed to dig up some additional photos from Manitoba senior baseball. Included in the update are Wayne Lalor, Ron Powers, Bill Fairbairn, Frank McKinnon, Bob Ash, Leon Garinger, Bob Thompson, Gary Greves, Bob Attwood, Ross Jamieson, Bill Cundiff and Bob Leiter.

Pete StemkowskiHe also discovered some newspaper pics of some junior players, several of whom got a little senior experience as the year wore on - Pete Stemkowski (right), Ken Kort, Ron Kruchak, Al Lucko, Buzz Lamond, Dan Lenoski, Bob Halayda, Ron McCulloch, Barry Epps and Bob Hunter.

Red Star    Rich even managed to dig up a couple of pics from Alberta in 1963 - Fred Seyer, with Leduc, and hockey star Larry Mickey, suiting up with the Peace River Stampeders.

Brian HuttonRed Star   Thank you Chris Hutton !  Chris, whose dad Brian Hutton, a right-handed pitcher, played with the Brandon Canucks in Manitoba ball has dug out a photo of his dad and sent it along.

Now posted in the 1960 and 1961 Manitoba Galleries.

06 July, 2020

Harold JohnsonHarold Johnson Sr,Red Star   For more than 30 years, Hal Johnson and Joanne McLeod have graced TV screens in Canada with their fitness program called Body Break.

A year or two back we noted that it's the same Harold Johnson who played semi-pro ball in the Ontario InterCounty League and in Red Deer and Edmonton in Alberta in the 1970s and 1980s.

Now I think we've spotted his dad!  Harold Johnson Sr., who played some Negro ball in the USA with the Indianapolis Clowns and on the prairies in Moose Jaw, Saskatoon and Rosetown.

The similarities in the photos and the discovery that Harold Jrs. mom is from Saskatoon helped put the pieces together. We've written to him to seek confirmation, but no reply as of yet.

That's Harold Jr. above left with Red Deer in 1977, and Harold St. on the right with Saskatoon in 1953.

Harold Jr. grew up in Toronto and played ball in the InterCounty League in 1976. He had won a baseball scholarship to the University of Colorado.

In 1977 he led the Alberta Major League in home runs and RBI while played for the Red Deer Border Players. The slugging third baseman moved on to play with the Edmonton Tigers, Lacombe Dodgers and in Calgary. He also suited up with the Canadian national team.

29 June, 2020

Bill CundliffTommy TownRed Star   We're in catch-up mode, trying to bring home a bunch of material from our super sleuth Rich Necker. 

He's dug into the 1963 archives for game reports on Manitoba ball, including detailed reports on the Manitoba Senior League, Winnipeg Metro Senior League and South-Central League.

There are also snippets of information on the Mid-Western loop, Oil Dome League, Neepawa & District League and news on the provincial Intermediate playoffs.

Among the Manitoba stars in 1963 were pitcher Bill Cundiff (above left) of St. Lazare Athletics and slugger Tommy Town of the Brandon Cloverleafs.

Photos for the Manitoba Gallery are in the works. And, a reminder that the 1962 Manitoba game reports gallery were updated just a few weeks back.

Red Star   Also we've added in a note about the Oil Belt League of 1914, made some additions to the Lacombe Tournament report on 1975 and the rosters of 1975,

Red Star   The 1973 Tournament page now includes a report on the BC Senior Championship of that season won by Fraser Arms.

19 June, 2020

Red Star   We've begun to work through more outstanding sleuthing by our Rich Necker. He's come up with more information on baseball in the 1960s on the prairies and includes a new swatch of individual photos.

Larry MickeyIn this initial installment, just a couple - Alberta players in 1963, Fred Seyer of Leduc and hockey star Larry Mickey (left) who suited up with the northern Alberta Peace River Stampeders.

In addition there is a revised 1962 photo of Frank McKinnon in the Manitoba Gallery and a couple of snapshots on the BC Snapshot page of 1963 (photos which include Gord Strongman and Gary Tuttle.

Red Star   Thanks to author Ralph Pearce "From Asahi to Zebras" for some corrections/additions to our story on the 1935 tour of the Tokyo Giants. 

First - it turns out to be Russell rather than Russel. The latter had been used in various reports, including Japanese newspapers, but Pearce's photo of the gravestone makes it clear it's Russell.

We had mismatched dates for the game with the San Jose Asahi and an incorrect date for the year Asahi star Russell Hinaga joined the team. There is still some discussion on whether Victor Starffin had two strikeouts or one strikeout in the final inning. Tried to go back to our major source for the tour by the Giants, but then realized it is in Japanese and I will need a translator!

15 June, 2020

Red Star   Keep safe everyone. Crazy times. We're slowly trying to get back in the swing, with COVID and a little carpal tunnel complicating our efforts.

Red Star   Our thanks to Jim Fraasch for a team photo of the 1947 Waseca, Minnesota, Braves of the Southern Minny League.

Jack ThornbyJim's uncle, Jack Thornby, played for Waseca while playing college ball for University of Minnesota. He was the oldest brother of Jim's mom.

The Southern Minny loop, one of the top amateur-semi-pro circuits in the USA, ran from 1945 through to 1966.

Thornby and Aleigh Kraupa (one of the top hurlers in the South Minny loop) photos added to the Minny Photo Gallery for 1947. We'll get the rest soon.

14 May, 2020

Russ PeakeRed Star   So sorry to hear of the passing of Russ Peake, a broadcasting legend in Alberta, an old friend from our days growing up in the Lloydminster area.  

A year or two younger, I followed Russ into broadcasting, hitting several of the same radio stations along the way. By the time I made CKRD, Red Deer, Russ was a legend there having moving on to bigger things as a sportscaster in Calgary.  Eventually, he’d do so well he’d win a spot in the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame. Loved all sports, really got into curling and rodeo. Just 80, Russ passed away a week ago in Calgary. 

Allan BabbRed Star   Also back to Lloydminster days - Allan Babb, who preceded me as batboy of the Lloydminster Meridians has sent along some neat stuff from the 1964 Western Canada League.

From one of the game programs we've been able to fill in details for the roster sheets, including uniform numbers for a couple of the teams. It also prompted me to dig up some photos, including :

1963 Western Canada Snapshots, Ted Bridges and Gail Hopkins, a pair of top college kids from Pepperdine to suit up in Western Canada.

Red Star   This search begins with a post by Lisa Uyeda of the Nikkei National Museum, Vancouver, and inquiries by our Tokyo colleague Yobun Shima. The photo is among hundreds the museum is chasing for information on the people, the dates, the occasions.

On this one, Hiro Yanagisawa, son of the former Asahi player, is able to positively identify his father Otto Yanagisawa (wearing what appears to be an Asahi baseball cap). Hiro also pointed out Johnny Inouye (over Otto's left should) one of Otto's teammates while playing with Nakusp. Then Yobun managed to connect with Ian Fraser of Kaslo who could identify Ken Kutsukake, former Asahi star, second from the right. Ian could also pinpoint the location, "The gentleman are standing in front of the New Canadian/Kootenaian newspaper offices and iconic buildings pictured on the right include the old school (Farmer’s Institute building) and the old King George Hotel (far right with the turret)." Seems Kutsukake was captain of the Kaslo team at one time.

Now to pin down the date and to try and identify the others in the photo !  The year of the car might help.

Otto Yanagisawa

Red Star   And, speaking of the Asahi - Yobun Shima sends along a note from Lorene Oikawa with information on her grandfather Keninchi "Ken" Doi, a pitcher who joined the Asahi in 1926. Yobun has dug up some details :

For your guidance, Kenich Doi's first appearance in the Asahi was on July 1st 1926 when he was recruited from the Japanese team at Fraser Mill, performed well and shut out the Mount Pleasant team 3-0 in the Terminal League. On Aug 15th, an Asahi party for the celebration of the Termainal League Championship was held at a Japanese restaurant "Yamashina" which was jammed but accomodated 120 participants beyond it's capacity. Kenichi Doi sang a Japanese traditional song "Yasugi Bushi" in the party according to the Continental Daily news..

Lorene included a clipping from the Vancouver Sun of August, 1926 which included a photo of the team which showed Doi as a member (as the regular team photo, likely taken before Doi joined the team, did not include him. We will search for a better version of tha photo.

Red Star   More superb stuff from our Rich Necker !  This time it's 1962 with game reports, rosters and photos. The game-by-game summaries include a host of leagues. In Alberta we begin with the Big Seven League of Edmonton, and then follow with reports from the Wheatbelt League, Smoky River League, Rosebud League, Edmonton & District League, South Irrigation, SaskAlta, Drybelt, Big Six, Sunburst, Oil Field League plus Senior and Intermediate "A" and "B" playoffs and tournaments too..

Then Mr. Necker tackled amateur and semi-pro ball in Manitoba, and collected game reports for the Manitoba Senior League, Winnipeg Metro Senior League, South-Central League, Mid-Western League, plus Provincial playoffs and tournaments in Birtle, Melita and Kenora.

There's even a few game reports for the Kenora & District League of Ontario.

Red Star  The new photographic additions go back to 1941 with a team photo of the Medicine Hat Tigers baseball team. We're pretty sure Wilf "Lefty" Pennington is among them, but we are not able to provide IDs as yet.

And, I think we've made all the corrections to the various spellings of Zeke Ziebart, long time Medicine Hat star.

1947, we even snuck in a softball team photo, the North Battleford Cardinals (a team which had several connections to the Beavers baseball team).

1949 Alberta Snapshots, Marshall Severyn with a Brooklyn Dodger scout.

Marshall Severyn, Dodgers

1950 Gallery, Isiah Ike Quarterman

1953 BC Gallery, Bill Parrish, Tommie Kolt, Spider Reese, Bill Whyte, Phil Filiatrault

1954 Saskatchewan Gallery, Bob Chapman

1954 Saskatchewan Snapshots, Bob Chapman, batting champion

1955 Manitoba Gallery, Jack Denbow

1960 Snapshots, Sherwood Brewer

1960 Alberta Gallery, Ray Stratton

1961 Saskatchewan Gallery Terry Burns, Morris McNabb

1961 Alberta Gallery, Ron Anton, Elroy Schaufele, Don Schwedelsky, Zeke Ziebart

1961 Snapshots, Edmonton pitchers Jimmy Johnson and Dennis Shaves.

1962 Alberta Gallery, Dale Gaume, Dave Reiniger, Terry Murphy, Barry Robertshaw.

1962 Manitoba Gallery, Doug Ross, Ross Brownlee, Barry Diller, Don Pottinger, Barry Moffatt, Bobby Ash, Neil Amy, Al Johnson, Al Evason, Jack Denbow, Reid Lumbard, Don Caley, Bob Wilson, Stan Skeen, Leon McClinton, Roy Cuthill, John Lesyshen, Garth Sararas, Greg Borotsik, Mort Wright

1962 team photo of the Amber Valley, Alberta, Seals.

1962 team photo of the Brandon, Manitoba, Canucks.

1963 Basin League Gallery, Jim Kalk of Winner.

1963 Snapshots, Lyle Olsen, the Saskatoon playing-manager with a text-book slide into second.

1963 It's on the team photo page, but they are larger individual pics of the Saskatoon-Medicine Hat Commodores. Still lots to ID. Among those identified so far, Lyle Olsen (see above), and former Blue Jays broadcaster Fergie Olver. The page combines new photos from Medicine Hat with those previously posted from Saskatoon.

1972 Saskatchewan Snapshots, Vince Rucobo of the North Battleford
Beavers of the Northern Saskatchewan League.

1973 Manitoba Snapshots, new images featuring Barry Jamieson, Brian Moffatt, Don Hunter, and Bob Williamson.

1973 Stats, we've moved the Manitoba records (to 1973) to the Stats page.

1973 Alberta Snapshots, featuring Wayne Commodore (who hit four consecutive home runs at the Lacombe Tournament), Irv Homs and Marty Maxwell (the tournament MVP), Rich Meily with a steal of second.

Ralph MabeeRed Star   As we dig further into the material from Kim Mabee on her dad's -- Ralph Mabee - career, we make substantial additions to our collection. Left - that's Ralph in 1938 playing for the Benson, Saskatchewan, Black Hawks (that's in the Saskatchewan Gallery of that season).

1950 Saskatchewan Snapshots include this one of hockey all-star and Saskatoon first sacker, Gordie Howe.

1951 Saskatoon 55s team photo (bottom one).

1951 Snapshots, Mabee and Al Verner, amalgamating teams to form the Saskatoon 55s

1951 Snapshots, Sam Fowlkes and umpire Amby Moran

1952, team photo of the Saskatoon Gems (bottom one)

1952 Photo Gallery, Bev Bentley

For the 1952 and 1953 rosters of the Saskatchewan League we've added in uniform numbers from a few programs from the Mabee collection.

1952, on the Saskatchewan League home page, a clipping from a program on team uniform colours and ball park dimensions.

1953 Gallery, Ted Wills

1953 Alberta Gallery, Don Kirk

1953 Snapshots, a trio of North Battleford Beavers, Chuck Holdaway, Johnny Coleman and Cliff Beisel.

The 1954 Snapshot of seven pitchers for the Saskatoon Gems - three right-handers, Bennie Griggs, Jim Morrow, Rolando Garcia and four lefties - Bentley MacEwen (identified in the newspaper caption and the statistics as Grant MacEwen), Bob Doig, Ted Wills and Don Kirk

1954 A local radio station issued a set of player cards of the Saskatoon Gems, the 16 cards are featured on the Gems team photo page, along with a little better version of the team picture.

Saskatoon Gems

1955 Snapshot of two of the Gems' stars - Cliff Pemberton and Don Kirk with manager Ralph Mabee. In a 1988 newspaper item, former manager Dave Abel said Kirk could have made the majors.

1955 Snapshots from the Global World Series in Milwaukee, featuring Johnny Ford, Ed Garay, Charlie Bogan, and the team managers.

1955 Saskatchewan Gallery, Gordon Campbell.

1955 Gallery, Ralph Mabee

1956 Mandak Gallery, Dee Moore

1957 Individual Moose Jaw Mallard photos, for now placed on the Moose Jaw team photo page, includes Bob Gregory, Garth Hayes, Jim Hoppe, Lorne Martin, Larry Miller, Barry Robertson, Floyd Temple, Tom Haller and John Kating

Writers page, Ken Newans, CHAB Radio

17 April, 2020

Red Star   1961 is in the spotlight as our Rich Necker brings game reports, rosters, photos and snapshots from prairie ball of '61.

Red Star    His main focus is on Alberta with coverage of the Big Seven League (which, by the way, had five teams), the Big Six League, Wheat Belt circuit, South Peace League, 36 League, SaskAlta, North Eastern, Oilfield, South irrigation along with some news on Intermediate ball as well.

Red Star    The photos include Vern Callihan, Roger Dejordy, Gene Kinasewich, Eddie Joyal and Bernie Sparks.

The snapshot photo has Gary Naylor, Wally Waddle and Lavern Holmes.

Red Star    Manitoba ball also gets attention with game reports on the Manitoba Senior League, the South Central loop and North Western. There's a couple of new photos - Bob Allen and Jerry Page - along with some additions in the 1961 snapshot page, one of those is Jerry Verbiwski right-hander of the Dauphin Redbirds.

Red Star    There's even a bit on BC ball in 1961 with coverage of the Prince George City League and an addition to the snapshot page.

Ad for catcherRed Star    And, there it is in the classified ads of the April 14, 1949 edition of the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix.

Just below the ad for a Shop Foreman, above one for a Book Salesman, alongside ones for Dietitians and Stenographers, is the one for a Baseball Catcher, part time.

At the time Unity, Saskatchewan (about 200 km west of Saskatoon) was a community of less than a thousand residents. It's not known if the ad attracted the required part time worker.

06 April, 2020

Ralph MabeeRed Star    Ralph Hubert Mabee was one of the prairies most influential baseball leaders in the late 1940s and 1950s out of Saskatoon.

He might be best known for his handling of the powerful Saskatoon Gem teams of the mid 1950s, including the club he took to the Global World Series in Milwaukee in 1955.

His daughter Kim has kindly allowed us to dig through his treasure trove of memorabilia which includes a little hockey too (as he managed the Saskatoon Quakers ice team in 1959-1960.) After moving to Calgary in the early 1960s he later became a director of the Calgary Expos of the late 1970s and early 1980s, the farm team of the Montreal Expos. He died in 1986 at the age of 74.

Red Star    So far, this is the earliest baseball photo we have of Mabee -- in the team photo of the 1938 Benson, Saskatchewan, Black Hawks. He began to play in Saskatoon in the late 1940s with the Legion team before taking on the helm of the Gems.

Red Star    Among the items in the Mabee collection is a series of Saskatoon baseball cards sponsored by a local radio station for the 1954 season. We've just begun to work on them, but below there is Ted Wills (left) the 1954 batting champion (and stellar hurler) and (right) Max Bentley, famous hockey artist and formidable diamond star.

Ted WillsCard backMax Bentley

Red Star    The Mabee material also brought us a photo of the 1954 Kamsack Cyclones (bottom one) to replace another poorer quality version published previously.  

Red Star   As usual our Rich Necker has done yeoman's work, to find some snapshot gems from the famous Lacombe, Alberta, tournament for both 1970 and 1971. And not sure if we alerted you to the photos of the Calgary Giants players in that 1970 Alberta Snapshot page.

Rich also provided incredible help in going through out team photos to sort out ones for which we had neglected to include the names on the roster pages. That turned out to be about seventy teams worth of players to be added. All those roster pages have now been update.

Red Star    A few other bits and pieces have helped to expand the photo galleries - 1941 Ozzie Warwick of Regina, 1948 Ken Terry of New Westminster, 1953 Jimmy Gilday of New Westminster, 1955 Max Weekly of Moose Jaw and 1957 Larry Miller of Moose Jaw.

Red Star    It's poor quality, but this photo from a newspaper of the 1963 Winner, South Dakota, Peasants of the Basin League will have to do until we track down a better version.  Aside from the photo, the caption provided valuable information on names and colleges.  A huge name from that group - high school pitcher Jim Palmer, who went on to a Hall of Fame career in the majors. He's now included in the 1963 Basin League Photo Gallery. The Basin loop also has an addition of pitcher Fred Brenzel in the 1956 gallery.

Red Star    The 1949 Tournament page has some additional detail for the August 6th Moose Jaw Tournament, another captured by the powerful Minot Merchants out of North Dakota.

 25 March, 2020

Red Star    Our amazing Rich Necker, without whom our site would be a skeleton of itself, has lots of updates for 1960, including game reports for British Columbia, Alberta and Manitoba.

The Alberta games include the Big Seven League, Oilfield League, South Peace River League, North Peace League, SaskAlta League, Southern Irrigation League and Central Alberta circuit.

In one of those Big Seven games, the North Edmonton Rockets were sailing along with a 13-2 lead in the eighth inning before losing 15-14 to the City Police Athletics !

The BC coverage for 1960 includes the Vancouver Industrial League, Dewdney League, and the hard-to-find Okanagan Mainline League, West Kootenay and Crow's Nest Pass ball leagues.

In Manitoba the coverage extends to the South Central League and Mid West League with outlines of three more.

In Saskatchewan, it's the Garry League

The 1960 roster page reflects all the new additions.

Red Star    Of course, along with game reports we have some photos. The 1955 Western Canada Snapshots has a picture of Edmonton catcher Stan Kulka, a local boy who had a couple of seasons of pro ball before coming back home.

The BC Gallery of 1960 has Cec Stein of Vancouver CYO, Luciano Luchin, Busher McIntyre, George McIntyre of Trail and Greg Jablonski and Gerry Goyer of Kelowna.

The Manitoba Gallery for 1960 includes Don Pottinger of the Brandon Canucks.

YanksThe majority of the new photos feature Alberta ball. In the 1960 Gallery are Ron Anton, Duke Edmundson, Val Fonteyne, Ron Gates, Larry Laplante, Jim Ryan, Bob Solinger and Pete Wright.

There are several new 1960 Alberta Snapshots as well which feature players such as Ron Zapisocki, Dave Kostenuk, Nick Baiton and Ken Anderson.

Red Star    For 1969, we've managed to dig up some details on the Peace River, Alberta, Tournament won by the Edmonton Blue Willow Angels. In addition, we uncovered a newspaper column with some history of the Peace River tournament and some local stars.

Red Star    Shawn Hennessy has fascinating information on US Military ball in Alberta in 1943.

Shawn was trying to find context for some photos of US military personnel (see above) which appeared to be taken in Canada. We were able to direct him to the Edmonton City League of the war years and he's posted a lovely piece on his site Chevrons and Diamonds. Now, we just have to put names to the faces.

Red Star   Two more team photo additions to our roster, the 1948 Edmonton Canadian Juniors, the Northern Alberta champions, and the 1954 Red Deer Dodgers the pennant-winners of the Chinook Baseball League.

Red Star    And, an addition to the 1954 Alberta Snapshots, a photo of a pair of the Chinook League managers, Hugh Wilson and Dave Able. We've also come across Chinook League statistics for 1954 !

Red Star    Thanks to collector Max Weder, we've added a photo from Nanaimo from 1922, the battery for the local squad, Phil Piper and Frank Nesbitt and to the 1957 Western Canada Snapshots, a photo of the jacket of the 1957 Saskatoon Gems a team which included the likes of Charlie Beene, Len Tucker, Len Breckner, Jim Garrett, Gene Graves, Jackie McLeod and Cliff Pemberton under the direction of manager Ralph Mabee.

13 March, 2020

Spero LeakosRed Star    Spero Leakos, a major force in baseball on the prairies in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s has died at the age of 92.

Spero Leakos awardWith a base of the family restaurant, The Commodore, in Saskatoon, Leakos ran the semi-pro Commodores of the Western Canada Baseball League and the North Saskatchewan League and later the Dodgers of the Saskatoon Senior League.

Leakos attracted top talent for his diamond nines including leading American college players, several of whom went on to major league careers, to suit up for the Commodores. Some of the best remembered - John Boccabella, Tim Cullen, Ernie Fazio, Dan Schneider, Darrell Sutherland, Conrad Munatones, Lee Murphy and Roy Taylor.

In 1961, Leakos (left) and his dad Steve were honoured August 13th at Cairns Field. Sid Buckwold (right), the Saskatoon mayor presented Spero with the City Certificate of Merit.

10 March, 2020

Red Star    It's one of those projects better left alone !  Anyway, I thought it a good idea (back four or five months ago) to begin a revamp of the Player Lists by comparing the names on each roster page with the names that show up on the various PDF files by league & by decade.

Well, that turned out to be tad more difficult than anticipated but the files have finally been updated. We now have more than 60,000 players listed from 1900 to 1979. And, it continues to grow.

Of course, the basic list is the Western Canada Players, but we've added separate lists over the years for the Basin League, Southern Minny and Ontario.

Red Star    This time around it's mainly photographic evidence of baseball on the prairies. Rich Necker has been busy digging up some good quality photos, many relating to baseball in Manitoba in the 1960s and 1970s.

Red Star    There's a couple from the 1950s, Pat Angers then (1959) with Selkirk Braves in Manitoba ball.

And a team photo of the 1957 team from Neepawa. One question about the names, Barry Mongomery or Montgomery? 

A new photo of Morris Seafoot of the Riverside baseball family now appears in the 1962 Manitoba Gallery. 

Stan FurmanStan Furman (left) in  colour, joins the 1964 Manitoba Gallery.

Bill Fairbairn of St. Lazare Athletics, 1966, is an addition to that Manitoba Gallery.

Glennis ScottWe've also re-done the photo of Glennis Scott (right)

The 1967 Snapshot page adds in Steve Derewianchuk of the Winnipeg CUAC Blues and Morris Seafoot, Riverside Blues.

Great colour shot of Barry Moffatt of the Riverside Blues, 1969.

Bob WilliamsonBill ChappleLynn CaldwellIn the 1972 Manitoba Snapshot Page & the 1972 Gallery, photos of Ron Ramsey of Hamiota and Bob Williamson (left) of Riverside.

The Gallery also includes a colour photo of Lynn Caldwell (near right) of Souris Cardinals.

The 1976 Manitoba Gallery adds Bill Chapple (far right) of the Brandon Cloverleafs.

Red Star    And, adding another team photo, the 1966 Rivers, Manitoba, Comets.

 28 February, 2020

Red Star    The biggest and longest-lasting tournament in the country most likely was the annual event at Lacombe, Alberta. Our Rich Necker has dug out photos from the 1968 and 1969 events. We've also added to the game summaries of those 1968 and 1969 Tournaments.

Greg DvorakA photo of pitcher/slugger Greg Dvorak is included. This was the season Dvorak accomplished a 20-0 pitching record (12-0 in the regular season and 8-0 in tournament play) likely the best-ever in prairie ball.

This is the Lacombe Tournament where one of the papers made a big deal of the appearance of pitcher/outfielder Rick Marquardt playing with the Vernon Luckies. Marquardt played, and played well, with a malformed left arm which the paper said, "looked like a half arm with a small, flexible hand".

There are also photos of Ira McKnight, Zeke Markowsky, among others.

Outside of the Lacombe Tournament, there are snapshots of Harold Hunchak, Malcolm Lynn, Jim Poelzer, Al Taylor and Dave Twa.

Red Star   The Lynn, Poelzer photos were in connection with the Canadian Junior Baseball Championship. A team out of Edmonton, the Blue Willow Angels, were the favourite. There's a summary of the Alberta-BC championship on the 1968 Tournament page.

Red Star   Rich Necker has gone into the 1969 archives to come up with game reports of the Alberta Major League season. The published statistics, for whatever reason, failed to show the basic won-lost records for pitchers, so we spent a few days trying to find all the games and total up the wins and losses. As usual, things failed to add up the first couple of times through, but I think we finally have it. And, we're really pleased to have both the batting stats and pitching results from that 1969 season.  Of course, we have the team rosters as well.

Red Star   Also really neat to have Rich's game reports on West Kootenay baseball in 1968 and 1969.

Red Star   Through Leigh Robstad we have a photo of the 1931 Viceroy, Saskatchewan, Twin Vees, the provincial junior champions. Leigh's grandfather John Robstad was a member of the team. She recalls family discussions about John becoming friends with a barnstorming player from the United States - Satchel Paige !  We've added individual photos of John and teammate Gaylen Shupe to the 1931 Saskatchewan Photo Gallery and the team roster is now included on the roster page.

Red Star   We're happy to help out Margaret Bergdal in her research into the baseball career of grampa, Alex "Lefty" Simons of ball fame in Vancouver in the 1920s and 1930s.

Red Star    Happy to help out the folks at the historical society in Sonoma, California, with some photos of former Calgary star Carl Mori who came up from California to play in the Big Four League in the late 1940s.

Red Star   A few individual photos added here and there. In 1944, there's Ralph Almas in the Saskatchewan Gallery; in the 1949 Alberta Gallery it's Bob Stretch Garrett and Tony Maze; the 1966 Saskatchewan Gallery has a new version of Harold Hunchak, the 1969 Alberta Gallery now has Al Taylor, Dave Twa and Bob Trembecky.

Red Star   Along the way we managed to make a few name corrections, the most prominent of which was Reg Erhardt (not Earhardt) of Calgary. Turns out the library at SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology) in Calgary carries his name following a huge donation to the institution from a former student of Erhardt's. 

Red Star   At a special New Year’s Party last month, former Asahi Ken Kaminishi (celebrating his 98thj birthday) was honoured with a presentation of a portrait painted by artist Steven Hepburn. The last of the celebrated Asahis is seen here with the painting and with Grace Eiko Thomson and Elmer Morishita. A thank you to Yobun Shima for this information and for keeping us updated, especially on everything Asahi.

Ken Kaminishi

08 February, 2020

Red Star    This is an unusual photo to be included as we don't have a grasp of what kind of ball it is and can't yet pin down the year either. But, it's such a classic photo of young baseball that we couldn't resist.

It's a team from Trail, BC, taken at Shavers Bench, where the ball field was located at the time. For now we've slotted it into 1950. Thanks to Lou DeRosa !

Larry KoentoppLou also sent along a program from a 1971 tournament in Trail featuring the Gonzaga University Bulldogs, the Trail-Rossland All-Stars and Nelson (maybe Kamloops too). From that we've extracted the rosters and searched out a photo of Gonzaga coach and former Alberta catcher Larry Koentopp (right).

Red Star    In digging through the newspaper archives, Rich Necker has found some news on Junior ball in the 1960s, specifically the Western Canada championships of 1966. A team from Edmonton captured the title.

And, he's dug out some photos from the 1967 Lacombe, Alberta, Tournament won by the Moose Jaw Regals.

Also a photo from the 1966 Lacombe event which featured future major league catcher Joe Ferguson, then playing for Kindersley, Saskatchewan.

Nick DiCarloTerry ValerioteRed Star    There's a little more on the Intercounty League of Southern Ontario as we post the team photo of the 1966 Guelph C-Joys.

In addition there are more individual photos in the 1964 and 1970 Ontario Galleries. That's Nick DiCarlo (left) and Terry Valeriote (right).  It's not very good quality, but we did manage to find a photo of former Blue Jay Dave Lemanczyk from 1970-71 when he pitched for Guelph.

 06 February, 2020

Red Star    What's that old movie ... Dancing as fast as I can?  We're working away to put a dent in the backlog.  Lots of interesting stuff from the old days.

Lou DeMore, Lui CorradoRed Star    Lou DeRosa and Rich Necker have pushed us along with material from British Columbia, including some Trail team photos from 1946 (the second one, at the bottom) and 1947. There's also this photo for which we need a date. I'm sure Lou and Rich can figure this one out.

In the middle is Lou DeMore the coach or manager, and at the right Lui Corrado, holding a trophy for winning something !   I'd guess the early 1950s.

While they are small bits, it is so nice to fill in game reports from the Okanagan Mainline League, a major amateur/semi-pro circuit of the era.  We have added some games for both 1967 and 1969

Red Star    With thanks to Anne Chamberlain, we have some photos for the 1968 Ontario Photo Gallery. Anne sent along a clipping on the Guelph C-Joys of that season and we've managed to extract more than a dozen individual pictures for the gallery. 

Ron SteadRobbie SleemanRed Star    We also happened upon a photo of the 1970 Guelph team which captured the Intercounty championship. Future Toronto Blue Jay Dave Lamanczyk was a member of that team, but unfortunately missed the team photo.

So far, we've extracted a couple of individual photos for the Ontario Gallery - Ron Stead (left) perhaps the greatest of all Intercounty pitchers, and Robbie Sleeman (right, yep, of the brewery of the same name).

Of course, we've added in the Guelph rosters for 1968 and 1970.

Red Star   Grant Warwick ?  Yes, he also was a ball player and is now posted in the 1951 Alberta Photo Gallery as a member of the Edmonton Oilers. But, he was much better known for his work on ice. 

The Saskatchewan product advanced to the National Hockey League with New York Rangers in 1941-42 and skated off with the Calder Memorial Trophy as the top rookie.  He played in the NHL over nine seasons before playing senior hockey in the Maritimes and then in the Okanagan. With the Penticton V's he was on an Allan Cup championship team and in 1955 was with the V's when they defeated the Soviet Union for the gold medal at the World Championships.

30 January, 2020

Red Star    For us, the 1970s are looked upon as pretty current.

So, there is real pleasure in posting game reports for the BC Interior for both 1970 and 1971. In the main, the stories cover activity in the West Kootenay area of the province and include statistics for 1971 (although there are head-shaking omissions such as no mention of home run leaders). 

Rich Necker's work also includes rosters for both 1970 and 1971. The 1970 rosters also include players from the Okanagan Mainline League, which had an interlocking schedule with the West Kootenay teams.

Doc GlennRed Star    There are also a couple of additional posts - the 1971 Trail Baseball Tournament and the 1961 British Columbia Senior Championship.

Red Star    One photo of note we've stumbled across - that's Stanley "Doc" Glenn (left), former Negro Leaguer who was a teenager in high school when he began his career with the Philadelphia Stars.

Glenn came up to Canada to play in Quebec's Provincial League then Ontario to play in the Intercounty League for two seasons, 1954 and 1955 with the St. Thomas Elgins.

 27 January, 2020

Red Star    Most of the updates this time around are in the Galleries or Snapshot pages, although we're pretty pleased to have put together the statistics for the 1962 Victoria Senior League and to have found a photo of the 1935 Chatham, Ontario, Colored All-Stars.

Chatham had won the Ontario Intermediate "B" championship in 1934 and was competing for the Intermediate "A" title in 1935. This is the team of Fergie Jenkins father.

The Victoria stats were a reaffirmation of the impact of Art Worth as both a hitter and pitcher. Worth had played on the prairies in the early and mid 1950s before settling back in Victoria where he continued on the diamond into the 1970s.

We've also added some stats for the 1962 Dewdney League of the Lower Mainland.

Red Star    With a thank you to Max Weder's baseball collection, we've hived off dozens of individual photos of St. Thomas players of Ontario's Intercounty League. From Joe Atkins to Tommy White they are now posted in the 1950, 1951, 1952 and 1953 Ontario Galleries.

Also, we came across a team photo of the 1955 St. Thomas Elgins.  

Red Star    Rich Necker, as usual, has been doing superb work digging up photos and game reports. These games are for the West Kootenay area, for 1968 and 1969. While there's not much detail, it's helpful to have a few facts on the 1968 Labour Day Tournament at Kamloops.

Red Star    The rest appears to be in the photo realm beginning with a team photo of the 1913 Vancouver Islands team from Alberni, then it's the 1935 BC Gallery,with Andy Padovan. Then more :

BC Gallery 1936, Ed Henry

1945 BC Gallery, Reg Clarkson 

1945 Alberta Snapshots, Dean Olmstead   

1945 Alberta Gallery, Harry Ornest   

1946 Ontario Gallery, Al Dumouchelle 

1946 Alberta Gallery, Bill Newman, Dick Eisler 

1947 Alberta Gallery, Don Lippincott, Arnold Martin, Lyell Rodger, Forrest Hunte

1948 Saskatchewan Gallery, Jack Matchett 

1950, BC Gallery, Frank Vaselenak 

1952 Alberta Gallery, Lefty Belter, Jim Ryan, Hal Callihan, Rollie Miles   

1953 BC, Ron Curby

1954, Alberta Gallery, Ken Ing   

1954, Alberta Snapshots, Dave Martin   

1956 BC Gallery, Budsy Usher

22 January, 2020

A little more catch-up. Bits and pieces here and there.

Red Star    Now just a quick check of the updates.

The 1935 BC senior champions were the Victoria Sons of Canada.

80 years after they completed the series, we have the game report of the final contest of the 1940 Comox District Twilight League.

A 1945 addition to the BC Gallery is Eddie Cross of the Victoria Army team.

This 1948 photo is the only one we've been able to find of pitcher Wally Granberg.

And, the new photo of the 1948 Nakusp, BC, team is of a tad better quality than our original one.

Rod MacKayThe 1948 BC Gallery has Rod MacKay (left) of the Vancouver Westerns before he launched a career in pro ball. Along with MacKay are Gerry Hallgren, Mike Johnson, Cliff Keeley, Gordie Meeres, Bill Sibson, Joe Yanchuk and Pete Younie.

Veteran Eddie Morris is added to the 1950 Alberta Gallery.

Ken MitchellGlen MathesonTommy Vigor, George Bogdanovich, Doug Cairns, Lorne Drummond, Barry Dunn, Glen Matheson (near right) and Ken Mitchell (far right) are the newest photos in the 1951 BC Gallery.

Thanks to Michelle Pearce we have a photo of a 1950s Fernie Falcons team. We believe this one is either 1952 or 1953.  The lone player identified so far is Frank Pearce and he's now posted in the 1952 Gallery.

A couple of new photos in the 1953 BC Snapshots, one features the Mauro brothers, the other three stars of the Vancouver Beavers.

The 1953 edition of the Galt Terriers of the Intercounty League featured a couple of former Negro League stars, Ed Steele and Gentry Jessup.,

Also from Ontario, there's the addition of a team photo of the 1954 Galt Terriers of the Intercounty League.

Ken Mitchell of South Burnaby Athletics is featured in the 1955 BC Snapshot page.

The 1958 Snapshots now include catcher Bert Dollar of the Edmonton Eskimos and a revised Bill Heath, another catcher, of Williston of the Western Canada League.

Jim Barudoni of the Williston Oilers is an add to the 1958 Western Canada Gallery.

West Kootenay baseball gets some coverage with game reports for the 1959 season.

Hal Jones, Addie Tambellini and Pinoke McIntrye of the Trail Smoke Eaters are the adds to the 1959 BC Gallery.

For 1959 you'll see the addition of BC game reports for Md-Island baseball and the Comox District Baseball League.

Neat to be adding some material from the Polar League in northern Manitoba. Here are a few game reports of the 1960 and 1961 seasons. And, more for both 1962 and 1963.

Discovering that we had the wrong year for a Brampton Red Sox photo we've made the change, to 1961 now confirmed as the year for that Intercounty club.

For BC ball in 1961, we've added game reports for the Industrial League and the Dewdney League.

The Whalley, BC, Cubs of 1961 are another new team photo addition along with game reports for the Victoria Senior League for 1961 and 1962.

John YankowskiA few additions to the 1962 BC Gallery - Don Cowan, Joe Patterson, Alan Richards and John Yankoski (left).

This doesn't happen very often - individual pictures of a whole team!  But, here are the 1962 Chemainus, BC, Comets, also in the 1962 BC Gallery.

For Manitoba, 1963, Larry Hart is an addition to the Photo Gallery. And in the 1964 Gallery it's Terry Moore.

These guys were the Manitoba North-South champions of 1964, Elphinstone.

The Basin League in South Dakota/Nebraska was a major competitor of the Western Canada League for players in the 50s and early 60s. For the Basin League 1965, we have added to the Gallery - Don Cook, Fred Devereux, Bob Reed and John Hilts all leading pitchers that season.

From the Basin League 1966, more individual photos including managers Jack Stallings, Floyd Temple and Don Quayle.

Don Thiessen of Saskatoon Torchinsky is the add to the 1966 Saskatchewan Gallery.

On the 1969 Saskatchewan Snapshots, a photo of the stars of that year's Saskatoon Exhibition Tournament - Jim Shaw, Reg Andrews and Erwin Doerksen.

Sometimes we just find a little better quality photo of one we've already had posted. That's the case with Tom Changnon of Calgary baseball 1971.

These 1971 action photos brought us a whole new page, the 1971 BC Snapshots.

From the Nakusp area, we've added a few games reports for the 1971 season of the Slocan-Arrow Lakes League.

A lone addition to the 1972 Alberta Gallery, Murray Keatley of the Calgary Giants.

The 1974 BC Snapshot page carries a photo of Mike Finlayson when signing a professional contract.

Finding league statistics is among our most difficult challenges, so we're really pleased to have even these abbreviated stats of the 1974 Victoria Senior League.

18 January, 2020

Red Star    Oh boy. Not sure what I got myself into.

Decided it was time to double-check all the entries we have on the rosters pages with all the entries listed in the Player List.  1900 to 1979.

It has been quite the chore. Year by year, line by line, name by name. Anyway the end is in sight and it's about time we started some catchup on a backlog of material, much from our indefatigable Rich Necker, who has prodded us to keep poking along.

Red Star   There won't be much of a theme to these catch-up posts, but we want to inform on just what we're adding.  I won't note every roster page updated as, by the end, every one of them will show additions and corrections.

Red Star    So away we go. 

A couple of small things we were happy to find - the rosters for the 1960 Grande Prairie, Alberta team, and to ID Ed Kielbiski of 1959 BC ball as Ed Kielbiski Jr. !  Pleased to also get names for Team BC for 1977.

The 1962 BC Snapshot page has a neat action pic from the Victoria Times.

We' added a number of individual photos, including Dennis Ferrey, John Thompson and Don Holmes to the 1968 BC Gallery. For Manitoba, 1959, we've added Ernie Pitts (yes, the football star), Gerry Brisson, Cliff Pennington, Fred Dunsmore and Aggie Kukulowicz.

For 1959 we've also punched in game reports for the Winnipeg Senior League.

Ken MitchellIn 1951 BC, it's Ken Mitchell (left) a rising star in Vancouver ball who would later play a couple of seasons in semi-pro ball in Calgary.

And, going all the way back to 1910, we've managed to snag photos of Victoria players Walter Gravelin, Robert Steele (a future major leaguer) and brother Ed Steele.

In the 1948 Alberta Gallery, there's the addition of Lethbridge player Oddie Lowe.


Michel BeaudryPinoke McIntyreHappy to dig out photos of 1970s Team Quebec star Michel Beaudry (left) and Trail's Pinoke McIntyre of the 1960s (right).

Red Star   And it's off to Ontario and the Intercounty League for a 1953 photo of Don Butler of St. Thomas.

Red Star    From the 1960 Polar League in Manitoba, pictures of Ted Hampson and George Konik of the Flin Flon teams in the league. And from the 1961 league, Phil Headley and Mel Pearson. A major thanks to T. Kent Morgan for information on the Polar League including some 1960s rosters.

Red Star    One new team photo, the 1957 Viking, Alberta, Shamrocks, the Eastern Alberta champions.

Much more to come.

24 October, 2019

Lou DeRosaJason BayRed Star    Luigi (Lou) DeRosa will find out on Monday whether he's been successful in a campaign to re-name the ball field at Butler Park at Trail, in honour of Jason Bay, the Trail product and former major leaguer.  Trail Council meets Monday and is to announce its decision on the proposal

For DeRosa, there is no better way than by connecting Trail’s finest baseball facility, Butler Park, to its biggest Major League Baseball star and his storied career. “

The accomplishments of local persons that bring nationwide pride need to be recognized in order to continue to promote our city as a leader in amateur sport,” said DeRosa. “We are ‘The City of Champions’ and need to continue to build that brand in public ways.”

The person for whom the park is currently named, Sydney Butler, was Trail Mayor from 1915-17 and is believed to have attended the 1927 Butler Park induction ceremony. There is no desire to remove Butler’s name from the park, only to add ‘Jason Bay Field’ on an arch above the sign, added DeRosa.

Check out the full story in the Trail Times.

Crow's News MuseumLou also send along a photo from his recent tour of the Crow's Nest Museum at  Coleman, Alberta. These uniforms appear to be from the 1960s. Much more to be uncovered on baseball in the Crow's Nest area !

And, he's sent along a team photo of the 1939 Trail Cardinals. Thank you Lou !

Phil RisingerRed Star    So pleased for Phil Risinger, the Medicine Hat star of the late 1950s, who has been inducted into the Weatherford, Oklahoma High School Hall of Fame.

Phil, All-State during his high school career, was one of eight individual athletes to be honoured at the 10th Weatherford Eagles' Induction ceremony.

Phil has been a great supporter of our site over many years.

Red Star    For our friends in the East, a big event early next month in London - the 4th annual Canadian Baseball History Conference in London, Ontario Saturday and Sunday, November 9th and 10th. 

There will be presentations and discussion on a wide range of topics relating to baseball history in Canada (along with a side trip to the newly expanded and renovated Museum at the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame).  Among the presentations will be one by Anne Chamberlain's into the history of Ontario's InterCounty Baseball League. Anne has been very helpful to us in trying to build up our information on the IC.

Red Star    Kudos to Patrick Larson for alerting us to some amazing videos of the Peace River, Alberta, Stampeders baseball team of the 1960s !  Wow.  I could even immediately identify one of the players, little Joe Weremy, the lefty hurler.  Check 'em out.

Video 1     Video 2

Red Star    Big thanks to colleague T. Kent Morgan for tracking down rosters for teams in Northern Manitoba - Flin Flon and The Pas. We'll be adding those in as we progress through the item below.

Red Star    We've been a tad lax on updates lately as we've undertaken a huge, enormous, unbelievably time-consuming project - by hand, all 80+ years, comparing the rosters posted on these roster pages each year with the names on our spreadsheet from which we extract the Player Lists. There's just no way to automate the procedure, so it's a line by line check. Very tedious, but when its finished it'll be a big step forward.

1960 Bill MintyRed Star    I had wondered why the references to Bill Minty suddenly stopped around 1960.

Well, I happened to stumble upon this story in the Vancouver Province in September, 1960. The veteran died with his spikes on.

We first have note of Minty and baseball in 1922 and thus he suited up for nearly 40 years, mainly in the Haney area of British Columbia.

Bill is in the re-do of the 1955 photo of the Haney BC pitchers (which also shows Larry Walker Sr.).

Red Star    Before I forget what I've updated, let me run down some of the additions, all of these in photo galleries or snapshot pages. A few of the entries are just a little better versions of the previous ones.

Red Star    Back to 1913 we managed to dig out a newspaper photos of pitcher Earl "Kid" Hurley and shortstop Gerald McNamara of the Medicine Hat Hatters of the Western Canada League.

Red Star    In the 1914 Alberta gallery, we've added brothers Eddie Marskell and James Marskell.

Red Star    The 1917 Saskatchewan gallery now includes Chester Parkinson who played in Regina before a stint in Winnipeg Senior ball.

Red Star    Ahead to 1920 in BC, there's Leo "Frisco" Edwards on the Snapshot page. Edwards was on a pro club in Victoria, BC, in 1920 after playing on five different teams in Alberta during the summer of 1919.

Red Star    The 1921 Snapshots now include Sam Leake, a catcher for Edmonton and Moose Jaw of the Western Canada League.

Red Star    A couple of additions for 1922 - photos of Bill Cadenhead and Ivan McDonald in the BC Photo Gallery and of Ivan McDonald on the Snapshot page.

Red Star    On the 1923 Snapshot page we've added a newspaper feature on the pitchers for BC Electric (slightly edited) and over on the photo page, Les Traeger and Pat Worley.

Red Star    The 1924 BC Gallery adds Jack Fraser and the 1926 Saskatchewan Gallery adds Bunny Clouston.

Red Star    The 1930 Manitoba Snapshot page has a new version of the Dunc McCorquodale action photo.

Red Star    Over in Alberta, 1932, some additions to the Photo Gallery - John Flaska, Charlie Lewis, Murray Smith, Bill Sutherland (replacing a similar photo which had been identified as Bob Sutherland), and Ivan Sutherland.

Red Star    Aldon "Lefty" Wilkie, a Saskatchewan product, pitched in Saskatoon in 1933, but was soon in the majors with Pittsburgh.

Red Star   In trying to check some spellings of player names in 1937 we happened upon a newspaper photo of Bill "Chick" Sayles, the University of Oregon star who pitched one season in Vancouver before heading off to the major leagues.

Red Star    Another one to get to suit up in the majors was Okanagan product Ted Bowsfield. We've added another little picture of him in our 1953 Gallery.

Red Star    The 1960 BC Gallery adds Mike Woodley of the Victoria Naval Vets.

Red Star    The following season, 1961, we now have Wayne Leonard, Andy Johnston, Ron Karadimas, Bill Martino, Larry Shannon, Trevor Swangard and Art Worth. And on the Snapshot Page, five new photos including a panel featuring manager Bill Kinder, and others with Denny Doyle, Wayne Norton, John Balloch, Barry Harvey, Wayne Doiron and Wayne Leonard.

Red Star    Ian Dixon of the Vancouver Ramadas is an addition to the 1965 Gallery.

Red Star     Thanks to Richard Jack who sent along an inquiry about a baseball photo from the early 1900s, we have the addition of the team photo of the Acme, Alberta, Giants of 1912. No names yet, but we are always hopeful !

Red Star    We've had a few team photos kicking around for awhile now, but unable to pinpoint the year or even the specific team.  If you can help that would be fantastic. The top one is a team from Kelowna (winners of something from the look of the trophy) likely in the 1960s. The middle one is a team from Summerland, BC. The bottom one a Japanese team which played in a tournament at Greenwood, BC, in 1943.    

1960s Kelowna

Summerland baseball

Greenwood baseball

09 September, 2019

Red Star    It's been about six weeks in the making, but we've finally posted an update to our Player Lists (now featuring more than 60-thousand individual players who suited up in amateur or semi-pro ball, mostly on the prairies).

There's still a lot a work to do in eliminating duplicate entries and in going through to double check spellings on the Player Lists with those on the roster pages but it's a huge task and we're happy to make a little progress.

Red Star    To complement early photos of teams from New Westminster, we've added a 1918 photo of the BC Manufacturing squad, the champions of the New Westminster City League. Names too !.

Skid MarstersRed Star    Concerning 1920s ball in the Kootenay area of BC, we stumbled into photos of a trio of Rossland players of 1924 - Skid Marsters (right), Bill Molisky and Frank "Dutch" Singer

Red Star    From 1927, we've added 16 new individual photos -- from Con Puhan to Camille VanBeneen -- of the Winnipeg Norwoods of the Winnipeg Senior League.

Red Star    In searching for the correct spelling of a player's name we lucked into a story with lots of first names of Winnipeg players of 1928 - now entered on the roster page.

Ed HenryRed Star    Veteran Ed Henry (left), who we first noticed playing in 1930 is still going strong in the 1950s. We've added his photo to the 1950 gallery and note that he continued to suit up until 1957.

Red Star    From the 1953 Western Canada season, we've added a snapshot photo of Saskatoon Gems' Oscar Tesch, Jim Shirley and Johnny Williams.  Tesch, a left-hander, showed brilliance in his early career in Vancouver, but was unable to find much success in the Western Canada League of the 1950s.

Bob LinckRed Star    As part of a recent acquisition, collector Max Weder of Vancouver stumbled into a gold mine of material from the prairies. Just one of the little items is a photo of Bob Linck the manager of "our" (Lloydminster's) first big team, the 1954 Lloydminster Meridians. But, he was injured in a car accident before the start of the season and eventually was moved to the North Battleford Beavers (hence the NB cap).

Max also obtained photos of various New Westminster and Vancouver players of the 1940s. Left below is a player for the New Westminster Royals. Centre and right are players of the Vancouver Luckies of 1947.  The challenge now is the identify the players. All three look kinda familiar !

New Westminster RoyalsVancouver LuckiesVancouver Luckies

Red Star   Thanks to our researcher deluxe, Rich Necker, we have more BC game reports -- for the 1969 season of the Victoria Senior League and a little coverage of 1971 Upper Island ball, with corresponding rosters, 1969, 1971.

Along with the game reports, Rich has sent along a 1969 photo of Dave Morgan, one of the Victoria Senior League players and a snapshot of Victoria's pitcher-first baseman Les Brice.  Also in the 1969 Photo Gallery, a couple of Nakusp, BC, players, high schoolers Glen Rounce and Gord Yolland.

And, for 1973, Rich has dug out rosters for the Team BC Juniors, the Canadian champions.

Red Star   Among the spelling changes throughout the site - Restell for Restall and other versions, and Lino Zanier for Leno. 

24 August, 2019

Red Star    The coverage of baseball in British Columbia extends to the 1959, 1960, 1968 and 1969 seasons while we also stumble upon a photo of two giants of Western Canada ball.

Dave DowlingMarcel LachemannRed Star    A future major leaguer and pitching star of the 1961 Western Canada season turns up in our coverage of 1960s ball on Vancouver Island.

Dave Dowling (left) was a 17-year-old for the Centralia Pavers of the Northwest International League.

And, another who advanced to MLB, Marcel Lachemann,right, (who played with the 1959 Calgary Dodgers of the Southern Alberta League), is in the lineup of the Aberdeen Harborites). The eight-team circuit had one Canadian team, the Victoria Pages.

George BriceOur 1960 additions include game reports, photos (Art Worth, Dave Black, and George Brice, left), snapshots, and rosters.

Red Star    Also for 1960 on the Island, we have coverage of the Victoria Senior Amateur League with game reports and some stats too (Gary Tuttle hit .400 to win the batting crown !  As noted in the rosters, there was a lot of player movement between teams and leagues.

Red Star    For 1959, we have game reports and some photos and rosters for the Fraser Valley League, the circuit a bit east of the Vancouver diamonds. The teams included the Yarrow Ocean Sprays and the Agassiz Loggers.  Our new photos include Norm Chambers, Joe Drdul, Grant Jordan and Gerry Kellington.

Red Star    We're also really pleased to have material on the late 1960s in BC. Rich has dug up information on both 1968 and 1969. 

The coverage includes game reports of the 1968 Vancouver Industrial League Charlie Whiteand the Vancouver Metropolitan League (as noted earlier, that Larry Webster was some pitching star).

There are a couple of new photos, one quite the surprise - Charlie White, right, a former ManDak League player who advanced to the majors, makes an appearance with Vancouver. 

White had previously played in the city with the professional Vancouver Mounties of the Pacific Coast League.   One of the other new pictures is of Don Sweet, who became a star kicker in Canadian football in Montreal.

Of course, the roster page has a list of players for the two leagues.

Red Star    1969 was the year of Larry Webster's perfect game in the Vancouver Industrial League. We have game reports and rosters

We've also expanded our report on the BC tournament to choose the provincial representative for the Canadian championships.

Len TuckerRed Star    In searching for a new photo of Dave Dowling, we happened upon a photo with Canadian baseball star Len Tucker, who made it up to MLB for spring training with Washington, but didn't appear in a regular season game.

Tucker, from the baseball factory at Fresno State University in California, began his semi-pro career in Canada with Kamsack Cyclones back in 1952 and returned in 1957 to hit .394 and lead the Western Canada League in home runs and runs batted in. (Ernie Rodriguez swatted .402 to win the batting crown).

The photo of Tucker and Dowling appears on a 1961 snapshot page.

Red Star    And, this one is a little too current to fit our pattern, but it's the successor league to the old Western Canada circuit. Okotoks has won the title in new WCBL !  The former Western Major Baseball League was renamed the Western Canadian Baseball League for this season.

Tristan Peters(August 16) It’s been 10 years coming, but the Okotoks Dawgs finally won the 2019 Western Canadian Baseball League championship title after closing out the Regina Red Sox in game two of their best-of-three series with a incredible 8-6 comeback effort on Friday night. The Dawgs posted a four-run bottom-of-the-eighth inning to come back for the second time, to not only rip the hearts out of the Scarlet Stockings, but also inflict historical revenge after the Red Sox won the 2012 title on Seaman Stadium soil. Bellevue University commit Liam Rihela opened the scoring with one swing of the bat, albeit on his third try during his leadoff at-bat in the bottom of the second. Okotoks also came out on top in game one, defeating Regina 7-2 at Currie Field in the Queen City. Tristan Peters,(right) an outfielder with the Dawgs, was named the playoff MVP.

18 August, 2019

Red Star    Moving right along. This time it's game reports for the 1966 Vancouver Industrial League and the 1966 Pacific International League both based in BC's Lower Mainland.

Thank you Rich Necker !

Red Star    A couple of photos too - Eric Guthrie (who became better known as a football quarterback including time in US college football) and Joe Smith who won a pro contract and spent just a year in the Giants' minor league system.

Red Star    One of the mysteries coming out of this coverage is the lack of photos of pitching star Larry Webster.

Not once.

Not even once did the Vancouver daily papers of the day (the Sun, the Province) display a photo of Larry Webster during his amazing career in local senior baseball.  From 1966 to 1971, the left-hander fired seven no-hitters, one of them a perfect game. Yet, not one photo.

Larry WebsterLarry WebsterWe do have two pictures on our site (one from a Kelowna paper, the other from Quesnel) from 1962 when a Larry Webster pitched for Merritt Luckies in tournament ball. We are trying to confirm whether this version (1960-1962) is the same Larry Webster.

This Vancouver one (a few of his highlights listed below) went on to became an ace with Canada's 1971 Pan Am team.

May 10, 1966 - Webster put an exclamation mark on the season opener, tossing a no-hitter as the Vancouver Longshoremen blanked CYO 8-0. The left-hander fanned 17.

May 24, 1966 - Webster hurled his second straight Industrial League no-hitter as he pitched the Longshoremen to a 7 to 0 victory over the Astorias. He fanned ten.

June 05, 1966 - Mr. Zero of the Longshoremen fired his third successive shutout, 5-0 over the Regents. He had 12 strikeouts.

June 05, 1967 - Webster fanned 11, with just one walk, in hurling a no-hitter Monday as Longshoremen crushed North Vancouver 13-0.

June 25, 1967 - Webster fired his fourth no-hitter in just over a year Sunday. The lefty fanned eight and walked one in the Longshoremen's 7-0 win over Burnaby.

July 06, 1967 - It was a two-hitter this time as Webster tossed his third shutout in just over a month in the Longshoremen's 2-0 win over Burnaby. He racked up 14 strikeouts and walked none.

May 14, 1968 - It was all Larry Webster Tuesday night as the slick left-hander gave up only two hits and drove in the winning run in a 3-1 win for the Longshoremen over CYO. Webster whiffed 16.

June 02, 1968 - Larry Webster put on another big show Sunday night tossing his fifth no-hitter in two seasons as the Longshoremen blasted the Villas 11-0 in interlocking play. He also was prominent at the dish with a pair of doubles and a single.

June 23, 1968 -  Longshoremen got one-hit, shutout, pitching from Larry Webster in a 3-0 victory over CYO.

July 28, 1968 - At the Powell Street Grounds, Webster was within one out of another no-hitter when Ken MacKenzie of the Merchants beat out a bunt for the only hit against him. The lefty fanned 14 and walking only one.

July 30, 1968 - Just two days after losing a no-hit bid in the seventh and final inning, Webster had a no-hitter into the sixth in an 8-0 victory over Port Coquitlam. He racked up 15 strikeouts.  Jack Tippe's single up the middle was the lone safely against Webster.

May 22, 1969 - Webster pitched a perfect game Thursday night as the Longshoremen edged the Merchants 1-0 in Industrial League action. It was the sixth no-hit gem by the left-hander in four years play in local senior ball.

July 08, 1971 - Webster pitched a no-hitter Thursday to lead Vancouver CYO to a 12-0 route of the Merchants. The lefty fanned six.

July 16, 1971 - Webster fired a one-hitter. with 16 strikeouts Friday, but didn't come away a winner as CYO and Merchants battled to a 1-1 nine-inning draw.

16 August, 2019

Lowell HodgesBill GarnerRed Star   A super job by our Rich Necker in wrapping up play in the 1959 Okanagan Mainline League and the 1959 Victoria Senior Amateur League. You can follow the whole season in the game reports !

Of course, there are rosters for the teams and some photos too !  (New images include Lowell Hodges, above left, Bill Garner, above right), Lyall Cornett, Berlyn Hodges, Ron Karadimas, Gerry Parker and Art Worth).

The Snapshot pages also includes a couple of pics from the Victoria loop.  As Rich notes, several of the Victoria players -- including Worth, Lowell Hodges, Berlyn Hodges and Parker -- had histories in the old Western Canada League.

Red Star   If you are looking below for material from prior to August, it's been shifted (in an annual move) to News 23.

15 August, 2019

Red Star   This 2014 newspaper feature on Max Weder and partner Jennifer Ettinger paints a lovely picture of the pair making a contribution to baseball in Vancouver playing host to young players of the Vancouver Canadians, a short-season farm team of the Toronto Blue Jays. 

What the article fails to note is the role of Weder as one of the country's foremost collectors of Canadian baseball artifacts. He recently made a major acquisition in Saskatchewan, much relating to semi-pro and amateur ball, and has kindly allowed us to reproduce some of the material.

Red Star   Among the delights is a better version of the 1958 team photo of the Lloydminster-North Battleford Combines, my hometown team. It includes guys like Curly Williams and Ed Tanner who were regulars at my dad's restaurant. With the two cities supporting the team, I don't recall who lived where, how the games were scheduled, and how they got back and forth. It's about 138 km (86 miles) between the two.

Red Star   There's also a better photo of what we had posted for the 1971 North Battleford Beavers (by this time the Western Canada League and Lloydminster's participation were long gone).  The Beavers played in the Northern Saskatchewan League with Kindersley, Unity and Neilburg. Access to the new photo also allowed the extraction of individual photos for the 1971 Saskatchewan Photo Gallery.

Red Star   Max's image of the 1950 Carman Cardinals of the Mandak League displayed a big larger than the one we had, so we've replaced that as well. The Mandak League proved to be a refuge to black players from the United States who found baseball jobs increasingly sparse with the collapse of the Negro Leagues following the integration of organized ball by Jackie Robinson.

Red Star   Also courtesy of Max is a "post card" photo of the 1951 Swift Current Indians to go along with the newspaper photo from the Camrose Tournament. So far, just a couple of names to attach to the photograph.

Red Star   Going all the way back to 1928, we've posted a photo of Lucky Lake, the champions of the 1928 Saskatoon Exhibition Tournament, also from Max's collection. Thank you Max !

14 August, 2019

Emile FrancisRed Star    An update of the 1951 Western Canada & Saskatchewan Snapshot pages has been on the to-do list for far too long.

Prompted by a newly discovered photo of Emile "The Cat" Francis from 1951, courtesy of Max Weder, I dove in to tackle the project and ended up re-editing almost all of the photos - most from the albums of former players John Noce and Charlie Beene. More than 60 photos in all.

Red Star   Rich Necker has been a busy beaver checking out the archives from several decades. With our deep thanks to Rich, we have additions from 1916 to 1974. 

In mainly chronological order, let me highlight the changes.

Red Star   1916-1928.  A photo of Dan Cantwell is new to the 1916 Manitoba Photo Gallery. From 99 years ago, 1920 game reports from Saskatchewan Senior Amateur ball and the Long Lake League.

Rich has dug into the newspaper archives for lots of BC baseball in the 1920s. 1922 Game reports on activity on Vancouver Island with stories on Victoria Senior ball, Mid-Island competition, Nanaimo. 1922 game reports on Nelson and Trail City Leagues, West Kootenay and East Kootenay ball.  And all these years later, we have the final statistics for the 1922 Victoria Senior Amateur League. "Deacon" McIlvride was the batting champ with a .442 average.

In the BC Interior, we now had reports for the 1923 Boundary International League, West Kootenay Senior, Intermediate and Junior ball plus the 1924  Boundary International League, the 1924 North Okanagan League, the 1925  Kootenay International League and we have the 1926 Game reports on the Boundary International League.

Just one game, but an interesting one with the famous Regina Balmorals added to the 1926 Saskatchewan game reports - a scoreless tie between the Balmorals and the Calgary All-Stars.

Andy MulliganThe Saskatchewan Snapshots of 1926 now include a newspaper photo of Lincoln "Dodger" Lewis and we managed to find a photo of Andy Mulligan (right) for the 1927 Saskatchewan Photo Gallery.

Back to the Island, we've added game reports for 1927, BC Upper Island ball, Vancouver Island and the 1928 Vancouver Island Baseball League.

Art MinnisThat's Jimmy Dangerfield, not Rodney the comedian, pitcher for Victoria Capitals as a new entry on the 1928 BC Photo Gallery joined by Art Minnis (left) and Eric Whitehead.

Red Star   1956-1960.  Some new photos add to the displays during this period. Pete Bouchier of Rossland is the addition to the 1956 BC Gallery. We've added 1957 Game reports on North Okanagan and Shuswap baseball and tacked on information on the 1959  Prince George tournament.

There's more coverage of diamond news in the BC Interior for 1959  as Rich has a pretty comprehensive look through game reports in the North Okanagan, Shuswap, Central Interior, West Kootenays and East Kootenays and there's news from the Lower Mainland too with reports on 1959  Vancouver ball in the Industrial League and the Dewdney League.

The 1959 Home Page notes perhaps the worst no-hitter of all time - no hits but 16 walks.

We have the 1959 Chetwynd Centennials as the latest team photo on the site. The team was the winner of the Prince George Tournament.

Ab CronieMore new photos in the 1959 BC Photo Gallery, including Ab Cronie (left) , Frank Bencher, Lou DeRosa, Sonny Hackett, Whitey Paugh, Lefty Gould, Bill Geefs, Jack Fowles, Stan Kato and a dozen more.

The 1959 BC Snapshot page now includes some images of Buck Buchanan, Lefty Rolin, Frank Bencher and Len Gatin.

I'm amazed we got this far in getting names to go along with a 1959 Little League photo on the Fred Cardwell Profile page.

With senior ball fading in many centres, coverage in the papers often turned to junior baseball, such as the 1960 coverage of junior baseball in the West Kootenays.

Dave KostenukRed Star   1960-1974.  The hits keep coming !  Dave Kostenuk (left), a fixture in prairie ball over two decades (Kamsack, Moose Jaw, Lloydminster, Neilburg and Edmonton) has a new photo in the 1960 Alberta Gallery.

The 1965 BC Gallery, now includes Murray Gage-Cole and Don McLeod.

We've added 1967 game reports for the Slocan Valley, elsewhere in the West Kootenays, including Junior Baseball. 1967 Tournament page includes the Penticton Tournament. Two additions to the 1968 BC Photo Gallery -- Larry Brandt, Ron Cull. One lone new photo on the 1968 Saskatchewan Gallery, Terry Rak

We're really pleased to have the 1969 Victoria Senior Amateur League game reports. And, the 1970 Tournament page includes a report on the BC Senior Championship. 

Gord StrongmanThe 1970 BC Gallery has the additions of Gord Strongman, Victoria (right) , and Bob Cyca and Bob Gassoff of Quesnel.

Victoria Senior ball gets extended coverage on the 1970 Vancouver Island reports page.

We have a bit of information on the 1970 Quesnel Senior League - standings, awards and stats. There are also game reports on Kaslo and Arrow Lakes baseball.

Joe Zanussi was the batting king in the West Kootenay Senior League for 1970.

Lots of game reports on 1970 baseball on the Lower Mainland with coverage of the Vancouver Industrial League and the Western International League.

The 1971 Home Page has an image of a program from the Alberta Major Baseball League.

The 1971 BC Gallery includes an image of American Jim Chapados who played in tournament ball in Canada & later in a league with the Burnaby Villas.

Big hair was quite the thing back in the '70s. Check out Kit Krieger, the Vancouver pitcher who tossed a no-hitter that season in the Industrial League. Krieger, now known in baseball circles for his jaunts to Cuba to raise money and awareness of the impact of Cuban players, had his day in the pros with the Vancouver Mounties and Tom Hawthorn has penned a wonderful piece on his one-day career in professional ball.

The 1972 Basin League Photo Gallery has some additional pics of players of the Rapid City Chiefs .

In our Snapshot section in 1974 coverage we've include a photo of a few members of the Trail Selkirk Selects who were competing in the Trail International Tournament. You'll note our own Rich Necker, as a coach with the squad. There's also a bit more information on Edmonton hurler Perry Lychak.

In his travels in the Archives over the last few months Rich has presented rosters including 4,457 players !  Among the roster page updates are 1922, 1923, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1967, 1970 and 1972.

Fergie JenkinsRed Star     Reminder - this Saturday, the 17th is the big day at the Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame ! 

It's the 35th Annual Hall of Fame Dinner, at Battleford, Saskatchewan with none other than Canadian baseball legend Fergie Jenkins as the guest speaker.

Jenkins, inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1991, was a Cy Young Award Winner who won at least 20 games seven times.

He rang up 284 career wins in the major leagues.

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