Archive for February, 2009

This Day in Baseball History: February 28th, 1903

February 28, 2009
I love the hat. I want one.

On February 28, 1903:

Barney Dreyfuss and James Potter lead a syndicate to buy the Philadelphia Phillies for $170,000.

Normally, this wouldn’t seem weird, but there is something you might be missing. Barney Dreyfuss bought the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1900. Not only did he not sell the team before buying the Phillies, he would hold onto the team for 32 years after buying it. When he bought the team, there would be no law against owning two teams. Obviously, owning two teams gives you a conflict of interest. If you have two teams, then they are obviously in competition with each other for the World Series. There is also the possibility of using one team as a “farm system”. You would essentially have two major-league teams with two farm systems, and because you owned both teams, you could force trades between the two to get all the good players on one team. That’s great if you are the one team, but it sucks if you are the other.

Anyway, the Phillies weren’t a very good team at the time. In 1901, they finished second, which was their highest finish since 1887, but they fell back down the standings that same season. Making things worse, a balcony collapsed killng 12 and injuring over 200 more. Al Reach and John Rogers were popular owners, but the situation became too much for them to handle. They sold the team for $170,000 to Dreyfuss and Potter. It would go under Potter’s name, but Dreyfuss still had some influence on the club. It wouldn’t matter that much, however, as Potter would sell the team to long-time manager Bill Shettsline in 1905. Five years later, a rule would be put in place by Major League Baseball to prohibit the ownership of two teams by one person.

This wasn’t the first time Dreyfuss had run up against the idea of owning two teams. While in Louisville, as owner of the Colonels, the National League contracted the league to eight teams in order to prevent cross-ownership of teams. Knowing his team would be contracted, Dreyfuss bought a share of the Pirates and moved some of Louisville’s best players with him.

This Day in Baseball History: February 26th, 1992

February 26, 2009
60 years is a long time to own a team, but I would own a team for that long if I had the money.

On February 26, 1992:

Red Sox owner Jean Yawkey passed away from a stroke.

Thomas Austin Yawkey was actually born as Thomas Austin on February 21, 1903, but he would be adopted by his uncle when his father died. Tom Yawkey inherited his uncle’s $40 million estate, but he couldn’t touch it until his 30th birthday. When he did get a hold of it, he spent it on the Red Sox in 1933. Almost 15 years after the sale of Babe Ruth to the Yankees, the Red Sox had been terrible, but Yawkey wanted to reverse that. For the next 43 years, he owned the team. His teams would regain some of the shine they had before Ruth left, but he wouldn’t win the World Series. One of his most important contributions would be renovations on Fenway Park, which had fallen into serious disrepair before his arrival.

He would own the team until his death in 1976, and his wife, Jean, would take over. Jean Hollander, later Jean Yawkey, was born in Long Island and would spend 10 years as a fashion model before marrying Tom Yawkey. She would inherit the team and run it for 16 years until her death in 1992. This would the first time that the Red Sox would be owned by someone other than a Yawkey in the last 60 years, an amazing run for one family ownership. When she died, the team became property of the Yawkey Trust, which would hold onto it for the next 10 years. At that point, the Trust sold it to a group headed by John Henry. Two seasons later, the Red Sox would end the curse the Yawkeys tried so desperately to end for almost 60 years.

The Yawkeys, obviously, left quite a legacy. Jersey Street, the street running alongside Fenway Park was renamed Yawkey Way. Both Tom and Jean’s initials are on the Green Monster in Morse Code. Outside of baseball, the family set up numerous scholarships and a few nature preserves.

Hall of Fame: Charlie Gehringer (1949)

February 26, 2009
The Mechanical Man

 Year Ag Tm  Lg  G   AB    R    H   2B 3B  HR  RBI  SB CS  BB  SO   BA   OBP   SLG *OPS+  TB   SH
+--------------+---+----+----+----+---+--+---+----+---+--+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+----+---+
1924 21 DET AL 5 13 2 6 0 0 0 1 1 1 0 2 .462 .462 .462 139 6 0
1925 22 DET AL 8 18 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 .167 .250 .167 8 3 0
1926 23 DET AL 123 459 62 127 19 17 1 48 9 7 30 42 .277 .322 .399 86 183 27
1927 24 DET AL 133 508 110 161 29 11 4 61 17 8 52 31 .317 .383 .441 112 224 9
1928 25 DET AL 154 603 108 193 29 16 6 74 15 9 69 22 .320 .395 .451 121 272 13
1929 26 DET AL 155 634 131 215 45 19 13 106 27 9 64 19 .339 .405 .532 139 337 11
1930 27 DET AL 154 610 144 201 47 15 16 98 19 15 69 17 .330 .404 .534 134 326 13
1931 28 DET AL 101 383 67 119 24 5 4 53 13 4 29 15 .311 .359 .431 104 165 2
1932 29 DET AL 152 618 112 184 44 11 19 107 9 8 68 34 .298 .370 .497 119 307 3
1933 30 DET AL 155 628 103 204 42 6 12 105 5 4 68 27 .325 .393 .468 126 294 6
1934 31 DET AL 154 601 134 214 50 7 11 127 11 8 99 25 .356 .450 .517 149 311 5
1935 32 DET AL 150 610 123 201 32 8 19 108 11 4 79 16 .330 .409 .502 137 306 17
1936 33 DET AL 154 641 144 227 60 12 15 116 4 1 83 13 .354 .431 .555 142 356 3
1937 34 DET AL 144 564 133 209 40 1 14 96 11 4 90 25 .371 .458 .520 144 293 5
1938 35 DET AL 152 568 133 174 32 5 20 107 14 1 113 21 .306 .425 .486 121 276 3
1939 36 DET AL 118 406 86 132 29 6 16 86 4 3 68 16 .325 .423 .544 139 221 11
1940 37 DET AL 139 515 108 161 33 3 10 81 10 0 101 17 .313 .428 .447 119 230 10
1941 38 DET AL 127 436 65 96 19 4 3 46 1 2 95 26 .220 .363 .303 71 132 3
1942 39 DET AL 45 45 6 12 0 0 1 7 0 0 7 4 .267 .365 .333 91 15 0
+--------------+---+----+----+----+---+--+---+----+---+--+---+---+-----+-----+-----+----+----+---+
19 Seasons 8860 2839 146 1427 89 372 .320 .404 .480 124 141
2323 1774 574 184 181 1186 4257

1 MVP award (1937)
6 All-Star games (1933-1938)

Charles Leonard Gehringer was born on May 11, 1903 in Fowlerville, Michigan. He would go on to the University of Michigan where he played both basketball and baseball. Surprisingly, he lettered in basketball but not baseball. After his first season in 1923, Gehringer had at least impressed someone, and he was brought to Navin Field for a tryout for the Tigers. Ty Cobb, who was impressed by few, demanded the Tigers owner to sign him immediately. The owner did just that, and by the end of 1924, the young second baseman was a Tiger. He, however, would be sent down the following season and wouldn’t play his first full season until 1926.

Playing for Cobb was originally a good thing for Gehringer, and the youngster even used Cobb’s bat. Gehringer was a bigger hitter, but he didn’t dare use another bat. After referring to him as a father, Gehringer would gradually come around to the general opinion and call him a “hateful man”. Luckily, 1926 was Cobb’s last season as manager. Gehringer’s first season was fairly solid, but he took a big step up in 1927 and became a legit .300 hitter while also scoring 110 times. From 1926-1930, he would improve his Triple Crown categories every season, and the only other player to do that in his first five seasons is Rogers Hornsby. After a bumpy 1931, Gehringer came back to life, and by 1933, he was a star.

The Tigers would take a major step forward over the next few seasons. Gehringer teamed with the likes of Hank Greenberg and Goose Goslin, and in 1934, they reached the World Series. Feeling robbed of World Series (which they lost to the Cardinals), the Tigers came back the following year and slammed the Cubs to win the World Series. Gehringer was entering the wrong side of 30 by this point, but he would have his finest seasons in 1936 and 1937. He would continue to play well, but injuries became a problem toward the end of the decade and the beginning of the next. After an embarassing 1941 and 1942, Gehringer called it quits.

In retrospect, Gehringer is one of the best second baseman in the game. He hit and was known as one of the best fielders ever at the position. Off the field, he was unassuming, and his manager once said, “He said hello on Opening Day and good bye the last day. In between, he hit .350”. In another story, Detroit held a Gehringer Day in 1929 where he was awarded a set of golf clubs. The clubs were right-handed and Gehringer hit left-handed, but instead of asking for a different set, he learned to play right-handed.

Gehringer’s fun with Major League Baseball didn’t end then. In 1949, he was elected to the Hall of Fame, but he also wasn’t. In the first election, he only received 102 of 115 votes needed, but the Hall called for a special election. The Hall wanted a selection and Gehringer had been the most-voted for player, so they had a run-off. Gehringer would be elected with 85% of that vote. Seeing the faults of this, the selection committee decided to abandon the run-off in following elections, but it would be brought back in 1960.

This Day in Baseball History: February 25th, 1972

February 25, 2009
Does he not look like Jamie Moyer in this picture?

On February 25, 1972:

The St. Louis Cardinals traded Steve Carlton to the Philadelphia Phillies for Rick Wise.

In 1971, Steve Carlton rebounded from the worst year of his career to win 20 games while posting a 3.56 ERA. Though good, it was about as good as the previous season, and it was much worse than the three seasons previous (all sub-3 seasons). Rick Wise had just won 17 games while posting a 2.88 ERA, but he had been somewhat erratic in his early career. One great season followed by a dismal one. Still, he had thrown a no-hitter that season while hitting two home runs in the same game, a record that has never been matched. The two pitchers were 26 and 25 that season, and both seemed destined for successful careers with their respective teams until Gussie Busch stepped in.

Carlton asked for a raise, but Busch refused to acquiesce. The struggle between the two became so great that Busch ordered Carlton to be traded. The Cardinals found a willing team in the lowly Philadelphia Phillies. The two teams traded young pitchers, but the trade wouldn’t work out too well for Busch and the Cardinals.

Carlton went on to have one of those historic seasons. He won 27 games while throwing 346 innings, and in the meantime, he posted a meager 1.97 ERA. All would be career bests while Carlton went on to win the first of his four Cy Young Awards. He, in fact, won all of his Cy Youngs with the Philadelphia Phillies. Most of his 347 wins came as a Phillie, and most remember him as a Phillie, even though he played six seasons in St. Louis and could have been one heck of a duo with Bob Gibson.

Rick Wise … didn’t have a Hall of Fame career. Though to be fair, he would go on to post a 32-28 record with low-3 ERA’s in his two seasons in St. Louis. He would be traded away for Reggie Smith and Ken Tatum, and while Smith would post two great seasons in St. Louis, he would not be the Hall of Famer Carlton was. Tatum never made an appearance. Wise would go on to finish a solid career, winning 19 games for the Red Sox in 1975, but his career was basically over after 1976 with a brief resurgence in 1979.

This is panned as one of the worst trades ever, but I’m not sure it comes close. Sure, the Cardinals gave up one of the top 3 or 4 lefties ever, but Wise still did okay for St. Louis and he brought Smith, who did pretty well while in St. Louis. This wasn’t a good trade, but it certainly wasn’t the worst, especially considering both looked pretty good in 1971.

Being a Baseball Fan of a Baseball Team

February 25, 2009
My fan meter just went up.

Every once in a while, I get introspective and start wondering about things in life. Sometimes, they are about important things like economics, politics, equality, justice, and finding a girl who can stand me, but other times, I wonder about baseball.

Everyone knows I’m a Braves fan, and after my little post about my baseball life, you know why that is. However, I’ve come up against a few questions I can’t quite answer. Here they are with my thoughts, but I’m interested in what people have to say.

1) Do I always have to be a Braves fan?
It isn’t like I don’t want to be one anymore. I’m still a big Chipper fan, I have a serious man-crush on Brian McCann, and I see a lot of good things for the Braves in the future. But, I grew up with a very different Braves team. I grew up with Maddux, Smoltz, Glavine, Chipper, Javy, and Lemke, and honestly, this team doesn’t remind me much of the old one. Am I a fan of the Braves, or was I a fan of the ’90s Braves? Do I need to stay a fan when all of them have come and gone, when Schuerholz is gone, and finally, when Cox is gone? It seems to me that I became a fan of them as a collective whole and not necessarily the Braves franchise itself. Yet, I still feel loyalty to them, but I wonder when Chipper and Bobby go, will I still feel that way?

2) If I don’t have to stay a Braves fan (which I think most people agree that I don’t have to) am I allowed to pick another team?
I wonder about this one. I can’t just jump on someone else’s bandwagon and completely forget about the Braves. But if I am not a die-hard fan of the Braves, can I be a die-hard fan of another team I admire at the moment? I really like the things the Rays are doing (which I know is jumping on the bandwagon, but I would like to place Exhibit A as me playing as the Rays in MLB 08 last season well before the Rays became the big shizz they are now), and I’ve always had this weird pull toward the Mariners, though I can’t explain why. Am I allowed to be a fan of them without compromising my integrity? Or do I have to forsake all teams and just be a fan of baseball instead? I believe that it would make me a better fan to watch all baseball and judge it without a bias, but it kind of takes all the excitement out of it, doesn’t it?

I realize I’m being a bit sentimental, but the team I grew up with and love is pretty much gone. It’s not that I don’t agree with the Braves letting them go. When players get past the point of production, you have to say good-bye. But as a fan of those players, I don’t feel the same pull toward the team.

3) Is this just a part of growing up?
For the most part, your childhood team is a product of chance. It could be your hometown team, a team you could watch, or maybe it was your family’s favorite team. But as you grow up, you abandon a lot of things you used to like or think as a child. Is this one of them? As I grow up, am I allowed to make a choice as to who my favorite team is? Do I get to sit down and decide who I want to be a fan of? Or do I need to stick with that team because it’s my team or just be a general, passionate fan? I realize that jumping to a team like the Mariners won’t make me a bandwagon jumper because they stink at the moment, but what about the Rays? I have a genuine love for how they’ve built that team, but is it fair to just go root for them (I will anyway for the AL East just because I don’t want the Red Sox or Yankees to win)? Is it fair to the fans of the team who have been there since the beginning? Did I need to be more prophetic and make the switch two years ago?

4) Is it necessary to be a fan of a specific team?
Plenty of really smart baseball team aren’t really that attached to a team. Is it childish to need a favorite team? As a free-thinking adult, do I need to smother my love and attention on a team with which I won’t always agree on how they run the team? Then again, it makes the game more exciting. While watching the Syracuse-Villanova game this past weekend, I didn’t care who won, but when I watch UK play someone, I get into it. It makes it more exciting. There’s something on the line, your heart pumps, you stress, and you’re either excited or pissed. But is it rational to bet your hopes, dreams, health, and material objects on a team? Should I just focus on the game as a whole?

This is an odd thought process for me. I don’t like dealing with emotions, and trying to make sense out of something that isn’t supposed to make sense is even more confusing. However, I feel that these are legitimate questions. Ones to be thought about. Why do we like who we like? If it came from childhood, do I have to continue liking them later after my heroes are gone? If I can choose another team, do I get to choose another 15 years from now? Or is this whole notion of favorites an emotion for children? I don’t want to grow up, and baseball is supposed to bring us closer to childhood. Maybe I’m just thinking about this too much.

This Day in Baseball History: February 24th, 1966

February 25, 2009
So what makes Andy Oliver so special?

On February 24, 1966:

The Braves sign Tom Seaver out of the University of Southern California.

Originally a member of the baseball team at the University of Southern California, Tom Seaver would have an interesting and gut-wrenching first experience with Major League Baseball. At first, the Trojans weren’t sure he was worth a scholarship, but after a sparkling 1964 season with the Alaska Goldpanners, the Trojans decided that he, indeed, was worth a scholarship. After a sparkling season in SoCal, Seaver would enter the draft. The Los Angeles Dodgers drafted him, but when Seaver demanded $70,000, the Dodgers decided to forego the young pitcher.

So, Seaver went back in the hat for 1966. The Atlanta Braves drafted him with the first pick, and they quickly signed him to a contract for the $70,000. However, Commissioner William Eckert had other ideas. USC’s season had already begun because they had played two exhibition games. Under league rules, the teams couldn’t sign a player still playing for his college team, so Eckert refused to allow the contract. Not able to play professionally, Seaver tried to go back to USC, but the NCAA had other ideas. Because he had signed a professional contract, Seaver was not allowed back on USC’s team. Seaver was stuck with nowhere to go.

Seaver’s father, however, was having no part of it. He went to Eckert, complained about the situation, and threatened a lawsuit. In a bad position, Eckert ruled that teams could match the Braves’ offer of $70,000. The New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, and Cleveland Indians all put in their bids. During a special lottery, the Mets won the rights to Seaver. Just in case you haven’t heard, Seaver ended up being a very good pitcher, and I’m slightly bitter.

This Day in Baseball History: February 23rd, 1934

February 23, 2009
He would have been cool to meet.

On February 23, 1934:

Casey Stengel replaces Max Carey as the manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers.

After a moderately successful playing career, Casey Stengel would become one of the most famous managers ever, but he would need an opportunity, first. His chance came in 1934. Max Carey had been the manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers since 1931.

Stengel took over the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1934, but he wasn’t very successful. In his three seasons as the Dodgers manager, he went a combined 208-251 and never finished higher than fifth. He would be fired, and he didn’t manage the following season. In 1938, the Boston Braves hired him, but they did not improve under Stengel. During his six seasons as Braves manager, the Braves never finished higher than fifth and finished seventh three times. By 1944, he was out of a job again.

Stengel found a job with the minor-league Milwaukee Brewers, and even though Bill Veeck objected, Stengel won an American Association pennant. The New York Yankees noticed and believed that Stengel had improved and would benefit from coaching a team with some actual talent. The Yankees hired Stengel in 1949, and Stengel rewarded them for their faith with 5 straight World Series championships. After a year where they finished second, the Yankees would win four straight AL pennants while winning two more World Series. In 1959, they finished third, but they won yet another AL pennant the year after. He won 7 World Series in 12 seasons in the Bronx.

After retiring for a year (it was forced retirement, but retirement nonetheless), Stengel returned to New York but as a Met. Four years later, the Mets sucked and finished 10th every time.

So, this brings me to a question. Is Bobby Cox done? On one hand, he had a lot of talent when he took over, and he rode it to a lot of success. On the other hand, he only won one World Series, and the recent teams have been sub-par. Were the teams good because of Cox, or was Cox good because of the talent? I won’t get into the actual value of a manager (maybe I will in a later post), but I’m interested in the perception of managers. I’m going to put a poll on the right. Answer as of right now, is Bobby done? Don’t predict and think where the Braves might be in a few months. Ask yourself, “How did I feel about Bobby Cox last October?” When October and September return, I’ll put the poll back up to see if the results changed.

This Day in Baseball History: February 22nd, 2005

February 22, 2009
The Rally Monkey has lost its power in recent years, but I still love it.

On February 22, 2005:

Tom Umberg proposes the “Truth in Sports Advertising Act” in order to stop the Anaheim Angels from changing their name to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

In 1961, the Los Angeles Angels was an expansion team owned by Gene Autry, and they played their first season in Wrigley Field (yes, the one in Chicago. Are you serious? No, there’s another one, or at least, there was another one). For the next four years, they shared Dodger Stadium with the Dodgers, but in 1965, Autry worked out a deal with the suburb of Anaheim to move the team. Anaheim Stadium was built, and the team changed its name to the California Angels.

In 1966, the Disney Corporation bought part of the Angels and changed the name to the Anaheim Angels. When Autry died in 1999, Disney bought the rest of the team, but they would only hold onto it for four more seasons. In 2003, Disney sold the team to Arturo Moreno, a billboard magnate (billboards? really?).

That’s when everything really changed. Moreno slowly began taking Anaheim out of the Angels’ moniker. T-shirts, merchandise, and signs no longer had “Anaheim” on them. On January 3, 2005, Moreno declared the team was changing its name to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, and from the past two years, it seemed as though the Anaheim at the end would be gone within a few years. Tom Umberg, a California legislator, took exception to this change.

He created the Truth in Sports Advertising Act. If you want to look at the actual bill, click here. Umberg’s bill proposed that any team not playing a majority of its games in the home city dictated by the team’s name had to dissemenate fliers and other media to tell fans the team does not actually play there. In regard to the Angels who technically still had “Anaheim” as part of the name, Umberg charged that they still fit because the team’s jerseys, symbols, and logos all advertised Los Angeles. “Anaheim” was nowhere to be seen.

Making the transition to Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim more difficult was the divide between those from Anaheim and those from Los Angeles. A cultural divide existed, but Moreno either didn’t know or didn’t care. Initially, there was a significant outcry, but it died down around the time the Angels were sued.

In City of Anaheim v. Angels Baseball, the mayor of Anaheim sued the team for a breach of contract. The Truth in Sports Advertising Act was killed in the state senate after the house had passed it, and therefore, the team was safe from it. The mayor, however, believed the team had breached its lease by changing the team name. In the end, the case was decided in favor of the team, but that was not the end of things. An appeal was filed, but after it came out as a split verdict, the city decided to drop the appeal, effectively ending the campaign.

Overall, who cares? Los Angeles doesn’t own the team. Anaheim doesn’t own the team. We all know this is the Rally Monkey’s team.

Spring Training 2008

February 21, 2009
The buffer Miggy. He still couldn’t play defense.

Spring Training is an odd time of year. Teams play games, but they don’t count. Players play well enough to earn spots on the team, but then, they don’t perform in the regular season. Teams play well, but they fail miserably in the regular season. There are a lot of reasons for this, most of them obvious. One, it’s a small sample size, and anyone can have a good month. Two, there’s no real strategy involved other than getting players in the game, but no match-ups are used and coaches want to see the players hit/pitch instead of bunt/intentionally walk. Three, when teams use other players, the performance changes (good teams use more AAA players and lose, for example). Four, injuries become more visible and more prevalent when the season gets underway. There are probably other reasons, but you get the point. Anyway, I thought we’d take a look at the standings from last season and its Spring Training.

This is the Spring Training standings.

A few things about the playoff teams:
1) The Phillies were terrible, and look how they ended up.
2) The Rays showed early signs of being good.
3) The Cubs were just mediocre.
4) Boston was terrible.
5) The Angels were worse than the A’s.
6) The White Sox were awful.
7) The Dodgers were see 7.
8) The Brewers were better than the Cubs.

So, as you watch your favorite team this Spring Training, don’t get too excited/pissed about your team’s play. Spring Training is a terrible predictor of how things are going to go, but I would love to see how many experts use it to predict the regular season. The regular season is a marathon, and there’s no point in looking at Spring Training as anything more than a few exhibition games for show. Though, I will admit it can be useful in certain circumstances, but those circumstances aren’t really known until October.

So, Jayson Stark, don’t make your prediction for the World Series based on Spring Training. Leave my Braves alone.

This Day in Baseball History: February 21st, 1945

February 21, 2009
I just feel bad for the guys who “made the team” and never made it again.

On February 21, 1945:

Major League Baseball decided to cancel the 1945 All-Star Game, the first one not played since the game’s inception in 1933.

As World War II raged, Germany was being pummeled, and Japan became the focus of the war effort, travel restrictions were placed on the country. Planes were needed to transport goods and troops, but air travel was nowhere near as developed as it is now. Railroads, the most popular form of travel, needed to be relatively clear for the same reason. If the country didn’t restrict travel, something could have happened, and the country’s reaction would have been slowed. Before you ask about highways, they weren’t around yet and wouldn’t be for another 11 years (actually, it would be more years, but the legislation was passed in 1956 under Dwight Eisenhower), so they couldn’t use those. Because of this restriction, the owners decided to cancel the game with the belief it would save 500,000 traveling miles (how does one come up with that?).

Baseball also decided some other rule changes to help with the government’s “request”. There were to be no neutral site games. Teams had to travel with the bare minimum number of players, coaches, etc. They weren’t even sure they would hold the World Series. Luckily, Truman would drop two atom bombs and the World Series occurred (yes, that was a joke, but I wonder how many people were glad he dropped the bomb so the World Series could happen).

Still, the country tried everything possible to act as normal when the All-Star Game came around. The Associated Press released an unofficial version of the All-Star players by getting the votes from 13 of 16 managers. Two of those who refused to respond were the “managers” in the game (Luke Sewell and Billy Southworth) and the other one refused to vote on such short notice (Joe McCarthy). After the fall of Berlin, Michael Todd tried to and almost convinced the MLB to hold the game in Nuremburg Stadium, but military advisors squashed the idea (the schedule would have had to be delayed by a month to get the players to and from Germany).

Instead of the All-Star Game, teams decided to play the War Relief Fund Games. These were exhibitions held by teams in the same city or at least close enough for the government not to freak out. The revenues of these exhibition games went to, not surprisingly, the war effort and the American Red Cross.

The game was to be held in Fenway Park, and as restitution, Boston was awarded the 1946 game.