Going through the folk's archives I came across a couple of pictures that intrigued me. First, let me say, that we were a baseball family. Herb was fairly non-committal about his favorite team, but it seemed to dance around whoever was winning that particular year. Phil and Mark were Cub's fans, but I don't really hold that against them. Marj? Well, she rooted for whoever would make rest of us happy. And me, I was a Met's fan, only because the majority of family member's liked the Cubs. Let me explain.
I recall a Sunday afternoon and for some reason I got totally disgusted with something about the Cubs, a path I was surely supposed to follow. I don't know if it was the constant losing, or the constant winning, or the "all things Chicago", but I grabbed the newspaper and walked calmly to my room. It was also the Wombie's room, but he must have been in the den watching the game.
I looked at the standings and with my finger followed down to the last team. This was back when they only had 10 teams in each league and I wanted to stay in the National League. Following that finger down to the last place team (rooting for the underdog?), I saw that there was this misfit outfit called the Met's. It didn't hurt that I liked Yogi Berra and he was ending his career with them at this time.
So, the birth of a Met fan. It has been tough. But not as tough as a Cub's fan.
So finding these pictures and having just been to a Ray's game last week, I was hoping to glean some information from the picture itself as to when my folks would have attend this game. Sadly, nothing was on the back except an "August 7, 1947" stamp from Merrill's Photo Shop.
Could I find anything on the back that would help? Toward the upper middle is a sign that says "Star Of Last Game". I tried seeing the name but it was fairly blurry. It looked like the last two letters were "H or LEY". Finding the Baseball Almanac online I was happy to discover a Ron Northey played for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1947.
Assuming Marj took this picture, and assuming also that she would have taken it in to get processed as soon as possible, since that what i would shave done, I deduced a few things:
- "The Star Of Last Game" was a a feature of Sportsman's Park in St. Louis and was home to both the Cardinals and Browns.
- Looking at both rosters, the only team that had a "L or HEY" player was Ron Northey of the Cardinals.
- Since I think people were anxious to get their pictures, and since these were processed on August 7, 1947, then this trip to St. Louis would have occurred shortly before that processing date.
- Looking at the St. Louis Cardinals schedule for August they had a home stand from July 19th through August 3rd. Northey didn't play on July 22nd, 23rd, 28th, 31st or Aug 1st.
- Northey did nothing at the bat on the 24th, 25th, 27th or 29th.
On August 2nd, Northey came up as a pinch-hitter in the ninth and hit a home run to win the game for the cards.
So, now what do we do? There are no more indicators on the pictures or in the box score to determine when this picture was taken. How about the weather? According to the weather almanac, the 27th of July was warm (88) and with possibility of light showers around 2 or 3 o'clock.
On August 3rd, the day was a real scorcher, over a 100 and clear skies.
Adding all this up, I have concluded that these pictures were taken by Marj on August 3rd, a clear hot day in St. Louis, at Sportsman Park, the day after Ron Northey clearly was the star of the last game.
Every picture has the answer, if only we go searching.