Saturday, 15 December 2007

Training Camp — April 5, 1952

Tyees Bow to Stockton, Blow Early 6-0 Margin
STOCKTON, Calif., [Victoria Colonist], April 5—Stockton Ports of the California State League today defeated Victoria Tyees, 9-7, in a loosely played, typical spring training baseball game at Heberts Field. A total of 35 players, 19 for Stockton, saw action in the game.
Manager Cec Garriott of the Tyees started his best line-up with rookie Gil Villaruel on the mound and the Tyees looked good. They hit the ball hard, picking up six of the seven hits and scoring all the runs in the first five innings. Rookies too over for the last part of the game and did not fare well, leaving nine men on base.
Looking good for the Tyees was the infield combination of second baseman Luther Branham, shortstop Granny Gladstone and third baseman Don Pries.
Branham handled himself well in the field and participated in two double plays. At the plate he drove in two runs with a 350-foot ground-rule double. Gladstone drove in three runs with a double and two singles in three trips, while Pries looked sharp in the field, starting two double plays.
Villaruel, stocky Mexican, gave up one hit and two runs in three innings but was hit by pitched ball in the fourth and replaced by Jack Healey. Healey walked the first four men, tossing only three strikes in 19 pitches. The fifth batter to face Healey hit a bases-loaded triple and the sixth singled.
Only two hits figured in the nine Stockton runs.

Jim Hedgecock Back With Caps As Abernathy Goes to Victoria
Seattle Rainiers today optioned a young pitcher, Vanoide Fletcher, to Vancouver Capilanos. Brother of the former Seattle coach, Guy Fletcher. Fletcher is reporting immediately to the Vancouver training camp at Penticton.
By ERIC WHITEHEAD [Vancouver Province, April 5]
PENTICTON—Vancouver Capilanos’ 1952 baseball stock jumped a couple of points Friday when manager Bill Schuster announced the return of ex-Vancouver pitching ace, Jim Hedgecock.
Hedgecock, the smart, rangy lefthander who contributed 22 victories to the successful Cap pennant campaign in 1947, returns to the fold after a two-year absence in a straight player trade that sends first baseman Chuck Abernathy to Victoria Tyees.
Abernarthy, the Caps’ 1951 first sacker, thus relinquishes his old first base spot to hard-hitting Jim Wert, acquired by Brown from the Seattle Rainier.
The addition of Hedgecock to Schuster’s staff brings to four the number of competent left-handers to four, the strongest array of Vancouver portsiders in years. The other three are Harry Butts, Veteran Carl Gunnarson and Bill Whyte, who is due in camp this weekend.
In the meanwhile, here at Penticton, the Vancouver squad, now totalling 24 players, had their second workout at King’s Park—but this time under clear skies and a warm sun.
New arrivals were outfielder Bill Cleveland and Catcher Don Lundberg, both on option from Seattle, and Don Tierney, a pitcher from Colorado Springs.

Eric Whitehead’s FANFARE
[Province April 5, 1952]
PENTICTON, B.C.—The most colorful item at the Capilanos spring training camp at the moment, apart from Bill Schuster’s wardrobe, is a tiny yellow English MG Sports Roadster with Arizona license plates and a spawling aluminum baggage rack bolted to the rear end.
When loaded for the road, this MG contains, in addition to the assorted baggage, Bill Cleveland, outfielder; Mrs. Bill Cleveland; 5-year-old Lynn Cleveland, and one Siamese cat, complete with collar and leash.
Bill, up here on option, is after a place in the power-laden Capilano outfield. In the off-season down in Tucson, Arizona, he manages a small bar.
Right now, the Cleveland family is staying in an auto court on the outskirts of Penticton, happy as the proverbial little clams.
They have but one regret—they have to leave their little MG outside all night in the cold.
The Clevelands are nuts about small English sports cars.
They both belong to the Tucson Sports Car Club, an organization of stock-car racing bugs who own an assortment of MGs, Rileys, Jaguars and other famed British midgets. Both are expert amateur race drivers; they would rather race that eat.
Away to the Races
Mrs. Cleveland—Ann—a beautiful willowy brunette, strapped herself into her little bus at Palm Springs last month and ran away and hid from seven other women drivers to win the Palm Springs International Road race while hubby was working up a sweat over at the Seattle Rainiers’ training camp.
Over a tough 51-mile course, she averaged 59.6 MPH and was timed just 10 seconds slower than the fastest time in the men’s race.
When Bill can get away for the races, they simply take turns with the car.
Next big stop for Ann will be the Delmar Torrie Pines International Road Race in San Diego late next September.
Ann obviously thrives on this gypsy-like business of being a baseball wife.
“Why do we travel together?” she says. “Why, because we’re just not happy apart. We just have to be together. Bill played with Tucson last year, right at home, but we made all the road trips together. And we’ll go where he goes this year, too.”
“Especially this year,” chimes in Papa. “Lynn goes to school next year and I guess we’ll have to split up until maybe June.”
Ann nodded to the pan simmering on the electric stove.
And Baby Makes Three
“We’re kind of health bugs, too,” she laughed. “Kind of stick with the ‘health’ foods . . . like coarse sugar and whole wheat flour. And look at Lynn . . .” A crew-cut miniature dynamo burst through the door, gleefully brandishing a toy tommy gun. “He’s travelled with us since he was born and hardly knows what a doctor looks like.”
The happy-go-luck Cleveland partnership was launched by the U.S. Navy. They met in a San Diego navy gym in 1945, when Bill was an aviation ordnance man and Ann was a “radioman” in the WAVES.
“Bill was playing basketball, and I was playing volleyball,” smiled Ann, “and see what that led to.”
The miniature dynamo burst back out through the door, in search of a Canadian savage.

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