Thursday, December 10, 2009

Giant Bat Story of the Year

Our nominee for the 2009 story about oversize baseball bats that stood above the rest is "Tree Becomes Baseball Bat" from Oneonta, NY, July 20. WBNG did this report, which we noted from press reports at the time. BUt here's another in Plainville, Mass

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Nothing says 'I love you' like a giant bat

Photo by Geo. Burke of Joe E. Brown presenting the Kellogg Co. parade's comic bat and ball to Lena Blackburne as the Chicago White Sox's manager. Hunt Auctions.

T/C: Tim

Year Tm .............Lg . G . W . L . % . Finish
1928 Chicago White Sox AL 80 40 40 .500 5
1929 Chicago White Sox AL 152 59 93 .388 7

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Wonderboy Lives

Inspired by a Bernard Malamud story, this giant baseball bat was made from a 120-foot-tall spruce tree after lightning struck it on July 2 in Oneonta, NY. Property owner Martin Patton decided to create a giant model of the famed bat "Wonderboy," carved from a tree struck by lightning, in the book and movie “The Natural.”

You can read the whole story here, but here are the facts:
  • cut down to 50 feet tall, first for safety, then to match the shape of the fictional bat;
  • done by woodworker Hal Macintosh;
  • 11 feet around the base, with a 6-foot end cap that was to be attached;
  • Patton said his wife is submitting documentation of the bat to the Guinness Book of World Records.

Monday, July 20, 2009

All-Star Bat

I'm told that the home of this giant baseball bat, the Dubliner in St. Louis has been a favorite watering hole of thirsty visitors for many years. Walking by during an All-Star trip, I didn't have a chance to stop in, but was impressed by the paint job.

Thanks to Tom for the phone pic.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

A Mighty Wallop

We've had this pic, "Both Carry a Mighty Wallop," in our collection for some time, as seen at Lelands, but today we were sent the link to its twin on the Getty website:

With the following caption:
"NEW YORK - APRIL 15, 1933. Babe Ruth poses with Jack Dempsey and a large baseball bat before opening day at Yankee Stadium on April 15th of 1929. (Photo by Mark Rucker/Transcendental Graphics, Getty Images)"

I think it's pretty cool that they had April 15 of 1933 before 1929. Who can blame them? Things in 1933 weren't so hot and '29 probably sounded worth aiming for. Though I don't know why they didn't go back to '27, or even '20, while they were at it.

Anyway, whoo, that's a big bat. The ol' Bambino needed the heavyweight ex-champ, The Manassa Mauler, to hold it for him. But that was nothing new.

The two had been lovers for some time, and didn't care who knew.
Women in the 1920's

OK, want something else cool? How about British newsreel footage?

t/c: Tom

Monday, March 23, 2009

Texas Leaguer

Tom came through with another minor league giant bat. This one is also a Texas Leaguer.

In 1919, Billy Smith managed the Shreveport Gassers to a 81-64 record, good for 3rd place. But they must have stepped up their game in the post season, taking home the league championship and inspiring this giant bat. The Texas League was Class B at the time.

In 1942, the Shreveport club was called the Sports. Currently, the town boasts the independent Captains.

3B/Manager Salty Parker was not deterred when the club finished 2nd at 83-61. They brought home their first title in 23 years, winning the Texas League crown, long a class A circuit, despite Dick Wakefield of the Beaumont Exporters winning Player of the Year honors.

Salty, a baseball lifer, managed at many levels of ball from 1939 to 1976, including 12 big league games. He's the only undefeated Houston major league manager (1-0), and is a member of the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame. More.

Joe Vitter, left, a 31-year-old OF in the middle of a 16-season minor league career, hit .220 with five homers.

Jerry Bozeman, went on to found the town of Bozeman, MT ... OK, that's not true.

The team and the league shut down before the next season for the duration of WWII.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Big Bat, Little Clown

Jerry Witte clowns around before a 1952 game at Buff Stadium in Houston. Witte had been the 1946 American Association MVP with Toledo. Here he is in 2001, and here's his book.

The Houston Buffaloes or Buffs were a minor league baseball team in the Texas League from 1907-58 (excluding 1943-45, when the league suspended operations during World War II) and in the American Association from 1959-61. The team's home was Buff Stadium, built in 1928. From 1921-58, the Buffaloes were a farm team of the St. Louis Cardinals at the Class A, A1 and AA levels.

Thanks to houston_buff for the giant baseball bat photo and Tom for finding it.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Big Little Bat

Sports Illustrated might have had this Babe Ruth giant bat in their prop closet, but this is the only time it was featured on their cover, April 6, '92.

Topps used the photo for Kirby Puckett's baseball card.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

In Front of 5/3 Stadium

In Front of 5/3 Stadium
Originally uploaded by photobunny
In addition to giant bats integrated into a gate, Fifth Third Field in Dayton has these oversize bats (and balls) outside the park. Thanks to photobunny on Flickr.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

St. Louis Slugger

Lot 169. St. Louis Slugger Giant Bat and Balls from Food Court

Call over Paul Bunyan, Gulliver, King Kong – and Mark McGwire, for that matter – after acquiring this overgrown bat and two baseballs that were mounted on the wall of the Hot Corner Food Court at Busch Stadium. Bat is 80” long and imprinted “St. Louis Slugger” on the midpoint. It comes with the original mounting clips that attached to the top and the bottom. Balls are actually half-balls that were affixed on two sides of a pillar, each orb with red seams is mounted on a circular silver disk that was mounted directly onto the pillars. Balls measure 15” in circumference and jut out 9” from the silver disks. Both the bat and the balls are in EX condition and recreate some really big memories.

(Estimate $1,000 - $1,500)
Reserve: $500
Number of Bids: 17
Final Bid: $3,700.19
Price Realized:$4,347.72


Thursday, January 01, 2009

Slugger Set

Slugger, FOR SALE SEPERATELY OR AS A WHOLE SET! Baseball 3'high $500, Bat (bench) 12'long $2,800, Mitt (chair) 6'tall $7,500, Whole set $10,000, Red Cedar, On display at Clinton Nursory, Clinton, WA. Pat McVay