Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Brown's bling tipped Senators' batters

The gold "bling" in Clint Brown's front teeth
provided Senators batters with a "tell" to
what pitch was coming.


Uncommon commons: In more than 30 years in sportscards publishing I have thrown hundreds of notes into files about the players – usually non-star players – who made up the majority of the baseball and football cards I collected as a kid. Today, I keep adding to those files as I peruse microfilms of The Sporting News from the 1880s through the 1960s. I found these tidbits brought some life to the player pictures on those cards. I figure that if I enjoyed them, you might too.


In the “Scribbled by Scribes” digest column in the June 25, 1942, The Sporting News, Shirley Povich of the Washington Post was quoted from a recent feature he’d written about pitcher Clint Brown.

            Brown was in the American League for 15 years, with the Indians, the White Sox and thence back to the Indians, but he hasn’t started a ball game since 1936. These past six seasons he has been earning his keep as a relief pitching specialist. His record of putting in rush appearances in 81 ball games in 1939 stands as an all-time high.
            Brown used to be a starting pitcher. He had particular success against the Yankees and Athletics, the two toughest teams of a decade ago. But for some reason he couldn’t beat Washington. In fact, he was lucky to last out the first inning against the Nats. Finally, manager Roger Peckinpaugh bowed to the weight of evidence and refused to start him against the Washington club.
            It wasn’t until several years later, along about 1934, that Cleveland learned why Brown was so habitually ineffective against Washington. It was all explained in great detail by Sam Rice, who was traded to Cleveland by the Nats. Rice threw complete illumination of the great secret of the Washington club’s ability to beat Brown.
            ‘He helped to lick himself,’ said Rice. ‘Did you ever notice all those gold teeth in the front of Brown’s mouth? Well, all the hitters on the Washington club noticed ‘em too. When Brown was going to throw a curve ball, his lips curled up and the Washington hitters saw those gold teeth. We’d take a toe hold and bang the curve we knew was coming.’
            Fortified by that knowledge, Brown got sweet revenge on the Nats in successive years. He’d bare his golden array and then cross up the hitters completely by fogging a fast ball past their unwary bats. He enjoyed their confusion hugely, and rarely missed a turn against the Nats thereafter.

The "Rice Revelation," does seem to have had an effect in Brown's success against the Senators. From 1930-33, Brown had a 1-5 record versus Washington, appearing in eight games. (He didn't face the Senators in 1928-29 when he first came up to the American League.)

Rice came over to the Indians prior to the 1942 season, and from 1934-42, Brown was 8-5 in 31 games against Washington.

Povich also observed that when, following his release by Cleveland, Brown announced that he was retiring to his chicken farm, “he . . . became the envy of most ball players.”

The writer explained, “Just as retired prize fighters gravitate to the tavern and restaurant business, the old ball players yearns for a chicken farm all his own. Approach any ball player, suddenlike, and ask him what he’d like to do when he’s through playing ball, and it’s even money that he’ll blurt out ‘chicken farm.’

“Why this compelling attraction for incipient omelettes? We don’t know,” Povich confessed, “and we leave you to figure it out. We are simply reporting the facts. The nation’s country side is dotted with chicken farms bossed by old ball players who saved their dough to that end.”


Despite pitching his entire big league career in
the Golden Age of pre-war bubblegum cards,
Clint Brown appears only in the 1934-36
Batter-Up set.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Baseball card for "local boy" Stu Locklin


Along the western shore of Lake Winnebago in east central Wisconsin there is a metroplex known as the Fox Cities. Four cities and half a dozen each of villages and towns follow the Fox River as it flows north from the lake to Green Bay. The total population is around 250,000.

My home in Iola is about 45 minutes west of the Fox Cities. In past years I used to drive over for Saturday baseball card shows and to catch a Class A Midwest League ballgame. Alex Rodriguez played for the Appleton Foxes when he began his pro career in 1994.

There have been eight or ten major leaguers who were born in the Fox Cities. Some you may have heard of are 1950s Giants and Braves pitcher Dave Koslo, 1970s-80s Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Jerry Augustine and Eric Hinske, who played for the Blue Jays, Red Sox, Rays, Pirates, Yankees and Braves between 2002 and 2013, and last season coached for the Cubs.

All of those guys had plenty of baseball cards to mark their major league careers, and several of the other Fox Cities native ballplayers also had cards issued during their playing days.

One who did not is Stu Locklin. It's not surprising . . . he played in only 25 games for the 1955 and 1956 Cleveland Indians.

Locklin was born in Appleton, Wis., in 1928. At age 86, he's working his way up the list of oldest living former major leaguers.

He graduated from the University of Wisconsin, where he had starred in baseball, football and basketball. He led the Badgers in hitting in 1947 and 1948, then signed with the Cleveland Indians (technically with their Baltimore Orioles farm team) in 1949. It is reported that in one Big Ten game against Michigan State, Locklin was 4-for-5 at the plate against future Hall of Famer Robin Roberts.

Locklin was bigger than the average ballplayer of his era; 6' 1-1/2" and 190 pounds, throwing the batting left handed. He generally played in the outfield and at first base.

Skipping the lower minors, Locklin started his pro career at Class A Dayton in 1949, where he led the Central League with 169 hits and was second with 39 doubles. 

Moving up to AA Oklahoma City in 1950, Locklin led the Texas League with 43 doubles. He followed his .311 batting average of the previous year with a .298 mark.

In 1951 Locklin was promoted to San Diego in the Pacific Coast League. In the faster company at the AAA level, Locklin's playing time diminished as a reserve outfielder and his average dropped to .267 with his power numbers also decreasing.

Locklin lost three prime years at age 23-25, serving in the Air Force during the Korean War, 1952-54.

When he returned from the service in 1955, he went right to the big club, playing in 16 games with Cleveland, nine of them as a pinch-hitter or pinch-runner. He hit just .167. 

The Indians kept him on the roster to start the 1956 season. He appeared in just nine games; the first eight as a PH or PR. In his only start, on May 30, he got his only hit of the season and was farmed out to Indianapolis with a lifetime .167 average.

Locklin never returned to the majors. He played five more years, all at the AAA level with Indy (1956), Miami (1957), Minneapolis (1958-60) and San Diego (1957-59).

After his playing days, Locklin returned to Appleton where he was a junior high school teacher, counselor and coach, and supervised the city's youth baseball program.

Locklin never had a baseball card contemporary with his playing days. He does appear in the 1974 Ed Broder collectors' issue set of Pacific Coast League "popcorn" cards picturing Coast League players of 1957-58.

Production notes

Initially I worked with the 1956 Topps card of Larry Doby to provide the background for my '56 Locklin. To make the colorized player portrait match the overall look of the night-game background, it would have been too dark.


I decided to work with the 1956 Art Houtteman background, which better matched the portrait in brightness. I had to move some things around, including flipping the entire background horizontally, and make other adjustments to erase the Houtteman portrait and action pictures.

There aren't many pictures of Locklin available on the internet, and no full-length shots. So I used the batting pose from Doby's card, lightening the skin, taking some weight off of the face and changing a few uniform details. As with most action pictures on original '56 Topps cards, you can't really make out who the player is, anyway.

On back, I repurposed two of the cartoons that I previously used on my Tom Gastall custom card (see my blog for May 1, 2011) and added a cartoon from the 1958 Red Schoendienst card.

Because of the cartoons on back, creating custom cards in the format of 1956 Topps is more difficult than most, but since that is one of all-time favorite Topps sets, I enjoy the challenge.


You can purchase this card. You can obtain a copy of this custom card for $12.50, postpaid. E-mail me at scbcguy@yahoo.com for ordering details. Illustrated lists of all my available custom baseball, football and non-sports cards can be found on my blog posts of Oct. 14-16.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Christmas collectible: Santa looks over 1955 Ford


With Christmas right around the corner, I thought I'd share with you a Santa Claus collectible that is now hanging on the living room wall near the aluminum Christmas tree.

The postcard pictured here was issued in 1955 by Ford Motor Co., and distributed by local dealerships to be sent to customers to entice them to stop by and look over the new line of 1956 Fords.

Besides its colorful image, the promotional postcard does double duty as a 78 rpm record of Rosemary Clooney and the Mitch Miller Orchestra performing a Christmas song. I don't know what the song might be because I haven't had a turntable that plays 78s in several decades.

Notice that the record/postcard is produced by Auravision and Columbia Records. That's the same team that in 1963-64 produced a set of baseball player picture recordings featuring top stars of the day.

Note also that my Santa-Ford record has the sales pitch signed by "Bob Lemke". Presumably, that Bob Lemke was a salesman at the Ford dealer in Mosinee, Wis., where the card was postmarked on Dec. 9, 1955.

That signature is how I came to own the card. Years ago, one of my weekly eBay searches was for the name "Lemke." At the time I was trying to keep my collection of Mark Lemke baseball cards current.

The car-selling Bob Lemke is no relation of mine. There was or is a branch of the Lemke clan in and around Wausau, Wis., about 20 minutes north of Mosinee. The Wausau Lemkes
in the past operated a photo studio and a dairy.

Besides wanting the Ford Christmas postcard because it was signed by another Bob Lemke, I had another reason for adding it to my collection. It brings back childhood memories of my Aunt Corrine.

When I was very young, around 4-6 years old, my Aunt Corrine lived with us. She was my mother's youngest sister, and was very involved with raising me and my own baby sister.

Aunt Corrine worked as a bookkeeper for the local (Fond du Lac, Wis.) Ford dealership. Knowing my penchant, even at that early age, for colorful cards, she sometimes brought home for me the promotional postcards showing each year's new Fords in the mid-1950s.

Over the years I have thought of assembling a collection of those childhood automobilia memories, but I never pursued it. These days I'm more concerned with divesting my collections. So, this 1955 Santa Claus card will likely be the extant of my accumulation of mid-century Ford postcards.

I've got one more Christmas collectible to share with you in the near future. Watch this space.


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Yes, my '65T Paige custom card is an anachronism


This is my fifth Satchel Paige custom card (previous cards have been 1935 Diamond Stars, 1951 and 1952 Bowman and 1952 Topps). And, yes, it is something of an anachronism.

While Paige did pitch his final game as a major leaguer -- after a 12-year layoff -- he appeared so late in the season that Topps couldn't have included a baseball card of him in its 1965 set.

Sure, if they had been so inclined, the bubblegum company could have issued a 1966 Paige card, but they didn't; and I chose not to go with that format. I simply prefer the 1965 style.

Topps may well have chosen not to do a '66 Paige card because his appearance on the mound for the Kansas City A's the previous season was strictly a money/publicity grab by Charlie Finley.

When Paige ambled to the mound at Municipal Stadium on Sept. 25, 1965, to start the A's penultimate home game, a Saturday night affair, last-place K.C. was 57-97; 40 games behind the Twins. They were facing the ninth-place (37.5 games out) Boston Red Sox.

Bringing Paige back to the majors in the city where he made his home and where he had starred throughout the 1940s for the Monarchs of the Negro American League, proved to be a fiscal home run for Finley. The attendance was 9,289. That number was greater than the total attendance (9,199) for the other six games in the A's final home stand against the Senators and BoSox. On Thursday afternoon, the A's had drawn only 690 on Washington's get-away day.

All in all, it can be said Paige had a successful major league finale. He pitched his contracted-for three innings (that was his standard appearance for most of his barnstorming and exhibition games in those days). While he didn't figure in the decision, he shut the Boston club out. Don Mossi took the 2-5 loss against Bill Monbouquette.

A double in the top of the first by Carl Yastrzemski was the only hit Paige gave up. He walked nobody and set the Red Sox down in order in the second and third innings. He had one strikeout, pitcher Bill Monbouquette, who himself had struck out Paige to end the home half of the second inning.

Finley had played up the spectacle of Paige (probably 59) becoming the oldest player ever in a major league game. He had a big ol' rocking chair for Satch next to the A's dugout, and a pretty "nurse" to rub down the pitcher's salary wing between innings. Speaking of which . . . I haven't found mention of what Finley had paid Paige. He had been signed as a free agent on Sept, 10, and was released after the season, on Oct. 15.

Surprisingly there are not a lot of color photos of Paige in a 1965 K.C. uniform; at least I haven't found them. But the profile portrait I chose is certainly acceptable for my faux '65T custom.

I am, by no means, done making Satchel Paige custom cards. On my to-do list is a remake of my 1952 Bowman-style, and I'm also planning a 1953 Red Man and a 1956 Topps minor league custom.

You can purchase this card. You can obtain a copy of this custom card for $12.50, postpaid. E-mail me at scbcguy@yahoo.com for ordering details. Illustrated lists of all my available custom baseball, football and non-sports cards can be found on my blog posts of Oct. 14-16.


Friday, November 28, 2014

Rifleman custom card added to TV Westerns




With the creation of this card based on The Rifleman television series of 1958-63, I've expanded into my third addition to the original Topps 1958 TV Westerns bubblegum card issue. (My Maverick cards were featured on the blog on Aug. 13, and Rawhide cards were presented on Sept. 28.)

The Rifleman is one of the few classic TV westerns that is currently (as of late 2014) being shown in reruns regularly on cable; Saturday mornings on AMC.

I'm not going to say too much about the television show, itself. There is plenty of readily available information on the internet. One recommended site is the "Official" web site of the series, at http://www.therifleman.net.

I can tell you why I chose to make this custom card. I've always been a fan of Chuck Connors; moreso since I met him at the National Sports Collectors Convention in 1985.

A couple of years earlier, one of my contributors at SCD, Paul Green, had worked up a profile of Connors and conducted a Q-and-A session for the paper. The article heavily leaned toward Connors' career in professional baseball: One game with the 1949 Brooklyn Dodgers and 66 games in 1951 as a Chicago Cub, plus more than 950 games in the minor leagues in 1940, 1942, 1946-52.

As we were setting up our booth at the Anaheim National, a tall, well-built fellow, whom I instantly recognized, strode up to me, shook my hand and introduced himself as Chuck Connors.

He wanted to thank me for publishing that interview and, parenthetically, for kick-starting a secondary "career" as an autograph guest at Southern California card shows. Connors didn't do card shows for the money, obviously, but rather because he really seemed to enjoy interacting with fans both baseball fans and Hollywood fans.

When he invited me for a drink, I left the booth set up to my minions and we adjourned to one of the bars at the Disneyland Hotel. We probably talked for two hours.

I listened to great stories of his days in pro ball. I got a real feel for the frustration he suffered in going to spring training with the Dodgers every year in the late 1940s, only to be sent out to Montreal or Mobile  when the season started, where he'd regularly hit around .300 with nearly 20 home runs.  He summarized his lack of success in breaking into the Brooklyn squad by saying he'd had "Gil Hodges stuck up my ass all that time."

We also talked about  his acting career. I was particularly interested in a new project that he had just signed on for. He was going to play Capt. Jonas Skorzeny, an evil lycanthrope, in a series that eventually aired for some 30 episodes in 1987-88 as Werewolf.

Our conversation came to an end when it was time for him to participate in a card-flipping contest. If I recall correctly, he lost in the celebrity division finals to Bob Feller. 


At the 1985 National Convention in Anaheim, Chuck
Connors stands by while Bob Feller makes his throw.

Not long after I returned to Wisconsin from the show, I received an envelope with a handful of autographed 8x10 photos from Connors. We corresponded a time or two prior to his passing in 1992.

My Rifleman custom card focuses on character Lucas McCain's "gimmick gun." Many of the TV westerns of that era featured some sort of signature weapon wielded by the star. Wyatt Earp had his Buntline Special, Johnny Yuma had his double-barreled sawed-off shotgun, Josh Randall his cut-down Winchester, etc.

Lucas McCain had a tricked-out Winchester Model 1892 saddle-ring carbine. Viewers were expected to suspend disbelief that a character in a series set in the 1880s in New Mexico Territory was sporting a rifle that wouldn't be invented for a dozen years.

The Winchester had a 20" barrel and a capacity of 15 rounds of .44-40 ammunition. A modified reverse-D lever had a set-screw that could be deployed to make the rifle fire without pulling the trigger, allowing McCain to get off a string of rapid-fire hip shots.

Viewers also had to suspend disbelief that a rifle could be fired in that fashion with any degree of accuracy. 

According to what I've seen on the internet, there were five rifles used in the series. Several of them have made their way into the gun collectors' market, where they have fetched good prices at auction. 

This may be the only Rifleman custom card I'll make. Good color photos relative to the show are not plentiful. This surely will not be the last time Chuck Connors appears on one of my custom cards, however. Some day I'll work up a baseball card or two.



You can purchase this card. You can obtain a copy of this custom card for $12.50, postpaid. E-mail me at scbcguy@yahoo.com for ordering details. Illustrated lists of all my available custom baseball, football and non-sports cards can be found on my blog posts of Oct. 14-16.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Is that name too ghetto for the Fortune 500?

Regular followers of my blog probably realize that my typical reader is a male baby boomer.

I'm going to step away from that target demographic this time to address a decidedly different audience -- soon-to-be baby mamas.

I want to plead with you that when the time comes to name your boy child, that you consider the long-term consequences of saddling him with a name that is too far out of the mainstream of contemporary American culture.

Sure, giving your baby a unique name might show the other girls in home room how clever you are when you pass around his picture on your Obama-phone. But please, look 20 years down the road.

Recently I've read of several studies conducted in which nearly-identical resumes were submitted to companies in response to job openings. The only difference in the resumes was in the names of the fictitious applicants.

The studies showed a remarkable difference in the selection of those who were invited for interviews or other second steps in the hiring process. Overwhelmingly, resumes of candidates with "normal" contemporary American names were shown preference versus those resumes on which the name was one which most people -- at least the people who make hiring decisions -- would perceive as "ethnic" in origins.

Unfair? Yes. Racist? Sure. Reality? You bet.

But please give this matter some serious thought. The "wrong" name at the top of a resume seems to insure that it never makes it out of the slush pile.

The following caveats are all related only to male first names. Surnames like Ramirez, Washington, Al-Mustafa, etc., are also likely to prompt an immediate rejection in today's business/corporate culture but to an extent, short of going to court to make a change, a person is stuck with his patronym.

And don't get me started on female first names . . . 

So here's ol' Uncle Bob's baby-naming tips to give your son a leg up when he goes job-hunting in 20-25 years.

That first name may be too ghetto:

  • if the name has the "shon" sound in it, and isn't "Sean" or "Shawn"
  • if the name ends in "us" or, especially, "ius," and it isn't shared with one of the 12 Caesars or 266 Popes
  • if the name has four or more syllables and is not found in the Old Testament.
  • if the name has an apostrophe
  • if the name has a "q" anywhere except the first letter
  • if, upon being introduced, the name has to be spelled or pronounced more than once
  • if the Scrabble-tiles total value of the name is more than 21
  • if the name starts with "Da" or "De" and the next letter is capitalized
  • if the name can’t be found on the revolving rack of miniature souvenir license plates at the truck stop/tourist trap/gift shop

If you were the unfortunate victim of first-name child abuse and are now having difficulty getting a foot in the door of corporate America, remember: there's no law against putting a different version of your first name on your resume (i.e., Da'Andre = Daniel), or even a completely different first name. "The Man" doesn't have to know the truth until after you've been hired and have to fill out HR paperwork. Then it's too late to renege on the job offer without landing in Federal court.


Monday, November 24, 2014

Dubuc escaped wrath of Judge Landis, Part 3



(Continued from yesterday)

           Rumors abounded in the 1923 pre-season that Dubuc would not return to Syracuse. He was said to be planning to join an expansion Ottawa team in the Eastern Canada League as stockholder-manager-pitcher. Another story had him taking the helm of a Syracuse farm club at Williamsport in the newly formed New York-Pennsylvania League.
          Syracuse's new president, Philip Bartelme, quashed all the rumors, however, by affirming Dubuc's place on the Stars roster. The executive called Dubuc, "a handy man to have around, as he can pitch, play the infield or outfield in an emergency and best of all can hit when a hit is needed." Unfortunately, Dubuc's hitting fell off considerably in 1923, dropping 114 points to .237.
          Dubuc did have an excellent, though injury-shortened, record on the mound for Syracuse in 1923. He went 5-2 with a 2.81 ERA. In June he was hit on the right arm in a game with Jersey City. He played the next three games but then went to the dcotor where he learned the arm had been broken. Dubuc was out of action from June 19 through July 29, spending part of his rehabilitation time in Canada on a scouting expedition to shore up the pitching staff.
          In 1924 the prediction that Dubuc would move to Ottawa proved accurate. The Eastern Canada League added a pair of Vermont teams and reorganized as the Quebec-Ontario-Vermont League. Jean Dubuc was able to purchase his release from Syracuse by re-paying his original signing bonus and joined the league as president and manager of the Ottawa-Hull team. To escape local blue laws, the Ottawa teams had for years played their Sunday home games across the river in Hull.
          Ottawa baseball writer M.J. Moloughney predicted Dubuc, whom he desribed as a "French-Canadian" would "receive a good welcome in this city. He will pitch and play the outfield for the local aggregation, and should just about burn up the league in both departments."
          The league consisted of two teams in Montreal, the Royals and Canadiens, the Quebec Bulldogs, the Ottawa Senators, and in Vermont, the Rutland Sheiks and the Montpelier Goldfish. The U.S. teams were unable to finish out the month of July. Neither was Dubuc. He was again disabled when his thumb was broken by a pitched ball in early July. He was able to pinch-hit and play some in the outfield for the remainder of the season, but his team ended the season in last place. Dubuc's pitching record for Ottawa was 2-2 on a 4.24 ERA. He had pitched in seven games and appeared 29 times in the outfield. He hit .286 for the year. The Q-O-V season had been set to run through Sept. 14, but closed after Labor Day. The league disbanded following the 1924 season.
          Dubuc returned to semi-pro ball for 1925, managing the Manchester, N.H., team in the Boston Twilight League. The following year Manchester joined the revived New England League and Dubuc was once again back in Organized Baseball.
          The Class B league consisted of teams in Manchester and Nashua, N.H., Lewiston and Portland in Maine, and the Massachusetts cities of Lynn, Salem, Haverhill and Lawrence. Dubuc's home base was considered the class of the league. Textile Field was described as the equal of any Class B facility in baseball. Its modern concrete and steel grandstand seated 2,900 fans, while an additional 2,000+ could be accomodated in the bleachers. An electric scoreboard allowed the fans to follow every ball and strike.
          Dubuc's 1926 Blue Sox won the premiere season's pennant. He had a 2-2 record and an ERA of 4.24. If he played any other positions in the field, it was not enough to be reported in the official records. He hit .311 for the season.
          In the spring of 1927 it was announced that Dubuc had accepted the position of baseball coach at Brown University. It was expected he would return to Manchester when the college season was over. Instead, Dubuc was reported to have accepted charge of a team in the independent Blackstone Valley League.
          In the off-seasons, Dubuc maintained an active interest in pro hockey. For many years he managed the Rhode Island Reds hockey team at Providence in the American Hockey League. His team made the playoffs for 12 straight years and won five championships.
          In 1928, Dubuc received an offer to return to major league baseball, as a scout for Detroit.
          In a letter dated Jan. 11, Frank Navin made this proposition, "Am going to let Charles Moran out as our representative in the east and I am offering you the position with us as Eastern representative. The position requires that you be on the look-out for us at all times during the year and if you care to you can work actively during the months of July and August when you are through with your college duties. We paid Mr. Moran $1,200 for the season and understood that if he picked up someone that was promising and of any use to us, he would get a suitable bonus in addition to his regular salary. But he never picked up anyone of any account to us so all he got was $1,200 and his expenses. The expenses to cover the time he was traveling for us during July and August. If this kind of a proposition interests you would like to have you advise me."
          Dubuc was interested in the scouting job and it paid big dividends for the Tigers when Dubuc landed Hank Greenberg from under the noses of the New York Yankees. According to what was supposed to have been a humorous account published in 1935, Yankees scout Paul Krichell "had Greenberg all sewed up and set for signing with the Yanks after having eaten Yiddish food at the Greenberg house for over a year to get in the family's good graces.
          "Then in stepped Jean Dubuc, Detroit scout, who called at Hank's house, bringing along his own ham sandwich, and signed up Hank right under the very shadow of the Yankee Stadium."
          The account continued, "Whenever Hank hits a home run Krichell has chills and fever, high blood pressure, water on both knees and a recurrence of the Slobodka Halitosis, which is a rare form, superinduced by eating fetulte miltz, gedumfte brust, gehachte laber and other Yiddish dishes. From that day to this, Paul gets mal de mer every time he gazes upon the corpse of a herring."
          In fact, Dubuc apparently got Greenberg the old-fashioned way -- by offering him more money. According to Greenberg's 1989 biography, The Story of My Life, Dubuc paid him a $6,000 signing bonus with the promise of $3,000 additional when he reported to the Tigers. Just out of high school, Dubuc got Greenberg a spot on the East Douglas, Mass., team in the Blackstone Valley League. "I think he found me the job because he wanted to hide me away from the other scouts in the New York area," Greenberg said.
          Under the terms of the contract signed with Dubuc and the Tigers, Greenberg was allowed to attend N.Y.U., but he quit school after one term to report to Detroit, pick-up his bonus and begin his Hall of Fame slugging career.
          Dubuc's brother Arthur purchased the Nashua, N.H., team in the New England League in 1929, though Jean apparently did not get involved, except perhaps as an investor.
          In spring training 1930, Dubuc put on the Detroit uniform once again, as pitching coach for manager Bucky Harris. Ironically, another of the Tigers coaches that season was Roger Bresnahan. Dubuc remained with Detroit as a coach through the 1931 season.
          In 1934 he was reported back in minor league ball as part-owner and manager of the New Bedford team in the Northeastern League. He returned to Brown University as baseball coach for another three-year term in the mid-1930s, according to an obituary.
          About the same time Dubuc became a salesman for the Braden-Sutphin Ink Co., a position he held for 20 years prior to retiring on the company's farm at Ft. Myers, Fla.
          In December of 1955, Dubuc -- already suffering from heart disease -- had a stroke from which he only partially recovered. His wife died in March, 1956.
          Later that year, a friend of Dubuc's wrote a letter which was published in Joe Barnea's "Barnstorming" column in the Manchester Union Leader, reporting on Dubuc's condition and soliciting letters and cards from well-wishers. While Dubuc was apparently financially sound, the stroke had left him unable to speak or write. "So you see," his friend wrote, "he is cut off from the world in so many ways and if you could drop a hint to his buddies that he'd appreciate hearing from them, you'd be doing him a real favor. He is gradually recovering his strength," the report continued, "and he is now able to get around without a great deal of difficulty. He reads the papers, watches television and the movies and, of course, is interested in baseball, as it was such a part of his life. He was able to watch the World Series games on television and was really excited about the perfect game pitched by Don Larsen of the Yankees."
          Dubuc himself was apparently the type of man who thought of others in times of ill health. The National Baseball Library has a letter from his 1918 Red Sox teammate Babe Ruth to Dubuc, dated Feb. 5, 1947, when the Bambino was dying of cancer. It reads, "Thanks so much for your kind wishes and most amusing get well card. I did not know I had so many thoughtful and sincere friends, and believe me it's messages like yours that have done so much to cheer me up during these long hours here at the hospital."
          Following three years of ill health, Dubuc died on Aug. 28, 1958, at the age of 70. He was interred in the Ft. Myers Memorial Gardens.
          Whether by luck or design, Dubuc was able to evade the wrath of baseball officialdom during the witchhunt that followed the Black Sox scandal. Available evidence indicates Dubuc engaged in activities that were no more than commonplace among the players of his era. Because Landis and his posse made only a token attempt to remove from the game all persons who had "guilty knowledge" of the fix, it was fortunate that Jean Dubuc was able to return and contribute to Organized Baseball. Others, no more culpable that Dubuc were not so fortunate.

Between 1910-1919, Dubuc appeared in all three series of
Coupon cigarettes tobacco cards (T213). He was always
pictured in the Cincinnati road uniform. In 1910 Type 1
His team designation is Cincinnati. In Type 2, 1914-16
his team is shown Detroit. In 1919 Type 3 his team
designation is "N.Y. Nat."


(Editor's note: Another account of the life and career of Jean Dubuc can be found in the SABR BioProject, authored by Tom Simon and Guy Waterman. It can be found at http://sabr.org/bioproj/person/d3b24f56 )