1946 All-American Girls Professional Baseball League season

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1946 All-American Girls Professional Baseball League season
All-American Girls Professional Baseball League logo.svg
League All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
Sport Baseball
Number of teams Eight
Regular season
Season champions Racine Belles
Shaugnessy playoffs
Champions Racine Belles
AAGPBL seasons
← 1945
1947 →

The 1946 All-American Girls Professional Baseball League season marked the fourth season of the circuit. The AAGPBL expansion brought two new franchises to the previous six-team format. At this point, the Muskegon Lassies and the Peoria Redwings joined the Fort Wayne Daisies, Grand Rapids Chicks, Kenosha Comets, Racine Belles, Rockford Peaches and South Bend Blue Sox. The eight teams competed through a 112 game schedule, while the final Shaugnessy playoffs faced season winner Racine against defending champion Rockford in a Best of Seven Series.[1]

Other modifications occurred in the league during 1946. The ball was decreased in size from 11½ inches to 11 inches. In addition, the base paths were lengthened to 70 feet and the sidearm pitching was introduced, as the league was moving toward baseball.[2]

Several pitching records were set during the season. Racine's Anna Mae Hutchison recorded two marks that would never be broken: most innings pitched in a single game (19 against Peoria) and most games pitched in a single season (51). For their part, Fort Wayne's Dorothy Wiltse set the mark for more strikeouts in a season (294), and Racine's Joanne Winter a record for the most consecutive scoreless innings (63). The untiring Wiltse also pitched and won both games of a doubleheader (August 25).[3]

Other highlights included Grand Rapids' Connie Wisniewski, who led all pitchers with a 0.96 earned run average. Besides this, Winter and Wisniewski combined for 33 wins a piece, the best ever in league history. In addition, Fort Wayne's Audrey Haine and South Bend's Doris Barr and Betty Luna hurled no-hitters. The only position player to top the .300 mark was Rockford's Dorothy Kamenshek (.316), proving that strong pitching is more important than having hot bats.[4][5]

For the second consecutive season, one team won both the season title and the championship. Racine defeated South Bend in the first round, three games to one, and beat the defending champion Rockford in the best-of-seven series in six games. Racine was led by Winter, who won four games in the two playoffs, including a 15-inning, 1–0 victory in the final game of the Shaugnessy series. The Belles also received offensive support from Sophie Kurys, who batted an average of .372 (16-for-43) in 10 playoff games, while setting a postseason record with 16 stolen bases. Kurys also was honored with the AAGPBL Player of the Year Award, after hit a second-best .286 while leading with 201 stolen bases and 117 runs.[6]

In the first three years after World War II, AAGPBL teams often attracted between two and three thousand fans to a single game. One league highlight occurred in 1946, when an estimated 10,000 people saw a Fourth of July doubleheader in South Bend, Indiana.[1]

Final standings[edit]

Rank Team W L W-L% GB
1 Racine Belles 74 38 .661
2 Grand Rapids Chicks   71 41 .569   3
3 South Bend Blue Sox 70 42 .625   4
4 Rockford Peaches 60 52 .536 14
5 Fort Wayne Daisies 52 60 .464 22
6 Muskegon Lassies 46 66 .411 28
7 Kenosha Comets 42 70 .375 32
8 Peoria Redwings 33 79 .295 41

[6]

               1946 Racine Belles Championship Team          
Front row, L-R: Madeline English (3B), Heather Black (bat girl), Claire Schillace (LF). Middle row, L-R: Irene Hickson (C), Lavonne Paire (C/IF), Betty Trezza (IF), Sophie Kurys (2B), Edythe Perlick (RF), Elizabeth Emry (P/SS), Ruby Stephens (P). Back row, L-R: Mildred Wilson (chaperone), Doris Barr (P), Anna Mae Hutchison (P), Margaret Danhauser (1B), Joanne Winter (P), Betty Russell (OF), Eleanor Dapkus (CF), Thelma Walmsley (PH), Leo Murphy (manager).

Postseason[edit]

First round
Best of five series
Second round
Best of seven series
           
1 Racine Belles 3
3 South Bend Blue Sox 1
1 Racine Belles 4
4 Rockford Peaches 2
2 Grand Rapids Chicks 2
4 Rockford Peaches 3

[6]

Batting statistics[edit]

Statistic Player Record
 Batting average   Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)  
Mary Baker (SB)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Amy Applegren (MUS)
Thelma Eisen (PEO)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Faye Dancer (FW)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
.316
.286
.286
.284
.281
.276
.262
.258
.256
.253
.250
.250
Runs scored Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Twila Shively (GR)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Margaret Callaghan (FW)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Thelma Eisen (PEO)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Mary Baker (SB)
Shirley Jameson (KEN)
117
90
78
78
72
70
70
69
68
64
63
62
Hits Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Twila Shively (GR)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Mary Baker (SB)
Faye Dancer (FW)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
129
116
112
110
110
106
102
101
100
99
92
92
91
Doubles Merle Keagle (GR)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Faye Dancer (FW)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
Alice Hohlmayer (KEN)
Ruth Lessing (GR)
Helen Callaghan (FW)
Philomena Gianfrancisco (GR)
Twila Shively (GR)
15
15
14
11
10
10
10
10
9
9
Triples Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Thelma Eisen (PEO)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
Betty Trezza
Margaret Stefani (SB)
Lois Florreich (KEN)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
9
9
9
8
8
8
7
7
7
Home runs Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Margaret Villa (KEN)
Margaret Danhauser (RAC)
Mildred Deegan (ROC)
Thelma Eisen (PEO)
    Philomena Gianfrancisco (GR)    
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Inez Voyce (SB)
9
8
4
3
3
2
2
2
2
2
2
2
Runs batted in Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Philomena Gianfrancisco (GR)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Irene Ruhnke (FW)
Naomi Meier (ROC)
Dorothy Maguire (MUS)
Twila Shively (GR)
72
63
59
59
57
57
56
53
53
53
50
49
47
45
Stolen bases Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Thelma Eisen (GR)
Helen Callaghan (FW)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Shirley Jameson (KEN)
Senaida Wirth (SB)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Margaret Callaghan (FW)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
201
128
114
114
109
107
98
89
88
80
79
78
Total bases Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Twila Shively (GR)
Thelma Eisen (PEO)
162
150
145
143
141
141
134
127
121
120

[6]

Pitching statistics[edit]

Statistic Player Record
Wins Joanne Winter (RAC)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Carolyn Morris (ROC)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Betty Luna (SB)
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Dorothy Wiltse (FW)
Josephine Kabick (GR/KEN)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Erma Bergmann (MUS)
Helen Nicol (KEN)
Viola Thompson (SB)
33
33
29
26
23
22
22
19
17
15
15
15
Earned run average Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Jean Faut (SB)
Carolyn Morris (ROC)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Kay Blumetta (PEO)
Faye Dancer (FW)
Merle Keagle (GR)
Erma Bergmann (MUS)
Helen Nicol (KEN)
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Jane Jacobs (PEO)
0.96
1.19
1.32
1.42
1.62
1.71
1.93
1.94
2.05
2.09
2.12
2.13
Strikeouts Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Carolyn Morris (ROC)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Kay Blumetta (PEO)
Helen Nicol (KEN)
Audrey Haine (FW/GR)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Betty Luna (SB)
Olive Little (ROC)
Annabelle Lee (PEO)
294
240
183
137
137
120
113
102
93
88
83
Games pitched Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Betty Luna (SB)
   Josephine Kabick (GR/KEN)   
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Annabelle Lee (PEO)
Erma Bergmann (MUS)
Lois Florreich (KEN)
Elise Harney (KEN/SB)
Helen Nicol (KEN)
51
49
48
46
41
40
39
38
35
33
33
33
33
Innings pitched Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Carolyn Morris (ROC)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Josephine Kabick (GR/KEN)
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Betty Luna (SB)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Erma Bergmann (MUS)
Elise Harney (KEN/FW )
Lois Florreich (KEN)
Olive Little (ROC)
366
357
356
349
324
309
298
288
263
255
247
244

[6]

All-Star Game[edit]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ a b "All-American Girls Professional Baseball League History". 
  2. ^ AAGPBL Rules of Play
  3. ^ The Women of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League: A Biographical DictionaryW. C. Madden. Publisher: McFarland & Company, 2005. Format: Softcover, 295pp. Language: English. ISBN 0-7864-3747-2
  4. ^ All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record BookW. C. Madden. Publisher: McFarland & Company, 2000. Format: Softcover, 294pp. Language: English. ISBN 978-0-7864-3747-4
  5. ^ The Women of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
  6. ^ a b c d e All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record Book

External links[edit]