1947 All-American Girls Professional Baseball League season

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1947 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 Muskegon Lassies
Shaugnessy playoffs
Champions Grand Rapids Chicks
AAGPBL seasons
← 1946
1948 →

The 1947 All-American Girls Professional Baseball League season marked the fifth season of the circuit. The teams Fort Wayne Daisies, Grand Rapids Chicks, Kenosha Comets, Muskegon Lassies, Peoria Redwings, Racine Belles, Rockford Peaches and South Bend Blue Sox competed through a 112 game schedule. The final Shaugnessy playoffs faced second place Grand Rapids against third place Racine in a Best of Seven Series.[1][2]

By April 1947, all of the league’s players were flown to Havana, Cuba for spring training. At the time, the Brooklyn Dodgers trained in the Cuban capital because Jackie Robinson, who would be the first Afro-American to play in the Major Leagues, was training with the Dodgers for the first time. By then, city ordinances in Vero Beach, Florida, where the Dodgers normally trained, prevented blacks and whites players from competing on the same field against each other. Notably, newspaper stories from Havana indicate that the All-American girls drew larger crowds for their exhibition games at Estadio Latinoamericano than did the Dodgers.[3][4]

In addition to the eight team practices, early 55.000 Cuban fans attended a round-robin tournament which took place at Estadio Latinoamericano at the end of the training. The Racine Belles won the tournament and received a commemorative trophy from Esther Williams, American competitive swimmer and MGM movie star.[5]

All in all, the rules, strategy and general play were the same in 1947. The sidearm pitching was strictly used, as the league was moving toward full overhand delivery for the next season. The sidearm throwing allowed the hitters more that an advantage that previous seasons. Rockford's Dorothy Kamenshek repeated her batting crown with a .306 batting average in a close race with Audrey Wagner (.305) of Kenosha. Nevertheless, five no-hitters were recorded during the regular season by Racine's Doris Barr, Muskegon Erma Bergmann, Kenosha's Jean Cione, and Rockford's Margaret Holgerson and Betty Luna. The pitching highlight came from Muskegon's Doris Sams, who hurled the third perfect game in league history. In addition, P/OF Sams posted an 11-4 record and a 0.98 earned run average in 19 pitching appearances, while batting a combined average of .280 (97-for-346) in 107 total games. Following the season, Sams was honored with the AAGPBL Player of the Year Award.[5][6]

At the end, Grand Rapids, Muskegon and Racine battled for the regular season title, until Muskegon got the victory with just two days remaining the schedule. Muskegon lost to Racine in the first round, three games to one, behind a strong pitching effort from Anna Mae Hutchison, who was credited with the all three victories for Racine. By the other side, Grand Rapids defeated South Bend in five games guided by Connie Wisniewski, who pitched a win, stole home plate for another win, and collected an average of .318 (7-for-22).[5]

The second round was a tight fight, when the first three contests all went to extra innings and Grand Rapids held a 3-1 advantage in the best of seven series. But the defending champion Racine won the next two games to force a decisive game seven. In a pitching duel, Mildred Earp defeated Hutchison and the Belles on a 1–0, five hit shutout, while driving in the winning run to give Grand Rapids the championship.[5]

In 1947 average crowds at AAGPBL games were two to three thousand people, while attendance records were set in Muskegon, Peoria and Racine ballparks .[3][5]

Final standings[edit]

Rank Team W L W-L% GB
1 Muskegon Lassies 69 43 .616
2 Grand Rapids Chicks   64 46 .582 4
3 Racine Belles 65 47 .580 4
4 South Bend Blue Sox 57 54 .514 11½
5 Peoria Redwings 54 57 .487 14½
6 Rockford Peaches 48 63 .432 19½
7 Fort Wayne Daisies 44 66 .400 24
8 Kenosha Comets 43 69 .384 26

[5]

           1947 Grand Rapids Chicks Championship Team        
Front row, L-R: Beverly Leach (PH), Charlene Barnett (3B), Jane Stoll (CF), Philomena Gianfrancisco (OF), Twila Shively (LF), Ernestine Petras (SS), Dorothy Montgomery (IF), Alma Ziegler (2B). Back row, L-R: Johnny Rawlings (manager), Ruth Lessing (C), Alice Haylett (P), Elsie Wingrove (RF), Audrey Haine (P), Connie Wisniewski (P/OF), Mildred Earp (P), Inez Voyce (1B), Doris Tetzlaff (3B), Ruth Richard (C/OF), Dorothy Hunter (chaperone).

Postseason[edit]

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

[5]

Batting statistics[edit]

Statistic Player Record
 Batting average   Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)  
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Doris Sams (MUS)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Rose Gacioch (ROC)
Charlene Pryer (MUS)
Eleanor Callow
Mary Reynolds (PEO)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
.306
.305
.291
.280
.261
.261
.257
.249
.245
.245
.239
.237
.237
Runs scored Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Alma Ziegler (GR)
Mary Baker (SB)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Pauline Pirok (SB)
Charlene Pryer (MUS)
Thelma Eisen (FW)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
81
62
58
55
54
52
51
51
51
49
48
47
Hits Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Charlene Pryer (MUS)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Mary Reynolds (PEO)
Doris Sams (MUS)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
119
112
105
104
104
102
99
98
97
97
90
Doubles Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Mary Reynolds (PEO)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Marjorie Pieper (FW/KEN)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Ruth Lessing (GR)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
25
17
14
11
11
11
11
10
10
9
9
8
Triples Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Elizabeth Mahon (SB)
Marie Mahoney (SB)
Alice Hohlmayer (KEN)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Theda Marshall (SB)
Marjorie Pieper (FW)
Doris Sams (MUS)
11
9
8
8
7
6
6
5
5
5
5
5
5
Home runs Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Marjorie Pieper (FW)
Thelma Eisen (PEO/FW)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Arleene Johnson (MUS)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
7
6
5
3
3
2
2
2
2
2
Runs batted in Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
Inez Voyce (GR)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Betsy Jochum (SB)
Ruth Lessing (GR)
Eleanor Dapkus (RAC)
Dorothy Harrell (ROC)
Doris Sams (MUS)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Marjorie Pieper (FW)
Margaret Stefani (SB)
53
50
45
43
42
42
41
41
41
39
38
38
Stolen bases Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Charlene Pryer (MUS)
Faye Dancer (PEO/FW)
Dorothy Ferguson (ROC)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Betty Trezza (RAC)
Dorothy Stolze (MUS)
Alma Ziegler (GR)
142
83
83
76
71
71
66
66
65
62
Total bases Audrey Wagner (KEN)
Dorothy Kamenshek (ROC)
Mary Nesbitt (PEO)
Edythe Perlick (RAC)
Mary Reynolds (PEO)
Sophie Kurys (RAC)
Doris Sams (MUS)
Charlene Pryer (MUS)
Josephine Lenard (MUS)
Lavonne Paire (RAC)
183
156
144
133
128
125
116
115
114
111

[5]

Pitching statistics[edit]

Statistic Player Record
Wins   Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)  
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Mildred Earp (GR)
Dorothy Wiltse (FW)
Jean Cione (ROC/KEN)
Jean Faut (SB)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Amy Applegren (MUS)
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
27
22
20
20
19
19
19
17
16
16
16
Earned run average Mildred Earp (GR)
Doris Sams (MUS)
Amy Applegren (MUS)
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Jean Faut (SB)
Jean Cione (ROC/KEN)
Dorothy Wiltse (FW)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Dorothy Mueller (PEO)
Donna Cook (MUS)
Jaynne Bittner (SB)
0.68
0.98
1.06
1.13
1.15
1.30
1.33
1.38
1.41
1.42
1.54
Strikeouts Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Mildred Earp (GR)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Dorothy Mueller (PEO)
Kay Blumetta (PEO/FW)
Jean Cione (ROC/KEN)
Jean Faut (SB)
Doris Barr (RAC)
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Alice Haylett
244
192
121
120
112
105
98
97
96
93
92
Games pitched Dorothy Mueller (PEO)
Jean Faut (SB)
Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Jean Cione (ROC)
Mildred Earp (GR)
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Ruby Stephens (SB)
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Doris Barr (RAC)
48
44
44
40
38
37
35
34
32
31
31
31
30
Innings pitched Anna Mae Hutchison (RAC)
Dorothy Mueller (PEO)
Jean Faut (SB)
Joanne Winter (RAC)
Dorothy Wiltse (GR)
Mildred Earp (GR)
Jean Cione (ROC)
Phyllis Koehn (SB)
Connie Wisniewski (GR)
Alice Haylett (GR)
Betty Luna (ROC)
Josephine Kabick (PEO
Nancy Warren (MUS)
Amy Applegren (MUS)
360
312
298
297
292
280
271
265
264
258
234
231
223
220

[5]

All-Star Game[edit]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Teams Records by Season
  2. ^ All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record BookW. C. Madden. Publisher: McFarland & Company, 2005. Format: Softcover, 295pp. Language: English. ISBN 0-7864-3747-2
  3. ^ a b "All-American Girls Professional Baseball League History". 
  4. ^ Cuban Baseball Home
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Record Book
  6. ^ SABR Biography Project – Doris Sams article by Jim Sargent

External links[edit]