Holyoke Wins Pennant

by Laurel | September 15th, 2009

September 15, 1907, page 14
Led the League Since June –Dowd’s Men Played Fast Ball

The Connecticut league pennant will fly over the Berkshire street lot in Holyoke next year, and the bunting has been landed by a team that has played consistent, aggressive and lively ball. The race between Holyoke and Waterbury for first honors has been only slightly close. Up to a month ago Springfield was in the running, and Manager O’Neil’s team was picked by many to be the club to fight the “Papermakers” on the home stretch. But the brand of ball served up by the “Ponies” was not the kind to head off teams that were playing fast in every game, that were fighting for every run. During the middle of the season Hartford made a splurge and “fans” in the “Nutmeg” capital naturally picked the “Senators” to win out. The more thoughtful baseball followers, however, predicted that Hartford’s fast clip would not last. The slump came. It happened even before Gastmeyer Ross and Land Louster left the team and after Manager Clarkin was deserted by a trio of his best players the “Senators,” except for an occasional spasm of sharp play, were left behind. Manager Clarkin tried hard to get a fast team and the “Senators” lineup looked strong during the middle of the season.

For Holyoke to land the pennant is a great victory for “Tom” Dowd. He took the Holyoke team in hand a year ago last June, after the club had made a very poor start, and he did fair work with Holyoke in spite of the conditions. The club finished sixth. But Holyoke “fans” were not satisfied. With recollections of the crack 1895 team, which under the hand of the late Jesse Frysinger, landed the pennant with comparative ease, another one, two three team was wanted. Dowd was re-engaged to manage Holyoke this year. Patrick H. Prindeville was elected president and Fred Winkler was re-elected secretary and treasurer. The club got an early start and it counted in the long run. Although at the time Manager Dowd was criticized for his seemingly overzealous efforts. Hardly was the snow off the ground when the trumped was sounded for practice.

The support accorded the pennant winners by Holyoke fans the past season has been anything but encouraging. The crowds have been altogether too small, especially for a first-water club. Holyoke is a criticizing ball town. Baseball is taken seriously. A first-class team was furnished and yet the “fans” stayed away. The Springfield – Holyoke series drew well, but not as largely as in past seasons. while the Saturday crowds have been ridiculously small. It is thought that there will be a fair balance over the net expenses of the season, but it would never have been so if Manager Dowd had not disposed of a number of his players at good prices. Hodge to the Washington Americans, Hoffman and Mettern to the Boston Nationals, Grubb back to Rochester, Dolan to Toronto, and Stackpole to Richmond, Va., the latter leased for the rest of the Virginia state league season, have brought about $5000 into the treasury.

The pennant has gone where it belongs, for Holyoke’s play has been the steadiest of any team on the circuit. In batting no team has been more timely with the stick. On the bases, Holyoke has had an aggregation of fast men, Boucher and Hoffman being two of the speediest on the circuit. From the start of the seas to its close Holyoke has played good ball. The team has been fortunate in the matter of injuries, no players being out of the game for any length of time, and when men have been forces to lay off, Dowd has entered the game and has played finely. The team has worked in harmony. All the members have worked hard for the team’s success. There has been no quitting. There has been no slump of any duration in Holyoke’s play. Holyoke fans should look with pride to the 1907 team, for, without question, it is one of the best that has ever represented the city and was well worthy of its place at the top of the heap.

Through all of the strenuous times when Holyoke has been fighting to keep the lead, the value of Manager Dowd became more and more apparent. Without doubt he has been one of the best, if not the best, team leader in the league. His experience with big league teams enabled him to land fast men, and after landing them he has displayed the faculty of managing them with success. His generalship on the bench has been such that he might be termed “Foxy” Dowd. During the first of the season he showed poor judgment in fighting the umpires, but it took a short time for him to see that this policy would not win games, and the umpires, after the first few weeks, had but few unpleasant experiences with Holyoke and its manager. Holyoke expected that “Tom” Down would bring pennant ball and expectations have been fulfilled. His work has been such as to put him in demand in other places, and it is doubtful if he will be at the helm another year. The season may not have been satisfactory from the standpoint of the box office, but from a baseball standpoint it has been a big success.

From The Springfield Republican.

[Note: Manager Thomas Jefferson Dowd “Buttermilk Tommy”, a Holyoke native (1869-1933) managed the Holyoke Papermakers in 190-1907. In 1908 Dowd Managed the Hartford team. The 1907 Connecticut League consisted of the following teams: Bridgeport Orators, Hartford Senators, Holyoke Papermakers, New Haven Blues, New London Whalers, Norwich Reds, Springfield Ponies, and the Waterbury Authors. Dowd had a long, eventful career in sports that can be read about here. On 02 July 1933, Tom Dowd ‘s body was found floating in a part of the Connecticut River, his death was ruled an accidental drowning. He is buried at Calvary Cemetery .]

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