Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Casey at the Bat Published June 3, 1888

On This Day in Baseball History June 3, 1888: The poem Casey at the Bat by Ernest Lawrence Thayer is published in the San Francisco Daily Examiner. Here is the text to the eternal Baseball poem that every Baseball fan can relate to:
Casey at the Bat 
By Ernest Lawrence Thayer
The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play,
And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.
A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to the hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, “If only Casey could but get a whack at that—
We’d put up even money now, with Casey at the bat.”
But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a hoodoo, while the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,
For there seemed but little chance of Casey getting to the bat.
But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Blake, the much despis├Ęd, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.
Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It pounded on the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.
There was ease in Casey’s manner as he stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey’s bearing and a smile lit Casey’s face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt ‘twas Casey at the bat.
Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt;
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance flashed in Casey’s eye, a sneer curled Casey’s lip.
And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped—
“That ain’t my style," said Casey. “Strike one!” the umpire said.
From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore;
“Kill him! Kill the umpire!” shouted someone on the stand;
And it’s likely they’d have killed him had not Casey raised his hand.
With a smile of Christian charity great Casey’s visage shone;
He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;
He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the dun sphere flew;
But Casey still ignored it and the umpire said, “Strike two!”
“Fraud!” cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered “Fraud!”
But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
And they knew that Casey wouldn’t let that ball go by again.
The sneer is gone from Casey’s lip, his teeth are clenched in hate,
He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate;
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey’s blow.
Oh, somewhere in this favoured land the sun is shining bright,
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light;
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout,
But there is no joy in Mudville—mighty Casey has struck out.
Here is Walt Disney's 1946 animated version of Casey at the Bat:

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco
For Further Reading:
- Click here for an audio recording of De Wolf Hopper reciting Ernest Lawrence Thayer's Casey at the Bat recorded June 16, 1909 from the Library of Congress Website

Monday, June 1, 2015

Lou Gehrig Starts His Consecutive Games Streak June 1, 1925

On This Day in Baseball History June 1, 1925: The man who would be known as the Iron Horse, Lou Gehrig started his consecutive games streak by being inserted as a pinch hitter by New York Yankees manager Miller Huggins for shortstop Paul "Pee Wee" Wanninger in a 5-3 loss to the Washington Senators. Similar to how Cal Ripken Jr made an inauspicious start to his streak, Gehrig would bat for Wanninger in the eight inning against future Hall of Fame pitcher Walter Johnson and deliver a soft flyball out to left field.

Up to that point in his first two seasons with the Yankees, Gehrig was nothing more than a pinch hitter and defensive replacement. Gehrig only appeared in 23 games during the 1923 and 1924 seasons combined. Circumstances beyond his control would lead to Gehrig's baseball immortality being cemented. Many people believe that the streak started the next day on June 2, 1925 when as per legend, Wally Pipp asked to take a day off. Gehrig stepped in for Pipp at first and didn't give the bag up until the day that he took himself out of the lineup thirteen years later on May 2, 1939. Just as Steve Buscemi says as Nucky Thompson in the pilot episode of Boardwalk Empire: Never let the truth get in the way of a good story, the story of Gehrig's rise and Pipp's fall makes for a good story but its not entirely true.

Jonathan Eig in his book Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig describes the events that went into Gehrig becoming an everyday player for the Yankees:
Huggins was frustrated. The season was only two months old, yet his team seemed to be giving up. Players had been missing curfew, practicing halfheartedly, mouthing off in the dugout, and drinking too much. Pipp wasn't giving him problems off the field, but on the field the first baseman was a disaster. Huggins had already dropped Pipp from the fourth spot in the batting order to the sixth, and Pipp had not responded. He was batting .244 with only three home runs and twenty-three runs batted in. During the last three weeks of May, his batting average was an anemic .181. After the loss to Walter Johnson, Huggins decided to try a new lineup. Maybe the veterans would respond to the threat of losing their jobs. He benched not only Pipp but also catcher Wally Schang and second baseman Aaron Ward. (Page 65)
After starting at first for ten seasons for the Yankees, Pipp suffered a head injury during batting practice a month later which resulted in a fractured skull that limited his playing time during the remainder of the 1925 season. Pipp's contract would be sold to the Cinicnnati Reds for the 1926 season and would retire after the 1928 season.

Gehrig as we know became a cornerstone for the New York Yankees become a Hall of Famer as part of a formidable one-two punch with not only Babe Ruth but also Joe DiMaggio. It would seem that the illness that bears his name was the only thing that could stop the Iron Horse.

Here is the boxscore from the June 2, 1925 edition of the New York Times for the June 1, 1925 game between the Washington Senators and New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium:

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

For Further Reading:
- Click Here for Lou Gehrig's career statistics from Baseball
- Click Here for Wally Pipp's career statistics from Baseball
- Click Here for the boxscore for the June 1, 1925 game between the Washington Senators vs The New York Yankees from Baseball
- Wally Pipp: A son's tale about the start of Gehrig's consecutive games streak by Chris Anderson
from the Sarasota Herald Tribune dated April 22, 2009

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cal Ripken Jr Starts His Iron Man Streak May 30, 1982

On This Day in History May 30, 1982: Baltimore Orioles rookie third baseman Cal Ripken Jr., took the field in front of 21,632 fans at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore against the Toronto Blue Jays, for the first of what would become his record setting 2,632 games played in a row. Ripken would go 0-2 with a walk and a strikeout. Not a very auspicious start to his "Iron Man" streak.

Ripken would continue to make history in 1982 when Orioles manager Earl Weaver moved him from third base to shortstop. In doing so, the position of shortstop would forever be changed form a "good glove, no hit" position to a position where both defense and offense became the norm. Ripken would go on to win the 1982 American League Rookie of the Year Award with a slashline of .264/.317/.475 with 28 homeruns and 93 RBI.

Ripken would reach the mark of 2131 consecutive games played set by the Iron Horse Lou Gehrig in 1939 on September 6, 1995 in front of the hometown crowd at Orioles Park at Camden Yards. Ripken's streak would come to an end when he voluntarily took himself out of the lineup on September 19, 1998.

Ripken would retire at the end of the 2001 season and to no one's surprise, was inducted to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007 garnering 98.53% of the vote (537/545 ballots) for third best all-time after Tom Seaver (98.84%) and Nolan Ryan (98.79%).

Though in theory players today are bigger, faster and stronger than players of yesteryear, I don't see anyone being durable enough to play in enough consecutive games to reach the lofty goal of 2,632 games. What do you think folks. Anyone want to take a stab at a guess?

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

For Further Reading:
- Cal Ripken Jr's career statistics from Baseball
- The Boxscore from the Toronto Blue Jays vs. Baltimore Orioles game from May 30, 1982 courtesy of Baseball
Ripken breaks record for consecutive games played from
Streak Scene 2,131: Ripken Passes Gehrig from the Baltimore Sun Archives website
It's Over: Ripken Sits Out After 2,632 Games by Richard Justice of the Washington Post dated September 21, 1998
Calling his own number, Ripken ends the streak by Roch Kubatko of the Baltimore Sun dated September 27, 1998
Baseball Hall of Fame BBWAA Voting Percentages from Baseball

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Two Major Leaguers KIA during World War II

Since it is Memorial Day Weekend here in the United States, what better way to commemorate the effort given by our troops than to shed light on the two Major Leaguers who made the ultimate sacrifice during World War II.

From the moment when Japan attacked the United States at Pearl Harbor on that fateful "Day That Will Live in Infamy", December 7, 1941, superstar, reserve player and minor leaguer alike served the nation's armed forces during World War II. It is estimated that over 500-major leaguers and many more minor leaguers served during World War II. While only 2 major leaguers lost their lives in the conflict, there were an estimated 139 minor leaguers that lost their lives in World War Two. Gary Bedingfield's wonderful and informative website Baseball in Wartime and his book Baseball's Dead of World War II: A Roster of Professional Players Who Died in Service are two amazing resources to look up who those players were. On to honoring the two major leaguers who were killed in action during World War II.

- Elmer Gedeon
Gedeon was born in Cleveland, Ohio on April 15, 1917 and was the nephew of former big leaguer Joe Gedeon. Gedeon was a three sport star at the University of Michigan and made the majors with the Washington Senators in 1939. His stint with the Senators was not very memorable since he appeared in only five games with the Nats. In those five games, Gedeon batted .200 with 3 hits in 15 at-bats with an RBI and a run scored. He would be sent down to Charlotte of the Piedmont League for the 1940 season, and was recalled to Washington at the end of the season but didn't play in a game. Gedeon would never play in the majors again.

Gedeon received his draft notice in January 1941, and would later be transferred to the the Army Air Force in October, 1941. It was here where Gedeon would shine and meet his final fate. According to the biography on Elmer Gedeon on the aforementioned Baseball in Wartime website:
Flight training was always a hazardous time and almost claimed the 25-year-old's life on August 9, 1942. Gedeon was the navigator in a North American B-25 Mitchell medium-sized bomber that struggled on take-off from Raleigh Airport, North Carolina. The plane clipped pine trees at the end of the runway and plunged into a swamp before bursting into flames. Despite suffering three broken ribs, Gedeon managed to free himself and crawl from the wreckage, then realized crewmate Corporal John Rarrat was still inside. Gedeon returned to the burning plane without a moment's hesitation and pulled Rarrat to safety. Corporal Ros Ware died in the crash, Rarrat succumbed to his injuries at Rex Hospital in Raleigh, and the five other crew members all suffered serious burns and broken limbs. Gedeon was hospitalized for 12 weeks. In addition to broken ribs he suffered severe burns to his back, face, hands and legs, some of which needed skin grafts.
Gedeon would be promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant and was awarded the Soldiers' Medal for his heroics (Gedeon would later be promoted to his highest rank of Captain).

According to pilot's superstition, Gedeon was quoted as saying "I had my accident. It’s going to be good flying from now on,". Unfortunately for Gedeon it was not to be so. Again referring to the aformentioned Elmer Gedeon biography on the Baseball in Wartime website:
With his duties as operations officer, Gedeon was not a regular flyer but on the afternoon of April 20, 1944, just five days after celebrating his 27th birthday, he piloted a B-26B, one of 30 Marauders that left Boreham Field that afternoon to bomb a German VI site being constructed at Bois d'Esquerdes, France. It was the group's 13th mission.
It was nearly 7:30 P.M. when the group approached the target area and encountered blinding searchlights and intense, accurate, heavy anti-aircraft fire. The sky was suddenly full of puffs of black explosions that were silhouetted against the searchlights. These explosions generated hundreds of pieces of jagged steel that could easily set oxygen and gas tanks blazing, or rip through the wings of a plane and just as easily through the bodies of the men inside. Lining up to make the bombing run the flak grew heavier, thicker and more deadly, causing planes to bounce around from nearby bursts.
Gedeon's bomber dropped its bombs and had just passed over the target. “We got caught in searchlights and took a direct hit under the cockpit,” recalled co-pilot James Taaffe. “I watched Gedeon lean forward against the controls as the plane went into a nose dive and the cockpit filled with flames. He must have been thinking, 'Oh, no. Not again.'” [9] Taaffe, with his clothing on fire, desperately struggled to open the pilot's and co-pilot's top hatches. He looked back and saw no movement from Gedeon as he scrambled to safety through the hatch. Descending through the night sky he watched the flame-engulfed airplane spiral out of control and explode on impact with the ground, carrying Gedeon and five others to their death. The other crew members were Second Lieutenant Jack March, Staff Sergeant Joseph Kobret, Sergeant John Felker, Sergeant Ira Thomas and Private Charles Atkinson.[10]
Gedeon was reported missing in action - his fate unknown, because Taaffe had been taken prisoner by German soldiers and was being held at Stalagluft 3. It was not until May 1945 that Elmer's father, Andrew A. Gedeon, received word from his son's commanding officer that the graves of the missing airmen had been located in a small British army cemetery in St. Pol, France. Elmer Gedeon's body was later returned to the United States and rests at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
For Further Reading:
Elmer J Gedeon from the American Air Museum in Britain website
- Elmer J. Gedeon's statistics from Baseball

- Harry O'Neill
Harry Mink O’Neill was born in Philadelphia on May 8, 1917 and as Gedeon was, O'Neill was a standout athlete in college. O'Neill attended Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and was a three-sport star. After graduating college, O'Neill signed with Connie Mack’s Philadelphia Athletics on June 5, 1939. He would be the third string catcher for the Athletics in 1939 making only one appearance in that season. According to the article Harry O'Neill by Gary Bedingfield, Frank Fitzpatrick, and Bill Nowlin from the SABR Baseball Biography Project:
O’Neill made his only major-league appearance on July 23, 1939, as a late-inning defensive replacement for Frankie Hayes against the Tigers. It was a blowout of a ballgame, with the Tigers leading 9-1 after three innings and 15-3 through seven. Hayes was 0-for-4 in the game, and finally Athletics manager Earle Mack – who had taken over from his father, Connie Mack, in late June when Connie became ill – decided to give Hayes the rest of the day off and put in O’Neill behind the plate. O’Neill never got a time at bat, and was not involved in any fielding plays. He caught the fifth of Philadelphia’s five pitchers, Chubby Dean.
O'Neill would finish his major league career with a .000 batting average and played part of the 1940 season at for the Harrisburg team of the Class B Interstate League.

In September 1942, O'Neill would enlisted with the Marines Corps and was sent to the Marine Officers' Training School at Quantico, Virginia where he would graduate with the rank of Second Lieutenant. O'Neill would join the 4th Marine Division at Camp Pendelton, California. O'Neill would rise to the rank of first lieutenant and would be shipped out to the Pacific theater with the 4th Marine Division in January 1944. According to the Harry O'Neill biography page on the Baseball in Wartime website:
With the division's 25th Weapons Company, O'Neill made major amphibious assaults at Kwajalein later that month, then at Saipan in June. On June 16, 1944, he suffered a shell-fragment wound to the right arm on Saipan, and was sent back to a hospital ship to recover. He returned to active duty on July 22, 1944, and participated in the assault on Tinian. On February 19, 1945, the division landed at Iwo Jima and moved inland, over extremely difficult terrain. After an intense Allied artillery bombardment of enemy positions on March 5,1945, elements of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Marine Divisions attacked on the morning of March 6. Fighting was heavy throughout the day with the enemy offering stiff resistance and subjecting the Marines to continuous small arms and mortar fire. By 5:30 P.M. on March 6, the Marines had made small local gains, but First Lieutenant O'Neill was dead. He had been killed by a sniper. O'Neill was one of 92 officers of the 4th Marine Division who lost their lives on Iwo Jima.
O'Neill was originally buried at Iwo Jima with 7,000+ Marines. His remains would later be interred at Arlington Cemetary in Drexel, Pennsylvania in July 1947.

For Further Reading:
Iowa Jima: Red Blood on Black Sand from the Fighting Fourth of World War II's website
- Harry M. O'Neill Class of 1939 Induction Class of 1980 of the Gettysburg College Hall of Athletic Honors page
- Harry O'Neill's statistics page from Baseball

I would recommend that you read the much more in-depth articles on Elmer Gedeon and Harry O'Neill on the Baseball in Wartime website and the Harry O'Neill article by Gary Bedingfield, Frank Fitzpatrick, and Bill Nowlin from the SABR Baseball Biography Project. You will not be disappointed.

If you happen to be at a ballgame this weekend, give a tip of your hats and honor Elmer J. Gedeon and Harry O'Neill with a moment of silence and thanks for their ultimate sacrifice in helping us enjoy the game that they both spent time playing. Rest in Peace Captain Elmer J. Gedeon and First Lieutenant Harry M. O'Neill. Thank you for your sacrifice. You'll never be forgotten.

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

Saturday, May 16, 2015

First American League Night Game May 16, 1939

On This Day in Baseball History May 16, 1939: The first American League night game took place at Philadelphia's Shibe Park when Connie Mack's Philadelphia Athletics hosted the Cleveland Indians in front of 15,109 fans.

The game would go into the 10th inning tied 3-3 until the Indians broke the game open with five runs in the top of the 10th. The Tribe would win the game by a score of 8-3.

The Athletics would become only the third MLB franchise to host a game under the lights after the Cincinnati Reds who were the first on May 24, 1935 and the Brooklyn Dodgers on June 15, 1938, which is significant in Baseball history as being the night when Cincinnati Reds pitcher Johnny Vandermeer threw his second consecutive no-hitter.

It is believed that the first professional Baseball game under the light took place on May 2, 1930, when the Des Moines, Iowa, team hosted Wichita for a Western League game. Many minor league teams would use lights to play night games five years before the majors in an attempt to stay viable during the Great Depression.

Here is the box score to the May 16, 1939 night game between the Cleveland Indians and the Philadelphia Athletics:

It really is amazing to think of a time where Baseball games were played primarily during the daytime. Aside from the Cubs who still play the majority of their home games during the day, we take it for granted today that the majority of the games are played under the lights. And with the profit margins leaning higher during night games, I don't see MLB teams playing less games at night and more during the day, especially during the week.

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

Friday, May 15, 2015

The White Sox Play the First of Nine Home Games in Milwaukee May 15 1968

On This Day in Baseball History May 15, 1968: The first American League game played in Milwaukee since the Milwaukee Brewers finished in last place in 1901 with a 48-89 record is a 4-2 win by the California Angels against Chicago White Sox before 23,403 fans. This game was the first of nine home games that the Chisox would play at Milwaukee County Stadium which stood empty with the departure of the beloved Milwaukee Braves to the greener pastures of Atlanta.

Now, when I saw this historical tidbit, I had to do a double take. I had no clue that the White Sox played "home" games in Milwaukee. I immediately thought of the Brooklyn Dodgers playing "home" games in Jersey City during the 1957 season right before their departure to Los Angeles after that season. So that got me thinking: Were the White Sox on the verge of leaving Chicago? The article A short history of the Milwaukee White Sox by Frank Jackson from the Hardball Times dated March 27, 2013 does a wonderful job describing the factors that led to the White Sox playing home games in Milwaukee not only in 1968 but also in 1969. So please go and read that post. But for simplicity sake, here goes a short synopsis.

Milwaukee was the first city to gain a major league city in 50-years when the National League's Boston Braves left the Beantown for Brew City right before of the start of the 1952 season. The Braves proved successful with two World Series appearances against the New York Yankees (1957-1958) with one World Championship in 1957. The Braves drew record crowds at first but attendance would decline even though the team never put up a losing record. Also keep in mind that by playing in Milwaukee, the team had issues earning revenue from the established medium of radio and growing medium of television. Being only 90 miles from two major league franchises in the second city of Chicago resulted in the lack of media opportunities and minimal media revenues.

That would change in 1965 when the city of Atlanta came in with a classic example of boosterism to woo the recently changed ownership of the Braves. For those of you who don't know what boosterism is, according to, boosterism is the action or policy of enthusiastically promoting something, as a city, product, or way of life.

The city of Atlanta offered an untapped major league viable market playing in a municipally owned state of the art stadium. Consider that unlike Milwaukee who was close in proximity to Chicago, in 1965 the nearest major league franchises to Atlanta were Cincinnati at roughly 400-miles away to the North, Washington D.C. at roughly 600-miles to the Northeast and the St. Louis Cardinals at roughly 500-miles away to the West. The Braves would be the Southern most franchise on the East Coast, since Florida was the home of Spring Training. The Marlins and Rays wouldn't become MLB franchises until the 1990's. The lure of an wide open market with no media competition (the Braves would later enjoy nationwide exposure with the broadcast of Braves games on cable TV on channel TBS) was an offer too good for the Braves ownership to pass up. This produced a problem in Milwaukee.

The team was to move for the 1965 season but was held up due to a lawsuit brought about by a group led by a Milwaukee car dealer by the name of Allen H "Bud" Selig. The lawsuit delayed the inevitable by a season leaving Milwaukee team-less in 1966. Selig believed that the next round of expansion in MLB would lead to Milwaukee getting another team. In order to Selig was able to organize an exhibition game between the Minnesota Twins and the Chicago White Sox at Milwaukee County Stadium on July 24, 1967 which drew over 51,000 spectators to show that Milwaukee was major league town. Unfortunately, MLB would expand into Kansas City, Montreal, San Diego and Seattle for the 1969 season. Going back to the "home" games for the Chisox in Milwaukee, Selig looked into moving the White Sox to Brew City.

As we know, the White Sox never left the South Side of Chicago. Ownership of the team remained in the hands of those who had no interest in moving the team. Selig's persistence would result in the purchase of the bankrupt Seattle Pilots right after the end of Spring Training of 1970 and the Pilots became the Milwaukee Brewers in time for the 1970 season. For more information on the Seattle Pilots, check out Mike Fuller's and don't forget to check out the aforementioned A short history of the Milwaukee White Sox by Frank Jackson from the Hardball Times dated March 27, 2013 for more information on the Chicago White Sox "home" series in Milwaukee.

With the movement to have Montreal get a second shot at a Major League team and rumors of the Rays potentially having to leave Tampa to stay viable, what city/cities would be a viable place for a move and/or expansion. Anyone want to take a guess?

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

For Further Reading:
- The Milwaukee White Sox by Gene Mueller from the WISports website dated July 29, 2014
- Back when Milwaukee made goo-goo eyes at the Chicago White Sox by Gene Mueller from the Newsradio 620 WMTJ website dated June 24, 2012

Monday, May 11, 2015

Ted Turner Manages the Atlanta Braves May 11, 1977

On This Day in Baseball History May 11, 1977: Atlanta Braves owner and media mogul Ted Turner takes over the reins as manager of the team that he owns surprising everyone in Baseball including his own players. Why did he do it? Turner felt that he wanted a first hand look as to why things were going bad for the team he owned which was in the midst of a 16-game losing streak. In doing so, he told manager Dave Bristol to take 10 days off to go on a scouting trip. Naturally this didn't go over well with the powers that be: National League President Chubb Feeney and MLB Commissioner Bowie Kuhn.

The team would extend their losing streak to 17-games with a 2-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates in Turner's managerial debut. In order to avoid Turner managing the team for a second consecutive game, Feeney would turn to the rule book to stop Turner. According to the article Turner Barred as Manager But Sees Team Triumph, 6-1 by Murray Chass from the New York Times dated May 13, 1977:
The rule, Major League Rule 20, section "e" says, "No manager or player on a club shall directly or indirectly own stock on any other proprietary interest or have any financial interest in the club by which he is employed except under an agreement approved by the commissioner..."
Turner would ask Feeney to get approval from Commissioner Kuhn. Not surprisingly, both Turner and Kuhn had butted heads during Turner's brief tenure as owner of the Braves. Turner had been found to violate free-agency rules in the attempt to sign Gary Matthews, which had led to a one-year suspension and a lawsuit filed by Turner that put a stay on the suspension. So on the backdrop of that contentious relationship, does anyone think that Kuhn would grant Turner an exemption allowing "Billionaire Ted" to manage the Braves? Kuhn tells Turner: NO DEAL.

According to the article Kuhn Decides Against Turner from the New York Times dated May 14, 1977:
"I am satisfied," Kuhn said in a statement late yesterday afternoon, "that Mr. Feeney's disapproval of the Turner coach's contract should stand. Given Mr. Turner's lack of familiarity with game operations, I do not think it is in the best interest of baseball for Mr. Turner to serve in the requested capacity." Later Turner said Bristol would return as manager today.
So what did Turner think of his banishment to the owner's box? According to the article None of the Braves by Rod Smith in his Sports of the Times column of the New York Times dated May 15, 1977:
Turner was understandably aggrieved. "If Walter O'Malley wanted to manage the Dodgers," he said "they wouldn't stop him. Would they?" 
Probably not, but Walter is one of the good old boys who Kuhn seldom, if ever, tells what to do. Turner is a fresh punk who would be under suspension now if a judge in Atlanta hadn't intervened.
And the banishment of Turner brought the team back to their losing ways with a 3-0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals. Maybe Turner should have stayed. Wouldn't have been any worse than Bristol. No?

Until Then Keep Playing Ball,
Baseball Sisco

For Further Reading:
- The night Ted Turner managed the Braves by Doug Williams from dated May 23, 2013