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Tigers Threat to Barnstorn

1912 New York Highlanders Ticket Book


  Collectors News Announcements and Articles of Interest  
Keymancollectibles.com The Webs Best Recourse for Baseball Memorabilia November 20, 2017
  In 1912 Ty Cobb Beats Up Fan and Wears a Yankee  Uniform In New York - Strikes & Pinstripes -Steven KeyMan  
     
 On May 15, 1912, Ty Cobb beat up a New York fan which would later lead to the first Baseball Player Strike, and the use of "Replacement players." Then in August, the Tigers returned to New York to play the Highlanders and were forced to wear Yankee Pinstripe uniforms. Tickets to both historic games have recently surfaced.

Ty Cobb's first visit to Hilltop Park in New York for the 1912 season resulted in an infamous incident that would live on forever in baseball lore. When Cobb took the field in the first inning of the May 15th game against the New York Highlander's, (who were officialy renamed the Yankees the following season) Claude Luckera a fan who had ridden Cobb hard in past, started his "good-natured" abuse. Despite protests made by Cobb to the Umpires, and Highlanders manager Harry Wolverton that the fan should be removed, the barrage of constant insults continued for the first three innings.

 Cobb who had been exchanging words with the fans became more and more angry as the game progressed. During his at bat in the top of the fourth, Luckera lashed out a racial slur towards cobb that sent him into a rage. Cobb then jumped into the stands targeting Luckera sitting 12 rows back. Fists flying Cobb struck Luckera on the forehead, knocked him down, and then continued to kick and spike him. Years earlier Claude Luckera who was a pressman, had lost his right hand and two fingers on his left in an accident. Someone yelled out that the man has no hands! Cobb replied I dont care if he has no feet!

 The umpire rushed into the angry mob of fans, accompanied by players of both teams and rescued the "Georgia Peach" from serious danger. The Tiger players wading through the crowd with their bats. Cobb was immediately removed from the game, and playing field. After a delay of 5 minutes the game resumed as threats continued against the Tigers until the end. Ty Cobb was suspended 10 games by American League President Ban Johnson who was in attendance, and witnessed the mayhem. Tiger players wrote a letter to the league's president stating "If the players cannot have protection, we must protect ourselves," and so they decided they would strike to protest Johnson's suspension.

  Detroit Team Strikes When Johnson
Refuses to Reinstate Ty Cobb
 
    Three days later on May 18, after playing one game without Cobb, the Tigers took the field in Philadelphia with Cobb, planning to play the game. After the umpires notified Tigers manager Hughie Jennings that Ban Johnson's suspension of Ty Cobb stood, Cobb was removed and his teammates then walked off the field with him refusing to play. Tiger owner Frank Navin had anticipated the protest and had Jennings put together a squad of replacement players to take the field. Hughie then marched out his recruits of semi-pros, college players from the Philadelphia area, and amateurs. Two Tiger scouts were included on the roster, 41-year-old Joe Sudgen who played first and 48 year old Jim McGuire who handled the catching duties.

 By the end of the third inning, the one sided game drew howling protests from fans yelling for their money back. Finally a few thousand of the 20,000 fans in attendance nosily departed.  After 1 hour 45 minutes and nine errors, the Tigers replacements were slaughtered, 24-2, but not without incident. Third baseman, Maharg was hit in the mouth by a ground ball and lost several teeth. In the ninth inning manager Hughie Jennings batted for the pitcher Travers who gave up 26 hits. The game was official and counted in the standings.

 Ban Johnson fined each striking player $100. and threatened to banish them from baseball if they continued to strike. Cobb convinced his teammates to return to action, and he completed his ten game suspension. By May 26, 11 days after he had charged into the Hilltop Park stands, Cobb was back in center field.
 
 
 
  Tigers In Yankee Uniforms         
          Lose to Highlanders 3-2
 
    Reported in the newspapers as the funniest incident in the history of the sport; before the first game of a 4 game series in New York, August 13, Home Game no. 54, the Detroit Tigers tearfully informed the Highlanders management that they all have to play in citizens clothes. Somewhere between Buffalo & New York the tigers lost Their uniforms. The clubs President Frank Farrell, and Manager Harry Wolverton, "didn't want to see such stars as Ty Cobb, Sam Crawford, Joe Lake, and others spoiling fancy street suits in their efforts to keep the fans from being disappointed." Wolverton suggested that the Tiger players wear the New York Highlanders gray traveling uniforms.

 The Detroit players reluctantly consented. Although the Georgia Peach was spared, having to wear Yankee pinstripes, the Tigers still had to adorn New Yorks interlocking "NY" team logo over their heart. Throughout the game the players felt it in their bones that the move would be fatal. They were doomed to defeat. The Tigers lost the game 3-2.
 
 
  During the early years, when the American League merged with the National League to form Major League baseball, from about 1901 to 1915, complimentary ticket books were used as a promotion, to help attract fans to the ballpark. Both the Game No.19 ticket (pictured above) and Game No. 54 ticket, came from this Rare 1912 ticket book. After being properly authenticated
 and slabbed by PSA the tickets will be offered in auction in the coming months. This is a rare opportunity to own these tickets attributed to historic moments in baseball. Check back soon for auction information or contact David Shakir theshak13@gmail.com to be updated by email.
 
Check out the 1912 New York Highlanders Home Game Schedule for attributes to all games
 
 
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