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The 1948 Project – Whisper’s from Washington 25 May 1948
Lemon Whitewashes the Nats. Bob Lemon scatters six hits as the Indians win their nineteenth game while the Senators fall to 12-18. Al Kozar collects half of Washington’s four hits and helps turn a nifty double play in the second inning ending a potential rally. But Cleveland breaks the game open in the third. Once again Bob Lemon is the nemesis. His one out double to center being the key blow. Joe Early missed a foul pop by Thurman Tucker. Tucker then is hit by a pitch. Allie Clark follows that with a single up the middle. Lou Boudreau continues the assault with a single to right that plates two runs. Since 9 May when Washington was 9-9 the team has faltered and is now five games under the .500 mark.
Player Profile – Al Kozar
Kozar started the spring secure he had the second base job all to himself. Manager Joe Kuhel stated, “I am perfectly happy to give up batting power for fielding finesse. Any you can take my word for it, so far as fielding is concerned. Some folks tell me that Kozar will not be able to hit the kind of pitching we are going to grace, but he batted .339 with New Orleans last year and that is encouraging.” Despite the words of encouragement the press during the spring didn’t think Kozar could hit and the prediction was made that he would hit .250 in 1948.
Kozar turned down $1,000 to sign with the Yankees. Instead he signed with the Boston Red Sox for no bonus. Kozar said the Sox said they would take care of me and they did. He added, “Besides I wasn’t going to get rich on $1,000. When I played in Memphis, I played with six players who had gotten bonuses of $35,000 and up, and they seemed to be satisfied, had no desire. They had the money and making the majors didn’t seem to matter to them.” Kozar came to Washington along with Leon Culberson in December In exchange for Stan Spence. He quickly developed a reputation for being tight-lipped. Washington sports writers complained that he was about as talkative as Harpo Marx with laryngitis. The quiet hard working Kozar is a respected member of the team.
Al Kozar is 26 years old unmarried and the girls of his home town of McKees Rocks keep wondering why. The reason is he probably is the shyest man in the major leagues. Among his teammates on the Senators Al’s reputation for reticence has won him the nickname of “Mumbles.” During the off-season he spends the day working for a moving and hauling concern. He enjoys driving in the Packard, presented to him by admiring friends.
Did you know? Kozar feels that the balls and strikes calls by Umpire Bill McGowan have always gone against him and the team. It has been spoken of in the clubhouse and Kozar has been complaining to Manager Joe Kuhel about it, but Kuhel was yet to take action and has in fact ignored his complaints.
The 1948 Project
The 1948 Project
The 1948 Project will be a winter long project Karen and Kevin Flynn will be running in conjunction with a bigger project the folks over at DidTheTribeWinLastNight.com are running this winter.
Did The Tribe Win Last Night is a wonderful website that covers everything about the Cleveland Indians baseball club. Starting September 22, 2013 they are going to start winter project where they are retelling of the Cleveland Indians 1948 World Series Season.