Friday, September 09, 2011

The Frankenstein and Lobster Game

With the season winding down and the Dodgers far from contention in the National League West there isn't much left to do but enjoy the rest of summer. Other then the Kemp's 40/40 attempt or Kershaw's potential 20 win season it's hard to get excited about the rest of the season. Fortunately, Ron Shafer who wrote "When the Dodgers Were Bridegrooms" keeps things interesting by recounting, day by day, the 1889 pennant race.

The Frankenstein and Lobster Game

Yesterday was the anniversary of one of the most unusual games in Dodgers history. Over 120 years ago the Dodgers were battling it out with the St. Louis Browns for the pennant. Fan excitement was at an all time high as these two teams went head to head in Washington Park, home of the Brooklyn Bridegrooms (yes, the Dodgers were once called this).

In what can only be called bizarre, the Brooklyn Bridegrooms pulled out a victory only when St. Louis forfeited the game when they pulled their team from the field in the midst of gamesmanship, controversy and a near fan riot. Check out Ron's website to read all about it here.
Angry Brooklyn fans pelted the Browns with beer bottles and other objects as the players left the field, and St. Louis right fielder Tommy McCarthy got into an altercation with one fan on his way to the safety of the dressing room. Sporting Life writer J. Donnelly, quickly dubbed the strange contest “the Frankenstein and Lobster Game.”

Even stranger, the very next day the Browns refused to show up for a rematch. No doubt, fearing for their lives.

For the fans interested in the often forgotten history of an ancient Dodger team I highly recommend Ron's site and his book "When the Dodgers Were Bridegrooms." Check out my interview with him, here, about his historical account of this team.

(Pic Link: Full Count Vintage Baseball Card Forum)

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