Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Vintage 1938 Newsletter "Brooklyn Dodger Doings" at Brockelman and Luckey Auctions

Here is something you don't see everyday.

Featured is a vintage 1938 Brooklyn Dodgers newsletter called, "Brooklyn Dodger Doings." Starting that season the Dodgers began sending fervent fans throughout the country a newsletter explaining the goings-on with the franchise.  The four-page periodical included biographies, news and rare photographs of the Dodgers.  Shown here is the July 30-31, 1938 issue, #7, and it is currently on auction at Brockelman and Luckey (auction link here).  Click on any pic to embiggen. 

From what I understand, the "Brooklyn Dodger Doings" newsletter changed its name to just "Dodger Doings" in 1941, then became “Line Drives from the Dodgers” during the middle of the 1943 season.  Upon moving to Los Angeles for the 1958 season it was renamed “Los Angeles Dodgers Line Drives” newsletter.  It stayed that way until 1991 when it was changed to “Dodgers Line Drives”, then simply “Line Drives” in 1994.  I am unsure exactly when they stopped printing these newsletters, but I do know it lasted until at least 2010.  Today, Dodger fans can get their news about the club from their monthly "Dodger Insider" monthly magazine given away free to game attendees.  (Hat Tip: Dodger collector Doug for much of the previous information)

As for this particular issue, it makes note of a game to be played on August 2nd.  Brooklyn Dodgers president Larry MacPhail decided to use a yellow baseball on the field for the first game of a double header against the St. Louis Cardinals. 
The first game... will be played with the yellow sphere and league officials as well as many other prominent baseball figures will be on hand to witness the test.  It is claimed that yellow is much easier to see than white and that the new ball will have a distinct advantage to the hitters.  Tuesday's game is the first experiment to be launched by the National League in determining the worthiness of the present ball as compared to the new yellow horsehide.
The experiment was not a success.  It would only be used in a game two other times.  The ball proved to be no easier to see than the normal white ball, and was actually a factor is keeping scoring lower.  The yellow dye would often bleed and cause the baseball to become wet. - effectively making a deader ball.  Per an AP story in the Evening Citizen, Ottawa, Ontario:
Outfielder Tuck Stainback of the Dodgers said he noticed the dye came off the ball and onto the bat after it was hit.

"I didn't get any more of a jump on flies to my position," continued Stanback, "but I couldn't notice that I was slower getting under flies, either."
Fred Fitzsimmons, who pitched the complete game, found that the dye came off on his perspiring fingers.  "It made it a little harder to grip the ball," he said.
Go ahead and click any of the pics here to read what is in this newsletter. 

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