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Hayes Croquet Club
Spiegel Grove Squires - 1860s base ball club



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Jerry Wasserman is a member of the Spiegel Grove Squires vintage base ball club. He also has served as manager.

The Diary of a Vintage "ballist"

By: Jerry Wasserman


September 21: The Squires finished the 2014 season by playing at the Tiffin-Seneca Heritage Festival. Our first match was a 17-5 victory over a familiar opponent, the Sylvania Great Black Swamp Frogs. At noon, we were paired with another familiar opponent, the Stemtown Stinkers. We were victorious by a score of 25-10. Our next opponent we had not played before, but the Squires were on the correct side of a 17-1 score over the Whiskey Island Shamrocks from the Cleveland area.
All of the Squires strikers had hot bats. The following is a list of the total number of hits each player had in the three games. Fly batted leadoff with 7 hits including a double. Numbers had 11 with two doubles. Bat had 8 with two triples. Ballpark had 12 hits to lead all of the strikers. Hammer had 8 with a double. Speedy had 10 with a double. Digger had 10. Slip and Slide had 7 with 2 doubles. Block had 8 and Kyzer had 9 hits. Bernie Steinmetz subbed for me as I was not able to attend and he collected 7 hits. Bernie played with us twice when we were short players for a total of 5 games and we won them all. The Squires finished the season with a 14-3 record.

September 7 : The Spiegel Grove Squires played their last home game of the season hosting our friends the Stemtown Stinkers from Green Springs. The Williams and Son Masonry scoreboard showed the Squires winners by a score of 22-2. It was a beautiful day to play and there was another excellent crowd to watch the match. Our record at this time stands at 11 wins and 3 losses. Hammer was the leader of the Squires hitters with 5 safeties. Four hits were achieved by Numbers (home run and triple), Bat (2 doubles), Rosie (double) and Digger . Speedy, Ballpark, Diamond and Fingers (home run) each collected 3 hits. Stockings and Wings had two hits. Tallyman had 2 hits in his only 2 at bats of the season so he ended the season batting 1.000. We enjoyed a fine post game meal in the Hayes Museum thanks to the sponsorship of KF Construction & Excavating.

August 24 : The Spiegel Grove Squires made the trip east to Canal Fulton to play the “Mules.” It seemed as though we left our defense in Fremont as we played as poor a defensive game as I have seen us play all year. We finished on the wrong side of a 14-4 score. On a positive note Lady Kay was able to be released from the disabled list and cheer us on. Fly (double), Digger and Iron Horse (triple) paced the Squires batsmen with three hits each. Numbers, Ballpark, Block and Stockings each had a pair of safeties. Hammer, Bat, Rosie, Speedy, Slip & Slide and Wings (double) had a hit apiece.

Aug. 9: The Spiegel Grove Squires played host to the Rochester Grangers from Rochester, Michigan. At the conclusion of a back and forth offensive battle the Squires were on the wrong side of the Williams and Son Masonry scoreboard 20-18. The Grangers held an 8-1 lead early in the game but the Squires continued to chip away at it. We took a one-run lead going into the 9th inning but the Grangers scored 6 runs and we were down by 5. We scored 3 runs in the bottom of the 9th but were short by 2 runs. Our season record is now 10-2.

Hammer was the hitting leader for the Squires with 4 hits including a double. Fly, Speedy (home run), Ball Park (3b and HR), Digger, Slip & Slide (3b), Kyzer (2b) and Stockings each had 3 hits. Rosie, Wings, Block, Lefty and Diamond (2b) had 2 safeties apiece. We enjoyed a fine post game meal courtesy sponsorship by KF Construction & Excavating, LLC. Our thanks to Gary The Ump Kaltenbach for a fine job as the arbiter on a hot afternoon and Jim Tallyman Miranda for another excellent job keeping our statistics

Once again the Sauder Cup Trophy has a home at the Hayes Presidential Center. It will be on display for a year.July 26 : The Squires were invited again to play in the Sauder Village Cup in Archbold, Ohio. We went with the intention of reclaiming the Windmill Trophy which we won three years ago. The winner of the tournament gets to keep the trophy until the following year. It is the nicest trophy of any tournament. It was crafted by the Sauder Village tinsmith and is beautiful.

Our first match was against our friends (who we play often) The Sylvania Great Black Swamp Frogs. The Squires were victorious by a score of 12-4. Hammer and Bernie Steinmetz led the Squires strikers with 4 hits each. Ballpark had 3 hits. Numbers, Wings, Kevin Johns, and Diamond had 2 hits each. We were short of players because of guys having to work so we recruited Bernie and Kevin to be sure we had enough players.

Our second match was against The Elkhart County Railroaders from Indiana. This was our first time playing this team and we were on the correct end of an 8-6 score when we finished the match. Digger paced our hitters with 3 hits. Fly, Hammer (2 doubles), Bat and Bernie (2 doubles) each had 2 safeties. Digger made a fine defensive putout and made a perfect throw to turn a double play. The Squires played a great defensive game. Bernie and Kevin filled in very well for us and we appreciate them making the trip. Thanks to Mindy for keeping the stats in the Tallyman’s absence. Stop in to the Hayes Center’s Museum Store to view the Windmill Trophy. I am certain that you will agree with my assessment of its beauty.

July 13 : The Squires played the fourth annual Celebrity All Star match and won handily (32-4) according to the Williams and Son Masonry Scoreboard. This was our first home match of the season as the prior two were rained out. There was an excellent crowd present that sat in the shade of the trees while we played on a very hot day. The Squires strikers were led with 7 hits by Numbers (cycle), Fingers and Slip & Slide . Fly (cycle) and Speedy had 6 hits. Bat, Block (double) and Wings (double) had 4 hits each. Hammer (double) and Lefty checked in with 3 hits. Our team owner and Hayes Center Director Christie Weininger, also got a base hit. The All Stars played well despite the disadvantage of not having played the vintage rules as much as the Squires have. Scott Welch was mentioned as the MVP because of the putouts he made as the catcher. Bernie Steinmetz made some great catches as did Kyle Mayle in left field. They all seemed to have a wonderful time. Thanks to the sponsorship of KF Construction and Excavating, LLC we were treated to a fine postgame meal in the museum.

June 12 : The Squires made an easterly trip to the city of Lakewood, Ohio for two matches with our friends, The Cleveland Blues. The first match was tied at 5 after 7 innings and we played until there was a resolution. Nobody wanted to end with a tie so we played 11 innings until the Blues scored an ace to make the score 6-5. It was a great game with a very nice field to play on. Fly led the Squires strikers with 4 hits, three being doubles. Bat, Slip and Slide, Fingers and Stockings each collected three hits. Bat had a double. Numbers, Ballpark (triple) and Hammer each had two hits.

The second match ended with the Squires on the correct side of a 7-6 score. Fly, Ballpark, Rosie, Bat and Hammer each collected two hits. Numbers, Slip and Slide, Fingers, Kyzer Frey, and Stockings had one hit apiece. This match was very closely played and there were several fine defensive plays by both teams. We adjourned after the match was over to The Merry Arts Tavern in Lakewood to enjoy a fine meal of pulled pork and brats and all of the trimmings. Huzzah! to the Blues for being such great hosts.

May 31-June 1

The Squires made the southerly trip on state route 53 to play in the Mayor’s Cup tournament in Upper Sandusky. The tournament is organized by the Wyandotte Ghostriders and played at Stepping Stones Park. It was a beautiful place to hold a tournament. Our first match was against the Columbus Buckeyes and the Squires were victorious by a score of 21-3 . The Squires were led with three hits by Ballpark, Numbers, Hammer, Speedy, Digger, Diamond and Wings . Fly, Iron Horse, Heaven and Stockings had two safeties each.

Our second match was against the Akron Black Stockings with a few members from the Hoover Sweepers. We were victorious by an 11-0 score . Iron Horse and Diamond paced the Squires strikers with four hits. Hammer and Stockings had three hits each. Fly, Numbers, Bat, Speedy, Digger, Heaven and Fingers each scored two hits. The players that were Hoover Sweepers members had continuing issues with some calls by the umpire and would not give up complaining.

Our third match was against the Hoover Sweepers with members of the Akron Black Stockings to supplement the team. It was basically the same team we played in the second game and the same Hoover members again found issues with the umpires. The Squires were on the correct side of a 12-8 score . Ballpark and Fingers both had three hits. Two hits were achieved by Fly, Numbers, Iron Horse, Bat, Speedy, Heaven and Stockings .

We came back on Sunday morning to play against our old friends, the Sylvania Great Black Swamp Frogs. It was a great game and the Squires prevailed by a score of 6-4 . Block and Numbers had three hits apiece. Fly, Iron Horse, Hammer and Stockings had two hits each.

Our next match pitted us against the Mansfield Independents, a team we had never faced before. We were victorious by a score of 17-1 . Mansfield was a fun-loving. The Squires were led by Ballpark with six hits. Fly and Iron Horse each had five hits. Speedy had four hits. Heaven, Kyzer Frey and Block had three hits. Hammer and Wings had two hits. Kyzer Frey played his first games today as a Squire and hit well and made several putouts as the catcher.

We were the only undefeated team at the tournament so we naturally determined we were the Mayor’s Cup Champions. However the Mayor must not have been finished with the Cup as we did not receive any kind of a trophy.

May 17 : The Spiegel Grove Squires opened its 2014 season at the Civil War Days at the Springs festival in Green Springs against the Stemtown Stinkers. We were on the winning side of a 14-1 score. The Squires strikers were led by Ballpark and Iron Horse with 5 hits each. Rosie, Numbers, Wings, and Heaven Frey had 4 safeties each. Three hits were collected from Fly, Block, and Speedy . Bryce McConnell, Bat, and Stockings each had 2 hits. The Squires welcomed Heaven Frey and Bryce McConnell as new players at least on a temporary basis and they both played well. Ram Gonzalez had to retire from the team because of some physical issues with his knee. We will miss him as a great teammate. I recall recruiting Ram many years ago. I had asked my niece if she knew anyone interested in playing for our team as we were going to be short players for an upcoming game. She suggested Ram and he agreed to come and play. He has been a regular attendee since that time. No one ever accused Ram of being fast afoot, but he was a good solid power hitter and played defense very well. Ram and his wife Judy were and always will be outstanding members of the Squires family.