Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Stocks Shock The City

The Stocks, one of the best teams in St. Louis in 1874, staked their claim to being "the best amateur nine" in the city in October of 1875 with a string of three straight victories over their top competition. Over three consecutive Sundays, the Stocks defeated the Reds, the Empire, and then the Reds once again.

The Stocks first victory was on October 3rd. In the first of a four game series between "the famous Red Stockings and the amateur Stocks" at the Compton Avenue Park, the Stocks shocked the over-confident Reds in what would later be described as "a hard fight". While the Globe-Democrat failed to report the Stocks win, coverage on the day of the game predicted a "massacre" of the Stocks by the Globe's favorite baseball team.

A week later, at the Grand Avenue Grounds, "the Stockyard nine" took on the "State champions of Missouri", the Empire Club. On a cool fall afternoon, the Stocks took it to the Empire, jumping out to a 4-1 lead after two innings before winning in a rout, 10-3. The Globe praised the Stocks play, saying it was "up to the professional standard".

The Stocks completed their run on October 17th against the Reds in what must have been one heck of a ballgame at the old Compton Avenue Park. Falling behind 5-4, the Stocks tied the game with a run in the seventh. In the eighth, they pushed across two runs to take the lead and won the game 7-5. "(This) victory," wrote the Globe, "places (the Stocks) in the front ranks of amateur clubs" in the nation.

The Stocks team that shocked the city of St. Louis with this string of upsets consisted of Bill Gleason ( 1b), McManus (2b), Jack Gleason (3b), Newell (ss), Monsel (lf), Gunsolis (cf), Glenner (rf), and a battery of Rippey (c) and Meagher (p). Newell is probably T.E. Newell.

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