Saturday, January 18, 2014

JOBC Cubs Almanac--January 18

Today's Featured Cub: Dirty Jack Doyle

On this day in 1901, the Cubs acquired a catcher/infielder/outfielder named Dirty Jack Doyle. His colorful life story, including his stint with the Cubs, and the origin of his nickname, is told wonderfully by the Baseball Biography Project.

You can read it here.

Today's Featured Baseball Card: Billy Grabarkewitz

(Topps 1975 Baseball Card)

Billy Grabarkewitz was born on this day in 1946. Doesn't that Cubs cap look realistic in the pre-Photoshop world? By the time the Cubs acquired the former all-star second baseman in 1974, he was strictly a backup. He played for the Cubs part of the 1974 season, but by the time this card came out in 1975, he had already been released.

The stats on the back of the card are from the 1974 season and read as follows: 155 at bats, 35 hits, 3 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, 14 RBI, and a .226 batting average.

Nickname of the Day: Babe

The Cubs have had lots of players nicknamed "Babe" over the years, but unfortunately none of their last names were Ruth. One of the "Babes" on the Cubs was born on this day in 1896. Babe Twombly played for the Cubs in 1920 and 1921 and hit over .300 in a part-time role, but he never managed to secure a full-time slot. He probably got the nickname "Babe" because his big brother "Silent George" Twombly was already a big leaguer when Babe came to the Cubs.

He passed away in California in 1974.

Other Cubs Birthdays

-Charlie Eden 1855 (White Stockings 1882)
He was a second baseman in Chicago for one season and later also played in Cleveland and Pittsburgh, but is apparently no relation to "I Dream of Jeannie" star Barbara Eden.

~Dave Geisel 1955 (Cubs 1978-1981)
Geisel pitched for the Cubs for three seasons, and later also pitched for the Blue Jays and Mariners, and probably never knew that another Cub was born exactly one hundred years before he was. Although he would have understood the "I Dream of Jeannie" reference.

A/V Club
Now that the show has been mentioned twice, it's obvious we have to show a clip. But can we find a Cubs connection? Yes we can. This clip features a cameo from a famous Cubs fan who attended many games at Cubs Park when he lived in Chicago in the late teens and early twenties.