“DIARY OF A WINNER”
SPRING TRAINING WITH THE 1915 RED SOX
March 2, 1915 ... Red Sox pitchers and catchers are scheduled to arrive in Hot Springs no later than Sunday March 7th. The balance of the team will report a week later. President Joseph Lanin signed formed Boston Brave, Bill Sweeney who was released from the Cubs.
March 5, 1915
The Red Sox party arrived in St. Louis and will depart for Hot Springs
later this evening. Former Baltimore pitcher, Babe Ruth was waiting at
the depot, along with pitcher James Scott (brother of shortstop Everett
Scott) a pitcher from Saginaw, and Pat Haley, the Providence catcher.
Hick Cady was the last to show up. They were joined by pitcher Ray Collins
who lectured all on farming in Vermont and revealed that he has never
doctored a baseball.
March 6, 1915 ... Joe Lanin’s troop of Red Sox arrived at Hot Springs around 11AM today after 49 hours on the train. Dutch Leonard arrived in the evening and looked great. A small snowstorm whisked down from the Ozark mountains and top coats were needed to venture outside. There will be no attempt to practice tomorrow as more players arrive.
March 7, 1915 ... Joe Wood and his wife pulled into camp today looking fit as a fiddle. George Foster arrived today from his home in Fort Smith where he has started an apple orchard. Five pitchers arrived from Memphis: Vean Gregg, Guy Cooper, Ernie Shore, Carl Mays and Ralph Comstock. Ernie Shore taught school in North Carolina and met the others in Memphis, where they bumped into the New York Highlanders, on their way to Savannah, GA. President Lanin is very interested in seeing how pitcher Vean Gregg does. Comstock and Mays are great members. Mays won 24 of the 32 games he pitched last year and Comstock finished the season very strong. The first workout is scheduled for tomorrow.
March 8, 1915 ... Eleven pitchers, four catchers and two infielders, Heinie Wagner and Bill Sweeney took part in the first workout today. The weather is still cold and the players wore sweaters. The workout consisted of throwing the ball around and a little fungo hitting. Manager Bill Carrigan and Heinie Wagner led the players on an afternoon hike for five miles before returning to the hotel. Carrigan met with the team in his room and expressed his thoughts that the team has an excellent chance to have a great record and that giving the extra effort starts here. Bill Sweeney expressed how glad he is to be with the Red Sox and how he felt that the fans did not give the Braves much support at South End Grounds.
March 9, 1915 ... With temperatures around 40 degrees the Red Sox held a two hour light workout. Bill Carrigan advised his pitchers not to take chances and possibly hurt their arms. Joe Wood hit fungos to players in the outfield. Heine Wagner was playing long toss, throwing the ball from third base to Dutch Leonard at first. Wagner’s arm has made remarkable progress, considering a year ago he could barely cut his meat at the dining room table. Now Wagner is the first man in uniform on the practice field. It looks as if the veteran shortstop could be a big asset this season. Now if they can get some warm weather the Sox are hoping they can then start getting in good shape. This year Bill Carrigan wants his batters to see a variety of curves and shoots, holding back the speed until the finishing touches are put on, breaking from the philosophy of past years. Joe Wood and Vean Gregg have made no effort to pitch. Carl Mays, who made a great impression in Providence last year looks like a natural ball player, with a McGinnty type underhand delivery to could bother the opposing hitters. President Lanin hosted the Boston writers on the golf course and tonight he took the party to a minstrel show at the Elks club. The Pittsburgh Pirates are due in town next Monday.
March 10, 1915 ... The weather warmed up and the Red Sox were able to have a good workout, walking two miles to the park and walking back via the mountain roads. The work consisted of bunting, running the bases, loosening up by the pitchers and infield work by Bill Sweeney, Heinie Wagner, and Germany Schaefer. Ray Collins was able to cut loose and looked great. Dutch Leonard pitched well but then was suffering from leg cramps, but still walked back, forgoing the mountain hike.
March 11, 1915 ... The temperatures got into the 50s today and the squad was able to have a great workout. Pitcher Ralph Comstock was in civilian clothes suffering from a strain, while all the other players worked freely. Carl Mays was noticed, pitching freely, with his riser pitch being very impressive. President Lanin also noted how adept Mays also is, with the bat. All the players rode back from the ballpark with the exception of Joe Wood and George Foster, who ran the full distance. Dick Hoblitzell and his wife arrived from Cincinnati, where he has a dentistry practice with his brother. Hobby makes the 18th player to arrive in camp with 13 more due over the weekend.
March 12, 1915 ... Larry Gardner, Harold Janvrin, Olaf Henriksen, members of the Red Sox staff and several members of the Providence Grays club left for Hot Springs from South Station this morning. When the party arrives in St. Louis they will meet up with Everett Scott, Del Gainer, M.J. McNally, Larry Pratt, and Charley Shorten, who led the New England League in batting last year. Tris Speaker, Harry Hooper, Duffy Lewis, Walter Rehg, Guy Tutweiler and Robert Gill will all go directly from their homes to Hot Springs. A full squad workout is scheduled for Monday. Back in Boston, the Red Sox staff is in the process of moving from their Devonshire Street office, to Fenway Park. The Braves are also setting up office space at Fenway Park. At Hot Springs the Sox drilled on pitchers covering first base, an art which manager Carrigan feels needs to be stressed. Another area the Carrigan is working on is the fielding of the pitchers on slow grounders. The team ran back and forth to the field today, with many wrapped up to lose weight, and improve their wind. Germany Schaefer left to day to join his club, the Kansas City Federals.
March 13, 1915 ... With a 60 degree temperature at Majestic Park today, manager Bill Carrigan pushed his troops to all they could stand. This week has been pretty much devoted to the pitchers and they should now be ready to take part in the full squad workouts. The pitchers all took their turn in the box with Carrigan watching them and coaching them on fielding bunts and covering first base. The Red Sox pitching staff is one of the finest ones ever assembled and they were worked very hard today. Carrigan, himself is rounding into shape and will catch Dutch Leonard and Ray Collins and leave the fast right handers to Hick Cady and Pinch Thomas, with Pat Haley as the extra man. Of the new pitchers, Carl Mays has made the biggest hit with the veterans. Charles Scott, brother of the Red Sox shortstop looks strong, and Ralph Comstock may not make the cut. The Sox plan on going with eight pitchers this season. This has been a hard week for trainer Green with an assortment of aches and pains for him to deal with Most of the pitchers are over six feet tall, and he is a small man, but with a lot of experience. Majestic Park has become a first rate ballpark and has had a lot of construction done to it to meet the needs of the Red Sox. Joe Wood confirmed that he is not sure about the condition of his throwing arm. Two years ago he sprained his thumb and last year was recovering from a serious operation. Right now his arm is lame, but probably will come around as the muscles are worked.
March 15, 1915 ... Rain set in and workouts were canceled for the day, including a mountain hike scheduled for the afternoon. The club is in fine physical shape with players getting down to weight. Ernie Shore feels he needs to add some weight. Vean Gregg, who is a plasterer by trade and stays in great shape. Shore is a schoolmaster in rural North Carolina and a part time farmer. Every morning the players meet with Bill Carrigan and suggestions and thoughts about the team are tossed around. The Pirates players arrived this morning, with Honus Wagner as full of fight as ever.
March 16, 1915 ... 36 players were on hand for the first official workout of the season. Thirty were Red Sox players and six are members of the Providence ball club. Each of the pitchers worked against the batters. Ray Collins, Babe Ruth and Dutch Leonard looked sharp. Guy Cooper had nothing on his ball, while Ernie Shore and Rube Foster would not throw curves yet. Joe Wood was last and just lobbed the ball in and grimaced with every throw. Vean Gregg is pacing his arm and knows at what point to start cutting loose. The big surprise is Ray Collins, who usually paces his workouts but is far ahead of his own schedule. The regulars had a good workout. Larry Gardner, Everett Scott and Hal Janvrin were in good form. Everett Scoot fielded his position greatly, with Dick Hoblitzell in form at first base. Duffy Lewis, Tris Speaker and Olaf Henriksen worked in the outfield. Speaker is several ponds overweight and looked very rusty. He looks like he as aged ten years. Lewis played ball over the winter in California and appeared to be in great shape. Carrigan and Hick Cady caught most of the session and both threw well to the bases. Later, Heinie Wagner brought out his “Yannigans” for fielding practice, with Del Gainor at first, Bill Sweeney at second, Mike McNally at short, and Bob Gill at third. Sweeney played with full enjoyment and Gainor showed no signs of a lame arm. It was obvious that Bill Carrigan is playing a lot of attention to his backups. Starting Thursday the Red Sox will start playing daily games after taking a full hour’s practice.
March 17, 1915 ... The Red Sox had three hours of practice under warm spring skies. After practice the Boston party headed to the splendid new racetrack, and enjoyed a town all decorated for St. Patrick’s Day. Heinie Wagner started for the ballpark early to work out his second string “Yannigans” while Bill Carrigan and his regulars left for the ball park at 11AM. Each team has fielding and batting practice. Joe Wood appears to be weaker than when he first arrived and it is discouraging to think he may be of little use this season. The Boston regulars looked sharp in fielding practice, while the rookies were way off in their infield work. Bill Sweeney and Heinie Wagner looked in better condition than the rest of their youngsters.
March 18, 1915 ... Under warm spring skies the Red Sox regulars beat the second string “Yannigans” 7-2. Carl Mays and Babe Ruth pitched for the regulars while Ernie Shore and Ray Collins pitched for the Yannigans. Olaf Henriksen singled twice and hit a double for the regulars, while Del Gainor led the second stringers with a double and a triple. Hick Cady and Pinch Thomas caught for the Regulars until Thomas left the game after a ball caught his finger. There was a large crowd from Boston on hand to watch the game.
March 19, 1915 ... Snow squalls reminded the players that it was still early in the spring this morning. After an hour workout the Regulars squared of against the Yannigans again. At the close of the fourth inning the game was deemed over as Bill Carrigan decided it was just too cold to continue. It was 8-6 in favor of the Regulars. Hal Janvrin, Tris Speaker, Mike McNally, and Wally Rehg all had three hits at the time. The regular infield continued with a light workout.
March 20, 1915 ... Today was a rainy and wet day, keeping most of the players in the hotel. The temperature hovered in the mid thirties, so at 11AM, Bill Carrigan and a group of 36 players and writers went on an eight mile hike, skirting the mountains to a beautiful valley with a small running stream. It was after 3PM when the party returned in great spirits after an enjoyable day. Tris Speaker is working harder than any man on the team and it is paying off. Right now it looks like Bob Gill and pitcher Charlie Scott will be headed for Providence for more work. So anxious are the Pirates to get going, that they did have a workout today in the cold. A new Arkansas law, makes Sunday baseball not allowed, so the Pittsburgh and Boston players will go to church, go fishing, horseback riding or playing golf. Walter Rehg’s knee is still bothering him and resulted in a visit to the doctor. Former Red Sox veteran, Freddy Parent arrived today from Maine and plans on working out with the team, in hopes of landing a spot with some major league club. Buck O’Brien may be arriving soon in hopes of connecting up with the Providence club. There are nine Grays players here and another four or five Red Sox players are expected to be dealt down to the farm team. Last season, the Grays won their championship and President Lanin will see that they have a strong team again this season. President Lanin received a letter today asking that the old Huntington Avenue Grounds be allowed to have amateur league baseball games played there this season. There was an agreement that the old ballpark not be used for baseball to protect the interests of the Red Sox.
March 22, 1915 ... The thermometer hovered around 30 degrees, but manager Bill Carrigan decided to have his boys start a noon time workout and take a short hike over the mountains. The Providence players joined the Red Sox for the morning meeting. Every day two or three Providence players join the squad and the mix-up becomes greater. Joe Wood and Heinie Wagner remained at the hotel with Dick Hoblitzell who is nursing a bad cold. Carrigan is in favor of working out in the cold weather because he feels it will acclimate the players for playing in the cold of an April in Boston. President Lannin is in great shape and usually walks to and from the park and is the first one there each morning. He is especially interested in the younger players. He is not only the supreme fan but also a very good judge of talent. He not only owns the Red Sox but also the Providence Grays club. Bill Carrigan and he have great interest in the Grays, because the Red Sox have many good players that they will send down to Providence and can keep a watch on.
March 23, 1915 ... The day was again cold, and after an hour workout, manager Carrigan wanted to have another ball game. Babe Ruth pitched for the regulars with Scott pitching for the Wagner team. In the third inning Ruth retired the side in order and then took a bat and drilled the ball over the right center fence. After that Ruth was wild and gave up seven runs, hitting two batters with pitched balls. The Yannigans scored two runs off Carl Mays and then settled down for three innings looking like a true veteran. Guy Cooper than finished for the Yannigans and limited the regulars to one hit by Duffy Lewis. Considering the weather, the workout and game was very enjoyable. The players returned in a well heated car. Providence manager Dave Shean learned that the governor of Rhode Island and the mayor of Providence plan a celebration for the champion Grays when the season begins.
March 24, 1915 ... The Yannigans behind Dutch Leonard and Ray Collins beat the regulars 6-2 in eight innings under warm skies in Hot Springs. Collins pitched the first four innings and Leonard the last four, while Ernie Shore and Ray Comstock split the duties for the veterans. Olak Henriksen wielded the hot bat for the regulars, while Tutweiler and Gainor were hot for the Yans. Dave Shean had the Grays working out before the Red Sox reached the park, with Freddie Parent playing some shortstop. The Grays will leave for Providence in a week and will be back in Providence on April 5th.
March 25, 1915
In a sharp game the regulars beat the Yans 2-0. With another warm day, the players let it all out for what they were worth. The fielding was sensational and the battle was close for six
innings. In the seventh Tris Speaker got on base. Duffy Lewis doubled him in and Everett Scott knocked in Lewis for the two runs. It was the first appearance for both Rube Foster and Vean Gregg. Both men pitched very well and were relieved by Carl Mays and Guy Cooper. Larry Gardner,
Everett Scott and Dick Hoblitzell were strong in the infield while Hal Janvrin was still taking it easy at second base. Joe Wood worked against batters for 15 minutes and looks to be making some progress. His hitting and fielding are just fine and he is working very hard. Heinie Wagner
and Bill Sweeney both fielded well, although Sweeney has not yet come around with his batting.
March 26, 1915 ... With weather again not cooperating both managers Carrigan and Shean ordered their troops to follow on a hike through the mountains. All the Red Sox were there except Heinie Wagner who is working out at his own pace. A few of the Royal Rooters came along for the hike. The Red Sox have a good following in the Rooters. The Rooters numbered 74 in one hotel and on the streets many, many more can be seen congregating and enjoying themselves. There is no hint as to which players will be sent down to Providence. Pitcher Ralph Comstock said that he would not return to Providence if he did not make the Red Sox club. Del Gainor is the surprise of the camp thus far and could be a valuable asset because of his speed. There are five more days left in camp, and everyone hopes for good weather.
March 27, 1915 ... The Yannigans, led by Bill Carrigan beat the Red Sox 4-1, in a seven inning game. The Yans had Doutch Leonard and Babe Ruth pitch and both threw the ball as if they were in mid-season form. Ralph Comstock and Guy Cooper pitched for the Red Sox and were clearly outclassed. The morning was very cold and the men did not start the game until 2:30, having arrived at the park at 1PM. After the weather warmed and the field dried out, the team had one of the best workout of the spring, showing the great physical shape they are in. Joe Wood and Vean Gregg had a good workout and both were pleased with their progress. All of the young players look great, but the decision on who will go to the Providence club has to be made in the next few days. Harry Hooper is scheduled to arrive tomorrow.
March 28, 1915 ... Harry Hooper arrived today from his home in California. He played some ball in San Jose and appears to be in great shape. The weather was fine and many players went to Whittington Ball Park to watch the Pirates in a practice game. As usual about five or six boys went fishing with Rube Foster making the catch of the day, a beautiful red snapper. Bill Carrigan had planned a workout today, but since he was so pleased with yesterday's game, he decided to give everyone the day off.
March 29, 1915 ... After a great two hour workout at the ballpark, the Red Sox and the Yannigans started a ball game, but were forced to call it quits in the fourth inning when a cold drizzle settled in. Rube Foster pitched for the Regulars and Ernie Shore for the Yans. All the pitchers got some work, with the exception of Joe Wood, who played the outfield. Robert Gill complained of a lame arm, but is working through it. Chances are he will be shipped to the Providence club. Vean Gregg made a good showing for the time he worked. Larry Pratt has been a strong catcher. His throwing to bases has been much better than all the others. Guy Tutweiler continues to impress in the outfield and M.J. McNally is full of pep and covers a lot of ground in the infield. Bill Sweeney is great in the field, but his hitting is suspect. Harry Hooper went to work today, as if he had never missed a beat and appears to be in great shape. Freddie Parent will remain for another 10 days. He has an offer from St. Louis in the Federal League, but would like to stay on the east coast.
March 30, 1915 ... Bad weather moved in today and lasted all day. At 10AM all of the players on last year's team were called to Bill Carrigan's room. The others who were sitting in the lobby all had the look of wondering what was in store for them. Manager, Dave Shean of the Providence club is anxiously awaiting to see who will be handed over to him. About 4PM a snow storm broke out and the superintendent at the ball park sent word over that the field would not be in shape to use tomorrow. This probably will mean a long hike over the mountains, because Carrigan clearly sees the need to keep the men in shape. The Pirates will probably workout tomorrow, but it appears they do not have a strong ball club this year. Bill Sweeney was given his unconditional release today.
March 31, 1915 ... The Boston Regulars lowered their flag to the Yannigans today by a score of 7-2. Heinie Wagner got into the game for the first time this spring at second base and fielded the position superbly, accepting 11 chances. Olaf Heriksen was the star at the plate with a double and a triple. Rube Foster and Guy Cooper were the pitchers who were hit hard. President Lanin left today for Memphis and will leave from there to Boston. Bill Sweeney left today for Memphis also, where he plans to meet with Hughie Jennings of the Tigers.
April 1, 1915 ... In the farewell game here this afternoon, the Red Sox regulars beat the Yannigans, 7-1. The first five innings were a pitcher's duel between Ray Collins and Dutch Leonard, who were pitching as if it was the last game of the World Series. The last four innings belonged to Babe Ruth for the regulars and Ralph Comstock for the Yannigans. The weather was warm and the squad had a great workout. Both Joe Wood and Vean Gregg pitched to batters and looked fairly good. Heinie Wagner againd played second base and shined in the field for the second straight day. The players worked on sliding for a good portion of the day. Manager Carrigan told the players today that would be sent back east with the Providence Greys. They are pitcher Charley Scott, third baseman Robert Gill, and Charles Shorten. Three other players are scheduled to be sent to Providence but that decision has not been made yet.
April 2, 1915 ... The Red Sox broke camp and headed to Memphis. After a six hour train ride, they arrived at 7PM. The Red Sox arrived at the Peabody Hotel, just as the Detroit Tigers were leaving for a train to Louisville. There was a grand farewell reception at the hotel in Hot Springs for the team and a huge crowd of locals at the station to send off the team and wish them luck.
April 3, 1915 ... The Red Sox beat the Memphis team here today, 7-2 on a cold and blustery afternoon. Ernie Shore started for the Sox and was found for three hits. Ditch Leonard pitched four perfect innings in relief, striking the side out in the seventh inning. The Sox scored four runs in the third inning on hits by Shore, Tris Speaker, Dick Hoblitzell, Everett Scott and Larry Gardner. Manager Carrigan had a two hour workout before the game. Rube Foster has his wife and two children with him for the rest of the trip.
April 4, 1915 ... With fine weather and a large crowd, the Red Sox bombed the Memphis team by a score of 10-2. When the game was well in hand, the regulars started dropping out of the lineup to give the bench players some work. Dick Hoblitzell left the game with a groin strain, and his replacement, Del Gainor played a clever first base. Ray Collins started the game and went five innings, with Carl Mays pitching the last four. Collins held the Turtles to five scattered hits and Mays struck out six in his four innings. The Red Sox put the game on ice in the seventh inning, scoring six runs.
April 5, 1915 ... The Sox made it three straight by beating the Turtles, 10-5. Tris Speaker had three doubles while Babe Ruth allowed just one hit in five innings and Rube Foster allowed only three hits although he was wild and didn't receive good support in the field. The day was very warm and the team had a two hour workout before the start. The Sox have scored 45 runs in the three games. The team left for Louisville tonight for three more games. Joe Wood and Vean Gregg are still not up to form and it's starting to look like the can't be counted on at the start of the season.
April 6, 1915 ... The Louisville Colonels hustled and beat the Red Sox 5-2. The Sox looked lazy, were guilty of poor base running and never on edge. Guy Cooper pitched the first five innings and was very wild and hit hard. Ralph Comstock worked the last three innings and did well. After arriving at the Watterson Hotel, Bill Carrigan called a team meeting and three of the younger players broke team rules in Memphis and were fined.
April 7, 1915 ... The Colonels held the lead until the eighth inning, but the Sox rallied and took the game 3-1 behind the hitting of Tris Speaker. Ernie Shore and Dutch Leonard both pitched well allowing just one run, which looked like it would be enough for the Louisville boys. Joe Wood pitched on the side and had a fine workout, showing considerable smoke.
April 8, 1915 ... The Louisville team held down the Sox today and refused to lose. Behind Carl Mays, the Sox took a 2-0 lead but the Colonels came back to tie the game and it lasted until the 11th inning when the game was finally ended. Dick Hoblitzell is still sidelined but is aiming to start when the team opens the season in Philadelphia.
April 9, 1915 ... With two down in the sixth inning and down by two runs, the Red Sox rallied against the Cincinnati Redbirds and tied the score on a triple by Rube Foster, a single by Harry Hooper, a pass, and a single by Tris Speaker to tie the game. The winning run was scored on hits by Larry Gardner and pinch hitter Wally Rehg. Dutch Leonard was wild and had nothing on his pitches. The Sox arrived in Cincinnati at noon and had no time to practice. Dick Hoblitzell was on the coaching lines during the 3-2 win.
April 10, 1915 ... The Red Sox surrendered to the Red Birds by a 3-1 score in eight innings. The Reds scored their runs on walks, steals and timely hits. Babe Ruth failed to show his good stuff in the loss. Vean Gregg left for Boston, as it is evident that right now he is of no value to the Red Sox. Ex Red Sox pitcher Jesse Tannehill was at the ballpark and is hoping to get an umpiring job. Dutch Leonard probably will not be pitching soon as he is has a sore arm.
April 11, 1915 ... Cincinnati defeated the Sox 2-0 on a game where the boys showed no fight and no interest. Shore, Collins, and Mays pitched well, but the Sox bats were silent. Manager Carrigan made his final cut by sending Guy Cooper, Larry Pratt, and Guy Tutweiler to Providence. He chose Pat Haley to stay with the club as one of his catchers. Heinie Wagner, Ray Collins, Ernie Shore, Dutch Leonard and Hick Cady will leave early for Philadelphia ahead of the rest of the team.
April 13, 1915 ... The Red Sox arrived in Richmond last evening at 7PM and won their final exhibition game today by a 5-0 shutout. Pat Haley caught the full game and was impressive. Rube Foster pitched four innings and Ralph Comstock finished the last five, making a fair showing. The team continued to be slumping at the plate. The Sox had a full hour of practice before the game, and hopefully will come back to life once the games are meaningful.