After a standout season in Class B ball, outfielder Jules Kustus got the attention of various major league clubs and landed an extended tryout with the 1909 Brooklyn Superbas. Regrettably, he flunked the audition, batting an anemic .145 in 53 games. Remanded to the minors, Kustus played well in spots but found efforts to secure an encore in the big leagues hampered by health setbacks – recurring bouts of malaria, then pneumonia, and finally the tuberculosis that claimed his life at age 33. The story of this obscure Deadballer follows.
Our subject was born Joseph Julius Kustusch in Detroit on September 5, 1882. Like his father and younger brother August, also a professional ballplayer, he sometimes shortened his surname to Kustus, the name under which he played baseball. Jules, as he was often called,1 was the second of six children2 born to bricklayer-carpenter Anton Kustusch (1848-1926) and his wife Elisabeth (née Fleming, 1847-1911). Both were ethnic German Catholic immigrants born in present-day Poland.
By age 14, Jules had entered the local work force as a common laborer.3 He was still a teenager when his name began appearing in newsprint as an outfielder for various Detroit amateur nines.4 Kustus returned to the amateur ranks in 1902, playing for the Byron Iron Works club. In late June, he went 2-for-4r off another Detroit prospect, future Black Sox ringleader Eddie Cicotte.5 A month later, it was reported that Kustus had been signed by the Battle Creek club of the independent professional Michigan State League.6 But no account of his actually playing for Battle Creek has been discovered. He spent the latter part of the summer playing for Selling and May, a top-notch amateur club sponsored by a Detroit clothing store.7
The ensuing summers yielded modest, if fitful, progress in Kustus’s career. In addition to returning to the Selling and May club and seeing action with the Detroit Wheelmen, both members of the amateur Detroit City League, he started receiving engagements from area semipro clubs during the 1903 season. This allowed exhibition of his talents across a wider area, with his work at first base for the semipro Detroit Independents drawing praise from an Upper Peninsula newspaper. “Kustus at first …is the goods,” opined the Sault Ste. Marie Evening News in late July.8 Kustus began the following April playing independent professional baseball for a club in Marietta, Ohio.9 He evidently performed well, as Marietta manager L.E. Anderson “highly recommended … center fielder Kustus” to local rivals when Marietta folded in late July.10 Without takers, Kustus was soon back in the Detroit City League playing amateur ball for the Hillsides.11
In April 1905, Kustus’s professional career began in earnest when he signed with the Zanesville (Ohio) Moguls of the then-independent Ohio-Pennsylvania (O-P) League.12 The circuit was admitted into the National Association in late July and assigned Class C status,13 making Kustus a member of Organized Baseball in the process. Although Moguls manager Ferd Drumm originally signed Kustus as a shortstop, Drumm declared that “Mollie” Kustus “is a star [who] can play any position.”14 In the early going, Kustus filled in at short and second base, but for the most part Drumm stationed Kustus in right field, where he fielded “elegantly”15 and displayed a powerful and accurate throwing arm. He also hit well, posting a .291 batting average16 for the third-place (51-36, .586) Moguls. Shortly thereafter, Zanesville reserved him for the 1906 season.17 A personal highlight, however, occurred after the O-P League season had concluded. An October exhibition contest against the National League’s Pittsburgh Pirates ended with the bases loaded when a last stride Kustus catch of a Honus Wagner drive to deep left field preserved a 6-4 Zanesville upset.18 The game’s hero then went home to Detroit, where he spent the winter working in a cereal mill.19
Although Kustus was obligated to return to Zanesville, his services were aggressively pursued by the Augusta (Georgia) Tourists of the Class C South Atlantic League.20 And a month prior to the start of the 1906 season, the Tourists got their man in return for an undisclosed amount of cash sent to Zanesville.21 In its Opening Day lineup report, the Augusta Chronicle described “Jules Kustus, center field” as “height, 6 feet; weight, 180 pounds; bats right-handed; throws right-handed.”22 He was also included in discussion of the best-looking player in the SALLY League.23
Kustus came within .004 of leading the Augusta club in batting average – by hitting .220. Catcher Tom Carson’s .224 was team best,24 with the other regulars finishing between .134 and .218. Kustus’s average was slightly above the norm for the 1906 South Atlantic League, a no-offense circuit even by Deadball Era standards. Of the 104 batting averages published by the league office, 51 (or 49%) were below .200.25 In addition to providing competent (by SAL norms) batting, “there is no truer thrower in the league nor faster center fielder” than Kustus, proclaimed the Tourists’ hometown newspaper.26 During the off-season, the Augusta Chronicle lavished more praise, declaring, “If Kustus improves at the bat he will be the most valuable outfielder in the SAL this season. The Detroit boy can field with the best [but] unfortunately he has a habit of chasing out-curves almost to first base.”27
If numbers are any guide, Kustus proved unable to lay off those out-curves, as he posted another .220 batting average for Augusta in 1907. Yet he must have made a good impression on those who saw him in the flesh, because he was drafted at season’s end by the Memphis Egyptians of the Class A Southern League.28 In the estimation of the Detroit Times, Kustus “has proven himself in the top class of [the SAL], has fielded finely, thrown sensationally and batted fairly well. He is about as fast as they make them too.”29 A Memphis daily concurred, describing the Egyptians’ new recruit as “the most rapidly developed piece of baseball material” in the South Atlantic League.30
Kustus never received the chance to show his wares in Memphis. Only shortly after acquiring the SAL alumnus, the Egyptians traded him to the Evansville (Indiana) River Rats of the Class B Central League. In return, Memphis received disaffected Evansville outfielder Bill Donahue.31 Memphis’ loss proved Evansville’s gain: Kustus had a breakout season in 1908. He debuted memorably for the River Rats, “with one of his low wide swings loft[ing] the ball clear of the left field fence” for a home run in a 6-2 defeat of Grand Rapids.32 And he kept on hitting from there. At the season’s midway point, he led the Central League in batting with a .337 mark.33
Kustus’s work did not go unnoticed, with both American and National League clubs inquiring with Evansville club officials about his availability.34 Initially, the rights to Kustus were acquired by the Cincinnati Reds.35 Club boss Garry Herrmann then either released or sold – accounts vary – Kustus to the Brooklyn Superbas.36 Press commentary on the transaction included infantile humor about the Superbas acquiring a player named Julius, with the Brooklyn Citizen being the worst offender.37 The press also circulated the outlandish claim that Kustus had already clouted 21 homers for Evansville.38 He actually hit five for the 1908 season. In any case, it was agreed that Kustus would remain in Evansville until the conclusion of the Central League campaign.39
During the second half of the season, Kustus’s batting tailed off. He hit only .258 (64-for-254) after the mid-point. Still, his overall numbers were excellent. In 140 games, he batted .295, with 34 extra-base hits,40 80 runs scored, and 38 stolen bases. And his outfield defense was sterling (.990 fielding percentage, with just three errors in 275 chances, plus 14 assists).41 The seventh-place (53-101, .344) Brooklyn club had an incumbent outfield of Billy Maloney (.195), Al Burch (.243), and Harry Lumley (.216). Thus, Kustus’s prospects for a future with the Superbas seemed excellent.
He and Evansville catcher Joe Dunn reached Brooklyn before the National League campaign ended but saw no regular season action. Rather, the two got their chance months thereafter at spring training in Jacksonville, Florida. Kustus got off well in camp, the Brooklyn Eagle declaring that “Julius Caesar Kustus is … a fine specimen of physical manhood … a good fielder, fast runner and stands up at the bat like a finished swatter.”42 Also favorably impressed was Sporting Life’s club correspondent who informed the Brooklyn faithful that “outfielder Kustus … is playing great and [playing manager] Lumley believes that he has found a man who will be a help to the Superbas for years to come.”43 When camp broke, Kustus headed north with the ballclub.
Jules Kustus made his major league debut on April 17, 1909, appearing as a ninth-inning pinch-hitter in a 5-1 road loss to the Boston Doves. He struck out.44 Two days later, he replaced Al Burch in left field in mid-game after Burch had been ejected. He got his first major league base hit, a double off right-hander Bill Chappelle in a 3-2 loss to Boston. Kustus got his first start on April 24, taking over in right field for injured manager Lumley. He went 0-for-2 at the plate but drew raves for his defensive play in a 2-0 Superbas victory over the New York Giants. “Kustus … played a star game in right field,” the Brooklyn Citizen reported. “He made a grand throw to the plate in the fourth that pinched [Fred] Tenney. All three fly balls that went out his way were hard chances, but he got them all. At bat he looked good, too. He didn’t get a hit” but contributed to the Brooklyn cause with a run-producing sacrifice bunt.45 Kudos also came Kustus’s way in another hometown game account. “The new find played a great fielding game, making three brilliant catches and a sensational throw to the plate. … Kustus hit the ball hard, but with no luck,” said the Brooklyn Eagle.46 Not to be outdone, the Brooklyn Standard Union described Kustus’s run-squelching strike from right field as “as pretty a throw as the most fastidious could dream of, much less yearn to see in all its perfect realization.”47
Kustus registered his first RBI and stolen base during a 6-1 win over Philadelphia on April 28. Continuing in the everyday lineup in Lumley’s absence, he played well in the outfield but did not hit. Before he blasted a late-game home run on May 13 to make Superbas staff ace Nap Rucker a 2-1 winner over St. Louis, Kustus had managed only a single base hit in his previous 23 at-bats. Kustus’s blow was also the first round-tripper hit by a Brooklyn batsman that season.48
Manager Lumley stuck with Kustus through his batting woes, switching him to center field when Lumley himself was able to return to the right field spot. Into mid-June, Kustus received 38 consecutive starting assignments. However, he batted .136 (19-for-140) with but nine RBIs. With the 17-27 (.386) Superbas swiftly falling out of contention, Lumley dispatched Burch to center. Thereafter, Kustus was used only sparingly.
On July 10, Kustus went 0-for-3 in an 8-0 loss to Cincinnati in the opening game of a twin bill. A harsh game report published in the Brooklyn Citizen lambasted his performance, declaring that “Julius Caesar, besides being a joke at the bat, played an indifferent game in the field [and] … was benched in the second game of the doubleheader.”49 The following day, Brooklyn optioned Kustus to the Rochester Hustlers of the Class A Eastern League.50 One of his boosters during spring training, Brooklyn sportswriter John B. Foster, remained hopeful. Foster wrote,, “Kustus has been sent to Rochester to see if [veteran] Hustlers manager [John] Ganzel can bring a little more base ball out of him. He started off well in Brooklyn, but it didn’t take pitchers long to find out that he had a weakness and pestered him with curveballs until he turned himself into a circle. A little hard work in the Eastern League may cure him of the curveball habit … for there are qualities about him outside of that which indicate that he will be something of a player when he has had a little more seasoning.”51
Foster’s hopes were not to be realized. The brief major league career of Jules Kustus was over. In 53 games total, he posted a paltry .145/.204/.191 slash line, with 12 runs scored, 11 RBIs, and nine stolen bases. His defense, however, had been major league quality (92 chances, six assists, five errors = .951 fielding percentage).
Unhappily for Kustus, the Rochester club, on its way to an Eastern League pennant, had little need of another outfielder. He got into only seven Hustlers contests (going 6-for-25, .240 BA) before being sold to the Syracuse Stars of the Class B New York State League.52 There he showed better form, batting .306 and fielding well (.982)53 well in 52 games. That performance was sufficient for Brooklyn to retain him on the club’s reserve list for the 1910 season.54
Over the winter, Brooklyn outrighted Kustus to Rochester. He attended the Hustlers spring camp in Anderson, South Carolina, which marked the onset of the chronic sickness that doomed his attempts to obtain a second chance in the majors. In late March 1910, he was stricken with malaria55 and sidelined for much of the preseason. Kustus was able to play some regular season games in Rochester but in early May, Rochester sold his contract to the Bridgeport Orators of the Class B Connecticut State League.56 The change of livery did not improve his health, as malarial symptoms persisted. In late June, Bridgeport manager Gene McCann granted Kustus a two-week leave of absence so that he could recuperate at home in Detroit.57
Kustus returned to the club in mid-July but without recovering either his health or playing form. Soon, he was asking skipper McCann “to either allow him another lay off, or his release.”58 When he received neither, Kustus left the club on his own, a move that promptly landed him on the Bridgeport suspended list.59 Back home in Detroit, he played the odd game for a local semipro club called the McGraw Tigers. Around this time, Kustus also formed a romantic attachment to Rose Zimmeth Oschenfeld, a 26-year-old divorcée. The two never married but apparently lived together as a common law couple for the remainder of Jules’ life.
Bridgeport kept Kustus on both its suspended and reserved lists over the ensuing off-season.60 Kustus responded by filing a grievance against the Bridgeport club, seeking back pay for the time that he was suspended and to be declared a free agent. The grievance was backhanded by minor leagues secretary John H. Farrell, finding Bridgeport’s punitive action “was well within its rights.”61 Kustus appealed, first to the National Board of Arbitration, thereafter to the National Commission, but to no avail.62 The suspension and salary loss stood.
The following April, an abashed Kustus reported to spring training with Bridgeport with “a great coat of tan and look[ed] to be in fine shape.”63 Appearances were deceiving. He lasted on the roster barely a month before being unconditionally released by the Orators.64 He returned home to Detroit and played some summer ball with a semipro club fielded by a health resort in Mt. Clemons.65 In August, Kustus returned to the Ohio-Pennsylvania League, signed by one-time Zanesville mentor Ferd Drumm, by then skipper of the Canton (Ohio) Deubers.66 This engagement also proved short-lived. Afflicted with recurring malaria-related weakness, Kustus asked for and received his release little more than a week after he arrived in Canton.67 Disappointed, manager Drumm observed that “Kustus was one of the most promising ball players I ever saw before the fever got a hold in his system.”68
Approaching age 30, Kustus was prepared to try it again the following spring, signing with the Zanesville Potters of the Class B Central League.69 Once again, ill health, this time in the form of pneumonia, thwarted a comeback.70 Two months later, the name Jos. Kustus was placed on the roster of the Wilkes-Barre Barons of the New York State League.71 But no evidence that Kustus actually suited up for Wilkes-Barre has been discovered.72 Rather, he spent the summer home in Detroit, playing an occasional game in the outfield for a club in the semipro Original Manufacturers League with his brother Chink (August).73
Kustus launched yet another comeback attempt the following year, signing with the St. Thomas (Ontario) Saints of the Class C Canadian League in April 1913.74 Against the odds, he made it through the season, batting .301 in 105 games for the third-place (56-48, .538) Saints, and leading the club in base hits (119), doubles (25), triples (12), and extra-base hits (40). He backed that campaign up with another first-rate effort for St. Thomas in 1914, batting a club-best .302 with solid outfield defense (.977 fielding percentage with 14 assists).75
Kustus returned to St. Thomas for a third season in 1915 but was dogged by health problems and released in mid-May.76 The time of Jules Kustus in Organized Baseball had come to its end. Unbeknownst to all concerned at the time, Kustus’s life was drawing to a close, as well. The arrival of spring training in 1916 found him in Detroit, living in the Kustus family home with his father and brother and employed by a neighborhood grocer.77 But ravaged by tuberculosis, he was removed to the sanitarium in Eloise, Michigan, on April 11. He died there 16 days later.78 Joseph Julius “Jules” Kustus was 33. Following funeral services conducted at Detroit’s Sacred Heart of Mary Church, his remains were interred in the family plot at the church cemetery. Survivors included father Anton and five siblings/half-siblings.
This biography was reviewed by Darren Gibson and Rory Costello and fact-checked by Bill Johnson.
Sources for the biographical info imparted above include the Kustus file at the Giamatti Research Center, National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Cooperstown, New York; US Census data and other governmental records accessed via Ancestry.com; and certain of the newspaper articles cited in the endnotes. Unless otherwise specified, stats have been taken from Baseball-Reference.
1 During his playing days, Kustus was variously known Jules, Jule, Joe, and Mollie/Molly. No contemporaneous newsprint, however, uses the Jul (or Kul) nickname ascribed to him by modern baseball reference works. For purposes of clarity, Kustus will be called Jules throughout the text herein.
2 His siblings were Jan (born 1879), Julia (1883), August (1887), Mary (1889), and a stillborn infant (1890). Kustus also had five older half-siblings from his mother’s first marriage.
3 Per the 1896 Detroit City Directory which lists him as Jos. Kustusch.
4 See e.g., “The Future Greats,” Detroit Free Press, May 5, 1901: 11, and “Amateur Baseball,” Detroit Free Press, July 21, 1901: 8; September 15, 1901: 8; and September 16, 1901: 8.
5 As reported in “Easy Victory for St. George Nine,” Detroit Free Press, June 22, 1902: 9.
6 Per “Amateur Notes,” Detroit Free Press, July 29, 1902: 2.
7 As noted in various game reports published in the local press.
8 See “Notes of the Game,” Sault Ste. Marie (Michigan) Evening News, July 27, 1903: 3.
9 As reported in “Six Local Players for Marietta Team,” Detroit Free Press, April 13, 1904: 7.
10 Per “May Sign the Marietta Men,” Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal, July 23, 1904: 5.
11 As reflected in game accounts/box scores published in the Detroit Free Press, August-October 1904.
12 See “First Game at Grant Park,” Zanesville (Ohio) Times Recorder, April 10, 1905: 5.
13 Per “The New Member,” Sporting Life, August 5, 1905: 7.
14 “Shortstop ‘Mollie’ Kustus,” Zanesville Times Recorder, May 27, 1905: 2. The “Mollie” nickname was only used by Ohio newspapers and its origin was unclear even in 1905.
15 “Notes,” Zanesville Times Recorder, May 24, 1905: 8
16 According to the Augusta (Georgia) Chronicle, April 15, 1906: 5.
17 Per “The Reserves,” Sporting Life, October 7, 1905: 14.
18 See “Wagner’s Band Walloped,” Pittsburg Post, October 10, 1905: 6, which described the Kustus catch as “the feature of the game.”
19 As reported by the Zanesville Times Recorder, December 27, 1905: 5.
20 As related by sportswriter Joe S. Jackson in the Detroit Free Press, Match 7, 1906: 10.
21 See “Kustus Sold to Augusta,” Zanesville Times Recorder, March 13, 1906: 8.
22 “What the Augusta Club Has Shown in the Past,” Augusta Chronicle, April 15, 1905: 5.
23 See “Southern People Say Detroit Boy Is Apollo of the Sally League,” Detroit Free Press, July 19, 1906: 9. See also, “Locals Are Ready,” Augusta Chronicle, March 29, 1906: 12.
25 Per official 1906 South Atlantic League stats published in the Charleston (South Carolina) Evening Post, November 6, 1906: 3. See also, “Had Poor Batters,” Augusta Chronicle, December 10, 1906: 8. Savannah’s Ed Sabrie won the SAL batting crown with a .290 BA.
26 Augusta Chronicle, August 24, 1906: 10.
27 “Baseball Gossip,” Augusta Chronicle, January 9, 1907: 12.
28 As reported in “South Atlantic Notes,” Sporting Life, January 4, 1908: 13.
29 “Sporting Notes,” Joliet (Illinois) Evening News, November 11, 1907, re-printing an item from the Detroit Times.
30 See “Kustus Has an Arm,” Memphis Commercial Appeal, December 18, 1907: 16.
31 As reported in “Donahue Goes; Kustus New One,” Evansville (Indiana) Press, January 17, 1908: 3; “Deal Is on to Trade Donahue,” Evansville (Indiana) Courier, January 17, 1908: 9. See also, “Late Notes by Wire,” Sporting Life, January 25, 1908: 2.
32 See “Evans. Trim G.R. in a 6-2 Game,” Evansville (Indiana) News-Journal, April 24, 1908: 4.
33 Per “Central League Batting Averages,” Fort Wayne (Indiana) Sentinel, July 16, 1908: 6.
34 See e.g., “Five Big League Clubs Seek French, Kustus and Dunn at End of Season,” Evansville Press, July 23, 1908: 3.
35 As reported in “Players’ Sale Is Confirmed,” Evansville Press, August 3, 1908: 3; “$3,500 Received for Kustus and Dunn,” Evansville Courier, August 2, 1908: 8; “Dunn and Kustus Sold to Reds,” Evansville News-Journal, August 2, 1908: 9.
36 See “Trade of Jordan for Lobert Would Help Strengthen Superbas,” Brooklyn Citizen, August 15, 1908: 3; “Reds and Pirates Helped the Superbas,” Brooklyn Eagle, August 11, 1908: 18. See also, “Kustus Goes to Brooklyn Team,” New Castle (Pennsylvania) Herald, August 1, 1908: 2. Acquisition of Kustus was only one aspect of an expensive new talent search then being undertaken by Brooklyn club boss Ebbets.
37 See “Superbas’ New Swatter Is Sorely in Need of a Brand New Name,” Brooklyn Citizen, July 30, 1908: 3. See also, “Brooklyn’s New Guard Has a Handicap Name,” Pittsburg Press, July 31, 1908: 16. Kustus’s middle name Julius was among the several (along with Jules, Jule, Joe, etc.) first names used for the player by the sports press.
38 Same as above.
39 See the news articles cited in endnote 35, above, and the (Brooklyn) Standard Union, September 5, 1908: 4.
40 According to the Brooklyn Eagle, January 10, 1909: 17, Kustus had 14 doubles, 15 triples, and five homers for Evansville in 1908.
41 Per Central League stats published in the Brooklyn Eagle, above, and 1909 Reach Official Base Ball Guide, 273.
42 Brooklyn Eagle, March 22, 1909: 26.
43 John B. Foster, “Brooklyn Bits,” Sporting Life, April 3, 1909: 8.
44 As memorialized in the game account published in the Standard Union, April 18, 1909: 6.
45 See “Superbas Shut Out Giants in Game Full of Thrills,” Brooklyn Citizen, April 25, 1909: 6. The sub-headline read “Kustus Stars for Manager Lumley and Puts Up a Star Game, Making a Pretty Throw to the Plate.”
46 “Twenty-Two Thousand Cheer as Brooklyns Win First Game,” Brooklyn Eagle, April 25, 1909: 38.
47 “Giant Throng Sees Dodgers Shut Out the Giants, 2-0,” Standard Union, April 25, 1909: 6. The article sub-caption included “Kustus Shines in Field.”
48 As a team, Brooklyn hit only 16 homers during the 1909 season.
49 “Superbas Lose Twice to Cincinnati Reds,” Brooklyn Citizen, July 11, 1909: 5.
50 As reported in the Brooklyn Times, July 14, 1909: 7; Standard Union, July 12, 1909: 8; and elsewhere.
51 John B. Foster, “Brooklyn Bits,” Sporting Life, July 24, 1909: 6.
52 See “Rochester Club Completes Sale of Catcher Erwin to Brooklyn – Kustus Released,” (Rochester) Democrat and Chronicle, August 1, 1909: 22.
53 Per the Bridgeport (Connecticut) Farmer, May 7, 1910: 7. Baseball-Reference provides no fielding stats for Kustus’s stay in Syracuse.
54 See “Major Players,” Sporting Life, October 16, 1909: 14.
55 As reported in “Another Hustler Joins Hospital List in Person of Joe Kustus,” Democrat and Chronicle, March 29, 1910: 19.
56 See “Sells Kustus to Bridgeport,” Democrat and Chronicle, May 4, 1910: 19.
57 As reported in the Bridgeport Farmer, June 28, 1910: 7.
58 According to the Bridgeport Farmer, July 28, 1910: 7.
59 Per “Farrell’s Bulletin,” Wilkes-Barre (Pennsylvania) Evening News, August 15, 1910: 5. At the time of his suspension, Kustus was batting .223 (55-for-247) in 54 games for Bridgeport.
60 Per “Ball Players Reserved,” Hartford Courant, October 4, 1910: 14; “Players Reserved Connecticut League,” Meriden (Connecticut) Journal, October 4, 1910: 8.
61 See “No Back Pay for Kustus,” Bridgeport Farmer, January 16, 1911: 8.
62 See “Players Have Obligations,” Sporting Life, March 25, 1911: 4; “Kustus’ Appeal Quashed Again,” Bridgeport Farmer, March 13, 1911: 8.
63 “Joe Kustus Reports to Grab Job in Outfield,” Bridgeport Farmer, April 12, 1911: 8.
64 Per “Kustus Released,” Norwalk (Connecticut) Hour, May 4, 1911: 11, which added that “Kustus is a quiet player and has quite a number of friends here. He is a free agent and can sign with any team he desires.”
65 Per “Kustus Located,” Detroit Times, July 7, 1911: 7.
66 See “Kustus Joins Drummer Team,” Canton (Ohio) Repository, August 4, 1911: 6.
67 As reported in the Mansfield (Ohio) News, August 14, 1911: 8; and Canton Repository, August 13, 1911: 14.
68 “Kustus Quits Owing to Sickness,” Canton Repository, August 13, 1911: 14.
69 As reported “Potters Get Molly Kustus,” Dayton (Ohio) Herald, March 23, 1912: 12; “‘Molly’ Kustus to Again Wear Zanesville Uniform,” Zanesville Times Recorder, March 19, 1912: 6.
70 Per Zanesville Times Recorder, April 20, 1912: 6. See also, Bridgeport Farmer, April 24, 1912: 11.
71 See York (Pennsylvania) Dispatch, June 4, 1912: 6; and Wilkes-Barre Evening News, June 1, 1912: 9.
72 Kustus’s name, however, appears on the post-season reserve list of the Wilkes-Barre club. See “The Reserves,” Sporting Life, October 18, 1912: 16.
73 As reported in Detroit newspapers during August 1912.
74 As reported in the Ottawa Citizen, April 23, 1913: 8.
75 Per Canadian League defensive stats published in Sporting Life, November 28, 1914: 13.
76 See “St. Thomas Gets Barbour,” Sporting Life, May 22, 1915: 2.
77 According to the 1916 Detroit City Directory.
78 As reflected in the Kustus death certificate, accessible online. The cause of death was posited as pulmonary tuberculosis.