Cieradkowski: Dobie Moore: Not all cats land on their feet

From SABR member Gary Cieradkowski Jr. at The Infinite Baseball Card Set on February 11, 2014:

May 18, 1926.

The Kansas City Monarchs won again that afternoon, and befitting their name, the team went out to celebrate in regal style. The Monarchs were the class-act of blackball, the most professional and talented of ball clubs and its players were welcomed everywhere they went in black Kansas City. Ragtime was transitioning into jazz and the though prohibition was law of the land, liquor flowed freely in KayCee if you knew where to look. The town was theirs.

At the head of the party looking to celebrate was their star shortstop, Walter “Dobie” Moore, known to fans as “The Black Cat”. Loud and boisterous, Moore was not shy about shooting his mouth off to criticize his teammates, his big size – 200 lbs and just shy of 6 foot – enabling him to back up most anything that passed his lips. But that night there was no reason to criticize anything – the Monarchs had beat the Chicago American Giants, Moore was batting .415, in the prime of his career, and the night was young. 

Though he was married, the best shortstop in the game wasn’t adverse to stepping out and conveniently his current girlfriend, Elsie Brown, was owner of a popular brothel. So naturally “The Black Cat” led his boys over to Elsie’s to cap off the evening. In retrospect it’s not too hard to see how a cocky, hot-headed ball player, souped up on illegal liquor, could get into an argument with his brothel-owning girlfriend, and according to Elsie, that’s exactly what went down that night.

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Originally published: February 11, 2014. Last Updated: February 11, 2014.