Cieradkowski: Hack Wilson: Stouts takes the field

From SABR member Gary Cieradkowski at The Infinite Baseball Card Set on October 4, 2016:

Last year I began to write a story about the early career of Hack Wilson. I was always fascinated by the guy, ever since I saw a photo of him standing with Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth in a book I had as a kid. His odd physique (5′-6″ with a Ruthian barrel chest wearing a size 5 1/2 shoe) made me do a double-take, and when I learned of his amazing 191 RBI season in 1930 it made me want to learn more about this odd guy. Wilson and the other 1920’s Cubs really came alive for me in “Mr. Wrigley’s Ballclub” by Roberts Ehrgott (a must-read for any pre-war baseball fan, I can’t recommend this book enough!) and I drew up a few versions of a Hack Wilson minor league card. However, to use a real flaky artist term, none of them “felt” right to me and I never got around to finishing the story. Instead, I stumbled upon a newspaper story from the opposite end of his career and got gleefully side tracked. You can read that story HERE, it’s become one of my favorites. So, the pre-big league Hack Wilson story got put on the shelf – that is until now. This weekend I put the finishing touches on an illustration of Hack that I felt fit him perfectly and dug up my stack of 1921-1922 newspaper clippings and notes and got to work …

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Originally published: October 4, 2016. Last Updated: October 4, 2016.