Preston: More on Babe Didrikson during spring training 1934

From SABR member J.G. Preston at The J.G. Preston Experience on August 11, 2013:

In researching Mildred “Babe” Didrikson, who holds the record for the longest baseball throw by a woman, I learned she made appearances in exhibition games for several major league baseball teams during spring training in 1934. The only web site I’ve found that accurately lists all of her appearances is, but it offers few details. I’ve not found complete and accurate information in any published biography, and her autobiography includes one glaring piece of apparent misinformation. I’m here to share everything I can find.

Didrikson was the most famous female athlete in the country, and one of the most famous athletes period, after winning two gold medals and just missing a third in track and field in the 1932 Olympics at Los Angeles. She was also a standout basketball player and spent the winter of 1933-34 traveling the country with a basketball team, reportedly earning $1,000 a month (a staggering amount of money for the time) playing local teams in various communities. The basketball venture was put together by a promoter from Muscatine, Iowa, named Ray Doan.

When March 1934 arrived Didrikson turned to baseball as a means of earning cash, as the news broke that she would spend the summer playing with the House of David barnstorming team, with and against men.

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Originally published: August 12, 2013. Last Updated: August 12, 2013.