Scott: It happens every spring in Cleveland

From SABR member David A. Scott at on April 8, 2020:

Spring in Northeast Ohio! The sap runs from Maple trees in Geauga County and elsewhere. Winter fades way too slowly for everyone, and baseball fans really want to believe sweet talk from the Indians.

It was Indians owner Jim Dunn’s turn on March 20, 1920, when he came back from the south with a story to tell, tickets to sell and hope to spread.

“My recent trip to New Orleans was worthwhile simply for me to see the happy family way in which the boys are working,” he said. “I never saw a training squad going at its work in such an enthusiastic way, and with such a start I cannot see anything but success for the Indians.”

Shed for a moment what you know about the 1920 season and think about how it must have felt to be an Indians fan back then. You had only a vague idea what happened in spring training. No TV. There were no radio stations and if you had a radio, you probably were a wealthy hobbyist. Most of what you knew came from the newspapers that had few spring accounts and a scattering of photographs that appeared to be selected because they were in focus more than because they demonstrated a player’s athletic ability. Most pictures were of players close to the baseline and therefore close to the photographer who was standing dangerously near the action.

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Originally published: April 8, 2020. Last Updated: April 8, 2020.