Shieber: Frank Chance and the devil

From SABR member Tom Shieber at Baseball Researcher on September 12, 2017:

The baseball photographs at the Explore Chicago Collections web site are wonderful. This is one of my favorites.


I first saw the photo around five years ago and my initial reaction was “What the hell?” And that has basically been my reaction every time I revisited the photo, as I tried to solve the mystery behind just what is going on. It has taken me a while to crack this nut, but here’s what I’ve determined …

The description at the Explore Chicago Collections web site states the photo depicts “Frank Chance, Cubs baseball player, standing with a person dressed in a devil’s costume on the field of the West Side baseball grounds.” There’s no question that the player is Cubs first baseman Frank Chance. And, while I’m not overly familiar with the devil, the fellow at right seems to fit the bill. But the ballpark doesn’t look to me like West Side Park, the Cubs home field from 1893 through 1915.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: September 13, 2017. Last Updated: September 13, 2017.