Tag Archives: Leo Twardy

“Rogue” Poffenberger Gains Split, Wins No. 15

On July 11 ,1940, Boots Poffenberger wins his 15th game as he holds Atlanta to three hits in the second game of a double header win 1-0 at Sulphur Dell, giving Nashville a split after the Vols loss to the Crackers 9-8 in the opener. Both games are seven inning affairs.

By the way of the win, Nashville (50-29) holds on to the Southern Association lead over Atlanta (51-34).

In the first game, Vols pitchers Leo Twardy, Russ Meers, and Johnny Sain are unable to hold Atlanta, allowing a total of 17 hits. Oris Hockett has two doubles and a homer, his eighth, and drives in five runs for Nashville as Johnny Mihalic adds two doubles. Bob Boken’s 20-game hitting streak is halted when he fails to get a hit in the first game.

In the second game, Mihalic hits two more doubles and scores the game’s lone run on a single down the right field line by Arnold Moser.

Known for his heavy drinking and poor training habits during two seasons with the Detroit Tigers (1937-38) and three games with Brooklyn in 1939, Nashville manager Larry Gilbert took a chance on the temperamental Poffenberger. After his splendid 1940 season (26-9), he would face manager Gilbert’s ire the next season.

Boots’ win total would be a league record that would never be matched, but he gained notoriety in 1941 by throwing at an umpire from the mound. Gilbert, declaring the right-hander would never appear in a Nashville uniform again, shipped Poffenberger to San Diego. He never regained his form and retired after spending 1947 in Hagerstown near his home of Williamsport, Maryland.

Sources

Anniston Star

baseball-reference.com

Baton Rouge Advocate

Nashville Tennessean

newspapers.com

© 2017 by Skip Nipper. All Rights Reserved.

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1940 Nashville Vols

In conjunction with its 100th Anniversary Celebration in 2001, Minor League Baseball named the 1940 Nashville Vols as the 47th best minor league team of all time.

Nashville_Vols_1940_2Included on the roster were Cletus “Boots” Poffenburger, Tom Drake, John Milhalic, Oris Hockett, Gus Dugas, George Jeffcoat, Ace Adams, Russ Meers, Dick Culler, Charley “Greek” George, Mickey Rocco, Robert Boken, Arnold Moser, Johnny Sain, Tommy Tatum, Marv Felderman, and Leo Twardy.

After leading the league from opening day until season’s end, Larry Gilbert’s team won 101 games.  The team’s batting average totaled .311 for the year, Boots Poffenberger won 26 games, and reliever Ace Adams stuck out 122 rival batters.

George Jeffcoat struck out 18 Chattanooga Lookouts on September 10, 1940 in a Shaughnessy Playoff game for Nashville at the end of the season.  The Vols beat Houston of the Texas League four games to one in the Dixie Series.

Ironically, the team roster stayed intact for the entire season.

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