“There’s no crying in baseball”

All American Girls Baseball League: The Springfield Sallies

Michael Bushnell
Publisher


March is Women’s History Month and keeping with the baseball theme of our weekly historic postcard feature, we’ll be touring some of the stadiums used by the All American Girls Baseball League between its founding in 1943 until the final league game was played in 1954.


Ten teams made up the league, including the Muskegon Belles from Muskegon, Michigan and the South Bend Blue Sox who played at Bendix Field in South Bend, Indiana. 


The league grew to over 600 players from all over the Midwest.
The most successful team in the league was the Rockford Peaches, made famous in the 1992 classic film, “A League of Their Own.”


As a side note, the Blue Sox and the Peaches were the only two teams in the league to play in every game from 1943 to 1954 in their respective cities.


This week, we spotlight the Springfield Sallies from Springfield, Illinois who joined the league in 1948. 


The Sallies were one of the worst teams in the league compiling a 41-84 record their first season, finishing 35 games behind the first place Racine Belles. 


The club was short-lived and resorted to touring with the Chicago Colleens between 1949 and 1951 as part of a player development exhibition series for the league. 


The teams bounced between Yankee Stadium in New York and Griffith Stadium in Washington DC, shown in this reproduction postcard for their games. 


The team was dissolved entirely after the 1951 season.


Griffith Stadium was the home of the Washington Senators from 1910, when it was originally constructed, until 1961 when it was ultimately closed. 


The park had the distinction of being the only ballpark in the country to have every President from William Howard Taft to John F. Kennedy throw a ceremonial first pitch at the park. 


The park was demolished in 1965. Howard University Hospital now occupies the site. A marker inside the hospital notes the location of the batter’s box and home plate. 

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