Featured Articles

When you look at the images on the walls of the Baseball Section Clubrooms, you wonder who were these people? What did they do? Who threw the potato? Who was the "Major"? Who played Baseball in front of 114,000 people at the MCG? Who was selected in front of Don Bradman for an MCC post? Who played Test cricket for Australia? Which Melbourne player stole two bases off pitcher Tris Speaker playing against the Chicago White Sox?

 

The 1897 Kangaroo Tour of the US.
      Also known as the "Disaster Tour". In 1897 there was an ambitious plan to send a team to the United States - the first foreign Baseball team to play in America.
V.S. Ransford
      Vernon S. Ransford (1885-1958). Represented M.C.C. Baseball Section from 1906-1925, Victorian Baseball representative 1908-1921, Australian Baseball representation 1908 vs Great White Fleet. M.C.C Committee member 1913-1957, M.C.C. Secretary 1939-1957. 
Dr H.I. Twiss
      A recent arrival from the US in 1904, his pitching was a revelation to local players, he had all the Yankee action, and both the in-out twists that the Australians had mastered by then, but he was one of the first to be able to throw the 12-6 curve ball. While only in Australia for 3 years, he dominated the local competition both with bat and ball.

1914 Victoria vs Chicago White Sox and New York Giants

In 1914, two of the top American teams, the New York Giants and the Chicago White Sox, under the leadership of the famous John J. McGraw and Charles Comiskey played on the MCG on a combined world tour. They played several demonstration games, including games against Victoria, the MCC were represented by Ransford and Vaughan.

  

C.W. Simmonds and the potato incident

Charles Simmonds was an outstanding catcher in NSW for many years, who had appeared for Australia against US Fleet teams in 1900 and 1908 and captained his State many times, transferred to Melbourne in 1914 and joined the MCC. Charles went on to become President of the Melbourne Cricket Club from 1957 to 1965. There are many stories attributed to Charles Simmonds, one of them is about fooling the third base runner into coming home by throwing a potato into left field! 

Major B.J. Wardill
      Benjamin Johnston Wardill (1842-1917). Secretary M.C.C. Baseball Section 1889-1910. He was elected secretary to the Melbourne Cricket Club in April 1879, served 31 years, was busy, business like, with a neatly trimmed Mark Twain moustache he became what The Australasian Star called "an International Institution", he was key to the establishment of the Baseball Section and its secretary from 1888 to 1910. Wardill was largely successful in his aim to make the Melbourne Cricket Club the Australian counterpart of the famous Marylebone Cricket Club in England, he helped lay the foundations of the Anglo-Australian Test cricket series and established the M.C.C as a multi discipline sporting club.
W.G. Ingleton
      Walter George Ingleton (1867-1923). Wally Ingleton or "Ingie" as he was known to a wide circle of friends, was the finest second baseman Australia had produced, and as a batsman he had few equals. 

Premier Baseball Team

The MCC Baseball team won an amazing 7 VBL pennants in a row from 1907 to 1913.

S.O. Quin
      Stan Quin (1908-1967). Represented M.C.C. Baseball Section from 1929-1945, MCC Baseball Section Coach 1940-1948, Victorian Baseball Team 1931-1940. 
Colin Miller
      Colin C. Miller (1916-2007). Represented M.C.C. Baseball Section from 1934-1953, S.C. Lansdown VBA best & fairest 1940, Victorian Baseball Team 1938-1947. 
Perry Ballmer
      Perry A. Ballmer (1899-1937). Represented M.C.C. Baseball Section from 1932-1936, S.C. Lansdown VBA best & fairest 1934, selected Victorian Baseball Team 1935. Tragically cut down in the prime of his life at age 38, a great player but more importantly a fine gentleman.
The extraordinary events in the B final '47
      Three of Hugh Trumble's sons, Tim, Charlie and Ken were playing in the B Final in 1947. Both Charlie and Ken broke their left legs in similar fashion. 
The 1956 Olympic Exhibition match Australia vs USA
      The 1956 Olympic Exhibition match Australia vs USA was attended by a world record crowd for a Baseball match at the time of 114,000. The USA won in 6 innings 11-5. 
David Went
      DAVID WENT - MELBOURNE, VICTORIAN AND AUSTRALIAN Player and Coach, whose record of achievements may never be equalled let alone surpassed. 
Wet behind the ears
      Prior to the move to summer baseball in 1976, the VBA hosted a Championship in 1975-76 which the Demons won but in an unlikely fashion. 
The Arthur Family
      The involvement of the Arthur family with the MCC Baseball Section began in 1974 when Ross was recruited by Arch Cavanagh and Club Coach David Went from a Diamond Valley premiership side coached by Les Arthur. From that time onwards the contribution by the Arthur family will perhaps never be equaled. 
  The Unwin Family
      The involvement of the Unwin family with the MCC Baseball Section. 
Arch and Veronica Cavanagh
      In memory of one of the sections great contributors to the administrative and social structure of the club, the Arch Cavanagh award honours outstanding and loyal service to the Baseball Section. Arch and Veronica became an institution around the club from the 1950's to the 1980's.

Were we robbed?

      The first nine were defeated by Waverley 6-5 in the 1981 preliminary final in a really outstanding and controversial game. 

Tom Trumble

The son of cricketer Hugh Trumble. Tom Trumble's legacy lives on in many areas of the club. He first joined the MCC committee in 1958 and joined the MFC equivalent in 1960. One of Melbourne's VFL delegates from 1962 to 1972. Made a Life Member in 1970.

The catchers mitt "Old Faithful"

One could argue that this piece of equipment belongs in the MCC Baseball Hall of Fame, being as highly decorated in premierships as any player. Represented in 20 years of first grade games, Claxton Shield carnivals and international matches.

   
 

The Book

Want to read more?

 

Above is the cover artwork of the MCC Baseball Section History Book to be released in late 2015, over 200 pages of history of the MCC's involvement in Baseball, including hundreds of images, 200 pages of stories, facts & figures.  WIll be available from the clubrooms and the online shop.