Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is.

Darrell Pittman

The following item was found in the July 19. 1896 edition of the Houston Daily Post by crack baseball researcher Darrell Pittman and donated for our notation and use in The Pecan Park Eagle:



A Spot Cash Offer with a Quick Delivery of Goods


There was a great deal of life in the grand stand yesterday. Of course, the people of Houston were interested in the home team and each successive play of advantage made by the Buffaloes was loudly applauded. Kline’s home run raised a howl of delight from them all, but when little Charlie Becker put it over the fence two separate times, the applause was deafening. Everybody went wild. Paris did not seem to have an admirer in a hundred yards of the plate. But they did, nevertheless.

There was a party of traveling men grouped in one corner of the grand stand. The traveler is always on the side of the stranger in a strange town. He is a stranger himself and always believes he gets the worst of it, but he don’t, and so this aggregation of good-natured drummers began to root for the visitors. Every good play made by the Midlands was given a good strong hand.

In the fifth inning, Payne and Mulkey were on bases (for Houston). Van Dresser had struck out and Cathey came to the stick. “Five dollars for a home run,” called out one of the drummers. Cathey tried to make it, but he only hit to Kline. He got first, however, filling the bases.

When Zeis walked up to the plate, stick in hand, the drummer raised his bet: “Seven dollars for a home run.” It looked like it would be a safe proposition as Zeis had two strikes on him but he got an easy one. He caught on the nose and lifted it above the heads of the scattered ballplayers Barker went back to the fence to pull it in, but he couldn’t. It lifted a little, made a down shoot, and dropped just without the enclosure.

Zeis had called the bet.

He had an easy walk around and then went to the grand stand. Of course, the drummers put up. They made the proposition and when they were called, showed their hands. They “went south”, as the expression goes and “dug up the coin.” It was unexpected to them. They were trying to enthuse matters. They did.

After the home run they quieted down and mentally figured the profits as Ivory soap and groceries from Marlin and Galveston. Will Richards, a prominent traveling man who makes Houston his headquarters and roots for the Buffaloes then went after them. He brought about forty small boys into the grand stand and they made life miserable for those (Houston-foreign) drummers.

There probably will be no more cash offers for spot home runs. The delivery is too sudden.



Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle


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