SCOUTING YESTERDAY: Pheasants draw the likes of Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams to South Dakota for annual all-star game
This week in South Dakota history: Oct. 11-17
Frigid fans packed Fairgrounds Park 75 years ago this week to watch Joe DiMaggio and the Major League Baseball All-Stars take on Hugh Luby and the Pacific Coast League All-Stars in the fifth annual Huron Baseball “Pheastival,” according to The Daily Plainsman.
Previous pheastivals had featured an American League-National League or MLB-South Dakota all-star game. After the Pacific Coast League’s unsuccessful attempt to join the major leagues, the Oct. 17, 1948, game was a chance for the minor league — of which stars like DiMaggio and Ted Williams are former players — to showcase their talent.
The Pacific leaguers scored three runs out of the gate on opening pitcher Joe Page of the New York Yankees, including a homer by Russ Burns of the Tulsa Oilers. The majors made it on the board in the third when Bill Nicholson of the Chicago Cubs hit his first homerun of the game.
The stars continued to rack up the runs until the bottom of the ninth inning when players and officials had had enough of the near freezing October day, calling the game in a 13-13 tie.
The Pacific Coast League would go on to become the only minor league to receive an ‘Open’ classification, according to the Baseball Hall of Fame, a grade above Triple-A minor league level.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to The Dakota Scout to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.