Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Series Dough Boys Grew in Spurts

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Series Dough Boys Grew in Spurts

Article excerpt

Somehow, when an average major-leaguer's salary is a million-bucks, it's hard to get excited about the romance of a World Series share. Not like, for instance, back in the Depression days of 1934 when an all-star rookie battery of Paul Dean and Bill DeLancey of the Cardinals' Gas House Gang nearly tripled their salaries in seven Series games.

The subject comes to mind as Toronto and Philadelphia play for a king-sized pie that could reach $120,000.

With a bow to inflation over the years, a dollar of lower value and higher taxation, it's a financial joyride from the first official Series back in 1903. That year, when the upstart newcomer Bostons of the American League beat Pittsburgh, the Red Sox share was $1,182.

The first $2,000 prize ($2,142) came in 1907 when the Chicago Cubs beat Detroit. Three thousand ($3,654) was topped in 1911 when Connie Mack's Philadelphia A's won over John McGraw's New York Giants.

A year later the winning figure passed $4,000 per ($4,024) when the Red Sox came from behind in the 10th inning of the seventh game to defeat the Giants. But Series slices thinned down thereafter.

In a war-shortened season in 1918, the Red Sox got only $1,102 for winning over the Cubs, and the two clubs nearly boycotted in protest.

So, interestingly, a year later when underpaid Chicago Black Sox threw the 1919 Series to Cincinnati, causing banishment of Shoeless Joe Jackson and seven others, the winning share exceeded five thousand for the first time ($5,207).

By 1923 briefly, the year the Yankees moved as tenants from the Giants' large Polo Grounds to their own larger Yankee Stadium, the Yanks got over $6,000 ($6,143), but that figure wasn't exceeded until 1935, a year the Tigers avenged their '34 loss to the Cardinals by beating the Cubs ($6,544.)

Tough times arrive in 1934 when aging Redbird player-manager Frank Frisch's salary was reduced from $28,000 to $18,500. Dizzy Dean got $7,500 for winning 30 games - he'd double it the next year - and brother Paul and rookie catcher DeLancey played for only $3,000.

Leo Durocher, earning $6,500 only if he paid off all the debts laundry-listed as a contract codicil, summed it up one day when Dizzy was horsing around, threatening to blow a lead. …

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