A big first win for the Brewers on April 21, 1926 helped to begin a season of victories. A team of 22 players brought thousands of fans to Athletic Park (later known as Borchertfield field) to experience the excitement of that season.
Thus began Jack Lelivelt’s successful career with the Milwaukee Brewers, who set a new club record for victories in 1926 with 93. By June 15th, 1926, the American Association standings in the Milwaukee Sentinel placed the Brewers in first place ahead of Indianapolis, Kansas City, Toledo and St. Paul.
Sylvester Simon (pictured fourth from left in the top row) only played one season with the Brewers but saw action in 107 games and hit a .308 average. Californian Clyde Beck (second from left in top row) also only played for the Brewers in 1926. Pitcher Ossie Orwoll (second from left in the bottom row) had the team best record with 12 wins to 4 losses. In June of 1926 he played in Athletic Park for the first time and aided in their ninth consecutive win. They defeated St. Paul 4 to 1 with Orwoll scoring one of those critical runs and bringing the two thousand fans to their feet on a rainy Wednesday afternoon. The whole city seemed to be in baseball fever as the streak continued.
An article by Chance Michaels of the Borchertfield Museum stated that in the 21st victory of the season they played the Toledo Mud Hens and won 9 to zero! That game was played on June 14th.
On the 16th the Brewers again played Toledo but fell 9 to 6, their first loss since May 26. It concluded the amazing 21 game undefeated streak. Hefty Heaving from the Toledo Mud Hens had three home runs and hit one through the hands of outfielder Bunny Brief (to the right of Borchert in photo) with the bases loaded in the fifth inning. Hefty's fine offense and the fatigue of pitcher Dave Dansworth proved decisive in the defeat. Dansworth (not in the photo above) otherwise had pitched a great season leading up to the Toledo game. However, he was ill for some time before the game and his performance suffered.
Athletic Field drew thousands of fans to the stands to watch the great victories of the 1926 Milwaukee Brewers team. The excitement of baseball, and the Milwaukee Brewers, are significant trademarks of the Milwaukee area. Congratulations 1926 Brewers! Welcome to a new baseball season, Milwaukee!
Brews Beaten After Winning 21 Straight Games [Electronic version]. (1926, June 17). The Milwaukee Journal, p. 10.
Hamann, R., & Koehler, B. (2004). American Association Milwaukee Brewers (pp. 52-59). Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing. Retrieved April 2, 2013, from http://books.google.com/books?id=8q3nrfVXC2MC&lpg=PA59&ots=ICkFpAOrPF&dq=milwaukee%20brewers%201920s&pg=PA52#v=onepage&q=milwaukee%20brewers%201920s&f=false
Michales, C. (2012, November 12). In Borchert Field . Retrieved April 2, 2013, from http://www.borchertfield.com/search/label/1920s
Ossie Orwall Faces St. Paul in Second [Electronic version]. (1926, June 2). The Milwaukee Journal, p. 39.
By Dustin Hochmuth,
Museum Intern, UW-Whitewater Communications Major