Venetian Gardens (Pat Thomas Park)

Leesburg Florida

Leesburg Lightning
Former  Gondoliers / Anglers / Packers
Pirates / Braves
A's / Dodgers
Jake Bunch and the Leesburg Gondoliers returned in 1938 and Bunch took the mound as ace of the team hoping to recreate his 23 win season of 1937. Would you believe he did just that, posting a 23-16 record and an even better 1.53 ERA? This time, Bunch wasn’t the only star in the rotation either. Arther Hardee would post an 18-8, 3.28. Joe Marina was excellent at 15-6, 2.00 and James Mahaffey would go 6-1, 2.37. At the plate, the Gondoliers were a little better as well. Stephen Risk didn’t take any chances (sorry…) putting up 22 2Bs, 5 3Bs and a .305. Chet Clemens (22 2Bs, 13 3Bs, 4 HRs, .289) and Frank Drews (20  2Bs, .290) would both have good seasons on their way to the Brooklyn Dodgers and Clarence Groat would bat .259 while hitting 21 2Bs, 10 3Bs and 7 HRs to lead the team in the power department. Ralph Onis (.255) would also go on to play for the Dodgers. (Why they didn’t hold an official Brooklyn Dodgers affiliation is uncertain). The Gondoliers finished with an excellent 87-52 record to capture 1st place. They easily took the 1st round of the playoffs but were stifled in the finals by the Gainesville G-Men. In the off-season the team would change it’s name to the Leesburg Anglers… a tribute to all the fishermen that came to the lake surrounding the ballpark to fish.