Photographs courtesy © Gary Jarvis www.minorleagueballparks.com
The PONY League continued to play throughout the war… one of very few leagues to do so, but the talent left town quickly. Eddie Howard would tie Don Richmond’s .330 avg but Samuel Williams would lose the most games going 8-12 with a 4.73 ERA. No players would make it to the MLB. They finished at an even 54-54 losing in the 1st round of the playoffs. In 1942, the Batavia Clippers signed a long term 10 year PDC with the Cleveland Indians. The first player to come up from the farm system to the big league club, would stand out far apart from the rest as future Indians’ Al Cihocki batted .342 with 16 2Bs, 8 3Bs and 7 HRs to take over the Batavia batting title and George Patte would become the team’s first 20 game winner going 20-6 with an all time Batavia low of 2.62, leading the Clippers to a 72-53 record. With the league expanding to 8 teams with the additions of Wellsville and Lockport, Batavia again finished 3rd and lost again in the 1st round to Olean. With 38,200 through the gates, Batavia finished 4th in attendance.