Photograph courtesy of Chris Hunter of the Schenectady Museum and Science Center from the G.E. Collection of Photographs (special thanks to Stephen LJ Russo)
A new Jennings Stadium was completed in 1928 in Augusta Georgia and professional baseball moved ts operations out of Warren Park, where Augusta pro teams had been playing since the turn of the century. The Augusta Tygers (named after Ty Cobb… a former teammate), were the first team to call this home, representing what is today’s Double-A Southern League. (Back in the early days this was called the South Atlantic League, but this Double-A league would change their name to the Southern League in 1963, and a new Single A South Atlantic League took over the S.A.L. name). The Tygres featured quite a few strong players including Cecil Davis who walloped 36 2Bs, 7 3Bs, 27 HRs and batted .315. Bloomer Milner led in doubles and hitting, putting up 42 2Bs, 15 3Bs, 5 HRs and a .355 batting ave. Gordie Johnson led in triples, slamming 28 2Bs and 18 3Bs while hitting .331. Odie Strain also held a strong bat batting .346 with 35 2Bs, 13 HRs and a .346... as did Luke Williams (29 2Bs, 8 HRs, .347). On the mound, ace of staff… future Indians’ Belve Bean, was the pitching star putting up a 20-9, 2.48 record. Unfortunately, the rest of the staff was downright miserable with Grady McClung (12-18, 3.93) defeating all of Belve Bean’s purpose as the Tygres finished in 3rd place with a 75-69 record and out of the playoffs despite the incredible hitting. Odie Strain would return in 1929 to manage the team and did his best with the bat to keep Augusta competitive putting up 30 2Bs, 9 3Bs, 8 HRs and a .361 (taking over the batting title), but Augusta sunk to 6th place with a 68-78 record.