Oregon & Portland’s Baseball History: Introduction

Joe Tinker, Satchel Paige, Lou Pinella, Sam McDowell, Del Baker, George Freese, Eddie Basinski, Jim Thorpe, Luis Tiant, Scott Brosius, Kent Bottenfield…

The list goes on and on. This is baseball history that either was born in Oregon or played in Oregon. Where was Ted Williams discovered by the Red Sox organization? He was discovered doing batting practice at Vaughn Street Park in NW Portland. Bet that is something you did not know. Bobby Doerr was signed here. Jim Thorpe (yes, that Jim Thorpe) played for the Beavers, as did the great Negro League pitcher Satchel Paige.

2003 marks the Centennial Anniversary of the Pacific Coast League. Portland is one of the Charter members of that League, and is the last Charter City not to have Major League Baseball. While we at the Oregon Baseball Campaign work diligently to bring MLB to our city, we would be remiss if we didn’t think we were standing on the shoulders of some incredible baseball history already.

With the PCL’s 100 Anniversary, we felt that it would be the goal of OSC to branch into something that would last well beyond the days when an MLB team arrives. Within the next year, this section of the site will grow into a baseball researchers haven for all things “Oregon Baseball”. We start by displaying the 1903-1957 batting stats for the Beavers. These stats are the culmination of several months of work by Mark Miller of the OSC staff, Ron Selter and Kevin Saldana of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), and myself. The dates between 1930 and 1957 will be presented within the next couple of weeks, and we are converting data from 1957 through the present for consumption, hopefully, before opening day. Pitching stats will be posted, as they become available.

Also coming soon will be a detailed timeline in both interactive version, and text version for those doing research. The interactive version will allow users to select a decade, and year from a scrolling timeline beginning in the 1860’s. Selecting a year will have information and short bios on events or players that were born in Oregon, or played in Oregon.

However, the most far reaching and exciting portion of the site will be biographies. It is the goal of OSC to document some type of biography for every player that either played for the Beavers, or was born in Oregon and played in MLB. This will be our legacy we leave to others who wish to learn about the great history that Portland has been granting baseball fans for a century.

We hope that you will check back here often, and look for updates within our Forums section,

Maury Brown
Information Director
Oregon Stadium Campaign