St. Cloud Moose Inaugural State Run

LOOKING BACK: St. Cloud Moose muscle way to inaugural Class B title

The newly added class to Minnesota amateur baseball in 1948 helped draw more fans, but also provided more opportunities for players as Class B grew quickly.

The first state tournament for Class B saw first-year teams like Richfield-Bloomington clinch a spot and allowed players like 45-year-old pitcher Neil Rengel and the St. Cloud Moose a chance at a championship at Riverside Park in Shakopee. Riverside Park saw significant upgrades leading up to the state tournament, including a $20,000 infusion to install new lights, add more seating, build new fences and re-do the infield.  

Rudy “Cobby” Saatzer pitched a two-hitter and Don Winter hit a home run in an 8-1 opening round win for the St. Cloud Moose over Dalton. 

Saatzer played earlier in the year with Enterprise, Alabama in the Class D Alabama State League and others on the roster included players from St. Cloud Cathedral and St. Cloud Tech.

Bob “Porkchop” Kinsel, a draftee from Kingston, started against Lester Prairie in the second round but Saatzer came on in the eighth inning after Lester Prairie tied the game. Saatzer drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the 12th inning for a 6-5 win. Lester Prairie reached the state tournament the next three consecutive years. Lester Prairie claimed the 1950 Class B championship and finished third in 1951.

Rengel, a former NFL player, started the championship game against the Springfield Cubs. St. Cloud jumped out to a 9-0 lead through six innings where he allowed just two hits. The Cubs got five runs off him in the seventh to make it 9-5 and Saatzer closed the game out for a 12-5 victory. The Moose didn’t return in 1949 as Saatzer went to Winsted. 

Springfield opened the tournament with a 6-4 win over Grand Meadow, the Region 6 champion and followed that with a 6-5 win over Taconite to reach the semifinals. The Cubs beat Pierz 11-6 to advance to the title game. Pierz defeated Backus 12-3 in the quarterfinals.

Lester Prairie edged Crookston 8-7 with a three-run ninth inning for a walk-off win in the quarterfinals.

 

Play-in Games

Sunday, Sept. 12— 1 p.m.

Lester Prairie 5, Richfield-Bloomington 1

Doug Dibb limited Richfield-Bloomington, Region 7 champion, to four hits and struck out 12 hitters for Lester Prairie, Region 8 champion. A walk, an error, and singles by Orval Birkholz, Oscar Rolf and Vic Wroge helped lead to three runs in the first inning. Lester Prairie’s Orland Kruschke also laid down a squeeze bunt in the inning.

 

Lester Prairie 5, Richfield-Bloomington 1

Richfield-Bloomington 000 000 100—1 4 3

Lester Prairie               301 100 00x—5 7 0

 

Monday, Sept. 13 —1 p.m.

Springfield Cubs 6, Grand Meadow 4

Art Rambow had a triple in the third inning and a single in the fourth inning to help Springfield, the Region 5 champion, to a 6-4 win. The Cubs scored two runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings. Grand Meadow, the Region 6 champion, grabbed a 2-0 lead after the second inning and regained a 3-2 lead after the top of the fourth inning.

 

Springfield 6, Grand Meadow 4

Grand Meadow 110 100 100—4 11 3

Springfield         002 220 00x—6 9 3

 

First Round

Tuesday, Sept. 14—1 p.m.

St. Cloud Moose 8, Dalton 1

Saatzer threw a three-hitter and struck out six for St. Cloud, the Central Minny and Region 1 champion. Don Winter hit a 360-foot two-run home run in the first inning against Dalton, the Tourist League and Region 10 champion. Jerry Becker singled with the bases loaded in the seventh. Don Winter had two hits and brother Vern also collected two hits, including a double. Junie Weisbrich and Speed Winter also hit doubles.

 

St. Cloud 8, Dalton 1

Dalton     000 000 010—1 3 3

St. Cloud 200 010 50x—8 8 2

 

Wednesday, Sept. 15—3 p.m.

Lester Prairie 8, Crookston 7 

Lester Prairie rallied from a two-run deficit in the bottom of the ninth to score three runs for an 8-7 victory. Lou Jenneke drove in the game-winning run with two outs and the bases loaded.  

 

Lester Prairie 8, Crookston 7

Crookston      410 000 002—7  9  6

Lester Prairie 000 022 103—8 10 7

 

Wednesday, Sept. 15—1 p.m.

Pierz 12, Backus 3

Pierz, the Great Central League and Region 9 champion, routed Backus, the Region 3 champion, despite committing seven errors. Backus committed five of its own and managed 10 hits.

 

Pierz 12, Backus 3

Backus 000 000 030—3 10 5

Pierz    000 203 34x—12 12 7

 

Thursday, Sept. 16— 1 p.m.

Springfield Cubs 6, Taconite 5

Springfield scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fifth inning after two errors, a stolen base and a wild pitch. Leo Domeier hit a home run for Springfield while Jim Troumbly, better known for his hockey career, and Joe Cloutier hit home runs for Taconite, the Mesabi League and Region 4 champion.

 

Springfield Cubs 6, Taconite 5

Taconite     101 110 010—5 7 6

Springfield 020 310 00x—6 8 3

 

Second Round

Thursday, Sept. 16—3 p.m.

St. Cloud Moose 6, Lester Prairie 5, 12 innings

Rudy Saatzer singled in the winning run in the 12th inning with two outs as Junie Weisbrich crossed the plate. Saatzer relieved starter Bob Kinsel in the ninth inning and picked up the win in relief. Kinsel went 13-5 and played with St. Cloud as a draftee from Kingston.

Lester Prairie held a 3-2 lead until the bottom of the seventh inning when they committed four errors, which allowed St. Cloud to tie the game. Lester Prairie tied it up in the eighth after the Moose committed two errors that led to two runs. Gale Roth, an 18-year-old, threw 10 2/3 innings for Lester Prairie and allowed just five hits.

 

St. Cloud 6, Lester Prairie 5, 12 innings

Lester Prairie 020 100 020 000—5 9 7

St. Cloud        110 000 300 001—6 5 4

 

Lester Prairie (5) AB H PO A

W. Dibb, CF 2 0 0 0

Roth, P         4 1 3 3

Oliver, 1B, CF 5 0 5 0

Jenneke, SS 3 1 3 9

Rolf, C 4 2 2 1

aO. Birkholz 1 0 0 0

Czech, RF 6 0 1 0

V. Wroge, LF 5 2 2 0

Kruschke, 2B 5 1 1 7

B. Birkholz, 3B 5 1 1 1

P. Dibb, P, 1B 5 1 17 1

Boser, C         1 0 0 0

Totals 46 9 j35 22

 

St. Cloud (6) AB H PO A

Rengel, LF 6 1 2 0

Miller, RF         2 0 1 0

Becker, RF 3 1 1 0

Weisbrich, 2B 6 1 2 2

V. Winter, SS 4 0 3 2

Saatzer, 3B 6 1 0 1

Hagen, 1B 2 0 4 0

Yeager, 1B 3 0 7 0

Streitz, CF 5 0 2 0

Seymour, C 4 1 13 1

Kinsel, P         3 0 1 2

S. Winter, 3B 2 0 0 1

Totals 46 4 36 9

a—Hit into double play for Rolf in 9th.

j—Two out when winning run scored.

Errors—Jenneke, Rolf 2, Kruschke, B. Birkholz 2, Boser, Weisbrick, Saatzer, Yaeger, Kinsel. Runs batted in—Rolf, V. Wroge 2, D. Dibb, Rengel, Becker, Saatzer. Two-base hits—Rolf, Seymour. Sacrifice hit—Kruschke. Double play—Weisbrick to V. Winter to Yaeger. Left on bases—Lester Prairie 10, St. Cloud 9. Bases on balls—Off D. Dibb 1, off Roth 3, off Kinsel 2, off Saatzer 3. Struck out—by Roth 3, by Kinsel 10, by Saatzer 2. Hits—off Dibb 1 in 1 inning, off Roth 4 in 11 2/3. Passed ball—Boser. Hit by pitcher—by Dibb (Miller). Wild pitches—Kinsel, Saatzer. Winning pitcher—Saatzer. Losing pitcher—Roth. Umpires—Oettel, Marty and Ryan. Time—2:42. 

 

Friday, Sept. 17—1 p.m.

Springfield Cubs 11, Pierz 6

Leo Domeier hit a home run and tripled for Springfield in an 11-6 win over Pierz. Domeier hit a go-ahead home run in the top of the sixth and his triple came during a four-run first inning. Pierz rallied to tie the game 6-6 in the bottom of the seventh before Springfield hung a five-spot in the top of the ninth.

 

Springfield Cubs 11, Pierz 6

Springfield 400 002 050—11 12 6

Pierz          005 001 100—6 8   5

Hofmeister, Wohlrabe and Gramentz; Voltin, Boser, McGonagel, Dominick and H. Meyer.

 

Springfield AB H PO A

Rambow, Al, LF 6 1 2 0

Schmid, SS 5 2 1 2

Miesen, 3B 5 3 2 1

Fredrich, 2B 4 2 2 5

Domeier, CF 4 2 0 0

Rambow, Art, RF 4 2 2 0

Callanan, 1B 3 0 11 0

Hofmeister, P 1 0 0 1

Wohlrabe, P 4 0 1 4

Gramentz, C 4 0 6 1

Totals 40 12 27 14

 

Pierz               AB H PO A

Meyer, H., C       5 0 7 2

Polkamp, 3B       5 1 0 1

Girtz, SS               0 0 0 0

Boser, P               3 1 0 2

McGonagle, P       1 1 1 1

Dominick, P       1 0 0 0

Litke, LF               5 2 2 0

Schreiner, 2B       3 0 2 1

Preimsberger, H., RF      4 0 3 0

Meyer, C., CF         3 2 0 0

Preimsberger, A., 1B 3 0 10 0

Boltin, P, SS         3 1 2 2

Totals       36 8 27 9

 

Errors—Schmid, Miesen, Fredrich 2, Domeier, Gramentz, Girtz, McGonagle, Polkamp, C. Meyer. Two base hits—Miesen, Polkamp. Three base hits—Domeier, McGonagle. Home run—Domeier. Double plays—Miesen (u), Wohlrabe to Fredrich to Callanan. Base on balls—off Hofmeister 1, Wohlrabe 1, McGonagle 3, Dominick 2. Struck out—by Hofmeister 3, Wohlrabe 3, Boser 5, McGonagle 3. Umpires—Koll, Shea, Jensen. Time—2:32.

 

Championship

Saturday, Sept. 18— 1 p.m.

St. Cloud Moose 12, Springfield Cubs 5

Neil Rengel, a 45-year-old veteran, held Springfield to two hits through six innings while Rudy Saatzer had three hits and closed the game out. Bud Streitz went 4-for-5 while Ray Yaeger, a Minnesota Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame member, and Gene Rengel each had two hits. Yaeger drove in three runs. Saatzer doubled twice in the game and pitched later in the game for his third appearance on the mound in the tournament. 

 

St. Cloud 12, Springfield 5

St. Cloud   204 002 103—12 14 2

Springfield 000 000 500—5     7 3

 

St. Cloud (12) AB H PO A

Rengel, G., LF 5 2 4 0

Schaefer, RF 4 0 2 0

Weisbrich, 2B 4 1 2 2

Winter, V., SS 5 0 0 1

Saatzer, 3B, P 5 3 1 2

Yaeger, 1B 4 2 11 1

Streitz, CF 5 4 2 0

Seymour, C 5 1 4 0

Rengel, N., P 4 1 1 1

Winter, D., 3B 1 0 0 0

Totals 42 14 27 7

 

Springfield (5) AB H PO A

Rambow, Al, LF 4 0 3 0

Hofmeister, 2B 2 0 2 2

Rambow, Art, RF 2 0 0 0

Miesen, 3B 4 1 2 5

Fredrich, RF, 2B 4 1 2 0

Domeier, CF 4 3 1 0

Schmid, SS 4 0 1 2

Callanan, 1B 4 1 9 0

Schumacher, Dennis, C 2 0 2 0

Wohlrabe, P 3 1 1 3

Schumacher, Dan, P 1 0 0 1

Gramentz, C 2 0 4 0

Totals 36 7 27 13

 

Errors—Saatzer 2, Hofmeister, Miesen, Gramentz. Two base hits—Saatzer 2, G. Rengel, Callanan, Miesen. Base on balls—off Schumacher 2, Wohlrabe. Struck out—by N. Rengel 2, Saatzer 1, Schumacher 2, Wohlrabe 3. Umpires—Mahre, Ruff, Johnson. Time—1:47.

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