Monday, February 24, 2020

Hoyt Wilhelm with the Jacksonville Tars

Photo credit: The Charlotte Observer
1948: Hoyt Wilhelm's time with the Jacksonville (FL) Tars (NY Giants Class A team, South Atlantic League) started out rough in 1948, as he posted an 0-0 record, 9 walks, and an 8.18 ERA in 11 innings during 6 games before being sent to the Knoxville (TN) Smokies (NY Giants Class B team, Tri-State League) where he flourished (see Knoxville Smokies page on Wilhelm).
1949: Wilhelm would redeem himself, however, in 1949, when he started and finished the season with the Jacksonville Tars, posting a 17-12 record (most wins on the team and sixth-best in the league) and a 2.66 ERA (best on the team and ninth-best in the league). At the plate Wilhelm hit .244 and had 2 doubles.

Photo credit: Collection (1949 Jacksonville Tars team; Wilhelm, back row, far left)
The 1949 Jacksonville Tars finished 73-81 and 5th place in the South Atlantic League.

Photo credit: Collection (close-up view of Wilhelm from the team photo)
South Atlantic League Hall of Fame: Hoyt Wilhelm was inducted into the South Atlantic League Hall of Fame along with six others in 1996 (the third year of the Hall of Fame's existence). Others inducted were: Bill Bethea (pitcher); Roy Majtyka (manager); Pat Putnam (first base); Jim Baynes (team executive), Ed Holtz (team executive); Pat Williams (team executive).

Photo: Durkee Field, Jacksonville, Florida (1939)
 The Jacksonville Tars played at Durkee Field, which was rebuilt in 1934 and hosted a minor league team until 1954 when a new stadium was built. Durkee Field was later renamed J.P. Small Ballpark and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places as Joseph E. Durkee Athletic Field.  

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