Norman’s Letter – USO National Leaguers visit Rizal Stadium

Saturday morning
January 5, 1945 [1946]

Dearest Mother & Dad;

Click Image to read the full letter
This typewritten letter from an unknown GI, named “Norman,” describes the USO National League Stars’ visit to Luzon to face the Manila Dodgers (Chevrons and Diamonds Collection).

                Went into the big ball game last night – and the National League All-Stars and these Manila Dodgers are really putting on a grand exhibition of baseball. Thursday afternoon the Dodgers beat the All-Stars by the score of 2-1, and it took 14 innings to do it. Last night the Dodgers jumped off to a three run lead in the first inning, but the All-Stars kept pecking away at the score, and tied the ball game up in the first half of the ninth.  The Dodgers put in a pinch-hitter for their starting pitcher in the last half of the ninth, and, since the Dodgers didn’t win the game, then they had to play extra innings. Well, the relief pitcher for the Dodgers that tossed the first half of the tenth should have been on guard duty or KP last night because the All-Stars pounded him for four runs – and that was the ball game. They had an overflow crowd last night, possibly 35,000 people. We went in right after work to eat at the Roosevelt Club, then go to the game. The meal at the Red Cross was roast beef, potatoes, peas, asparagus & cheese salad, bread, butter, baked custard and coffee. It wasn’t the best meal I have eaten there, but it was pretty good. We got to Rizal Stadium about 6:30m and since the game didn’t start until 8:00 we thought we would be able to get good seats. However, there must have been lots of fellows that figured there would be a big crowd and they had better go early – because we and to go to the bleachers far down on the right field line – and those were the only seats left. I thought that since so many men have gone home that these games wouldn’t have the crowds they have been having but I guess that new men have found Rizal Stadium and are spending their spare time down there. I must admit that is a good place to spend spare time because one can go there and forget all their troubles and woes about having to be stuck overseas. The big guns of the All-Stars thus far has been Frank McCormick. He had two home runs in the first game, had a triple, two doubles and a single in the second, and last night had two doubles and two singles. Last night, Red Barrett – the Cardinals pitcher, had four hits in five times at bat. The crowd was really amazed at the way he hit – and they gave him a big round of applause for it. He is still carrying on quite a show, clowning all of the time. Every time he gets on base he really has a picnic. He teases everyone he gets close to – and usually keeps the crowd in an uproar all of the time. Once certainly would never see Mort Cooper do that. Barrett, if not as good a pitcher as Cooper, certainly is 1000000% improvement as far as personalities are concerned. And, from the looks of the records at the end of last year – Barret was a better pitcher than Cooper.

[Remainder of letter not transcribed]

Loads of love,
Norman [signed]

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