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Boston owner John I. Taylor continued to offer suggestions regarding player health, the Boston Globe reporting his opinion that “ballplayers make a great mistake in using too much hot water in bathing after their work in the field.  His idea is a little hot water and then a cold plunge or a cold shower bath.”

He also declared that he considered Fresno the best place on the West Coast to hold spring training, and planned an unprecedented cross-country train trip (there was no other commercial mode of transportation available) to the West Coast for spring training – though the team booked its spring home in the seaside town of Redondo Beach, where – unlike Fresno – February was plagued with rains and cold ocean breezes.

A special train spent about a week traveling across the land, stuck in snow, skirting the Mexican border during the Revolution and finally arriving – entertained by the Red Sox Quartette which had formed en route.  A reconstituted group went out on the vaudeville circuit after the season, to considerable success.

In the busy preseason, General Charles H. Taylor (John I’s father) purchased a plot of land at Ipswich and Lansdowne streets and, with the lease on the Huntington Avenue Grounds expiring, announced that they would build a new ballpark for the team in time for the 1912 season, a facility soon named Fenway Park.

After a few intrasquad games at Redondo Beach, the team split into two groups, one under  the command of manager Patsy Donovan and the other under Bill Carrigan. One went north to San Francisco. The other moved to Los Angeles. They played some games, then switched locales, and soon headed east playing games as they went in place which will never see another Red Sox game, places such as Ogden, Utah and Yuma, Arizona. The Yuma locals couldn’t raise more than four players to take on the Red Sox, who had to loan them five players to make for a nine. In one game in Hanford, California, Walter Moser pitched for both teams.

Smoky Joe Wood was a rising star, and he had a no-hitter going through 8 1/3 innings on July 7, winning a one-hitter, 6-1, against St. Louis. On the 29th, the Browns were in Boston and this time he walked two and hit one batter, but threw a 5-0 no-hitter.

The team actually dropped to fifth place (78-75). Wood was 23-17 (2.02). Cicotte and Collins both won 11 games, and Larry Pape was 10-8. The team ERA was 2.74 and the team batting average was .275.

Duffy Lewis led with 86 RBIs, and hit seven homers with a .307 average. Tris Speaker hit one more homer, and batted .334, driving in 70. Harry Hooper hit .311, four home runs, and drove in 45 – but scored a team-leading 93 times.

In mid-September, Taylor sold a 50% share in the club to James McAleer, who’d recently managed the Washington ballclub. The Taylors planned to rent their new ballpark to the team

By Bill Nowlin
 

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Tagged:
Bill Carrigan, Boston Red Sox, Duffy Lewis, Fenway Park, Harry Hooper, Huntington Avenue Grounds, Jimmy McAleer, Joe Wood, John I. Taylor, Patsy Donovan, St. Louis Browns, Tris Speaker, Walter Moser
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